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Thomas Phillips

Thomas Phillips (1806-1870) was a Calvinistic Methodist minister and Welsh secretary of the British and Foreign Bible Society.

Phillips was born in March 1806 at Llandovery, Carmarthenshire, Wales. Influenced by the revival of 1819, he began preaching two years later. He had intended to become a missionary abroad, and had already arranged to be trained at Cheshunt, when in 1825 he was invited to become a Calvinistic Methodist missioner at Hay. He remained there for ten years, preaching and keeping school.

Early in 1836, however, he was appointed by the Bible Society to be its secretary for Wales, and removed to Hereford. He was a great success in his new sphere, and was the Society’s oldest servant at the time of his death. The celebration of the Society’s jubilee (1853 ) was placed in his charge.

He published in Welsh Llyfr y Jubili (1854), a catechism on Protestantism (which went through several editions), and in English The Welsh Revival (1860; republished by the Trust in 1989). Phillips was a good organizer, and took a prominent part in the founding (in 1864) of the Calvinistic Methodist General Assembly, becoming, in 1865, its second moderator. He died at Hereford in October 1870.

[Author image by permission of Llyfrgell Genedlaethol Cymru/The National Library of Wales.]