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The Hyacinth-Bucket-isation of Baptist Forebears?

This is an aside, not even vaguely important, but it delays a bit of essay wrestling!

When I was learning Baptist history the twin-forebears (they weren't twins but there were two of them, together, even thought they squabbled and fell out later) were Thomas Helwys and John Smith.  Common or garden Smith, nothing fancy.  Recently he seems to have had a Hyacinth experience, especially across the pond, and become John Smyth, pronounced smythe to rhyme with scythe.  Googling him (with Helwys who is rarer, so makes the whole thing work) brings back both spellings, though from UK sources more typically Smith.

So is 'Smith' just not posh enough?  Should Smyth be pronounced smith or smythe?

And just who are the equivalents to Onslow and Daisy?!  Answers on a postcard to the usual address.


  • This intrigues me - when I did a project on Baptist History for my Girls Brigade Queen's Badge, back in 1971, and interviewed lots of venerable baptist worthies [mostly now dead!] he was definitely SMYTH as in SCYTHE then - so the wheel has turned full circle.
    On subject of ancient baptists, what are your thoughts about "K" in Rippon's selection? [how firm a foundation]

    I shall muse on the Onslow'n'Daisy issue whilst away on holiday next week!

  • Intriguing! What about 'K'? We are singing it next week - along with 'we limit not the truth of God' and 'open this book that we may see your word'.

    When I did my GB Queen's (completed 1980) I wrote about the URC (to which I then linked) which was then only a few year's old! So ended up writing about Browne and the Independents which, received wisdom of the time, would see as fore runners of Congs and Baps - but not nowadays. Ah history, it's all so fluid and fashion driven! No wonder I failed my 'O' level!!

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