The Quakers

By Hugh Barbour; J. William Frost | Go to book overview

K

KEITH, GEORGE ( 1638, Peterhead, in Aberdeenshire, Scotland--27 March 1716, Edburton, England). Education: M.A., Marischall College, Aberdeen, 1654-58. Career: Surveyor; schoolteacher; Anglican clergyman. (See Chapter 7.)

George Keith, raised a Presbyterian, received a good education becoming learned in philosophy, theology, languages, and mathematics. He converted to Quakerism in 1663 and soon became a leader, first in Scotland and later in England, and suffered imprisonment in 1664, 1667, and 1675. Influenced by Descartes, the Cambridge Platonists, and Protestant mystics on the Continent, Keith early proved receptive to new intellectual currents and was willing to consider the theological implications of Quaker beliefs. Along with his good friend Robert Barclay*, Keith in debates and numerous tracts provided a systematic defense of Friends' ideas. After moving to London in 1670 Keith became a close associate of leading English Quakers and, along with George Fox*, William Penn*, and Barclay, journeyed to the Continent in 1677. Ostensibly, Keith was a surveyor and schoolteacher, but he spent much of his time writing and in the traveling ministry.

In 1684 Keith migrated to East Jersey, where he obtained extensive property, drew the boundary between East and West New Jersey, and served as surveyor- general. He journeyed to New England to defend Rhode Island Quakers against the Puritans. In 1689 he moved to Philadelphia and became master of the Quaker school. By 1691 he had decided to return to England when an elderly Quaker minister accused him of the heresy of preaching two Christs, an inward and spiritual Christ versus an outward and historical Jesus.

Keith, who had a forceful personality, demanded vindication and the resulting impasse eventually created a major division, with Keith charging many of the leading members of the Philadelphia Yearly Meeting with holding unsound

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The Quakers
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Recent Titles in Denominations in America ii
  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Illustrations ix
  • Series Foreword xi
  • Preface xiii
  • Part One the Quakers: A History of Friends in America 1
  • 1: Introduction 3
  • 2: The Religious Setting of the Early Friends 11
  • 3 - The Lamb's War and the Awakening of the North of England 35
  • 4: Quaker Worship and Ethics and Their Transformation, 1652-1662 39
  • 5 - The Mission to America 58
  • 6: England, 1660-1689 61
  • 7: The Quaker Colonies 73
  • 8: A Tolerated Society of Friends 83
  • 9: A Spiritual Existence 95
  • 10: A Disciplined Christian Life 107
  • 11: Crisis and Reformation 119
  • 12: The American Revolutions 137
  • 13: Quaker Migrants to Carolina and the Midwest; Eastern Philanthropists 153
  • 14: Separations 169
  • 15: The Midcontinent in the Midcentury, 1828-1867 185
  • 16: West and Midwest, 1867- 1902 203
  • 17: The Liberal Transformation 219
  • 18: Suburban and College Friends 231
  • 19: Creativity in Peacemaking 247
  • 20: Social Service and Social Change, 1902-1970 261
  • 21: New Forms of Quaker Interaction, 1960-1987 271
  • Part Two a Biographical Dictionary of Former Quaker Leaders in America 281
  • A 285
  • B 287
  • C 301
  • D 311
  • E 313
  • F 315
  • G 321
  • H 327
  • J 337
  • K 343
  • L 347
  • M 351
  • P 357
  • R 363
  • S 365
  • T 369
  • U 371
  • V 373
  • W 375
  • Appendix: Chronology 381
  • Bibliographic Essay 385
  • Index 393
  • About the Authors 409
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