General Reference Glossaries

Of Interest to Theosophists


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A Dictionary of Philosophers,

Theologians and

Political Commentators


Reference Work



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Abælardus (Petrus), b. 1079. A teacher of philosophy at Paris, renowned

for being loved by the celebrated Eloise. He was accused of teaching

erroneous opinions, chiefly about the Creation and the Trinity, and was

condemned by a council at Soissons in 1121 and by that of Sens 1140,

at the instigation of St. Bernard. He was hunted about, but spent

his last days as a monk at Cluni. He died 21 April, 1142. "Abelard,"

observes Hallam, "was almost the first who awakened mankind, in the

age of darkness, to a sympathy with intellectual excellence."


Abano (Petrus de). See Petrus, de Abano.


Abauzit (Firmin), a French writer, descended from an Arabian family

which settled in the South of France early in the ninth century,

b. Uzes, 11 Nov. 1679. He travelled in Holland and became acquainted

with Bayle, attained a reputation for philosophy, and was consulted by

Voltaire and Rousseau. Among his works are, Reflections on the Gospels,

and an essay on the Apocalypse, in which he questions the authority

of that work. Died at Geneva 20 March, 1767. His Miscellanies were

translated in English by E. Harwood, 1774.


Abbot (Francis Ellingwood). American Freethinker, b. Boston, 6

Nov. 1836. He graduated at Harvard University 1859, began life as a

Unitarian minister, but becoming too broad for that Church, resigned

in 1869. He started the Index, a journal of free religious inquiry

and anti-supernaturalism, at Toledo, but since 1874 at Boston. This he

edited 1870-80. In 1872 appeared his Impeachment of Christianity. In

addition to his work on the Index, Mr. Abbot has lectured a great

deal, and has contributed to the North American Review and other

periodicals. He was the first president of the American National

Liberal League. Mr. Abbot is an evolutionist and Theist, and defends

his views in Scientific Theism, 1886.


Ablaing van Giessenburg (R.C.) See Giessenburg.


Abu Bakr Ibn Al-Tufail (Abu J'afar) Al Isbili. Spanish Arabian

philosopher, b. at Guadys, wrote a philosophical romance of pantheistic

tendency Hai Ibn Yakdan, translated into Latin by Pocock, Oxford 1671,

and into English by S. Ockley, 1711, under the title of The Improvement

of Human Reason. Died at Morocco 1185.


Abu-Fazil (Abu al Fadhl ibn Mubarak, called Al Hindi), vizier to

the great Emperor Akbar from 1572. Although by birth a Muhammadan,

his investigations into the religions of India made him see equal

worth in all, and, like his master, Akbar, he was tolerant of all

sects. His chief work is the Ayin Akbary, a statistical account of

the Indian Empire. It was translated by F. Gladwin, 1777. He was

assassinated 1604.


Abul-Abbas-Abdallah III. (Al Mamoun), the seventh Abbasside, caliph,

son of Haroun al Rashid, was b. at Bagdad 16 Sept. 786. He was a patron of science and literature, collected Greek and Hebrew manuscripts, and invited the scholars of all nations to his capital. He wrote several treatises and poems. Died in war near Tarsus, 9 Aug. 833.


Abul-Ola (Ahmad ibn Abd Allah ibn Sulaiman), celebrated Arabian poet,

b. at Maari, in Syria, Dec., 973. His free opinions gave much scandal

to devout Moslems. He was blind through small-pox from the age of

four years, but his poems exhibit much knowledge. He called himself

"the doubly imprisoned captive," in allusion to his seclusion and

loss of sight. He took no pains to conceal that he believed in no

revealed religion. Died May, 1057, and ordered the following verse

to be written on his tomb:--"I owe this to the fault of my father:

none owe the like to mine."


Abu Tahir (al Karmatti), the chief of a freethinking sect at Bahrein,

on the Persian Gulf, who with a comparatively small number of followers

captured Mecca (930), and took away the black stone. He suddenly

attacked, defeated, and took prisoner Abissaj whom, at the head of

thirty thousand men, the caliph had sent against him. Died in 943.


Achillini (Alessandro), Italian physician and philosopher b. Bologna 29

Oct. 1463. He expounded the doctrines of Averroes, and wrote largely

upon anatomy. Died 2 Aug. 1512. His collected works were published

at Venice, 1545.


Ackermann (Louise-Victorine, née Choquet), French poetess, b. Paris 30

Nov. 1813. She travelled to Germany and there married (1853) a young

theologian, Paul Ackerman, who in preparing for the ministry lost his

Christian faith, and who, after becoming teacher to Prince Frederick

William (afterwards Frederick III.), died at the age of thirty-four

(1846). Both were friends of Proudhon. Madame Ackermann's poems

(Paris 1863-74 and 85) exhibit her as a philosophic pessimist and

Atheist. "God is dethroned," says M. Caro of her poems (Revue des

Deux Mondes, 15 May, 1874). She professes hatred of Christianity

and its interested professors. She has also published Thoughts of a

Solitary. Sainte Beuve calls her "the learned solitary of Nice."


Acollas (Pierre Antoine René Paul Emile), French jurisconsult and

political writer, b. La Châtre 25 June, 1826, studied law at Paris. For

participating in the Geneva congress of the International Society

in 1867 he was condemned to one year's imprisonment. In 1871 he was

appointed head of the law faculty by the Commune. He has published

several manuals popularising the legal rights of the people, and has

written on Marriage its Past, Present, and Future, 1880. Mrs. Besant

has translated his monograph on The Idea of God in the Revolution,

published in the Droits de l'Homme.


Acontius (Jacobus--Italian, Giacomo Aconzio). Born at Trent early

in sixteenth century. After receiving ordination in the Church of

Rome he relinquished that faith and fled to Switzerland in 1557. He

subsequently came to England and served Queen Elizabeth as a military

engineer. To her he dedicated his Strategems of Satan, published at

Basle 1565. This was one of the earliest latitudinarian works, and

was placed upon the Index. It was also bitterly assailed by Protestant

divines, both in England and on the Continent. An English translation

appeared in 1648. Some proceedings were taken against Acontius before

Bishop Grindall, of the result of which no account is given. Some

passages of Milton's Areopagitica may be traced to Acontius, who,

Cheynell informs us, lived till 1623. Stephen's Dictionary of National

Biography says he is believed to have died shortly after 1566.


Acosta (Uriel). Born at Oporto 1597, the son of a Christianised Jew;

he was brought up as a Christian, but on reaching maturity, rejected

that faith. He went to Holland, where he published a work equally

criticising Moses and Jesus. For this he was excommunicated by the

Synagogue, fined and put in prison by the Amsterdam authorities,

and his work suppressed. After suffering many indignities from both

Jews and Christians, he committed suicide 1647.


Adams (George), of Bristol, sentenced in 1842 to one month's

imprisonment for selling the Oracle of Reason.


Adams (Robert C.), Canadian Freethought writer and lecturer. Author

of Travels in Faith from Tradition to Reason (New York, 1884), also

Evolution, a Summary of Evidence.


Adler (Felix) Ph. D. American Freethinker, the son of a Jewish rabbi,

was b. in Alzey, Germany, 13 Aug. 1851. He graduated at Columbia

College, 1870, was professor of Hebrew and Oriental literature

at Cornell University from '74 to May '76, when he established in

New York the Society of Ethical Culture, to which he discourses on

Sundays. In 1877 he published a volume entitled Creed and Deed, in

which he rejects supernatural religion. Dr. Adler has also contributed

many papers to the Radical literature of America.


Ænesidemus. A Cretan sceptical philosopher of the first century. He

adopted the principle of Heraclitus, that all things were in course

of change, and argued against our knowledge of ultimate causes.


Airy (Sir George Biddell). English Astronomer Royal, b. Alnwick

27 July, 1801. Educated at Cambridge, where he became senior

wrangler 1823. During a long life Professor Airy did much to advance

astronomical science. His Notes on the Earlier Hebrew Scriptures 1876,

proves him to have been a thorough-going Freethinker.


Aitkenhead (Thomas), an Edinburgh student aged eighteen, who was

indicted for blasphemy, by order of the Privy Council, for having

called the Old Testament "Ezra's Fables," and having maintained

that God and nature were the same. He was found guilty 24 Dec. 1696,

and hanged for blasphemy, 8 Jan. 1697.


Aitzema (Lieuwe van), a nobleman of Friesland, b. at Dorckum 19

Nov. 1600, author of a suppressed History of the Netherlands, between

1621-68. Is classed by Reimmann as an Atheist. Died at the Hague 23

Feb. 1669.


Akbar (Jalal-ed-din Muhammad), the greatest of the emperors of

Hindostan, b. 15 Oct. 1542, was famous for his wide administration and

improvement of the empire. Akbar showed toleration alike to Christians,

Muhammadans, and to all forms of the Hindu faith. He had the Christian

gospels and several Brahmanical treatises translated into Persian. The

result of his many conferences on religion between learned men of

all sects, are collected in the Dabistan. Akbar was brought up as a

Muhammadan, but became a Theist, acknowledging one God, but rejecting

all other dogmas. Died Sept. 1605.


Alberger (John). American author of Monks, Popes, and their Political

Intrigues (Baltimore, 1871) and Antiquity of Christianity (New York,



Albini (Giuseppe). Italian physiologist, b. Milan. In 1845 he

studied medicine in Paris. He has written on embryology and many

other physiological subjects.


Alchindus. Yakub ibn Is'hak ibn Subbah (Abú Yúsuf) called Al Kindi,

Arab physician and philosopher, the great grandson of one of the

companions of Muhammad, the prophet, flourished from 814 to about

840. He was a rationalist in religion, and for his scientific studies

he was set down as a magician.


Alciati (Giovanni Paolo). A Milanese of noble family. At first

a Romanist, he resigned that faith for Calvinism, but gradually

advanced to Anti-trinitarianism, which he defends in two letters

to Gregorio Pauli, dated Austerlitz 1564 and 1565. Beza says that

Alciati deserted the Christian faith and became a Muhammadan, but

Bayle takes pains to disprove this. Died at Dantzic about 1570.


