This book explores the life, thought and political commitments of the free-thinker John Toland (1670–1722). Studying both his private archive and published works, it illustrates how he moved in both subversive and elite political circles in England and abroad. The book explores the connections between Toland's republican political thought and his irreligious belief about Christian doctrine, the ecclesiastical establishment and divine revelation, arguing that far from being a marginal and insignificant figure, he counted queens, princes and government ministers as his friends and political associates. In particular, Toland's intimate relationship with the Electress Sophia of Hanover saw him act as a court philosopher, but also as a powerful publicist for the Hanoverian succession. The book argues that he shaped the republican tradition after the Glorious Revolution into a practical and politically viable programme, focused not on destroying the monarchy but on reforming public religion and the Church of England. It also examines how Toland used his social intimacy with a wide circle of men and women (ranging from Prince Eugene of Savoy to Robert Harley) to distribute his ideas in private. The book explores the connections between his erudition and print culture, arguing that his intellectual project was aimed at compromising the authority of Christian ‘knowledge’ as much as the political power of the Church. Overall, it illustrates how Toland's ideas and influence impacted upon English political life between the 1690s and the 1720s.
the activities of missionary work in India, and Wellesley’s
determination to eradicate the influence of French republicanism, 98 Buchanan’s
Memoir on the Expediency of an EcclesiasticalEstablishment for
British India (1805) unsurprisingly owed rather more to Grant
than Carey, even though many of the fears of 1793 had receded.
‘Our extensive territorial triumph over our only formidable
Anglo-Saxon literature and material culture
role while alive. Yet this performance did not end with his death.
In fact, it was crucial for the community of Lindisfarne, and for
Northumbria in a wider sense, that Cuthbert did not ‘die’ –or
crucial, at least, that his presence remained perceptible. Following
Cuthbert’s death, the leadership of the Lindisfarne community
passed for a brief but divisive period to Wilfrid. Thacker identifies
this as a period of anxiety for a large section of the Northumbrian
ecclesiasticalestablishment, since ‘hostility to the
ecclesiasticalestablishment, and monastic factors playing upon popular
sentiment, with fatal results for the Jews, and particularly for Jewish
children. In the incident at Blois the Jewish community as a whole was
blamed for the murder of a Christian; their guilt was proven through trial
by ordeal, they were executed by burning at the stake, and the Jewish
children were taken to be raised as Christians.8 Every Jewish leader in
northern France (and even in Germany) after the 1170s was aware of this
event, and R. Yitzhak, although he did not respond to the event directly,