Auber, Henriette


(often ‘Harriet’ in error), b Spitalfields, Middx (E London) 1773, d Hoddesdon, Herts 1862. She was a descendant of Huguenot refugees from the revoked Edict of Nantes (1685), many of whom settled in Spitalfields; her father became Rector of Tring. Later she moved to Broxbourne (Herts) and then Hoddesdon, living a apparently uneventful life, latterly with her friend Mary Jane Mackenzie (‘two saintly ladies’—K L Parry). Her best-known writing was The Spirit of the Psalms; or, a Compressed Version of the Psalms of David, 1829 (see also the notes to H F Lyte). This included verses by others but consisted mostly of her own paraphrases aimed at recapturing the poetic quality of the Pss in English metre, moving on in the tradition of Isaac Watts. Writing in Julian in an extensive feature on ‘Psalters, English’, H Leigh Bennett says that ‘She uses evangelical interpretation freely. Several renderings are full of gentle [verbal] melody.’
Spurgeon included some 20 of her versions at the Metropolitan Tabernacle, in Our Own Hymn Book (1866). Nos.45, 526.

Hymns and songs by Auber, Henriette

Number Hymn Name
45 With hearts in love abounding
526 Our great Redeemer, as he breathed