Lay Activism and the High Church Movement of the Late Eighteenth Century

The Life and Thought of William Stevens, 1732-1807


Lay Activism and the High Church Movement of the Late Eighteenth Century: The Life and Thought of William Stevens, 1732-1807, by Robert M. Andrews, is the first full-length study of Stevens’ life and thought. Historiographically revisionist and contextualised within a neglected history of lay High Church activism, Andrews presents Stevens as an influential High Church layman who brought to Anglicanism not only his piety and theological learning, but his wealth and business acumen. With extensive social links to numerous High Church figures in late Georgian Britain, Stevens’ lay activism is shown to be central to the achievements and effectiveness of the wider High Church movement during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.

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Robert M. Andrews obtained his PhD in Church History in 2012 at Murdoch University, Perth, Western Australia. He is presently an Honorary Research Associate within the School of Arts at Murdoch University.
"(...) Andrew's work succeeds in adding further nuance to revisionist historiography, especially surrounding the role of commerce and Hutchinsonianism among Georgian high churchmen." Bethany Kilcrease, Aquinas College, in: Anglican and Episcopal History, Volume 87.2 (2018).

"Andrews has drawn attention to a key figure in a much neglected area of the history of the modern Church of England. All being well the publication of this book will encourage further research about the Hackney Phalanx, and its contribution to the Church of England and British society." W.M. Jacob, King's College London, Church History and Religious Culture, Volume 96.3 (2016).
Readers interested in the history of High Church Anglicanism in late Georgian Britain and its neglected lay element, especially the influence exhibited by Stevens over the movement as a whole.