Cudworth, William

He was the leading spirit of an off-shoot from Calvinistic Methodism. For a period he associated with George Whitefield, but launched his own movement and ministered to a small congregation in Spitalfields, London. In 1751 he was in Norwich, preaching at the Tabernacle before erecting his own chapel in Margaret Street, London. He edited Holy Meditations and Contemplations of Jesus Christ, the work of an unknown author, and published his own pamphlets, mostly in the nature of theological controversy. John Wesley met him, weighed his opinions and wholly distrusted him, partly because of his antinomian tendencies and partly because he soured Wesley's relationship with James Hervey. His connexion had dissolved before the end of the century.

  • WHS Proceedings, 12 pp.34-6
  • Peter Lineham, 'The Antinomian Methodists' [Cudworth and Wheatley], in Malcolm Chase and Ian Dyck (eds.), Living and Learning (Aldershot, 1996), pp.35-51