Haweis, Thomas

Evangelical clergyman, born atRedruth on 1 January 1734. He was converted under the Rev. Samuel Walker. He was initially trained in medicine before going to Christ Church, Oxford in 1756. Transferring to Magdalen Hall in 1757, he became the leader of a group that has been called 'a second Holy Club'. (This led eventually to the St. Edmund Hall expulsions in 1768.)

He served for a while as a curate at St. Mary Magdalen, Oxford, but was ejected in 1762 because of his evangelicalism and left Oxford for London, where he assisted Martin Madan at the Lock Hospital Chapel. His installation as rector of Aldwincle, Northants in 1764 embroiled him in unedifying controversy over the living. He became associated with of the Countess of Huntingdon, preached in her chapels and was one of her trustees and executors. In his later years he was often away from his parish, leaving it in the hands of curates, and spent much of his time in Bath, giving himself to writing. He edited John Newton's Authentic Narrative (1764) and wrote a life of William Romaine (1797) and a History of the Rise, Declension and Revival of the Church (1800), in which he spoke highly of John Wesley's character and ministry despite their disagreement over election. He published Carmina Christi, or Hymns to the Saviour (1792), which included the original version of the tune now known as 'Richmond' (HP 744 and 809; SF 155 and 747). He died in Bath on 11 February 1820.

  • A. Skevington Wood, 'A Second Holy Club', in WHS Proceedings, 29 pp.73-75
  • A.Skevington Wood, Thomas Haweis 1734-1820 (1957)
  • Oxford DNB