Aleardi (Gaetano). Italian poet, known as Aleardo Aleardi, b. Verona, 4

Nov. 1812. He was engaged in a life-long struggle against the Austrian

dominion, and his patriotic poems were much admired. In 1859 he was

elected deputy to Parliament for Brescia. Died Verona, 16 July, 1878.


Alembert (Jean le Rond d'), mathematician and philosopher, b. at

Paris 16 Nov. 1717. He was an illegitimate son of Canon Destouches

and Mme. Tencin, and received his Christian name from a church

near which he was exposed as a foundling. He afterwards resided

for forty years with his nurse, nor would he leave her for the most

tempting offers. In 1741, he was admitted a member of the Academy of

Sciences. In 1749, he obtained the prize medal from the Academy of

Berlin, for a discourse on the theory of winds. In 1749, he solved the

problem of the procession of the equinoxes and explained the mutation

of the earth's axis. He next engaged with Diderot, with whose opinions

he was in complete accord, in compiling the famous Encyclopédie, for

which he wrote the preliminary discourse. In addition to this great

work he published many historical, philosophical and scientific essays,

and largely corresponded with Voltaire. His work on the Destruction

of the Jesuits is a caustic and far-reaching production. In a letter

to Frederick the Great, he says: "As for the existence of a supreme

intelligence, I think that those who deny it advance more than they

can prove, and scepticism is the only reasonable course." He goes on

to say, however, that experience invincibly proves the materiality of

the "soul." Died 29 Oct. 1783. In 1799 two volumes of his posthumous

essays were printed in Paris. His works prove d'Alembert to have been

of broad spirit and of most extensive knowledge.


Alfieri (Vittorio), Count. Famous Italian poet and dramatist, b. Asti,

Piedmont, 17 Jan. 1749, of a noble family. His tragedies are justly

celebrated, and in his Essay on Tyranny he shows himself as favorable

to religious as to political liberty. Written in his youth, this work

was revised at a more advanced age, the author remarking that if he

had no longer the courage, or rather the fire, necessary to compose

it, he nevertheless retained intelligence, independence and judgment

enough to approve it, and to let it stand as the last of his literary

productions. His attack is chiefly directed against Catholicism,

but he does not spare Christianity. "Born among a people," he says,

"slavish, ignorant, and already entirely subjugated by priests, the

Christian religion knows only how to enjoin the blindest obedience,

and is unacquainted even with the name of liberty." Alfieri's tragedy

of Saul has been prohibited on the English stage. Died Florence,

8 Oct. 1803.


Alfonso X., surnamed the Wise, King of Castillo and of Leon; b. in

1223, crowned 1252. A patron of science and lover of astronomy. He

compiled a complete digest of Roman, feudal and canon law, and

had drawn up the astronomical tables called Alfonsine Tables. By

his liberality and example he gave a great impulse to Spanish

literature. For his intercourse with Jews and Arabians, his

independence towards the Pope and his free disposal of the clerical

revenues, he has been stigmatised as an Atheist. To him is attributed

the well-known remark that had he been present at the creation of the

world he would have proposed some improvements. Father Lenfant adds

the pious lie that "The king had scarcely pronounced this blasphemy

when a thunderbolt fell and reduced his wife and two children to

ashes." Alfonso X. died 4 April, 1284.


Algarotti (Francesco), Count. Italian writer and art critic, b. at

Venice, 11 Dec. 1712. A visit to England led him to write Newtonianism

for the Ladies. He afterwards visited Berlin and became the friend

both of Voltaire and of Frederick the Great, who appointed him his

Chamberlain. Died with philosophical composure at Pisa, 3 May, 1764.


Alger (William Rounseville), b. at Freetown, Massachusetts, 30

Dec. 1822, educated at Harvard, became a Unitarian preacher of the

advanced type. His Critical History of the Doctrine of a Future

Life, with a complete bibliography of the subject by Ezra Abbot,

is a standard work, written from the Universalist point of view.


Allen (Charles Grant Blairfindie), naturalist and author, b. in

Kingston, Canada, 24 Feb. 1848. He studied at Merton College, Oxford,

and graduated with honors 1871. In 1873 appointed Professor of Logic

in Queen's College, Spanish town, Jamaica; from 1874 to '77 he was

its principal. Since then he has resided in England, and become

known by his popular expositions of Darwinism. His published works

include Physiological Æsthetics (1877), The Evolutionist at Large

(1881), Nature Studies (1883), Charles Darwin (1885), and several

novels. Grant Allen has also edited the miscellaneous works of Buckle,

and has written on Force and Energy (1888).


Allen (Ethan) Col., American soldier, b. at Litchfield, Connecticut,

10 Jan. 1737. One of the most active of the revolutionary heroes,

he raised a company of volunteers known as the "Green Mountain Boys,"

and took by surprise the British fortress of Ticonderoga, capturing

100 guns, 10 May, 1775. He was declared an outlaw and £100 offered

for his arrest by Gov. Tryon of New York. Afterwards he was taken

prisoner and sent to England. At first treated with cruelty, he was

eventually exchanged for another officer, 6 May, 1778. He was a member

of the state legislature, and succeeded in obtaining the recognition

of Vermont as an independent state. He published in 1784 Reason

the only Oracle of Man, the first publication in the United States

openly directed against the Christian religion. It has been frequently

reprinted and is still popular in America. Died Burlington, Vermont,

13 Feb. 1789. A statue is erected to him at Montpelier, Vermont.


Allsop (Thomas). "The favorite disciple of Coleridge," b. 10 April,

1794, near Wirksworth, Derbyshire, he lived till 1880. A friend

of Robert Owen and the Chartists. He was implicated in the attempt

of Orsini against Napoleon III. In his Letters, Conversations and

Recollections of Samuel Taylor Coleridge, he has imported many of

his Freethought views.


Alm (Richard von der). See Ghillany (F. W.)


Alpharabius (Muhammad ibn Muhammad ibn Tarkhan) (Abu Nasr), called

Al Farabi, Turkish philosopher, termed by Ibn Khallikan the greatest

philosopher the Moslems ever had, travelled to Bagdad, mastered

the works of Aristotle, and became master of Avicenna. Al Farabi is

said to have taught the eternity of the world and to have denied the

permanent individuality of the soul. His principal work is a sort

of encyclopædia. Rénan says he expressly rejected all supernatural

revelation. Died at Damascus Dec. 950, aged upwards of eighty.


Amaury or Amalric de Chartres, a heretic of the thirteenth century,

was a native of Bene, near Chartres, and lived at Paris, where he gave

lessons in logic. In a work bearing the title of Physion, condemned

by a bull of Pope Innocent III. (1204), he is said to have taught a

kind of Pantheism, and that the reign of the Father and Son must give

place to that of the Holy Spirit. Ten of his disciples were burnt at

Paris 20 Dec. 1210, and the bones of Amaury were exhumed and placed

in the flames.


Amberley (John Russell) Viscount, eldest son of Earl Russell,

b. 1843. Educated at Harrow, Edinburgh and Trinity College,

Cambridge, where ill-health prevented him reading for honors. He

entered Parliament in 1866 as Radical member for Nottingham. Lord

Amberley contributed thoughtful articles to the North British,

the Fortnightly and Theological Reviews, and will be remembered by

his bold Analysis of Religious Belief (1876), in which he examines,

compares and criticises the various faiths of the world. Lord Amberley

left his son to be brought up by Mr. Spalding, a self-taught man of

great ability and force of character; but the will was set aside, on

appeal to the Court of Chancery, in consideration of Mr. Spalding's

heretical views. Died 8 Jan. 1876.


Amman (Hans Jacob), German surgeon and traveller, b. Lake Zurich

1586. In 1612 he went to Constantinople, Palestine and Egypt, and

afterwards published a curious book called Voyage in the Promised

Land. Died at Zurich, 1658.


Ammianus (Marcellinus). Roman soldier-historian of the fourth century,

b. at Antioch. He wrote the Roman history from the reign of Nerva to

the death of Valens in thirty-one books, of which the first thirteen

are lost. His history is esteemed impartial and trustworthy. He served

under Julian, and compares the rancor of the Christians of the period

to that of wild beasts. Gibbon calls him "an accurate and faithful

guide." Died about 395 A.D.


Ammonius, surnamed Saccas or the Porter, from his having been obliged

in the early part of his life to adopt that calling, was born of

Christian parents in Alexandria during the second century. He,

however, turned Pagan and opened a school of philosophy. Among his

pupils were Origen, Longinus and Plotinus. He undoubtedly originated

the Neo-Platonic movement, which formed the most serious opposition

to Christianity in its early career. Ammonius died A.D. 243, aged

over eighty years.


Anaxagoras, a Greek philosopher of the Ionic school, b. about 499 B.C.,

lived at Athens and enjoyed the friendship of Pericles. In 450 B.C. he

was accused of Atheism for maintaining the eternity of matter and was

banished to Lampsacus, where he died in 428 B.C. It is related that,

being asked how he desired to be honored after death, he replied,

"Only let the day of my death be observed as a holiday by the boys

in the schools." He taught that generation and destruction are only

the union and separation of elements which can neither be created

nor annihilated.


Andre-Nuytz (Louis), author of Positivism for All, an elementary

exposition of Positive philosophy, to which Littré wrote a preface,



Andrews (Stephen Pearl). American Sociologist, b. Templeton, Mass.,

22 March, 1812. He was an ardent Abolitionist, an eloquent speaker,

and the inventor of a universal language called Alwato. His principle

work is entitled The Basic Outline of Universology (N. Y., 1872). He

also wrote The Church and Religion of the Future (1886). He was a

prominent member and vice-president of the Liberal Club of New York,

a contributor to the London Times, the New York Truthseeker, and many

other journals. Died at New York, 21 May, 1886.


