The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

William Chatterton Dix
(1837-1865)

Photograph of William Chatterton DixWilliam Chatterton Dix was born in Bristol, England on June 14, 1837, the son of a surgeon. William Dix' father, a surgeon, wrote a biography of poet Thomas Chatterton, and gave his son his middle name in his honor. Young William attended the Bristol Grammar School for a commercial career.

After school he became the manager of a marine insurance company in Glasgow, a vocation which he followed to the end of his life.

His heart was in the poetry of worship. He wrote more than 40 hymns over the course of his life.

His was a literary family. His father, who had a gift for poetry, wrote The Life of Thomas Chatterton, a minor English poet. It is easy to understand how William Chatterton Dix revealed an aptitude for writing verse, especially hymns. It has been said of him; "Few modern writers have shown so signal a gift as his for the difficult art of hymn-writing." Dix also wrote many Christmas and Easter carols, the most widely known of which is "What Child Is This" taken from "The Manger Throne" about 1865.

He died September 9, 1898, Cheddar, Somerset, England, and was buried: Parish church, Cheddar, Somerset, England.

His works include:

Hymns:

Sources: