Pages from History: Bishop Reginald Heber dies at Thiruchirappalli (1826)

3 April, 1826: Bishop Heber (b.21 Apr.1783) was the second Anglican Bishop of Calcutta. He is known for his hymn Holy, Holy, Holy sung on Trinity Sunday.

He was on his way to the Southern Kingdom of Travancore to visit the Syrian Christian Church Leaders as part of a visit to the churches in South India to look into issues of caste plaguing the church. He baptized 42 people the day before he died. “On 3 April, after attending an early-morning service at which he gave a blessing in the Tamil language, Heber returned to his bungalow for a cold bath. Immediately after plunging into the water he died, possibly from the shock of the cold water in the intense heat.”

Heber died at the age of 42 on 2 April, 1826 of a cerebral hemorrhage at Thiruchirappalli. He is buried at St. John’s Church, Thiruchirappalli, Tamil Nadu, India (north side of the altar)

Portrait of Reginald Heber  at the British Library

Portrait of Reginald Heber at the British Library

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