William Chatterton Dix

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William Chatterton Dix
William Chatterton Dix.jpg
Born(1837-06-14)14 June 1837
Bristol, England
Died9 September 1898(1898-09-09) (aged 61)
Cheddar, Somerset, England

William Chatterton Dix (14 June 1837 – 9 September 1898) was an English writer of hymns and carols. He was born in Bristol, the son of John Dix, a local surgeon, who wrote The Life of Chatterton the poet, a book of Pen Pictures of Popular English Preachers and other works.[1] His father gave him his middle name in honour of Thomas Chatterton, a poet about whom he had written a biography.[2] He was educated at the Grammar School, Bristol, for a mercantile career, and became manager of a maritime insurance company in Glasgow where he spent most of his life.[3]

Tomb in the churchyard of St Andrew's Church, Cheddar

His original hymns are found in most modern hymn-books.[1] He wrote also felicitous renderings in metrical form of Richard Frederick Littledale's translations from the Greek in his Offices of the Holy Eastern Church; and of Rodwell's translations of Abyssinian hymns.[3] Some of his carols, such as The Manger Throne, have been very popular.[3] His hymns and carols also include As with Gladness Men of Old, What Child Is This?, To You, O Lord, Our Hearts We Raise and Alleluia! Sing to Jesus.

At the age of 29 he was struck with a near fatal illness and consequently suffered months confined to his bed. During this time he became severely depressed. Yet it is from this period that many of his hymns date.[4][5] He died at Cheddar, Somerset, England, and was buried at his parish church.

His children included the writer Gertrude Dix.


  1. ^ a b James Moffatt, Handbook to the Church Hymnary, Oxford University Press, 1927
  2. ^ Albert Edward Bailey, The Gospel in Hymns, Charles Scribner's Sons, 1950, p. 359
  3. ^ a b c James Moffatt, Handbook to the Church Hymnary, Oxford University Press, 1927, p. 318
  4. ^ Robert Guy McCutchan (1937) Our hymnody, a manual of the Methodist hymnal
  5. ^ John Telford (1934) The new Methodist hymn-book illustrated in history and experience

External links[edit]

  • Works by or about William Chatterton Dix at Internet Archive
  • Works by William Chatterton Dix at LibriVox (public domain audiobooks)
  • William Chatterton Dix at Find a Grave and also here (entry as William Chatterdon Dix, but marker correct)
  • Giles, Gordon (27 May 2010). "Dix, William Chatterton (1837–1898)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/97110. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)