Church and State in the Modern Age: A Documentary History

By J. F. MacLear | Go to book overview

that Christ gave himselfe a ransome for our sinns, or that we are iustified by his death & righteousnes, but by the perfection of our owne works, or deniing the morallity of the 4th commandement, or any other heresy of such nature & degree, every such person continuing obstinate therein, after due meanes of conviction, shall pay to the common treasury during the first six months 20 s[hillings] a month, & for the next six months 40 s[hillings] per m[onth], & so to continue dureing his obstinacy; & if any such person shall endeavor to seduce others . . . , he shall forfeit . . . for every severall offence therein, five pounds.


G. Massachusetts School Law of 1647, November 11, 1647:

It being one cheife proiect of that ould deluder, Satan, to keepe men from the knowledge of the Scriptures, as in former times by keeping them in an unknowne tongue, so in these latter times by perswading from the use of tongues, that so at least the true sense & meaning of the originall might be clouded by false glosses of saint seeming deceivers, that learning may not be buried in the grave of our fathers in the church and commonwealth, the Lord assisting our endeavors, --

It is therefore ordered, that every towneship in this iurisdiction, after the Lord hath increased them to the number of 50 housholders, shall then forthwith appoint one within their towne to teach all such children as shall resort to him to write & made, whose wages shall be paid either by the parents or masters of such children, or by the inhabitants in generall, by way of supply, as the maior part of those that order the prudentials of the towne shall appoint; provided, those that send their children be not oppressed by paying much more than they can have them taught for in other townes; & it is further ordered, that where any towne shall increase to the number of 100 families or househoulders they shall set up a grammer schoole, the master thereof being able to instruct youth so farr as they may be fited for the university, provided, that if any towne neglect the performance hereof above one yeare, that every such towne shall pay 5 [pounds] to the next schoole till they shall performe this order.

Source: A. Records of the Governor and Company of the Massachusetts Bay (ed. Nathaniel B. Shurtleff ) ( Boston, 1853), I, 55; B. ibid., 87; C. ibid., 140; D. ibid., 168; E. ibid., 240- 241; F. ibid., II, 176-177; G. ibid., 203.


SUGGESTIONS FOR BACKGROUND AND REFERENCE

Foster, Their Solitary Way: The Puritan Social Ethic in the First Century of Settlement in New England ( New Haven, 1971).

D. D. Hall, Puritanism in Seventeenth-Century Massachusetts ( New York, 1968).

G. L. Haskins, Law and Authority in Early Massachusetts ( New York, 1960).

P. Müller, The New England Mind: The Seventeenth Century ( New York, 1939).

E. S. Morgan, Visible Saints: The History of a Puritan Idea ( New York, 1963).

D. B. Rutman, American Puritanism. Faith and Practice ( Philadelphia, 1970).

-42-

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