Beard, Thomas the "protomartyr of Methodism," was one of Mr. Wesley's first assistants. In 1744, during the fierce persecutions waged against the Methodists, he was torn from his family and sent away as a soldier. He maintained a brave spirit under his sufferings, but his health failed. He was sent to the hospital at Newcastle in 1774, "where," says Wesley, "he still praised God continually." His fever became worse, and he was bled, but his arm festered, mortified, and had to be amputated. A few days later he died. Charles Wesley wrote the hymn Soldier of Christ, adieu! as a tribute to the memory of Beard. Wesley, Works, 3, 317; Stevens, Hist. of Methodism, 1, 210; Atmore, Memorial, p. 27.