Andrieux (Louis). French deputy, b. Trévoux 20 July, 1840. Was

called to the bar at Lyons, where he became famous for his political

pleading. He took part in the Freethought Congress at Naples in 1869,

and in June of the following year he was imprisoned for three months

for his attack on the Empire. On the establishment of the Republic he

was nominated procureur at Lyons. He was on the municipal council of

that city, which he has also represented in the Chamber of Deputies. In

1879 he became Prefect of Police at Paris, but retired in 1881 and was

elected deputy by his constituents at Lyons. He has written Souvenirs

of a Prefect of Police (1885).


Angelucci (Teodoro). Italian poet and philosopher, b. near Tolentino

1549. He advocated Aristotle against F. Patrizi, and was banished

from Rome. One of the first emancipators of modern thought in Italy,

he also made an excellent translation of the Æneid of Virgil. Died

Montagnana, 1600.


Angiulli (Andrea). Italian Positivist, b. Castellana 12 Feb. 1837,

author of a work on philosophy and Positive research, Naples 1868. He

became professor of Anthropology at Naples in 1876, and edits a

philosophical review published in that city since 1881.


Annet (Peter). One of the most forcible writers among the English

Deists, b. at Liverpool in 1693. He was at one time a schoolmaster

and invented a system of shorthand. Priestley learnt it at school

and corresponded with Annet. In 1739 he published a pamphlet on

Freethinking the Great Duty of Religion, by P. A., minister of

religion. This was followed by the Conception of Jesus as the

Foundation of the Christian Religion, in which he boldly attacks

the doctrine of the Incarnation as "a legend of the Romanists,"

and The Resurrection of Jesus Considered (1744) in answer to Bishop

Sherlock's Trial of the Witnesses. This controversy was continued in

The Resurrection Reconsidered and The Resurrection Defenders Stript

of all Defence. In An Examination of the History and Character of

St. Paul he attacks the sincerity of the apostle to the Gentiles and

even questions the authenticity of his epistles. In Supernaturals

Examined (1747) he argues that all miracles are incredible. In 1761

he issued nine numbers of the Free Inquirer, in which he attacked

the authenticity and credibility of the Pentateuch. For this he was

brought before the King's Bench and sentenced to suffer one month's

imprisonment in Newgate, to stand twice in the pillory, once at

Charing Cross and once at the Exchange, with a label "For Blasphemy,"

then to have a year's hard labor in Bridewell and to find sureties

for good behavior during the rest of his life. It is related that

a woman seeing Annet in the pillory said, "Gracious! pilloried for

blasphemy. Why, don't we blaspheme every day!" After his release Annet

set up a school at Lambeth. Being asked his views on a future life

he replied by this apologue: "One of my friends in Italy, seeing the

sign of an inn, asked if that was the Angel." "No," was the reply,

"do you not see it is the sign of a dragon." "Ah," said my friend,

"as I have never seen either angel or dragon, how can I tell whether

it is one or the other?" Died 18 Jan. 1769. The History of the Man

after God's Own Heart (1761) ascribed to Annet, was more probably

written by Archibald Campbell. The View of the Life of King David

(1765) by W. Skilton, Horologist, is also falsely attributed to Annet.


Anthero de Quental, Portuguese writer, b. San Miguel 1843. Educated

for the law at the University of Coimbra, he has published both poetry

and prose, showing him to be a student of Hartmann, Proudhon and Rénan,

and one of the most advanced minds in Portugal.


Anthony (Susan Brownell). American reformer, b. of a Quaker family

at South Adams, Massachusetts, 15 Feb. 1820. She became a teacher,

a temperance reformer, an opponent of slavery, and an ardent advocate

of women's rights. Of the last movement she became secretary. In

conjunction with Mrs. E. C. Stanton and Parker Pillsbury she conducted

The Revolutionist founded in New York in 1868, and with Mrs. Stanton

and Matilda Joslyn Gage she has edited the History of Woman's Suffrage,

1881. Miss Anthony is a declared Agnostic.


Antoine (Nicolas). Martyr. Denied the Messiahship and divinity of

Jesus, and was strangled and burnt at Geneva, 20 April, 1632.


Antonelle (Pierre Antoine) Marquis d', French political economist,

b. Arles 1747. He embraced the revolution with ardor, and his article

in the Journal des Hommes Libres occasioned his arrest with Baboeuf. He

was, however, acquitted. Died at Arles, 26 Nov. 1817.


Antoninus (Marcus Aurelius). See Aurelius.


Apelt (Ernst Friedrich), German philosopher, b. Reichenau 3 March,

1812. He criticised the philosophy of religion from the standpoint

of reason, and wrote many works on metaphysics. Died near Gorlitz,

27 Oct. 1859.


Aquila, a Jew of Pontus, who became a proselyte to Christianity, but

afterwards left that religion. He published a Greek version of the

Hebrew scriptures to show that the prophecies did not apply to Jesus

(A.D. 128). The work is lost. He has been identified by E. Deutsch

with the author of the Targum of Onkelos.


Arago (Dominique François Jean), French academician, politician,

physicist and astronomer, b. Estagel, 26 Feb. 1786. He was elected to

the French Academy of Sciences at the age of twenty-three. He made

several optical and electro-magnetic discoveries, and advocated

the undulatory theory of light. He was an ardent Republican and

Freethinker, and took part in the provisional Government of 1848. He

opposed the election of Louis Napoleon, and refused to take the

oath of allegiance after the coup d'état of December, 1851. Died 2

Oct. 1853. Humboldt calls him a "zealous defender of the interests

of Reason."


Ardigo (Roberto), Italian philosopher, b. at Casteldidone (Cremona)

28 Jan. 1828, was intended for the Church, but took to philosophy. In

1869 he published a discourse on Peitro Pomponazzi, followed next year

by Psychology as a Positive Science. Signor Ardigo has also written on

the formation of the solar system and on the historical formation of

the ideas of God and the soul. An edition of his philosophical works

was commenced at Mantua in 1882. Ardigo is one of the leaders of the

Italian Positivists. His Positivist Morals appeared in Padua 1885.


Argens (Jean Baptiste de Boyer) Marquis d', French writer, b. at

Aix, in Provence, 24 June 1704. He adopted a military life and

served with distinction. On the accession of Frederick the Great

he invited d'Argens to his court at Berlin, and made him one of his

chamberlains. Here he resided twenty-five years and then returned to

Aix, where he resided till his death 11 June, 1771. His works were

published in 1768 in twenty-four volumes. Among them are Lettres

Juives, Lettres Chinoises and Lettres Cabalistiques, which were

joined to La Philosophie du bon sens. He also translated Julian's

discourse against Christianity and Ocellus Lucanus on the Eternity

of the World. Argens took Bayle as his model, but he was inferior to

that philosopher.


Argental (Charles Augustin de Ferriol) Count d', French diplomat,

b. Paris 20 Dec. 1700, was a nephew of Mme. de Tencin, the mother

of D'Alembert. He is known for his long and enthusiastic friendship

for Voltaire. He was said to be the author of Mémoires du Comte de

Comminge and Anecdotes de la cour d'Edouard. Died 5 Jan. 1788.


Aristophanes, great Athenian comic poet, contemporary with Socrates,

Plato, and Euripides, b. about 444 B.C. Little is known of his life. He

wrote fifty-four plays, of which only eleven remain, and was crowned

in a public assembly for his attacks on the oligarchs. With the utmost

boldness he satirised not only the the political and social evils

of the age, but also the philosophers, the gods, and the theology

of the period. Plato is said to have died with Aristophanes' works

under his pillow. Died about 380 B.C.


Aristotle, the most illustrious of ancient philosophers, was born at

Stagyra, in Thrace, 384 B.C. He was employed by Philip of Macedon

to instruct his son Alexander. His inculcation of ethics as apart

from all theology, justifies his place in this list. After the death

of Alexander, he was accused of impiety and withdrew to Chalcis,

where he died B.C. 322. Grote says: "In the published writings of

Aristotle the accusers found various heretical doctrines suitable for

sustaining their indictment; as, for example, the declaration that

prayer and sacrifices to the gods were of no avail." His influence

was predominant upon philosophy for nearly two thousand years. Dante

speaks of him as "the master of those that know."


Arnold of Brescia, a pupil of Abelard. He preached against the papal

authority and the temporal power, and the vices of the clergy. He

was condemned for heresy by a Lateran Council in 1139, and retired

from Italy. He afterwards returned to Rome and renewed his exertions

against sacerdotal oppression, and was eventually seized and burnt at

Rome in 1155. Baronius calls him "the patriarch of political heretics."


Arnold (Matthew), LL.D. poet and critic, son of Dr. Arnold of Rugby,

b. at Laleham 24 Dec. 1822. Educated at Winchester, Rugby, and Oxford,

where he won the Newdigate prize. In 1848 he published the Strayed

Reveller, and other Poems, signed A. In 1851 he married and became

an inspector of schools. In 1853 appeared Empedocles on Etna, a poem

in which, under the guise of ancient teaching he gives much secular

philosophy. In 1857 he was elected Professor of Poetry at Oxford. In

1871 he published an essay entitled St. Paul and Protestantism; in 1873

Literature and Dogma, which, from its rejection of supernaturalism,

occasioned much stir and was followed by God and the Bible. In 1877

Mr. Arnold published Last Essays on Church and State. Mr. Arnold

has a lucid style and is abreast of the thought of his age, but he

curiously unites rejection of supernaturalism, including a personal

God, with a fond regard for the Church of England. He may be said

in his own words to wander "between two worlds, one dead, the other

powerless to be born." Died 15 April, 1888.


Arnould (Arthur), French writer, b. Dieuze 7 April, 1833. As

journalist he wrote on l'Opinion Nationale, the Rappel, Reforme and

other papers. In 1864 he published a work on Beranger, and in '69 a

History of the Inquisition. In Jan. 1870 he founded La Marseillaise

with H. Rochefort, and afterwards the Journal du Peuple with Jules

Valles. He was elected to the National Assembly and was member of

the Commune, of which he has written a history in three volumes. He

has also written many novels and dramas.


Arnould (Victor), Belgian Freethinker, b. Maestricht, 7 Nov. 1838,

advocate at the Court of Appeal, Brussels. Author of a History of the

Church 1874, and a little work on the Philosophy of Liberalism 1877.


