Abide with me; fast falls the eventide

Abide with me; fast falls the eventide. Henry Francis Lyte* (1793-1847). Probably written in 1847, this is one of the world’s best known hymns. Based on Luke 24:49, it is particularly associated with funeral services, but has had wide appeal in secular contexts as well. Its origins are somewhat uncertain. It was originally thought that Lyte had written it in his study on the evening before preaching his farewell sermon in the parish of Brixham, Devon, in September 1847; this account is plausible, given the hymn’s sea and tide imagery (‘Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day’). It is more likely, however, that it was written at Berry Head, near Brixham, in August 1847. An article by...

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