A native of Carmarthen, Wales, Lewis Bayly (c.1575–1631) was born in about 1575. Educated at Exeter College, Oxford, he received several church preferments in England and Wales before becoming Treasurer of Saint Paul’s Cathedral in London, and Chaplain to King James the First. In 1616 Bayly was appointed chaplain to the kind, and that same year consecrated as bishop of Bangor, a post he retained until his death in 1631.
Bayly’s Puritan convictions led to an imprisonment of several months in 1621 when he opposed The Book of Sports. He continued to be harassed by Archbishop William Laud, with fresh charges being brought against him in (and successfully defended) 1626 and 1630. He died in October 1631, being survived by his wife and four sons.
Bayly’s devotional manual, The Practice of Piety, appeared in 1611. By 1842 it had gone through eighty English editions and had been translated into several other languages. Among those who were strongly influenced by Bayly’s book were the English Baptist pastor and writer John Bunyan and Howell Harris, a leader in the Welsh revival of the 18th century.
The Works of Lewis Bayly:
The Practice of Piety: Directing a Christian How to Walk, That He May Please God. (491 pages)
[pdf epub mobi txt web via Google Books]
[pdf txt web via CCEL]
The CCEL files are of much higher quality.
Want to discuss something pertaining to Lewis Bayly? Leave a public comment below (subject to moderation), or send a private message to the webmaster.