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Selected Poetry of Edmund Hamilton Sears (1810-1876)


from Representative Poetry On-line
Prepared by members of the Department of English at the University of Toronto
from 1912 to the present and published by the University of Toronto Press from 1912 to 1967.
RPO Edited by Ian Lancashire
A UTEL (University of Toronto English Library) Edition
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries
© 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto

Index to poems

  1. Christmas Carols (It Came upon the Midnight Clear)


Notes on Life and Works

Edmund Hamilton Sears was born on April 6, 1810, and educated at Union College in Schenectady, New York, 1831-34, and Harvard Divinity School, from which he graduated in 1837. He became a missionary for the American Unitarian Association, a minister for congregations in Wayland and Lancaster, Massachusetts, and editor, from 1859 to 1871, of The Monthly Religious Magazine. Married to Ellen Bacon, with four children, he died on January 16, 1876, of injuries sustained from a fall from a tree two years previously. He remains very well known for his hymns, especially "It came upon the midnight clear."

Biographical information

Given name: Edmund Hamilton
Family name: Sears
Birth date: 6 April 1810
Death date: 16 January 1876
Nationality: American