Ancient and Modern Celebrated Freethinkers

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From Table of Contnts: THOMAS HOBBES. LORD BOLINGBROKE. CONDORCET. SPINOZA. ANTHONY COLLINS. DES CARTES. M. DE VOLTAIRE. JOHN TOLAND. COMPTE DE VOLNEY. CHARLES BLOUNT. PERCY BYSSHE SHELLEY. CLAUD ARIAN HELVETIUS. FRANCES W. D'ARUSMONT. EPICURUS ZENO, THE STOIC MATTHEW TINDAL. DAVID HUME DR. THOMAS BURNET THOMAS PAINE. BAPTISTE DE MIRABAUD BARON D'HOLBACH. ROBERT TAYLOR. JOSEPH BARKER. In these pages, appearing under the title of "Half-Hours with the Freethinkers," are collected in a readable form an abstract of the lives and doctrines of some of those who have stood foremost in the ranks of Free-thought in all countries and in all ages; and we trust that our efforts to place in the hands of the poorest of our party a knowledge of works and workers-some of which and whom would otherwise be out of their reach-will be received by all in a favorable light. We shall, in the course of our publication, have to deal with many writers whose opinions widely differ from our own, and it shall be our care to deal with them justly and in all cases to allow them to utter in their own words their essential thinkings. We lay no claim to originality in the mode of treatment-we will endeavor to cull the choicest flowers from the garden, and if others can make a brighter or better bouquet, we shall be glad to have their assistance. We have only one object in view, and that is, the presenting of free and manly thoughts to our readers, hoping to induce like thinking in them, and trust-ing that noble work may follow noble thoughts. The Freethinkers we intend treating of have also been Free Workers, endeavoring to raise men's minds from superstition and bigotry, and place before them a knowledge of the real. We have been the more inclined to issue the "Half-Hours with the Freethinkers" in consequence, not only of the difficulty which many have in obtaining the works of the Old Freethinkers, but also as an effective answer to some remarks which have lately appeared in certain religious publications, implying a dearth of thought and thinkers beyond the pale of the Church. We wish all men to know that great minds and good men have sought truth apart from faith for many ages, and that it is because few were prepared to receive them, and many united to crush them, their works are so difficult of access to the general mass at the present day." -
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