Johan Olaf Wallin of Sweden 30 June 1839

Johan Olaf Wallin was born in Sweden in 1779, the son of a non-commissioned army officer. He attended the University of Uppsala, became a pastor, and eventually (two years before his death) the Archbishop of Uppsala and primate of Sweden. He is remembered chiefly for his hymns. The Swedish hymnal of 1819 is largely his work. Of its 500 hymns, about 130 were written by him and nearly 200 more were revised or translated by him. The 1819 hymnal continued in use in the Church of Sweden for more than a century.

Magnus Brostrup Landstad is the principal Norwegian hymnwriter. He was born in 1802 and served as a pastor for many years. He introuduced popular, contemporary language into the hymns he wrote. He died 8 October 1886.

An American Lutheran hymnal on my shelves has six hymns by Wallin and three by Landstad.


Heavenly Father, we bless you for your servants Josef Wallin and Magnus Landstad, to whom you gave the skill and the desire to write hymns; and we pray that your Church may always have in its midst those who by writing noble and beautiful hymns may lead us in worthily singing your praises, to your glory and our delight; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.

written by James Kiefer