Arouet (François Marie). See Voltaire.


Arpe (Peter Friedrich). Philosopher, b. Kiel, Holstein, 10 May,

1682. Wrote an apology for Vanini dated Cosmopolis (i.e., Rotterdam,

1712). A reply to La Monnoye's treatise on the book De Tribus

Impostoribus is attributed to him. Died, Hamburg, 4 Nov. 1740.


Arthur (John) is inserted in Maréchal's Dictionnaire des Athées

as a mechanic from near Birmingham, who took a prize at Paris and

republished the Invocation to Nature in the last pages of the System

of Nature. Julian Hibbert inserted his name in his Chronological

Tables of Anti-Superstitionists, with the date of death 1792.


Asseline (Louis). French writer, b. at Versailles in 1829, became an

advocate in 1851. In 1866 he established La Libre Pensée, a weekly

journal of scientific materialism, and when that was suppressed

La Pensée Nouvelle. He was one of the founders of the Encyclopédie

Générale. He wrote Diderot and the Nineteenth Century, and contributed

to many journals. After the revolution of 4 Sept. 1870 he was elected

mayor of the fourteenth arrondissement of Paris, and was afterwards

one of the Municipal Council of that city. Died 6 April, 1878.


Assezat (Jules). French writer, b. at Paris 21 Jan. 1832 was a son

of a compositor on the Journal des Debats, on which Jules obtained a

position and worked his way to the editorial chair. He was secretary of

the Paris Society of Anthropology, contributed to La Pensée Nouvelle,

edited the Man Machine of Lamettrie, and edited the complete works

of Diderot in twenty volumes. Died 24 June, 1876.


Assollant (Jean, Baptiste Alfred). French novelist, b. 20 March,

1827. Larousse says he has all the scepticism of Voltaire.


Ast (Georg Anton Friedrich). German Platonist, b. Gotha 29

Dec. 1778. Was professor of classical literature at Landshut and

Munich. Wrote Elements of Philosophy, 1809, etc. Died Munich 31

Dec. 1841.


Atkinson (Henry George). Philosophic writer, b. in 1818. Was educated

at the Charterhouse, gave attention to mesmerism, and wrote in

the Zoist. In 1851 he issued Letters on the Laws of Man's Nature

and Development, in conjunction with Harriet Martineau, to whom he

served as philosophic guide. This work occasioned a considerable

outcry. Mr. Atkinson was a frequent contributor to the National

Reformer and other Secular journals. He died 28 Dec. 1884, at Boulogne,

where he had resided since 1870.


Aubert de Verse (Noel). A French advocate of the seventeenth century,

who wrote a history of the Papacy (1685) and was accused of blasphemy.


Audebert (Louise). French authoress of the Romance of a Freethinker

and of an able Reply of a Mother to the Bishop of Orleans, 1868.


Audifferent (Georges). Positivist and executor to Auguste Comte,

was born at Saint Pierre (Martinque) in 1823, settled at Marseilles,

and is the author of several medical and scientific works.


Aurelius (Marcus Antoninus). Roman Emperor and Stoic philosopher, b. at

Rome 26 April, 121. Was carefully educated, and lived a laborious,

abstemious life. On the death of his uncle Antoninus Pius, 161, the

Senate obliged him to take the government, but he associated with

himself L. Verus. On the death of Verus in 169 Antoninus possessed

sole authority, which he exercised with wise discretion and great

glory. Much of his time was employed in defending the northern

frontiers of the empire against Teutonic barbarians. He had no

high opinion of Christians, speaking of their obstinacy, and it is

pretended many were put to death in the reign of one of the best

emperors that ever ruled. If so we may be assured it was for their

crimes. Ecclesiastical historians have invented another pious miracle

in a victory gained through the prayers of the Christians. Antoninus

held that duty was indispensable even were there no gods. His

Meditations, written in the midst of a most active life, breathe a

lofty morality, and are a standing refutation of the view that pure

ethics depend upon Christian belief. Died 17 March, 180.


Austin (Charles), lawyer and disciple of Bentham, b. Suffolk 1799. At

Cambridge, where he graduated B.A. in 1824 and M.A. in 1827, he won,

much to the amazement of his friends, who knew his heterodox opinions,

the Hulsean prize for an essay on Christian evidences. For this he

was sorry afterwards, and told Lord Stanley of Alderley "I could

have written a much better essay on the other side." He afterwards

wrote on the other side in the Westminster Review. Successful as a

lawyer, he retired in ill-health. J. S. Mill writes highly of his

influence. The Hon. L. A. Tollemache gives a full account of his

heretical opinions. He says "He inclined to Darwinism, because as he

said, it is so antecedently probable; but, long before this theory

broke the back of final causes, he himself had given them up." Died

21 Dec. 1874.


Austin (John), jurist, brother of above, was born 3 March, 1790. A

friend of James Mill, Grote and Bentham, whose opinions he shared,

he is chiefly known by his profound works on jurisprudence. Died 17

Dec. 1859.


Avempace, i.e., Muhammad ibn Yahya ibn Bajjat (Abu Bekr), called

Ibn al-Saigh (the son of the goldsmith), Arabian philosopher and

poet, b. at Saragossa, practised medicine at Seville 1118, which he

quitted about 1120, and became vizier at the court of Fez, where he

died about 1138. An admirer of Aristotle, he was one of the teachers

of Averroes. Al-Fath Ibn Khâkân represents him as an infidel and

Atheist, and says: "Faith disappeared from his heart and left not a

trace behind; his tongue forgot the Merciful, neither did [the holy]

name cross his lips." He is said to have suffered imprisonment for

his heterodoxy.


Avenel (Georges), French writer, b. at Chaumont 31 Dec. 1828. One of

the promoters of the Encyclopédie Générale. His vindication of Cloots

(1865) is a solid work of erudition. He became editor of la République

Française and edited the edition of Voltaire published by Le Siècle

(1867-70). Died at Bougival, near Paris, 1 July, 1876, and was,

by his express wish, buried without religious ceremony.


Averroes (Muhammad Ibn-Ahmad Ibn Rushd), Abu al Walid, Arabian

philosopher, b. at Cordova in 1126, and died at Morocco 10

Dec. 1198. He translated and commented upon the works of Aristotle,

and resolutely placed the claims of science above those of theology. He

was prosecuted for his heretical opinions by the Muhammadan doctors,

was spat upon by all who entered the mosque at the hour of prayer,

and afterwards banished. His philosophical opinions, which incline

towards materialism and pantheism, had the honor of being condemned

by the University of Paris in 1240. They were opposed by St. Thomas

Aquinas, and when profoundly influencing Europe at the Renaissance

through the Paduan school were again condemned by Pope Leo X. in 1513.


Avicenna (Husain Ibn Abdallah, called Ibn Sina), Arabian physician and

philosopher, b. Aug. 980 in the district of Bokhara. From his early

youth he was a wonderful student, and at his death 15 June, 1037,

he left behind him above a hundred treatises. He was the sovereign

authority in medical science until the days of Harvey. His philosophy

was pantheistic in tone, with an attempt at compromise with theology.


Aymon (Jean), French writer, b. Dauphiné 1661. Brought up in the

Church, he abjured Catholicism at Geneva, and married at the Hague. He

published Metamorphoses of the Romish Religion, and is said to have

put forward a version of the Esprit de Spinoza under the famous title

Treatise of Three Impostors. Died about 1734.


Bagehot (Walter), economist and journalist, b. of Unitarian parents,

Langport, Somersetshire, 3 Feb. 1826; he died at the same place 24

March, 1877. He was educated at London University, of which he became

a fellow. For the last seventeen years of his life he edited the

Economist newspaper. His best-known works are The English Constitution,

Lombard Street and Literary Studies. In Physics and Politics (1872),

a series of essays on the Evolution of Society, he applies Darwinism

to politics. Bagehot was a bold, clear, and very original thinker,

who rejected historic Christianity.


Baggesen (Jens Immanuel), Danish poet, b. Kösor, Zealand. 15

Feb. 1764. In 1789 he visited Germany, France, and Switzerland; at

Berne he married the grand-daughter of Haller. He wrote popular poems

both in Danish and German, among others Adam and Eve, a humorous mock

epic (1826). He was an admirer of Voltaire. Died Hamburg, 3 Oct. 1826.


Bahnsen (Julius Friedrich August), pessimist, b. Tondern,

Schleswig-Holstein, 30 Mar. 1830. Studied philosophy at Keil,

1847. He fought against the Danes in '49, and afterwards studied at

Tübingen. Bahnsen is an independent follower of Schopenhauer and

Hartmann, joining monism to the idealism of Hegel. He has written

several works, among which we mention The Philosophy of History,

Berlin, 1872, and The Contradiction between the Knowledge and the

Nature of the World (2 vols), Berlin 1880-82.


Bahrdt (Karl Friedrich), German deist, b. in Saxony, 25

Aug. 1741. Educated for the Church, in 1766 he was made professor

of biblical philology. He was condemned for heresy, and wandered

from place to place. He published a kind of expurgated Bible, called

New Revelations of God: A System of Moral Religion for Doubters and

Thinkers, Berlin, 1787, and a Catechism of Natural Religion, Halle,

1790. Died near Halle, 23 April, 1792.


Bailey (James Napier), Socialist, edited the Model Republic, 1843, the

Torch, and the Monthly Messenger. He published Gehenna: its Monarch

and Inhabitants; Sophistry Unmasked, and several other tracts in the

"Social Reformer's Cabinet Library," and some interesting Essays on

Miscellaneous Subjects, at Leeds, 1842.


Bailey (Samuel), philosophical writer, of Sheffield, b. in 1791. His

essay on the Formation and Publication of Opinions appeared in 1821. He

vigorously contends that man is not responsible for his opinions

because they are independent of his will, and that opinions should

not be the subject of punishment. Another anonymous Freethought work

was Letters from an Egyptian Kaffir on a Visit to England in Search

of Religion. This was at first issued privately 1839, but afterwards

printed as a Reasoner tract. He also wrote The Pursuit of Truth,

1829, and a Theory of Reasoning, 1851. He was acquainted with both

James and John Stuart Mill, and shared in most of the views of the

philosophical Radicals of the period. Died 18 Jan. 1870, leaving

£90,000 to his native town.


