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Peter Sterry

d.1672. Chaplain to Oliver Cromwell.* Educated at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, he became a fellow there in 1636. During the 1640s he was a chaplain to Lady Brooke, a member of the Westminster Assembly* of Divines, and an occasional preacher before Parliament. In 1649 he became a regular preacher to the council of state of the Commonwealth, and also acted as a chaplain to the Lord Protector. After the latter's death he moved to Hackney where he taught some students in his home. Following the Restoration of Charles II, he was known as a Nonconformist and preached at conventicles. This period saw also some of his best literary work—e.g., A Discourse of the Freedom of the Will, published posthumously in 1675. He was a Calvinistic mystic, influenced by Neoplatonism and by such mystics as Jakob Boehme.*