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The attempt to wash the blackamoor white, was not more futile, than the attempt to convert the Jewish world to Christianity. We might feel astonishment at the gross infatuatioú of those creatures called Christians, did we not know that their disease somewbat resembles that of the Athenian madman, who fancied that he had possession of, and power over, all that he bebeld, and actually regretted the restoration of his reason, and the loss of this pleasing insanity. The money wasted about the Christian religion in this country, is enough to clothe all the naked bodies, and fill all the hungry bellies in it, and would render unnecessary the whole amount of the poor rates. The more rapid the decay of this religion at home, the more money is wasted by propagating it abroad. Our priests begin to relax at home, and feel that it is all over with them, and confine themselves now to the expression of their abhorrence of blasphemy and sedition, in addresses to the king; and in their last resource--pulpit declamation. They durst no longer venture to meet their opponents in controversy or argument. We have been informed (thongh we pledge ourselves that we have not bad the slightest sbare in it) that a project is on foot to try what number of priests in this country can be found to sign a petition to the king for the liberation of the Editor of this publication, on the ground of challenging him to whatever attack be may be able to make on the Christian religion, and trusting solely to its divinity, and not to the secular arm for its support and protection. We have heard of this project with surprise within the last week, and we shall feel further surprise, if there be found half a dozen priests in the country who will sign such a petition, The petition which the whole body of the priests would willingly subscribe, is that which a bishop sent with a hundred pounds to Mr. Clement, the proprietor of the Observer, and which was published in that paper, in two or three parts, on as many Sundays, preparatory to the sentence of ihe Court of King's Bench, and which, among other murderous recommendations, had the following: “ The patient is maddene i by a poison below buman nature, and beyond human remedy; his language is raving, and, for the common safety of the species, he must be fettered till be dies!" Such a petition as this would be unanimously signed, and one of the Dorchester Clerical Magistrates expressed an anxiety to proceed practically with its recommendation. The above petition recommended the fining the Editor £3000. by way of making the £1500 look but a trifle! And further, the fine
was recommended to be such as not to leave bim a tittle of property, nor the means of paying it: a bint that was not lost upon the Christian Judge Bailey! I shall hope that this Judge be solicited to sign this new fashioned petition, and let his profession be put to the test, he is more a priest than a judge. To conclude this article, we shall predict the fall of the Christian religion, as fell the superstitious belief of a revelation in the Sibylline leaves at Rome, in the words of a note in Grainger's Tibullus: “ The Sibylline books continued in high reverence, till about the time of Theodosius the elder, when the greatest part of the Senate being converted to Christianity, they began to be regarded as fables ; and at la-t, in the reign of Honorius, Stilicho burnt them.” Sucb we predict will be the cbange from Christianity to Deism in a few years.
TO MR. CARLILE.
Port-ea, Nov. 29, 1820. A Few few friends to civil and religious liberty in this neighbourhood, beg you will accept the enclosed small sum of £l, as a token of the respect which they owe to you, for your manly and persevering couduct in the exposure of that fabulous book called ihe Bible, which has greatly assisted the progress of corruption in this country.
They hope the time iş pot far distant when they shall see the intrepid Carlile recrive an enthusiastic applause as a zealous Reformer of Church and State. They are happy to say that the Sun of Reason has begun to expand its bright and animating rays in those paris, and they hope it will continue to diffuse itself uutil the darkness which has so long pervaded this country be finally dispelled.
They cannot but look with disgust on the unmanly conduct and persecuting spirit of the Vice Society and Attorney General in prosecuting Mrs. Carlile, because she sells such books as tend to expo:e all their bloody and murderous proceedings. It is their most anxious wish to see you and your wife once more at liberty to face the monstrous ciew, aud they also hope that the day is now come when our tyrants will be driven from the shores of this country. You will excuse the manner in which they have expressed themselves, it is their hearts which speak with a burning indignation towarus those monsters in human shape who have so long ty-. rannized over us.
They hope you will excuse their names as their situations will not admit of making them public. They send this small sum as a
token of sincere love and admiration of your principles, which they clearly perceive are nothing less than those of universal liberty.
The REFORMERS IN AND ABOU'T Portsea. P. S. Be pleased to acknowledge this letter by ivserting it in the Republican, and we shall feel further obliged. We wish to make our sentiments known though we durst not publish our names from the nature of our employment.
TO THE REFORMERS IN AND ABOUT PORTSEA.
CITIZENS, Dorchester Gaol, Dec. 4, 1820. It is with pleasure I ackuowledge your token of respect, and give insertion to your se.itunents. Being well acquainted with your neighbourhood I am fully aware of your peculiar situations, and the necessity, at this inoment, of concealmg your names. forn a pretty correct idea of the extensive progress of liberal principle in your neighbourhood by the extensive demand you have made for my publications. That demand has almost equalled that of any of the great lowus in the north, and has excelled any thing in the southern and western towns of England. Alihouyh Portsea might be compared to a Couit for patronage and influence, I believe there are very few parasites in the towni
. That we are on the eve of some great change for better or for worse I think is not to be doub:ed. It is impossible to say what will occiir immediately, but a iseform in Parliament must not, cannot be far remote. Every change, let it be for better or worse, will draw us the nearer to it; as the great body of the people have nothing else in view and will be satisfied with nothing short of that all-important object.
