George Whitefield

WHITEFIELD, George. b. Gloucester, 16 December 1714; d. Newburyport, Massachusetts, 30 September 1770. He was the son of an innkeeper, who died when he was two years old. His mother remarried, unhappily, and the inn was mismanaged by his step-father. Whitefield’s childhood cannot have been a settled one, although he was educated at Gloucester Cathedral School and the Crypt School. In 1732 he matriculated at Pembroke College, Oxford, as a ‘Servitor’, performing menial tasks in order to pay for his education. In 1733 he joined the ‘Holy Club’ of John* and Charles Wesley* and their associates. He had various illnesses at Oxford, probably brought about by hard work and fasting, but graduated...

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