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Swedenborgians were followers of Emanuel Swedenborg (1688–1772), a Swedish scientist and diplomat who taught that there are correspondences between the visible forms of nature and the invisible world of the spirit. In 1787 some of his followers started the New Jerusalem church. Their teaching that the end of creation could be achieved only through man had radical implications and they were particularly strong in Manchester where they were known as Bible Christians under the leadership of William Cowherd, a Church of England curate, Joseph Brotherton, MP for Salford, and James Scholefield, supporter of Henry Hunt and Feargus O'Connor.

Edward Royle

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