; July 1591 – August 1643) was a Puritan
spiritual advisor, religious reformer, and an important participant in the Antinomian Controversy
which shook the infant Massachusetts Bay Colony
from 1636 to 1638. Her strong religious convictions were at odds with the established Puritan clergy in the Boston
area and her popularity and charisma helped create a theological schism
that threatened to destroy the Puritans' religious community in New England. She was eventually tried and convicted, then banished from the colony with many of her supporters.
Hutchinson was born in Alford
, England, the daughter of Francis Marbury
, an Anglican cleric and school teacher who gave her a far better education than most other girls received. She lived in London as a young adult, and there married a friend from home, William Hutchinson
. The couple moved back to Alford where they began following preacher John Cotton
in the nearby port of Boston, Lincolnshire
. Cotton was compelled to emigrate in 1633, and the Hutchinsons followed a year later with their 11 children and soon became well established in the growing settlement of Boston in New England
. Hutchinson was a midwife
and helpful to those needing her assistance, as well as forthcoming with her personal religious understandings. Soon she was hosting women at her house weekly, providing commentary on recent sermons. These meetings became so popular that she began offering meetings for men as well, including the young governor of the colony, Henry Vane
. (Full article...