February 18, 1823, Edinburgh, Scotland.

November 27, 1864, Menton, France.

Highgate Cemetery, London, England.


Burns earned his MA degree at the University of Edinburgh. He received his theological training under Thomas Chalmers, and in 1845, became a Free Church minister in Dunblane, Scotland. However, he resigned in 1848 due to bad health. He then took charge of the Presbyterian Church at Funchal, Madeira, Portugal. In 1855, his health improved, he returned to England and became minister of Hampstead Presbyterian Church in London. After nine years, he again traveled abroad due to ill health. His hymns appeared in:

Burns also wrote the article Hymn in the 8th edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica.

  1. Apostle Slept, a Light Shone in the Prison, The
  2. As a Helpless Child Who Clings
  3. As Trustful as a Child Who Looks
  4. At Thy Feet, Our God and Father
  5. Conscious of Thee, O Lord
  6. From Place to Place the Christian Goes
  7. He Who the Rule to God Hath Yielded
  8. Heaven and Earth, and Sea, and Air
  9. Hushed Was the Evening Hymn
  10. Hushed Was the Hymn, the Temple Dark
  11. Jesus Shall Our Watchword be
  12. No More Let Sorrow Cloud the Eye
  13. Not, Lord, unto That Mount of Dread
  14. O Jerusalem, Fair Dwelling
  15. O Thou Whose Sacred Feet Have Trod
  16. O Time of Tranquil Joy and Holy Feeling!
  17. Still with Thee, O My God
  18. This Night, O Lord, We Bless Thee
  19. Thou, Lord, Art Love, and Everywhere
  20. Thou Who Didst on Calvary Bleed
  21. Voice Is Heard on Earth of Kinsfolk Weeping, A
  22. We Wait for Thee, All Glorious One