KILHAM, ALEXANDER: Founder of the Methodist New Connection, frequently called Kilhamites; b. at Epworth (21 m. n.n.w. of Lincoln), Lincolnshire, July 10, 1762; d. at Nottingham Dec. 20, 1798. He began to preach in 1783, and was received by Wesley into the regular itinerant ministry in 1785. On the death of Wesley (1791) he became an energetic leader of the faction favoring complete separation of the Methodists from the Church of England and published a number of rather violent pamphlets in support of his views. At the conference held in London in 1792 he was censured, and at the conference of 1796, also held in London, he was unanimously expelled from the conference. On Aug. 9, 1797, Kilham met three other Methodist clergymen and a number of lay men at Leeds and organized the Methodist New Connection. See METHODISTS, I., 3.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: His Life (written by himself) was edited with a preface by J. Grundell, and R. Hall, Nottingham, 1799; [J. Blackwell,] Life of Rev. Alexander Kilham, London, 1838; W. J. Townsend, Alexander Kilham, the First Methodist Reformer, ib. 1890; DNB, xxxi. 102-103.
KILIAN, SAINT: Irish cleric in Germany, who, with several companions, met a martyr's death at Würzburg in the eighth century. He is called Bishop Chilianus in a necrology of the time and in the martyrology of Rabanus is spoken of as coming from Ireland to preach the Gospel of Christ in those regions and meeting death because of his faith. There are difficulties connected with the tradition, not the least being that the Franks dwelling on the middle Main were no longer a pagan people and Kilian's labors, therefore, were not those of a missionary. Only the fact of the Celtic bishop's violent death is undoubted; the exact period of his martyrdom at the hands of a Duxor a Judge Gozbert can not be verified. Concerning the form of the name "Kilian" the following seems to be well established. The Ch of the "Chilianus" in the oldest authority is to be ascribed to the regular working of the laws of Germanic phonology. Irish names ending in an, iane, ene are always nicknames, appellatives, etc., as in the case of the abbot of Armagh, about 640, addressed by Pope John V. as Tomian and Tomene. The old Irish cell (gen. celle, dat. and acc. cill, c being always pronounced like k) signified the cell of an anchorite, a monastery or a church, and Cellan and Cillene were common names among the Irish clergy in the seventh and eighth centuries, signifying "anchorite." On the analogy of Tomian and Tomene, Killian, spelled with two ll's might properly be regarded as a variant of Cillene. The difficulty presented by the fact that the Frankish form is Kilian, with single l, may be explained by supposing the substitution for the liquid double l of a single letter bearing the same sound. St. Kilian's reputation dates from the time of Burchard, bishop of Würzburg (d. about 754).
BIBLIOGRAPHY: An early Vita, with comment, is in ASB, July, ii., 599-614. Consult: T. D. Hardy, Descriptive Catalogue of Materials, i. 1, p. 339, in Rolls Series, no. 26, London, 1862; W. D. Killen, Ecclesiastical Hist. of Ireland, 2 vols., London, 1875; H. Zimmer, The Irish Element in Mediæval Culture, New York, 1891; Rettberg, KD, ii. 303; Hauck, KD, i. 370; DCB, i. 544-555; KL, vii. 446-448; DNB, x. 363--364.
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