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William Kelly

1821-1906. Plymouth brother and biblical critic. Only son of an Ulster squire, he was educated at Downpatrick and Trinity College, Dublin. He was in 1841 converted to the principles of the Brethren, and began to write extensively on behalf of the Darbyite section of that body. He edited two periodicals, The Prospect from 1848 to 1850, and the Bible Treasury from 1856 till his death; wrote a long series of devotional works and commentaries; and edited the collected works of J.N. Darby* (34 vols., 1867-83). In 1879 the excommunication of Dr. Edward Cronin led to the “Kelly schism” in the Exclusive Brethren, Kelly heading the more moderate and understanding faction till his death. The original Kelly assemblies are now much reduced, being entirely separate from the Exclusives and inclining more to the independent Brethren. Spurgeon said of Kelly that he was “born for the universe” but “narrowed his mind by Darbyism.”