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This chapter examines the emergence and development of Methodism. Historical writing on Methodism has been dominated by John Wesley and the branch of Methodism that he founded. However, this chapter argues that Methodism was a more varied movement, that there were Methodisms, rather than a singular Methodism. It examines the beginnings of the Methodist revival in England under the leadership of George Whitefield and in Wales by Howel Harris and Daniel Rowland in the late 1730s. It then charts the divergence of the revivals along Calvinist and Arminian/Wesleyan lines. As well as teasing out the character of early Methodism, it also suggests some ways in which early Methodism shaped the wider evangelical movement. It concludes with some reflections on the contrasting fortunes of Calvinistic Methodism in England and Wales and some reasons for the ultimate dominance of Wesley’s brand of Methodism in England and further afield.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of Early Evangelicalism
EditorsJonathan Yeager
Place of PublicationOxford
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages22
Publication statusPublished - 21 Sept 2022

Publication series

NameOxford Handbooks


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