Download The Infidel Tradition: from Paine to Bradlaugh by Edward Royle PDF

By Edward Royle

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Carlile. This mission was entered upon in May, and begun at Cambridge', by a general challenge to that University, in the most formal and most complete way in which it could be made, to the public defence of the Christian religion. The only answer given to this challenge was, in the persecution of Mr. Smith, of Rose Crescent, the printseller and lodging-house keeper, for lodging the infidel missionaries. Waiting near a week at Cambridge to no purpose, but with some threats of personal violence from the members of the University, the mission proceeded to Wisbeach, to Stamford, and to Nottingham, without being able to get standing room under a roof for an audience; but not without formally challenging the priests by a printed circular.

Every repetition becomes an addition to its force, and every impression of the Printing Press adds to its former power when rightly applied. There is much of sophistry and falsehood yet to be brushed away, but I feel satisfied, that the Press is competent, when worked by the arm of courage, and devoted to the cause of truth and liberty. Just calculate how many persons may read one copy of the ''Age of Reason,'' if it be taken care of. I know several persons, who have kept copies, which they purchased of me in 1819, in constant use, in the way of lending them up to this time, and instances where a single copy has gone through fifty families, all approving as they read.

Jones, John Hawes, Joseph Trust, Thomas Evans, and William Ethel, when we proceeded to 55, Fleet Street, where we met three more-thus making eight. We then formed ourselves into a committee, for the purpose of aiding Mr. Carlile. The following are the names of the persons we met at 55, Fleet Street-W. Henman, P. Phillips, the other name I have forgotten; the only thing I recollect is, he had a wooden leg. Our first act was to get two books--one for the purpose of entering any rules that we might think requisite; and the other to enter the subscriptions in.

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