- Revd. Vincent Perronet (1693-1785) was a close associate and advisor of the Wesleys. He attended the Conference of 1747, and his influence as an elder statesman of the movement is reflected in the fact, that he was sometimes referred to as the Archbishop of Methodism. His sons Edward and Charles Perronet both served as Methodist itinerant preachers, but broke away in later life. Edward Perronet wrote the hymn 'All Hail the Power of Jesu's Name'. Source: Dictionary of National Biography and Encyclopedia of World Methodism (1974)
From William Briggs in London. He has been very busy or he would have answered Wesley's letter of November 27.
'Grace is promised & Grace has been given sufficient for the trying day of our worthy friend [Thomas] Butts, and I hope his tryal has been blessed...'
Briggs is better than he has been and can assure Wesley that his [health problem] is 'a profitable sermon to my soul'. Spiritual matters are discussed.
Briggs has recently had the pleasure of [John Wesley's] company on two separate occasions. On Tuesday of last week [John Wesley] dined at Mr Bird's and with Briggs on the Thursday after. From what he said, Briggs is confident that [John Wesley] is determined 'to amend or abolish the present disorder amongst our wild brethren'. He shares Charles Wesley's opinion and only tolerates them in the hope that good may result. By all accounts their meetings are more orderly than before [John Wesley] arrived to London, and if he can bring them back into conformity then it will be a cause for rejoicing. 'On visiting the classes he [John Wesley] has found above 500 who profess that they have attained [?perfection]; tho he does not believe 1 IN 10 IS ARRIVED to that Holy state...'.
'In last SATURDAYS PUBLICK ?LEDGER this disorder amongst us first made its publick appearance under the important name of the Revd Mr D or Dodd! But I belive this gentleman's zeal is more particularly tho indirectly aimed at convincing the world that he is no M [Methodist] - I have wrote a FEW LINES BY WAY of apology for your Bro's conduct, which, if published, I hope it will do good - at least it will rap the knuckles of Master Dodd for this his ungenerous & unfriendly conduct towards the M [Methodists]'.
Briggs's father [Vincent Perronet] laments the fact that [Thomas] Maxfield is so mixed up with [Bell and his followers].
[The reference to Briggs's father would seem on the surface to be to his natural father Henry Briggs (1687-1748), the rector of Holt in Norfolk and Chaplain to King George II. However Henry died in 1748 and his son must therefore be referring to his father-in-law Vincent Perronet in much the same way as Charles Wesley often described Sarah Gwynne senior as his mother.]
[Annotated by Charles Wesley - 'Brigs of ranters'.]