1812-1883

September 12, 1812, Hoddesdon, Hertfordshire, England.

June 18, 1883, London, England.

Brompton, Middlesex, England.

Irons was the son of hymnist Joseph Irons. Josiah graduated from Queens College, Oxford (BA 1833, DD 1854), and took Holy Orders in 1835. He served as Curate of St. Mary, Newington (1835-37); Incumbent at St. Peter’s, Walworth (1837); Vicar of Barkway; Incumbent of Brompton; Rector of Wadingham; and Rector of St. Mary-Woolnoth and Prebendary of St. Paul’s Cathedral (1872). He earned his Doctor of Divinity degree in 1854. Irons took part in the ecclesiastical controversies of his day, and published extensively thereon in the form of sermons, letters, pamphlets, etc. His 1870 Bampton Lectures were on Christianity as Taught by St. Paul.

Irons’ hymn writing and translating began during his curacy at St. Mary, Newington, and continued until his death. Many of his efforts were first printed as broadsheets, and later included in Hymns for the Christian Seasons, by R. T. Lowe, Rector of Lea, Lincolnshire (Gainsburgh: 1854), and in his own collections. His works include:

  1. Blest Voice of Love
  2. Can Earthly Voices Fitly Sing
  3. Children of Earth, for Heaven We Seek
  4. Eternal Spirit, God of Grace
  5. Faithful Creator, Lord Divine
  6. Father of Love
  7. Hail, Holy Rest
  8. Is Not This Our King and Prophet?
  9. It Is Not Finished, Lord of Grace
  10. Jesu, Who for Us Didst Hear
  11. Joy of Joys, He Lives, He Lives
  12. Lord, Hear My Prayer, Bow Down Thine Ear
  13. Lord, in Thy Wrath Thou Thinkest Yet
  14. Lord, Thy Voice Hath Spoken
  15. No Sorrow, and No Sighing
  16. O God with Us, the Savior
  17. O How Long, How Long?
  18. O Savior, Now at God’s Right Hand
  19. O, Sing We a Carol
  20. O Who Are They So Pure and Bright?
  21. Sing with All the Saints in Glory
  22. Thanks Be to God for Meet and Right
  23. To Whom but Thee, O God of Grace
  24. Triumphant Lord, Thy Work Is Done
  25. We Praise Thee, O Our God
  26. Who Is This from Bethlehem Coming?
  27. Why Art Thou Weary, O My Soul?
  1. Day of Wrath, O Day of Mourning

where to get Irons’ photo