1672–1719

May 1, 1672, Mil­ston (near Ames­bu­ry), Wilt­shire, Eng­land.

June 17, 1719, Hol­land House, Ken­sing­ton, Eng­land.

West­min­ster Ab­bey, Lon­don, Eng­land.

portrait

Joseph was the son of Lan­ce­lot Ad­di­son (some­time Dean of Lich­field and au­thor of De­vo­tion­al Po­ems), and hus­band of Char­lotte Mid­dle­ton.

He at­tend­ed Char­ter­house and Mag­da­len College, Ox­ford (BA 1691, MA 1693). Al­though in­tend­ed for the Church, he stu­died law and pol­i­tics, and soon at­tained, through pow­er­ful in­flu­ence, some im­port­ant posts.

He was suc­ces­sive­ly a Com­mis­sion­er of Ap­peals, Un­der Sec­re­ta­ry of State, Sec­re­ta­ry to the Lord Lieu­ten­ant of Ire­land, and Chief Sec­re­ta­ry for Ire­land. He mar­ried the Dow­ager Coun­tess of War­wick in 1716.

Addison is best known for his con­trib­u­tions to the news­papers The Spec­ta­tor (where his hymns ap­peared), The Tat­ler, The Guard­i­an, and The Free­hold­er. He al­so wrote the tra­ge­dy Ca­to.

  1. How Are Thy Serv­ants Blest, O Lord!
  2. Lord My Pas­ture Shall Pre­pare, The
  3. Spacious Fir­ma­ment on High, The
  4. When All Thy Mer­cies, O My God
  5. When Is­ra­el, Freed from Pha­raoh’s Hand
  6. When Ris­ing from the Bed of Death