Bailey (William S.), editor of the Liberal, published in Nashville,

Tennessee, was an Atheist up till the day of death, March, 1886. In

a slave-holding State, he was the earnest advocate of abolition.


Baillie (George), of Garnet Hill, Glasgow. Had been a sheriff in one

of the Scotch counties. He was a liberal subscriber to the Glasgow

Eclectic Institute. In 1854 he offered a prize for the best essay on

Christianity and Infidelity, which was gained by Miss Sara Hennell. In

1857 another prize was restricted to the question whether Jesus

prophesied the coming of the end of the world in the life-time of his

followers. It was gained by Mr. E. P. Meredith, and is incorporated

in his Prophet of Nazareth. In 1863 Mr. Baillie divested himself

of his fortune (£18,000) which was to be applied to the erection

and endowment of an institution to aid the culture of the operative

classes by means of free libraries and unsectarian schools, retaining

only the interest for himself as curator. He only survived a few years.


Baillière (Gustave-Germer), French scientific publisher, b. at Paris

26 Dec. 1837. Studied medicine, but devoted himself to bringing out

scientific publications such as the Library of Contemporary Philosophy,

and the International Scientific Series. He was elected 29 Nov. 1874 as

Republican and anti-clerical member of the Municipal Council of Paris.


Bain (Alexander) LL.D. Scotch philosopher, b. at Aberdeen in 1818. He

began life as a weaver but studied at Marischal College 1836-40, and

graduated M.A. in 1840. He then began to contribute to the Westminster

Review, and became acquainted with John Stuart Mill, whose Logic

he discussed in manuscript. In 1855 he published The Senses and

The Intellect, and in 1859 The Emotions and the Will, constituting

together a systematic exposition of the human mind. From 1860 to

1880 he occupied the Chair of Logic in the University of Aberdeen,

his accession being most obnoxious to the orthodox, and provoking

disorder among the students. In 1869 he received the degree of

LL.D. In addition to numerous educational works Dr. Bain published a

Compendium of Mental and Moral Science (1868), Mind and Body (1875),

and Education as a Science (1879), for the International Scientific

Series. In 1882 he published James Mill, a Biography, and John Stuart

Mill: a Criticism, with Personal Recollections. In 1881 he was elected

Lord Rector of the University of Aberdeen, and this honor was renewed

in 1884, in which year he published Practical Essays.


Bainham (James), martyr. He married the widow of Simon Fish, author

of the Supplycacion of Beggars, an attack upon the clergy of the

period. In 1531 he was accused of heresy, having among other things

denied transubstantiation, the confessional, and "the power of the

keys." It was asserted that he had said that he would as lief pray

to his wife as to "our lady," and that Christ was but a man. This

he denied, but admitted holding the salvation of unbelievers. He was

burnt 30 April, 1532.


Baissac (Jules), French littérateur, b. Vans, 1827, author of several

studies in philology and mythology. In 1878 he published Les Origines

de la Religion in three volumes, which have the honor of being put

upon the Roman Index. This was followed by l'Age de Dieu, a study

of cosmical periods and the feast of Easter. In 1882 he began to

publish Histoire de la Diablerie Chrétienne, the first part of which

is devoted to the person and "personnel" of the devil.


Bakunin (Mikhail Aleksandrovich), Russian Nihilist, b. Torshok

(Tver) 1814, of an ancient aristocratic family. He was educated at

St. Petersburg, and entered as an ensign in the artillery. Here he

became embued with revolutionary ideas. He went to Berlin in 1841,

studied the Hegelian philosophy, and published some philosophical

writings under the name of Jules Elisard. In '43 he visited Paris and

became a disciple of Proudhon. In '48 he was expelled from France

at the demand of Russia, whose government set the price of 10,000

silver roubles on his head, went to Dresden and became a member of the

insurrectionary government. He was arrested and condemned to death,

May '50, but his sentence was commuted to imprisonment for life. He

escaped into Austria, was again captured and sentenced to death,

but was handed over to Russia and deported to Siberia. After several

years' penal servitude he escaped, travelled over a thousand miles

under extreme hardship, reached the sea and sailed to Japan. Thence he

sailed to California, thence to New York and London, where with Herzen

he published the Kolokol. He took part in the establishment of the

International Society, but being at issue with Karl Marx abandoned

that body in 1873. He died at Berne 1 July 1876, leaving behind a

work on God and the State, both being vigorously attacked. Laveleye

writes of him as "the apostle of universal destruction."


Ball (William Platt), b. at Birmingham 28 Nov. 1844. Educated at

Birkbeck School, London. Became schoolmaster but retired rather

than teach religious doctrines. Matriculated at London University

1866. Taught pyrotechny in the Sultan's service 1870-71. Received

the order of the Medjidieh after narrow escape from death by the

bursting of a mortar. Upon his return published Poems from Turkey

(1872). Mr. Ball has contributed to the National Reformer since 1878

and since 1884 has been on the staff of the Freethinker. He has

published pamphlets on Religion in Schools, the Ten Commandments

and Mrs Besant's Socialism, and has compiled with Mr. Foote the

Bible Handbook. Mr. Ball is a close thinker and a firm supporter of

Evolutional Malthusianism, which he has ably defended in the pages

of Progress. He has of late been engaged upon the question: Are the

Effects of Use and Disuse Inherited?


Ballance (John), New Zealand statesman, b. Glenary, Antrim, Ireland,

March 1839. Going out to New Zealand he became a journalist and started

the Wanganui Herald. He entered Parliament in 1875 and became Colonial

Treasurer in '78. With Sir Robert Stout he has been a great support

to the Freethought cause in New Zealand.


Baltzer (Wilhelm Eduard). German rationalist, b. 24 Oct. 1814, at

Hohenleine in Saxony. He was educated as a Protestant minister, but

resigned and founded at Nordhausen in 1847 a free community. He took

part in the Parliament of Frankfort in '48; has translated the life

of Apollonius of Tyana, and is the author of a history of religion

and numerous other works. Died 24 June, 1887.


Bancel (François Désiré). French politician, b. Le Mastre,

2 Feb. 1822. Became an advocate. In 1849, he was elected to the

Legislative Assembly. After the coup d'état he retired to Brussels,

where he became Professor at the University. In 1869 he was elected

deputy at Paris in opposition to M. Ollivier. He translated the work

on Rationalism by Ausonio Franchi, and wrote on Mysteries, 1871,

besides many political works. Died 23 June, 1871.


Barbier (Edmond). French translator of the works of Darwin, Lubbock,

and Tylor. Died 1883.


Barbier d'Aucour (Jean). French critic and academician, b. Langres,

1642. Most of his writings are directed against the Jesuits. Died

Paris, 13 Sept. 1694.


Barlow (George). Poet, b. in London, 19 June, 1847. In his volumes,

Under the Dawn and Poems, Real and Ideal, he gives utterance to many

Freethought sentiments.


Barlow (Joel). American statesman, writer and poet, b. Reading,

Connecticut, 24 March, 1754. Served as a volunteer in the

revolutionary war, became a chaplain, but resigned that profession,

taking to literature. In England, in 1791, he published Advice to the

Privileged Orders. In France he translated Volney's Ruins of Empires,

and contributed to the political literature of the Revolution. Paine

entrusted him with the MS. of the first part of the Age of Reason. His

chief work is entitled the Columbiad, 1808. He was sent as minister

to France, 1811, and being involved in the misfortunes following the

retreat from Moscow, died near Cracow, Poland, 24 Dec. 1812.


Barni (Jules Romain). French philosophic writer, b. Lille, 1 June,

1818. He became secretary to Victor Cousin, and translated the works

of Kant into French. He contributed to La Liberté de Penser (1847-51)

and to l'Avenir (1855). During the Empire he lived in Switzerland

and published Martyrs de la Libre Pensée (1862), La Morale dans

la Démocratie (1864), and a work on the French Moralists of the

Eighteenth Century (1873). He was elected to the National Assembly,

1872; and to the Chamber of Deputies, 1876. Died at Mers, 4 July,

1878. A statue is erected to him at Amiens.


Barnout (Hippolyte). French architect and writer, b. Paris 1816,

published a Rational Calendar 1859 and 1860. In May 1870 he established

a journal entitled L'Athée, the Atheist, which the clerical journals

declared drew God's vengeance upon France. He is also author of a

work on aerial navigation.


Barot (François Odysse). French writer, b. at Mirabeau 1830. He

has been a journalist on several Radical papers, was secretary to

Gustave Flourens, and has written on the Birth of Jesus (1864) and

Contemporary Literature in England (1874).


Barrett (Thomas Squire). Born 9 Sept. 1842, of Quaker parents, both

grandfathers being ministers of that body; educated at Queenwood

College, obtained diploma of Associate in Arts from Oxford with honors

in Natural Science and Mathematics, contributed to the National

Reformer between 1865 and 1870, published an acute examination of

Gillespie's argument, à priori, for the existence of God (1869),

which in 1871 reached a second edition. He also wrote A New View

of Causation (1871), and an Introduction to Logic and Metyphysics

(1877). Mr. Barrett has been hon. sec. of the London Dialectical

Society, and edited a short-lived publication, The Present Day, 1886.


Barrier (F. M.). French Fourierist, b. Saint Etienne 1815, became

professor of medicine at Lyons, wrote A Sketch of the Analogy of Man

and Humanity (Lyons 1846), and Principles of Sociology (Paris 1867),

and an abridgment of this entitled Catechism of Liberal and Rational

Socialism. Died Montfort-L'Amaury 1870.


Barrillot (François). French author, b. of poor parents at Lyons in

1818. An orphan at seven years of age, he learnt to read from shop

signs, and became a printer and journalist. Many of his songs and

satires acquired popularity. He has also wrote a letter to Pope Pius

IX. on the OEcumenical Council (1871), signed Jean Populus, and a

philosophical work entitled Love is God. Died at Paris, 11 Dec. 1874.


