Charlotte Elliott

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This article is about the English poet. For the Scottish poet, see Lady Charlotte Elliot.
Charlotte Elliott

Charlotte Elliott (March 18, 1789 – September 22, 1871) was an English poet and hymn writer.

Early life[edit]

Charlotte was the daughter of Charles Elliott, a silk merchant and his wife, Eling Venn[1] who married at Yelling on 20 December 1785. Eling Venn was the daughter of Rev. Henry Venn of the Clapham Sect and Eling Bishop and her brother was John Venn.

Charlotte's siblings were Henry Venn Elliott and Edward Bishop Elliott, who were associated with the curacies of St Mary the Virgin Church and St Mark's Church respectively. Henry Venn Elliott was also the founder of St Mary's Hall in Brighton.

"At an early age, Charlotte began to be aware of her sinful nature and of her importance to resist sin's enticements." Charlotte felt unworthy of God's grace while growing up, and was incapable of facing righteous and perfect God. She was continuously told by different pastors at the many churches she visited to pray more, study the Bible more, and perform more noble deeds.[2]

Adulthood[edit]

Charlotte spent the first 32 years of her life in Clapham. She was an invalid and was often a great sufferer during the last 50 years of her life. In 1823, she moved to Brighton. She was a member of the Church of England. Charlotte was confined to her home and unable to attend church services.

After 13 years of being an invalid, at age 32, Charlotte wrote the five verses to "Just As I Am" in 1834.[clarification needed] In spite of being raised in a Christian home, she reflected on her conflicts and doubts and was unsure of her relationship with Christ. So she penned her words of assurance about Jesus loving her just as she was. William B. Bradbury composed music for her lyrics and published the song in 1849. This hymn has been translated into many languages all over the world. Tens of thousands of people have committed their lives to Christ during the playing of this hymn.

Miss Elliott wrote about 150 hymns and many poems, some of which were printed anonymously, with Just As I Am probably the best-known. Dr John Julian wrote:

Though weak and feeble in body, she possessed a strong imagination and a well-cultured and intellectual mind..... Her verse is characterized by tenderness of feeling, plaintive simplicity, deep devotion, and perfect rhythm. For those in sickness and sorrow, she has sung as few others have done.

Charlotte Elliott died in Brighton in 1871. She is buried, along with her brothers, in the churchyard at St Andrew's Church, Hove.

See also[edit]

English women hymnwriters (18th to 19th-century)

References[edit]

  • Julian, John (June 1907). A Dictionary of Hymnology. London: John Murray. p. 328. 
  • Christian Classics Ethereal Library. "Hymn Writers of the Church". Retrieved 2007-01-30. 
  • Wonderful Words of Life Songbook with devotions by Wiliam H. Goddard, copyright 1985 by Hope Publishing Co.

External links[edit]

  1. ^ "Miss Charlotte Elliott, 1789-1871.". http://www.stempublishing.com/hymns/biographies/elliott.html. 
  2. ^ http://www.hymns.net/stories/elliott.htm