1877 - 1962 Person Name: K. E. Roberts (1879-1953) Paraphraser of "Now the Joyful Bells A-Ringing" in Seventh-day Adventist Hymnal Katherine Emily (Clayton) Roberts was born in 1877 in Leicester, England. Her father, Rev. Lewis Clayton, later became Suffragan Bishop of Leicester and Assistant Bishop of Peterborough. Her mother, Katherine (Hare) Clayton was active in the woman's suffrage movement in England. Katherine Emily Clayton married Rev. Robert Edwin Roberts (1878 - 1940) on January 17, 1901 at Peterborough Cathedral. He was born in Wales (Llangernyw), served as a Master at the Choir School of Westminster Abbey, saw active duty in World War I as a chaplain, worked in a munitions factory, and became a Canon of the Church of England and Dean of Leicester Cathedral. He was reportedly a gifted baritone singer who often gave lecturers on Welsh, Irish and Scottish music. He compiled hymnals and composed the tune, PHILIPPINE, presumably named for his daughter, born in 1919.
Katherine and her husband wrote a history, "Peterborough," published in 1920 in the series "The Story of the English Towns." Katherine E. Roberts translated and freely paraphrased Welsh carols for The Oxford Book of Carols. Translations include "Dark the Night Lay" (No. 9) and "All Poor Men and Humble" (34). Paraphrases include "Awake Were They Only Those Shepherds So Lonely" (59) and "Now The Joyful Bells A-Ringing" (50), better known in its secular version as Deck The Halls. She wrote the baptism text "O Lord, Thy People Gathered Here," for her husband’s tune PHILIPPINE.
Chris Hoh, used by permission
Katharine Emily Roberts