Barthez (Paul Joseph), French physician, b. Montpelier 11 Dec. 1734. A

friend of D'Alembert, he became associate editor of the Journal des

Savants and Encyclopédie Méthodique. He was made consulting physician

to the king and a councillor of State. Shown by the Archbishop of

Sens a number of works relating to the rites of his see he said,

"These are the ceremonies of Sens, but can you show me the sense

[Sens] of ceremonies." His principal work is New Elements of the

Science of Man. Died 15 Oct. 1806.


Basedow (Johann Bernhard), German Rationalist and educational reformer,

b. at Hamburg 11 Sept. 1723. He studied theology at Leipsic, became

professor at the Academy of Sora, in Denmark, 1753-1761, and at

Altona, 1761-1768. While here he published Philalethea, the Grounds of

Religion, and other heterodox works, which excited so much prejudice

that he was in danger of being stoned. He devoted much attention to

improving methods of teaching. Died at Magdeburg 25 July, 1790.


Baskerville (John), famous printer, b. Sion Hill, Wolverley,

Worcestershire, 28 Jan. 1706. Lived at Birmingham. He was at

first a stone-mason, then made money as an artistic japanner, and

devoted it to perfecting the art of type-founding and printing. As

a printer-publisher he produced at his own risk beautiful editions

of Milton, Addison, Shaftesbury, Congreve, Virgil, Horace, Lucretius,

Terence, etc. He was made printer to Cambridge University 1758. Wilkes

once visited him and was "shocked at his infidelity" (!) He died

8 Jan. 1775, and was buried in a tomb in his own garden. He had

designed a monumental urn with this inscription: "Stranger, beneath

this cone in unconsecrated ground a friend to the liberties of

mankind directed his body to be inurned. May the example contribute

to emancipate thy mind from the idle fears of superstition and the

wicked arts of priesthood." His will expresses the utmost contempt

for Christianity. His type was appropriately purchased to produce a

complete edition of Voltaire.


Bassus (Aufidus). An Epicurean philosopher and friend of Seneca in

the time of Nero. Seneca praises his patience and courage in the

presence of death.


Bate (Frederick), Socialist, author of The Student 1842, a drama

in which the author's sceptical views are put forward. Mr. Bate

was one of the founders of the social experiment at New Harmony,

now Queenswood College, Hants, and engraved a view representing the

Owenite scheme of community.


Baudelaire (Charles Pierre), French poet, b. Paris, 9 April 1821,

the son of a distinguished friend of Cabanis and Condorcet. He

first became famous by the publication of Fleurs du Mal, 1857, in

which appeared Les Litanies de Satan. The work was prosecuted and

suppressed. Baudelaire translated some of the writings of E. A. Poe,

a poet whom he resembled much in life and character. The divine

beauty of his face has been celebrated by the French poet, Théodore

de Banville, and his genius in some magnificent stanzas by the English

poet, Algernon Swinburne. Died Paris 31 Aug. 1867.


Baudon (P. L.), French author of a work on the Christian Superstition,

published at Brussels in 1862 and dedicated to Bishop Dupanloup under

the pseudonym of "Aristide."


Bauer (Bruno), one of the boldest biblical critics of Germany,

b. Eisenberg, 6 Sept. 1809. Educated at the University of Berlin,

in 1834 he received a professorship of theology. He first attained

celebrity by a review of the Life of Jesus by Strauss (1835). This

was followed by his Journal of Speculative Theology and Critical

Exposition of the Religion of the Old Testament. He then proceeded

to a Review of the Gospel History, upon the publication of which

(1840) he was deprived of his professorship at Bonn. To this followed

Christianity Unveiled (1843), which was destroyed at Zurich before

its publication. This work continued his opposition to religion,

which was carried still further in ironical style in his Proclamation

of the Day of Judgement concerning Hegel the Atheist. Bauer's heresy

deepened with age, and in his Review of the Gospels and History of

their Origin (1850), to which Apostolical History is a supplement,

he attacked the historical truth of the New Testament narratives. In

his Review of the Epistles attributed to St. Paul (1852) he tries to

show that the first four epistles, which had hardly ever before been

questioned, were not written by Paul, but are the production of the

second century. In his Christ and the Cæsars he shows the influence

of Seneca and Greco-Roman thought upon early Christianity. He died

near Berlin, 13 April, 1882.


Bauer (Edgar), b. Charlottenburg, 7 Oct. 1820, brother of the

preceding, collaborated in some of his works. His brochure entitled

Bruno Bauer and his Opponents (1842) was seized by the police. For

his next publication, The Strife of Criticism with Church and State

(1843), he was imprisoned for four years. He has also written on

English freedom, Capital, etc.


Baume-Desdossat (Jacques François, de la), b. 1705, a Canon of

Avignon who wrote La Christiade (1753), a satire on the gospels,

in which Jesus is tempted by Mary Magdalene. It was suppressed by

the French Parliament and the author fined. He died 30 April, 1756.


Baur (Ferdinand Christian von), distinguished theological critic, b. 21

June, 1792, near Stuttgart. His father was a clergyman. He was educated

at Tübingen, where in 1826 he became professor of Church history. Baur

is the author of numerous works on dogmatic and historic theology, in

which he subverts all the fundamental positions of Christianity. He was

an Hegelian Pantheist. Among his more important works are Christianity

and the Church in the First Three Centuries and Paul: His Life and

Works. These are translated into English. He acknowledges only four

of the epistles of Paul and the Revelation as genuine products of

the apostolic age, and shows how very far from simplicity were the

times and doctrines of primitive Christianity. After a life of great

literary activity he died at Tübingen, 2 Dec. 1860.


Bayle (Pierre), learned French writer, b. 18 Nov. 1647, at Carlat,

France, where his father was a Protestant minister. He was converted

to Romanism while studying at the Jesuit College, Toulouse, 1669. His

Romanism only lasted seventeen months. He abjured, and fled to

Switzerland, becoming a sceptic, as is evident from Thoughts on the

Comet, in which he compares the supposed mischiefs of Atheism with

those of fanaticism, and from many articles in his famous Dictionnaire

Critique, a work still of value for its curious learning and shrewd

observation. In his journal Nouvelles de la République des Lettres

he advocates religious toleration on the ground of the difficulty of

distinguishing truth from error. His criticism of Maimbourg's History

of Calvinism was ordered to be burnt by the hangman. Jurieu persecuted

him, and he was ordered to be more careful in preparing the second

edition of his dictionary. He died at Rotterdam, 28 Dec. 1706. Bayle

has been called the father of free discussion in modern times.


Bayrhoffer (Karl Theodor), German philosopher, b. Marburg, 14 Oct.,

1812, wrote The Idea and History of Philosophy (1838), took part in

the revolution of '48, emigrated to America, and wrote many polemical

works. Died near Monroe, Wisconsin, 3 Feb. 1888.


Beauchamp (Philip). See Bentham and Grote.


Beausobre (Louis de), b. at Berlin, 22 Aug. 1730, was adopted by

Frederick the Great out of esteem for his father, Isaac Beausobre,

the author of the History of Manicheanism. He was educated first at

Frankfort-on-Oder, then at Paris. He wrote on the scepticism of the

wise (Pyrrhonisme du Sage, Berlin, 1754), a work condemned to be burnt

by the Parliament of Paris. He also wrote anonymously The Dreams of

Epicurus, and an essay on Happiness (Berlin, 1758), reprinted with

the Social System of Holbach in 1795. Died at Berlin, 3 Dec. 1783.


Bebel (Ferdinand August). German Socialist, b. Cologne, 22

Feb. 1840. Brought up as a turner in Leipsic. Since '63, he became

distinguished as an exponent of social democracy, and was elected to

the German Reichstag in '71. In the following year he was condemned (6

March) to two years' imprisonment for high treason. He was re-elected

in '74. His principal work is Woman in the Past, Present and Future

which is translated by H. B. A. Walther, 1885. He has also written on

the Mohammedan Culture Period (1884) and on Christianity and Socialism.


Beccaria (Bonesana Cesare), an Italian marquis and writer, b. at Milan,

15 March, 1738. A friend of Voltaire, who praised his treatise on

Crimes and Punishments (1769), a work which did much to improve the

criminal codes of Europe. Died Milan, 28 Nov. 1794.


Beesly (Edward Spencer), Positivist, b. Feckenham, Worcestershire,

1831. Educated at Wadham College, Oxford, where he took B.A. in 1854,

and M.A. in '57. Appointed Professor of History, University College,

London, in 1860. He is one of the translators of Comte's System of

Positive Polity, and has published several pamphlets on political

and social questions.


Beethoven (Ludwig van), one of the greatest of musical composers,

b. Bonn 16 Dec. 1770. His genius early displayed itself, and at the

age of five he was set to study the works of Handel and Bach. His many

compositions are the glory of music. They include an opera "Fidelio,"

two masses, oratorios, symphonies, concertos, overtures and sonatas,

and are characterised by penetrating power, rich imagination, intense

passion, and tenderness. When about the age of forty he became totally

deaf, but continued to compose till his death at Vienna, 26 March,

1827. He regarded Goethe with much the same esteem as Wagner showed

for Schopenhauer, but he disliked his courtliness. His Republican

sentiments are well known, and Sir George Macfarren, in his life in

the Imperial Dictionary of Universal Biography, speaks of him as a

"Freethinker," and says the remarkable mass in C. "might scarcely

have proceeded from an entirely orthodox thinker." Sir George Grove,

in his Dictionary of Music and Musicians, says: "Formal religion he

apparently had none," and "the Bible does not appear to have been one

of his favorite books." At the end of his arrangement of "Fidelio"

Moscheles had written, "Fine. With God's help." To this Beethoven

added, "O man, help thyself."


