Frances Ridley Havergal


Artist Birtday : 14/12/1836 (Age 36)
Born In : Astley, Worcestershire, England
Occupation(s) : Religious Poet and hymnwriter.
Genres : Gospel

Frances Ridley Havergal was born into an Anglican family, at Astley in Worcestershire, 14 December 1836. Her father, William Henry Havergal, was a clergyman, writer, composer, and hymn-writer. Her brother, Henry East Havergal, was a priest in the Church of England and an organist.

When she was five, her father removed to the Rectory of St. Nicholas, Worcester. In August 1850, she entered Mrs Teed’s school, who had a strong influence on her. In the following year she says, “I committed my soul to the Saviour, and earth and heaven seemed brighter from that moment.” A short sojourn in Germany followed. In 1852/3, she studied in the Louisenschule, Düsseldorf, and at Oberkassel. Havergal’s scholastic acquirements were extensive, embracing several modern languages, together with Greek and Hebrew.

On her return to England, she was confirmed in Worcester Cathedral, 17 July 1853.

Havergal died of peritonitis near Caswell Bay on the Gower Peninsula in Wales at age 42. She is buried in the far western corner of the churchyard at St Peter’s parish church, Astley, together with her father and near her sister, Maria Vernon Graham Havergal.

Her sisters saw much of her work published posthumously. Havergal College, a private girls’ school in Toronto, is named after her. The composer Havergal Brian adopted the name as a tribute to the Havergal family.