The Age of Reason: Being an Investigation of True and Fabulous Theology

The Age of Reason: Being an Investigation of True and Fabulous Theology

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The Age of Reason: Being an Investigation of True and Fabulous Theology

The Age of Reason: Being an Investigation of True and Fabulous Theology

Read FREE!

Excerpt

In the opening year, 1793, when revolutionary France had beheaded its king, the wrath turned next upon the King of kings, by whose grace every tyrant claimed to reign. But eventualities had brought among them a great English and American heart -- Thomas Paine. He had pleaded for Louis Capet -- "Kill the king but spare the man." Now he pleaded, -- "Disbelieve in the King of kings, but do not confuse with that idol the Father of Mankind!"

In Paine Preface to the Second Part of "The Age of Reason" he describes himself as writing the First Part near the close of the year 1793. "I had not finished it more than six hours, in the state it has since appeared, before a guard came about three in the morning, with an order signed by the two Committees of Public Safety and Surety General, for putting me in arrestation." This was on the morning of December 28. But it is necessary to weigh the words just quoted -- "in the state it has since appeared." For on August 5, 1794, François Lanthenas, in an appeal for Paine's liberation, wrote as follows: "I deliver to Merlin de Thionville a copy of the last work of T. Payne [The Age of Reason], formerly our colleague, and in custody since the decree excluding foreigners from the national representation. This book was written by the author in the beginning of the year '93 (old style). I undertook its translation before the revolution against priests, and it was published in French about the same time. Couthon, to whom I sent it, seemed offended with me for having translated this work. . . ."

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