Bekker (Balthasar), Dutch Rationalist, b. Metslawier (Friesland)

20 March, 1634. He studied at Gronigen, became a doctor of divinity,

and lived at Francker, but was accused of Socinianism, and had to fly

to Amsterdam, where he raised another storm by his World Bewitched

(1691), a work in which witchcraft and the power of demons are

denied. His book, which contains much curious information, raised

a host of adversaries, and he was deposed from his place in the

Church. It appeared in English in 1695. Died, Amsterdam, 11 June,

1698. Bekker was remarkably ugly, and he is said to have "looked like

the devil, though he did not believe in him."


Belinsky (Vissarion Grigorevich), Russian critic, b. Pensa 1811,

educated at Pensa and Moscow, adopted the Pantheistic philosophy of

Hegel and Schelling. Died St. Petersburg, 28 May, 1848. His works

were issued in 12 volumes, 1857-61.


Bell (Thomas Evans), Major in Madras Army, which he entered in 1842. He

was employed in the suppression of Thugee. He wrote the Task of To-Day,

1852, and assisted the Reasoner, both with pen and purse, writing over

the signature "Undecimus." He contemplated selling his commission to

devote himself to Freethought propaganda, but by the advice of his

friends was deterred. He returned to India at the Mutiny. In January,

1861, he became Deputy-Commissioner of Police at Madras. He retired

in July, 1865, and has written many works on Indian affairs. Died 12

Sept. 1887.


Bell (William S.), b. in Allegheny city, Pennsylvania, 10

Feb. 1832. Brought up as a Methodist minister, was denounced for

mixing politics with religion, and for his anti-slavery views. In

1873 he preached in the Universalist Church of New Bedford, but in

Dec. '74, renounced Christianity and has since been a Freethought

lecturer. He has published a little book on the French Revolution,

and some pamphlets.


Bender (Wilhelm), German Rationalist, professor of theology at Bonn,

b. 15 Jan. 1845, who created a sensation at the Luther centenary,

1883, by declaring that the work of the Reformation was incompleted

and must be carried on by the Rationalists.


Bennett (De Robigne Mortimer), founder and editor of the New York

Truthseeker, b. of poor parents, Springfield (N.Y.), 23 Dec. 1818. At

the age of fifteen he joined the Shaker Society in New Lebanon. Here

he stayed thirteen years and then married. Having lost faith in the

Shaker creed, he went to Louisville, Kentucky, where he started a

drug store. The perusal of Paine, Volney, and similar works made him

a Freethinker. In 1873, his letters to a local journal in answer to

some ministers having been refused, he resolved to start a paper of

his own. The result was the Truthseeker, which in January, 1876 became

a weekly, and has since become one of the principal Freethought organs

in America. In 1879 he was sentenced to thirteen months' imprisonment

for sending through the post a pamphlet by Ezra H. Heywood on the

marriage question. A tract, entitled An Open Letter to Jesus Christ,

was read in court to bias the jury. A petition bearing 200,000

names was presented to President Hayes asking his release, but was

not acceded to. Upon his release his admirers sent him for a voyage

round the world. He wrote A Truthseeker's Voyage Round the World,

Letters from Albany Penitentiary, Answers to Christian Questions and

Arguments, two large volumes on The Gods, another on the World's Sages,Infidels and Thinkers, and published his discussions with Humphrey, Mair, and Teed, and numerous tracts. He died 6 Dec. 1882.


Bentham (Jeremy), writer on ethics, jurisprudence, and political

economy, b. 15 Feb. 1748. A grand uncle named Woodward was the

publisher of Tindal's Christianity as Old as the Creation. Was educated

at Westminster and Oxford, where he graduated M.A. 1767. Bentham

is justly regarded as the father of the school of philosophical

Radicalism. In philosophy he is the great teacher of Utilitarianism;

as a jurist he did much to disclose the defects of and improve our

system of law. Macaulay says he "found jurisprudence a gibberish and

left it a science." His most pronounced Freethought work was that

written in conjunction with Grote, published as An Analysis of the

Influence of Natural Religion, by Philip Beauchamp, 1822. Among his

numerous other works we can only mention Deontology, or the Science

of Mortality, an exposition of utilitarianism; Church of Englandism

and its Catechism Examined; Not Paul, but Jesus, published under the

pseudonym of Gamaliel Smith. Died 6 June, 1832, leaving his body for

the purposes of science.


Béranger (Jean Pierre de), celebrated French lyrical poet,

b. Paris, 19 Aug. 1780. His satire on the Bourbons twice ensured

for him imprisonment. He was elected to the Constituant Assembly

1848. Béranger has been compared not inaptly to Burns. All his songs

breathe the spirit of liberty, and several have been characterised

as impious. He died 16 July, 1857.


Bergel (Joseph), Jewish Rationalist, author of Heaven and Its Wonders,

Leipsic, 1881, and Mythology of the Ancient Hebrews, 1882.


Berger (Moriz), author of a work on Materialism in Conflict with

Spiritualism and Idealism, Trieste, 1883.


Bergerac de (Savinien Cyrano). See Cyrano.


Bergk (Johann Adam), German philosopher, b. Hainechen, Zeitz, 27 June,

1769; became a private teacher at Leipsic and wrote many works, both

under his own name and pseudonyms. He published the Art of Thinking,

Leipsic, 1802, conducted the Asiatic Magazine, 1806, and wrote under

the name of Frey the True Religion, "recommended to rationalists

and destined for the Radical cure of supernaturalists, mystics,

etc." Died Leipsic, 27 Oct. 1834.


Bergk (Theodor), German humanist, son of the above, b. Leipsic,

22 May, 1812, author of a good History of Greek Literature, 1872.


Berigardus (Claudius), or Beauregard (Claude Guillermet), French

physician and philosopher, b. at Moulins about 1591. He became a

professor at Pisa from 1628 till 1640, and then went to Padua. His

Circulus Pisanus, published in 1643, was considered an Atheistic

work. In the form of a dialogue he exhibits the various hypotheses

of the formation of the world. The work was forbidden and is very

rare. His book entitled Dubitationes in Dialogum Galilæi, also brought

on him a charge of scepticism. Died in 1664.


Berkenhout (Dr. John), physician and miscellaneous writer, b. 1731,

the son of a Dutch merchant who settled at Leeds. In early life he

had been a captain both in the Prussian and English service, and

in 1765 took his M.D. degree at Leyden. He published many books on

medical science, a synopsis of the natural history of Great Britain

and Ireland, and several humorous pieces, anonymously. His principal

work is entitled Biographia Literaria, a biographical history of

English literature, 1777. Throughout the work he loses no opportunity

of displaying his hostility to the theologians, and is loud in his

praises of Voltaire. Died 3 April, 1791.


Berlioz (Louis Hector). The most original of French musical composers,

b. Isère, 11 Dec. 1803. He obtained fame by his dramatic symphony

of Romeo and Juliet (1839), and was made chevalier of the Legion

of Honor. Among his works is one on the Infancy of Christ. In his

Memoirs he relates how he scandalised Mendelssohn "by laughing at

the Bible." Died Paris, 9 March, 1869.


Bernard (Claude), French physiologist, b. Saint Julien 12 July,

1813. Went to Paris 1832, studied medicine, became member of the

Institute and professor at the Museum of Natural History, wrote

La Science Experimentale, and other works on physiology. Died 10

Feb. 1878, and was buried at the expense of the Republic. Paul Bert

calls him the introducer of determinism in the domain of physiology.


Bernier (Abbé). See Holbach.


Bernier (François), French physician and traveller, b. Angers about

1625. He was a pupil of Gassendi, whose works he abridged, and he

defended Descartes against the theologians. He is known as le joli

philsophe. In 1654 he went to Syria and Egypt, and from thence to

India, where he became physician to Aurungzebe. On his return he

published an account of his travels and of the Empire of the Great

Mogul, and died at Paris 22 Sept. 1688.


Bernstein (Aaron), a rationalist, b. of Jewish parents Dantzic

1812. His first work was a translation of the Song of Songs, published

under the pseudonym of A. Rebenstein (1834). He devoted himself

to natural science and published works on The Rotation of Planets,

Humboldt and the Spirit of the Time, etc. His essay on The Origin of

the Legends of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob was translated by a German

lady and published by Thomas Scott of Ramsgate (1872). Died Berlin,

12 Feb. 1884.


Berquin (Louis de), French martyr, b. in Artois, 1489. Erasmus,

his friend, says his great crime was openly professing hatred of

the monks. In 1523 his works were ordered to be burnt, and he was

commanded to abjure his heresies. Sentence of perpetual banishment

was pronounced on him on April 16, 1529. He immediately appealed to

the Parliament. His appeal was heard and rejected on the morning of

the 17th. The Parliament reformed the judgment and condemned him to

be burnt alive, and the sentence was carried out on the same afternoon

at the Place de la Grève. He died with great constancy and resolution.


Bert (Paul), French scientist and statesman, b. at Auxerre, 17

Oct. 1833. In Paris he studied both law and medicine, and after

being Professor in the Faculty of Science at Bordeaux, he in 1869

obtained the chair of physiology in the Faculty of Science at Paris,

and distinguished himself by his scientific experiments. In '70 he

offered his services to the Government of National Defence, and in

'72 was elected to the National Assembly, where he signalised himself

by his Radical opinions. Gambetta recognised his worth and made him

Minister of Public Instruction, in which capacity he organised French

education on a Secular basis. His First Year of Scientific Instruction

is almost universally used in the French primary schools. It has been

translated into English by Josephine Clayton (Madame Paul Bert). His

strong anti-clerical views induced much opposition. He published

several scientific and educational works and attacked The Morality of

the Jesuits, '80. In '86 he was appointed French Resident Minister at

Tonquin, where he died 11 Nov. '86. His body was brought over to France

and given a State funeral, a pension being also accorded to his widow.


Bertani (Agostino), Italian patriot, b. 19 Oct. 1812, became a

physician at Genoa, took part with Garibaldi and Mazzini, organising

the ambulance services. A declared Freethinker, he was elected deputy

to the Italian Parliament. Died Rome 30 April, '86.


Berti (Antonio), Italian physician, b. Venice 20 June, 1816. Author

of many scientific works, member of the Venice Municipal Council and

of the Italian Senate. Died Venice 24 March, 1879.


