Katherine Hankey

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Katherine Hankey

Arabella Katherine Hankey (January 12, 1834 – May 9, 1911)[1] was an English missionary and nurse who is best known for being the author of the poem The Old, Old Story, from which the hymns "Tell me the old, old story" and "I Love to Tell the Story", were derived.[2][3]


Hankey was born in 1834, the daughter of a prosperous banker in London. Her family were devout Anglicans and members of the Clapham Sect. She was inspired by the Methodist revival of John Wesley and organised and taught in Sunday schools in London. She then did missionary work as a nurse in South Africa, assisting her brother.[2]

In 1866, she had a serious illness and was bedridden for a long convalescence.[3] During this time, Hankey wrote her long poem, entitled The Old, Old Story,[4] with 100 verses in two parts: The Story Wanted and The Story Told.[2]

She recovered from the illness and lived to the age of 77, dying in 1911.[citation needed]

See also[edit]

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


  1. ^ Arabella Katherine Hankey, CyberHymnal.org
  2. ^ a b c Warren Shiver (November 9, 2007), Stories Behind The Hymns, The Gaffney Ledger
  3. ^ a b Arabella Katherine Hankey
  4. ^ Tell Me the Old, Old Story, retrieved June 2, 2015

External links[edit]