I am heartily glad to see that superstition has lost its bold on your minds and that you are fully alive to the proper title of our
Holy Bouk.” We must no longer respect fable as truth, and iinmorality and obscenity as ihe source of moral justruction. It is mopstrous to think that such a thing shonld be jusisted upon. I do not condemn the Bible generally, unless it be in its character of being Holy, or Divine, or prophetic. 'Those parts of it which the Jews borrowed from the Persians, or rather the Babylonians then called, convey some good moral lessons, such is the book of Job and Proverbs, but it is not the only book that has moral lessons, and unless we can separate the moral froin the imaoral part of the Bible, we had better not meddle with it at all.
A religion that has no other foundation than the tales of a paltry nation, which in its extent and fertility cau only be compared to Wales, can never lead the mivd to a contemplation of the only true God of Nature. It was well observed by one of the Princes who
went from Italy to conquer the Holy Land (80 called) in one of the famous crusades, that if the God of the Jews had ever seen any part of Italy or Sicily, he would never have made choice of such a barren spot as Judea. This expression was actually made, and it forms a proof that our natural feelings are apt, even accidentally, to call in question our superstitious notions. 'Truth must and ever will have nature for its guide, and since most men have adopted some sort of creed, I also have adopted mine, in which I am certain I cannot err; I BELIEVE IN NOTHING SUPERNATURAL. Nothing can be more comprehensive or intelligible; it is a creed which cannot lead to schisin and dissension, It is a creed which has truth for its basis, for po mind can err that believes no further than it can see. I would recommend my creed to all mankind as a panacea for all religious madness and dispute.
Reformers of Portsea, I hope again to spend a few hours with you, in a town ind neighbourhood in which I have spent mars pleasant months, within a year or two ut farthest. 1 scarcely think I shall fill out the time allotted me by the common enemy for imprisoninent. But be that as it may, I can assure you that it does not prey upon my spirits, and although I do not laugh much, and live in the most tenperate manner, I cannot help growing corpulent. I have no guilty conscience to gnaw my vitals ; I feel notonly content but pleasure at what I have done, and ain perfectly placid both sleeping and waking. I ain still resolved to proceed in some shape or other whilst I can command a printing-press or keep a shop open.
I am your humble friend,
CHARACTER OF THOMAS PAINE.
From an American Publication called “ The Theophi
The biography of Mr. Thomas Paine is known; he was of low origin, but even in his youth of a strong, resolute and constant temper. He had from his infancy adopted the opinions be so successfully promulgated in his manhood. All his literary productions evince an acute, profound, determined mind; his language is simple, accurate and nervous, adapted to all capacities, so pointed and unequivocal, that there is no misconceiving it; he is sententious; his axioms are incontrovertible, and their jupressions. indelible. No human being's effort have done more for liberty; he made more converts than Syduey or Russel. His “ Common Sepse” enfranchised America. America was divided into two parties; the argument of this little pamphlet, decided
the contest. His “ Rights of Man" had nearly à similar effect in England. Innumerable replies have appeared against it; but so weak and futile as to injure the cause they meant to sustain. He reasoned from facts, and his distinction was irresistible, he poured like a torrent and bore down every thing before him; he was prosecuted for bis works, but they are so admired they are in every library. He seemed stern and morose, but he was lenient, friendly, and benevolent. He instanced his humanity by his resolute vote to save the king's life. The sanguinary Robespierre never forgave him. In the reign of terror Robespierre imprisoned him, but the apostle of liberty, though in such imminent danger, never retracted his opinions, or solicited mercy; it pleased providence that he should escape this monster. Bold, manly, and fiariess, he never concealed his sentiments; positive and inflexible, they never varied. He continued in Paris long after Buonaparte rendered himself supreme in the state, and spoke as freely as ever. He told the writer of this article at Paris, on the peace of Amiens, that he was preparing for America; that he could not reside in comfort in the dominions of Buonaparte; that if he was to govern like an angel, he should always remember that he had perjured bimself; that he had beard him swear that France should be a pure republic; and that he himself would die rather than endure the authority of a single individual; he would end his days in America, for he thought there was no liberty any where else. There he soon went, and there he paid the debt of nature; but his
will never perish.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE REPUBLICAN.
SIR, The Queen being all the rage at present, induced me to send you the following Lines, should you deem them worth it, by their insertion in your valuable Paper, you will much oblige, Yours, &c.
T. R. BAYLEY POTTS.