Samuel John Stone

25 April 1839–19 November 1900

Annotations Upon Popular Hymns (1893)

REV. SAMUEL JOHN STONE was born April 25, 1839, at Whitmore, Staffordshire, England. He was graduated at Pembroke College in Oxford, 1862, and in September of the same year was ordained to the curacy of Windsor, in which he abode eight years, winning the esteem and confidence of all with whom he came in contact. He then removed to Haggerston, a suburb of London, where he became his father’s curate. Afterwards, when the growing infirmities of his father necessitated a removal to a less laborious incumbency, he was made vicar of St. Paul’s in Haggerston. Here he yet remains, preferring the charge he has among grateful and middle-class parishioners to any of the better benefices which have been proposed for his acceptance. He is a “High Churchman,” though it is said he is not a ritualist; still, some of his stanzas have had to be altered in order to fit them to the taste and use of the churches at large.

by Charles S. Robinson
Annotations Upon Popular Hymns (1893)

SAMUEL JOHN STONE was born at the rectory, Whitmore, Staffordshire, April 25, 1839. He studied at Pembroke College, Oxford. His first curacy was that of Windsor. In 1874 he succeeded his father at St. Paul’s, Haggerston; and in 1890 was appointed rector of All Hallows, London Wall. Mr. Stone is a hymn-writer of high order, and his compositions are numerous, and very uniform in quality. Many of them are in common use, but a few are better known than others. Such are: “The church’s one foundation,” originally a hymn of ten stanzas. Five stanzas are usually chosen for hymnal purposes. … It may be added that the poem is based on the ninth article of the Apostles’ Creed, and its origin was the able statement made against the teaching of Bishop Colenso by Bishop Gray, Cape Town. “Weary of earth and laden with my sin” is a penitential hymn of much pathos. “Of all my hymns,” the author writes, “it is the most dear to me, because of the letters I have received from, or about, persons to whose “joy and peace in believing” it has been permitted to be instrumental in the first instance or later.” “The old year’s long campaign is o’er” is a good hymn for the New Year. Stone died in London November 19, 1900.

by John Brownlie
The Hymns and Hymn Writers of the Church Hymnary (1911)

Samuel J. Stone, Poems and Hymns (1903).

Featured Hymns:

The church’s one foundation

Collections of Hymns and Poems:

The Doings of Drink (1865): WorldCat

Lyra Fidelium (1866): PDF

Penny Hymn Book for Temperance Societies (1868): PDF

Hymn for Church Defence (1870s): WorldCat

Hymns for the Day of Intercession (1872; reprinted from Mission Life, below): WorldCat

The Knight of Intercession and Other Poems

1st ed. (1872): PDF
2nd ed. (1873): PDF
3rd ed. (1875):
4th ed. (1877)
5th ed. (1882): HathiTrust
6th ed. (1887): PDF
7th ed. (1892): PDF

The First Problem: The Soliloquy of a Rationalistic Chicken (ca. 1874-1890): HathiTrust

Sonnets of the Sacred Year (1875): WorldCat

The Beautiful Death: Song of a Cavalier’s Mother (1878): WorldCat

The Sea’s Amen: Song (1879): WorldCat

The Christmas Tree (1882): WorldCat

Order of the Consecutive Church Service for Children, with Original Hymns (1884): WorldCat

Hymns (1886): WorldCat

Lays of Iona (1897): WorldCat

see also:

Church of England Temperance Society Magazine (1866)

Hymns Ancient & Modern (1868-1904)

Mission Life, vol. 3, pt. 2 (1872), pp. 685-688

The Scottish Guardian (1875)

S. Kettlewell, Thomas à Kempis (1882)

G.H. Leslie, The First Christmas Morn (1882)

Monthly Packet (1869, 1870, 1884)

Parochial Magazine (1885)

Church Bells (10 April 1885)

Hymns for Use During 1897, Being the Sixtieth Year of the Reign of Queen Victoria (1897): WorldCat

Church Mission Hymn Book (1899)

Church Monthly (July 1899)

C.W.A. Brooke, Additional Hymns (1903)

Other Works:

A new year’s gift to England; written on the birth of a son to their Royal Highnesses the Prince and Princess of Wales (1864): WorldCat

Deare Childe: A Parish Idyll (ca. 1879): WorldCat

Parochial Sermons (1901): WorldCat


British Library, Archives & Manuscripts, including MS proof copy of Hymns (1886).

Bodleian Library; Modern Oxford Diocesan Records; MSS. Oxf. dioc. papers; 2262 c.10 Oxon.27 (v.3)


F.G. Ellerton, Poems and Hymns by Samuel John Stone, with a Memoir (London: Methuen & Co., 1903):

Related Resources:

S.J. Stone, Facts and details of the East London mission to the Jews: in connection with the churches of St. Peter’s, Eaton Square, S.W., and of St. Paul’s, Haggerston, E. (1884): WorldCat

Samuel Duffield, English Hymns: Their Authors and History (NY: Funk & Wagnalls, 1888), pp. 418-419:

Charles S. Robinson, Annotations Upon Popular Hymns (NY: Hunt & Eaton, 1893), pp. 265-266:

John Julian, “Samuel John Stone,” A Dictionary of Hymnology, with Supplement (London: J. Murray, 1907), pp. 1095-1096, 1707.

John Brownlie, “Samuel John Stone,” The Hymns and Hymn Writers of the Church Hymnary, rev. ed. (London: Henry Frowde, 1911), pp. 218-220, 370:

Coulson Kernahan, In Good Company Some personal recollections of Swinburne, Lord Roberts Watts-Duncan, Oscar Wilde, Edward Whymper, S.J.Stone, Stephen Phillips (London: John Lane, The Bodley Head, 1917).

Valerie Bonham, “Samuel John Stone,” Oxford Dictionary of National Biography:

H.E.C. Stapleton, “Samuel John Stone,” Canterbury Dictionary of Hymnology: