When languor and disease invade. A. M. Toplady. [Affliction and Death.] In the Lady Huntingdon Collection of Hymns, 1780, there is as No. 238, ”When languor and disease invade,” in 8 stanzas of 4 lines, and headed "Meditation on God's Love," and as No. 263 "Sweet to rejoice in lively hope," in 6 stanzas of 4 lines, and headed "Funeral," the two hymns thus making 14 stanzas of 4 lines. These two hymns, with an additional stanza (x.), were given in the Gospel Magazine, Oct. 1796, as a single poem, with this note appended thereto:—
"This hymn was written for the late Countess of Huntingdon, at her request, when in illness, by the Rev. Mr. Toplady, and kindly given to the publisher as it originally stood, by the Right Hon. Lady Ann Erskine."
From the poem as thus printed we find that No. 238 above was composed of stanzas i.-vii. and xiv., and No. 263 of stanza viii., ix., xi.-xiii. and xv. Stanza x. was not used. The centos from this poem now in common use are:—
1. How blest to rest in lively hope (stanza viii.). In Windle's Met. Psalter and Hymnal
2. Sweet to reflect how grace divine (st. iv.). In some American collections.
3. Sweet to rejoice in lively hope (stanza viii.). In a few American collections.
4. 'Tis sweet to rest in lively hope (stanza viii.). In common use in Great Britain and America.
5. When languor and disease invade (stanza i.). In extensive use in most English-speaking countries.
The full text of the poem is in D. Sedgwick's reprint of Toplady's Hymns and Sacred Poems, 1860.
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)