Taylor, David

Evangelical preacher, born on 28 April 1715 at Wymeswold, near Loughborough. He was employed in the Countess of Huntingdon's household, and by 1740, after a conversion experience, was preaching in the villages near Donington Park and Sheffield. Here he became acquainted with Benjamin Ingham and the Moravians, also the Methodist preachers John Bennet and John Nelson. At Bennet's invitation in 1741 he visited the Derbyshire Peak District and was also instrumental in Bennet's evangelical conversion in 1742. On joining the Methodists, he spent time accompanying Nelson and, in May 1743, was with Charles Wesley during the riots at Sheffield and Thorpe. Some of the societies resulting from his preaching in Cheshire, Derbyshire and Lancshire were later taken over by Bennet and then incorporated in the WM connexion. Despite being influenced by Moravian stillness and suspected of antinomianism, in 1749 he was with John Wesley and Bennet at Bolton, where he defended them against the mob. However, unsettled in his doctrinal views, he joined the Moravians in 1751, but later continued to vaccilate between Moravianism, Methodism and the Quakers. He died in Manchester on 8 July 1783.

  • Charles Atmore, Methodist Memorial (1801) 412-13
  • James Everett, Historical Sketches of Wesleyan Methodism in Sheffield (Sheffield, 1823)
  • Oxford DNB