“Rock of Ages (I)”


"Rock of Ages, Cleft for Me, Let me hide myself in thee." The singer admits to the inability to meet God's demands, and asks forgiveness and protection


Augustus Montague Toplady is most famous for writing the words to this song. Charles Johnson's _One Hundred & One Famous Hymns_ gives a brief biography which seems to consist mostly of denomination-jumping. He is said to have been "always in frail health," which explains his early death.

He is credited with two volumes of religious lyrics. Nonetheless _Granger's Index to Poetry_ lists only seven of his works which made it into their voluminous database (and it appears that two of those are actually alternate names for this piece). This is of course the one most cited (twelve times under various titles). - RBW

Cross references


  • Henry Burr, "Rock of Ages" (Columbia 1781, 1904)
  • Peerless Quartet, "Rock of Ages" (Paramount 33010, 1919)
  • Hamlin Male Quartet, "Rock of Ages" (Supertone 9267, 1928)


  1. Silber-FSWB, p. 357, "Rock of Ages" (1 text)
  2. Fuld-WFM, pp. 469-470, "Rock of Ages"
  4. ADDITIONAL: Charles Johnson, One Hundred and One Famous Hymns (Hallberg, 1982), pp. 120-121, "Rock of Ages" (1 text, 1 tune)
  5. Roud #5429
  6. BI, FSWB357C


Author: Words: Augustus Montague Toplady (1740-1778)/Music: Thomas Hastings (1784-1872)
Earliest date: 1775 (first stanza; remainder of text 1776, both in "The Gospel Magazine"; music published 1832)
Keywords: religious nonballad
Found in: US(SE)