Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Culy, David

CULY, DAVID (d. 1725?), sectary, was a native of Guyhirn, a hamlet in the parish of Wisbech St. Peter's, Cambridgeshire. He founded a new sect of dissenters who were called Culimites. They held him in such high esteem that he was styled the bishop of Guyhirn (Notes and Queries, 2nd ser. x. 407). Most of the inhabitants of Guyhirn became his disciples, as did many persons at Whittlesea, Wisbech St. Mary's, Outwell, and Upwell, until his flock was increased to seven or eight hundred. But after his death, which occurred about 1725, the Culimites gradually declined in numbers, and in 1755, when Bishop Mawson issued articles of inquiry respecting nonconformists, it appeared that there were only fifteen families belonging to the sect in the diocese of Ely, and that they all resided at Wisbech St. Mary's and Guyhirn. Culy's doctrine differed but little from that of the anabaptists, to which sect he had originally belonged.

Shortly after his death there appeared: ‘The Works of Mr. David Culy, in three parts: I. The Glory of the two Crown'd Heads, Adam & Christ, unveil'd; or the Mystery of the New Testament opened. II. Letters and Answers to and from several Ministers of divers Persuasions, on various subjects. III. Above forty Hymns compos'd on Weighty Subjects,’ London, 1726, 12mo; Boston, 1787, 12mo. The first part, ‘The Glory of the two Crown'd Heads,’ was reprinted at Plymouth Dock, 1800, 12mo, and at Spilsby, 1820, 12mo (Brit. Mus. Cat.)

[Authorities quoted above; Stevenson's Appendix to Bentham's Hist. of Ely, p. 44*; Watson's Wisbech, p. 456.]

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