"Amazing Grace" is a Christian hymn published in 1779, with words written in 1772 by English poet and Anglican clergyman John Newton (1725–1807). Newton wrote the words from personal experience. He had grown up without any particular religious conviction, and was conscripted into service in the Royal Navy. In 1748, a violent storm battered his vessel off the coast of County Donegal, Ireland, so severely that he called out to God for mercy. This moment marked his spiritual conversion, which led him to studying Christian theology.