1000 Songs/There were ninety and nine (Ira Sankey)

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There were ninety and nine (Ira Sankey)

1000 Songs

Text[edit | edit source]

Author[edit | edit source]

"There were ninety and nine" was written in the mid 1800s. The hymn text was written by Elizabeth C. Clephane in 1868. Clephane only wrote a few hymns. One of her hymns that is probably more well-known is "Beneath the Cross of Jesus". Clephane was Scottish and spent her entire life in Scotland.

Translations/Challenges[edit | edit source]

This text was originally written in English.

Editor's Choice[edit | edit source]

Music[edit | edit source]

Tune[edit | edit source]

The hymn tune of "There were ninety and nine" was written by Ira D. Sankey in 1874. Sankey was from New England. This is generally the only widely used tune for this hymn. Because of the text's irregular meter, there aren't a lot of other tunes that would work for this hymn unless they were written specifically for it. An interesting point in Sankey composing music for this hymn is that he is considered a gospel song composer, and yet this hymn doesn't have some of the qualities in the other texts he composed for, such as a refrain and sentimental call to repentance in the last stanza. Sankey was known as the Sweet Singer of Methodism. As this nick name would suggest, he was a Methodist by denomination. Along with composing music he was also a song leader and good friends with another great gospel song writer, Fanny Crosby.

Arrangements[edit | edit source]

Editor's Choice[edit | edit source]

Background[edit | edit source]

Author biography[edit | edit source]

Author's circumstances[edit | edit source]

Historical setting[edit | edit source]

Cultural setting[edit | edit source]