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Peard Dickinson (1758-1802)

Peard Dickinson was born at Topsham, Devon, the son of a wealthy landowner. He was educated at Taunton School before moving to Bristol to commence a career in business. At Bristol he lodged with a Methodist family and was converted. Intent on entering the Anglican ministry, Dickinson proceeded to Oxford to read Classics. He was ordained in 1783. While at the university, he was visited by John Wesley and spent his vacations assisting at City Road Chapel and Methodist Societies elsewhere.

Dickinson served for a short time as curate to Revd. Vincent Perronet, and in 1786 was invited by John Wesley, to be a resident Anglican clergyman at City Road Chapel in London. He was employed in preaching, administering the sacraments and attending prayer and class meetings. He also assisted Wesley in the ordination of several preachers. Dickinson was not apparently a gifted preacher but had a strong reputation for piety. He was appointed one of Wesley's executors.

His wife was Elizabeth Briggs (1751-1822), granddaughter of Vincent Perronet. Dickinson's autobiography was edited after his death by Joseph Benson, and was published in Britain and the United States.

Source: Dictionary of Evangelical Biography, edited by Donald Lewis (1995) and George John Stevenson, City Road Chapel, London, and its Associations, Historical, Biographical, and Memorial (1872), pp.396-397

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