The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler

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Augustus Montague Toplady, 1740-1778

Nationality: English
Date of Birth: 1740
Place of Birth: Farnham, Surrey
Date of Death: 1778
Place of Death: London


Toplady was educated at Westminster School in London and Trinity College in Dublin. Although originally a follower of John Wesley, the founder of Methodism, in 1758 Toplady adopted extreme Calvinist views, which eventually led to a bitter controversy between him and Wesley. 'Rock of Ages' was first published in 1775 in the Gospel Magazine. According to one account of the hymn's composition, Toplady was inspired by the sight of a great cleft of rock near Cheddar in Somerset. At the time of Toplady's death in 1778, he was the minister of a Calvinist church in London. AMW referred to the 'Rock of Ages' on numerous occasions.


Augustus Toplady, The works of Augustus Toplady: Late Vicar of Broad Hembury, London, 1837.