English pastor, author and hymn writer, often called the father of English hymnody. Raised within the Puritan tradition, Watts became minister of an independent church in London. As a young pastor, he became ill and remained in poor health for the rest of his life. Nevertheless, he was a prolific writer on a variety of philosophical and theological topics, and best remembered for his composition of hundreds of hymns, often using extrabiblical poetry. Watts’s work wielded widespread influence on worship within the Reformed tradition and evangelicalism, especially in the practice of singing hymns together with psalms in corporate worship.