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Elizabeth A.Sackler Center for Feminist Art

Selin Hastings

b. 1707, Staunton Harold, Leicestershire, England; d. 1791, London

The correct spelling of this name is SELINA HASTINGS.

Selina Hastings, countess of Huntingdon, a pivotal figure in England’s evangelical revival in the eighteenth century, converted to Methodism, a dissenting offshoot of Protestantism, in 1739. She proselytized her religious beliefs among the aristocratic classes and lobbied for official protection of the Methodist movement. Yet she was dissatisfied with certain of the sect’s doctrines and explored other forms of spirituality, including Calvinism, mysticism, and millenarianism, eventually establishing a sect of Calvinistic Methodists called the Countess of Huntingdon’s Connection (1783). She financed the building of chapels in aristocratic resorts, including Bath (1765) and Tunbridge Wells (1769), and in 1768 founded Trevecca College as a training ground for evangelical ministers.