December 4, 1779, Cannock, Staffordshire, England.
December 29, 1823, Sheffield, England (Julian says the Gentlemen’s Magazine incorrectly published Cotterill’s death date as January 5, 1824).
After attending the local boarding school of Rev. J. Lomax, Cotterill went the Free School in Birmingham. He graduated from St. John’s College, Cambridge (BA 1801, MA 1805), of which he became a Fellow. Taking Holy Orders, he became Curate of Tutbury in June 1803. Subsequently, he was Incumbent of Lane End, Staffordshire (1808–17), and Perpetual Curate of St. Paul’s, Sheffield (1817–23).
Cotterill published his Family Prayers in six editions. Though he wrote some original hymns, he is better known as the compiler of A Selection of Psalms and Hymns for Public and Private Use, Adapted to the Festivals of the Church of England, which had a marked effect on modern hymnals (first edition 1810, ninth edition 1820). Cotterill himself contributed 25 original hymns and versions of individual psalms to the Selection.