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PENN, William (1644-1718). The Speech of William Penn to his Majesty upon his Delivering the Quakers Address. [London, 1687.]
PENN, William (1644-1718). The Speech of William Penn to his Majesty upon his Delivering the Quakers Address. [London, 1687.]
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PENN, William (1644-1718). The Speech of William Penn to his Majesty upon his Delivering the Quakers Address. [London, 1687.]

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PENN, William (1644-1718). The Speech of William Penn to his Majesty upon his Delivering the Quakers Address. [London, 1687.]

One of the foundations of religious liberty: William Penn appeals to King James II to protect freedom of conscience for the Quakers. An eloquent appeal to the King, citing Jesus’ oft-quoted phrase, “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God, the things that are God’s.” While observing that “this distinction ought to be observed by all Men, in the Conduct of their lives, so the King has given Us an Illustrious Example in His own Person that excites Us to it; For while HE was a Subject, HE gave Caesar His Tribute; and now HE is Caesar, gives GOD his Due, (viz) The Sovereignty over Consciences.” At the bottom of the second page, James offers his acknowledgement “that conscience ought not to be Forced.” In 1687 James II proclaimed the Declaration of Indulgence or Declaration of Liberty of Conscience, the first step in establishing freedom of religion in Great Britain.

Broadsheet, two pages, quarto (280 x 175mm). (Minor toning at top margin, minor loss at bottom left not affecting text.)

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