William Cowper (pronounced Cooper) (1731-1800) was an English poet and hymnodist. One of the most popular poets of his time, Cowper changed the direction of 18th century nature poetry by writing of everyday life and scenes of the English countryside. He suffered from periods of severe depression, and although he found refuge in a fervent evangelical Christianity, he often experienced doubt and fears that he was doomed to eternal damnation. However, his religious motivations and association with John Newton (who wrote the hymn "Amazing Grace") led to much of the poetry and hymns for which he is best remembered.
Poems by Madame Guyon (translated by Cowper) (65 pages)
Madame Guyon (1648-1717) was a French mystic and one of the key advocates of Quietism. Quietism was considered heretical by the Roman Catholic Church, and she was imprisoned from 1695 to 1703 after publishing a book on it, A Short and Easy Method of Prayer.
Madame Guyon's warmest partisans after her death were to be found among the Protestants. It was a Dutch Protestant, the pastor Poiret, who began the publication of her works; a Vaudois pietist pastor, Duthoit-Mambrini, continued it. Her "Life" was translated into English and German, and her ideas, long since forgotten in France, have for generations been in favour in Germany, Switzerland, England, and among Methodists in America.