Bertillon (Louis Adolphe), French Anthropologist and physician,

b. Paris 1 April, 1821. His principal work is a statistical study

of the French population, Paris '74. He edits in conjunction with

A. Hovelacque and others, the Dictionary of the Anthropological

Sciences ('83 etc.) His sons, Jacques (b. '51) and Alphonse (b. '53),

prosecute similar studies.


Bertrand de Saint-Germain (Guillaume Scipion), French physician,

b. Puy-en-Velay 25 Oct. 1810. Became M.D. 1840, wrote on The

Original Diversity of Human Races (1847), and a materialistic work

on Manifestation of Life and Intelligence through Organisation,

1848. Has also written on Descartes as a Physiologist, 1869.


Berwick (George J.) M.D., appointed surgeon to the East India Company

in 1828, retired in '52. Author of Awas-i-hind, or a Voice from the

Ganges; being a solution of the true source of Christianity. By an

Indian Officer; London, 1861. Also of a work on The Forces of the

Universe, '70. Died about 1872.


Besant (Annie) née Wood. B. London, 1 Oct. 1847. Educated in

Evangelicalism by Miss Marryat, sister of novelist, but turned

to the High Church by reading Pusey and others. In "Holy Week"

of 1866 she resolved to write the story of the week from the

gospel. Their contradictions startled her but she regarded her doubts

as sin. In Dec. '67 she married the Rev. F. Besant, and read and

wrote extensively. The torment a child underwent in whooping-cough

caused doubts as to the goodness of God. A study of Greg's Creed

of Christendom and Arnold's Literature and Dogma increased her

scepticism. She became acquainted with the Rev. C. Voysey and Thomas

Scott, for whom she wrote an Essay on the Deity of Jesus of Nazareth,

"by the wife of a beneficed clergyman." This led to her husband

insisting on her taking communion or leaving. She chose the latter

course, taking by agreement her daughter with her. Thrown on her own

resources, she wrote further tracts for Mr. Scott, reprinted in My Path

to Atheism ('77). Joined the National Secular Society, and in '74 wrote

in the National Reformer over the signature of "Ajax." Next year she

took to the platform and being naturally eloquent soon won her way to

the front rank as a Freethought lecturess, and became joint editor

of the National Reformer. Some lectures on the French Revolution

were republished in book form. In April, '77, she was arrested

with Mr. Bradlaugh for publishing the Fruits of Philosophy. After a

brilliant defence, the jury exonerated the defendants from any corrupt

motives, and although they were sentenced the indictment was quashed

in Feb. '78, and the case was not renewed. In May, '78, a petition

in Chancery was presented to deprive Mrs. Besant of her child on the

ground of her Atheistic and Malthusian views. Sir G. Jessell granted

the petition. In '80 Mrs. Besant matriculated at the London University

and took 1st B.Sc. with honors in '82. She has debated much and issued

many pamphlets to be found in Theological Essays and Debates. She

wrote the second part of the Freethinkers' Text Book dealing with

Christian evidence; has written on the Sins of the Church, 1886, and

the Evolution of Society. She has translated Jules Soury's Religion

of Israel, and Jesus of the Gospels; Dr. L. Büchner on the Influence

of Heredity and Mind in Animals, and from the fifteenth edition of

Force and Matter. From '83 to '88 she edited Our Corner, and since

'85 has given much time to Socialist propaganda, and has written many

Socialist pamphlets. In Dec. '88, Mrs. Besant was elected a member

of the London School Board.


Beverland (Hadrianus), Dutch classical scholar and nephew of Isaac

Vossius, b. Middleburg 1654. He took the degree of doctor of law and

became an advocate, but devoted himself to literature. He was at the

university of Oxford in 1672. His treatise on Original Sin, Peccatum

Originale (Eleutheropoli, 1678), in which he contends that the sin

of Adam and Eve was sexual inclination, caused a great outcry. It

was burnt, Beverland was imprisoned and his name struck from the

rolls of Leyden University. He wrote some other curious works and

died about 1712.


Bevington (Louisa S.), afterwards Guggenberger; English poetess and

authoress of Key Notes, 1879; Poems, Lyrics and Sonnets, '82; wrote

"Modern Atheism and Mr. Mallock" in the Nineteenth Century (Oct. and

Dec. '79), and on "The Moral Demerits of Orthodoxy" in Progress,

Sept. '84.


Beyle (Marie Henri), French man of letters, famous under the

name of de Stendhal, b. Grenoble, 23 Jan. 1783. Painter, soldier,

merchant and consul, he travelled largely, a wandering life being

congenial to his broad and sceptical spirit. His book, De l'Amour

is his most notable work. He was an original and gifted critic and

romancer. Balzac esteemed him highly. He died at Paris, 23 March,

1842. Prosper Merimée has published his correspondence. One of his

sayings was "Ce qui excuse Dieu, c'est qu'il n'existe pas"--God's

excuse is that he does not exist.


Bianchi (Angelo), known as Bianchi-Giovini (Aurelio) Italian man

of letters, b. of poor parents at Como, 25 Nov. 1799. He conducted

several papers in various parts of Piedmont and Switzerland. His Life

of Father Paoli Sarpi, 1836, was put on the Index, and thenceforward

he was in constant strife with the Roman Church. For his attacks on

the clergy in Il Republicano, at Lugano, he was proscribed, and had to

seek refuge at Zurich, 1839. He went thence to Milan and there wrote

a History of the Hebrews, a monograph on Pope Joan, and an account

of the Revolution. His principal works are the History of the Popes

until the great schism of the West (Turin, 1850-64) and a Criticism

of the Gospels, 1853, which has gone through several editions. Died

16 May, 1862.


Biandrata or Blandrata (Giorgio), Italian anti-trinitarian reformer,

b. Saluzzo about 1515. Graduated in arts and medicine at Montpellier,

1533. He was thrown into the prison of the Inquisition at Pavia,

but contrived to escape to Geneva, where he become obnoxious to

Calvin. He left Geneva in 1558 and went to Poland where he became a

leader of the Socinian party. He was assassinated 1591.


Bichat (Marie François Xavier), a famous French anatomist and

physiologist, b. Thoirette (Jura), 11 Nov. 1771. His work on the

Physiology of Life and Death was translated into English. He died a

martyr to his zeal for science, 22 July, 1802.


Biddle or Bidle (John), called the father of English Unitarianism,

b. Wotton-under-Edge, Gloucestershire, 14 Jan. 1615. He took his

M.A. degree at Oxford, 1641, and became master of the Gloucester

Grammar School, but lost the situation for denying the Trinity. He

was also imprisoned there for some time, and afterwards cited at

Westminster. He appealed to the public in defence, and his pamphlet

was ordered to be burnt by the hangman, 6 Sept. 1647. He was detained

in prison till 1652, after which he published several pamphlets, and

was again imprisoned in 1654. In Oct. 1655, Cromwell banished him to

the Scilly Isles, making him an allowance. He returned to London 1658,

but after the publication of the Acts of Uniformity was again seized,

and died in prison 22 Sept. 1662.


Bierce (M. H.) see Grile (Dod).


Billaud-Varenne (Jean Nicolas), French conventionalist b. La Rochelle,

23 April, 1756. About 1785 became advocate to Parliament; denounced

the government and clergy 1789. Proposed abolition of the monarchy

1 July, 1791, and wrote Elements of Republicanism, 1793. Withdrew

from Robespierre after the feast of the Supreme Being, saying "Thou

beginnest to sicken me with thy Supreme Being." Was exiled 1 April,

1795, and died at St. Domingo, 3 June, 1819.


Bion, of Borysthenes, near the mouth of the Dneiper. A Scythian

philosopher who flourished about 250 B.C. He was sold as a slave

to a rhetorician, who afterwards gave him freedom and made him his

heir. Upon this he went to Athens and applied himself to the study

of philosophy. He had several teachers, but attached himself to

Theodorus the Atheist. He was famous for his knowledge of music,

poetry, and philosophy. Some shrewd sayings of his are preserved,

as that "only the votive tablets of the preserved are seen in the

temples, not those of the drowned" and "it is useless to tear our

hair when in grief since sorrow is not cured by baldness."


Birch (William John), English Freethinker, b. London 4

Jan. 1811. Educated at Baliol College, Oxford, graduated M.A. at

New Inn Hall. Author of An Inquiry into the Philosophy and Religion

of Shakespeare, 1848; An Inquiry into the Philosophy and Religion

of the Bible, 1856; this work was translated into Dutch by "Rudolf

Charles;" Paul an Idea, not a Fact; and the Real and Ideal. In the

stormy time of '42 Mr. Birch did much to support the prosecuted

publications. He brought out the Library of Reason and supported

The Reasoner and Investigator with both pen and purse. Mr. Birch has

resided much in Italy and proved himself a friend to Italian unity

and Freedom. He is a member of the Italian Asiatic Society. Mr. Birch

has been a contributor to Notes and Queries and other journals,

and has devoted much attention to the early days of Christianity,

having many manuscripts upon the subject.


Bithell (Richard), Agnostic, b. Lewes, Sussex, 22 March 1821, of pious

parents. Became teacher of mathematics and chemistry. Is Ph.D. of

Gottingen and B.Sc. of London University. In '65 he entered the

service of the Rothschilds. Has written Creed of a Modern Agnostic,

1883; and Agnostic Problems, 1887.


Björnson (Björnstjerne), Norwegian writer, b. Quickne 8 Dec. 1832. His

father was a Lutheran clergyman. Has done much to create a national

literature for Norway. For his freethinking opinions he was obliged

to leave his country and reside in Paris. Many of his tales have been

translated into English. In 1882 Björnson published at Christiania,

with a short introduction, a resumé of C. B. Waite's History of the

Christian Religion, under the title of Whence come the Miracles of the

New Testament? This was the first attack upon dogmatic Christianity

published in Norway, and created much discussion. The following year

he published a translation of Colonel Ingersoll's article in the North

American Review upon the "Christian Religion," with a long preface,

in which he attacks the State Church and Monarchy. The translation

was entitled Think for Yourself. The first edition rapidly sold out

and a second one appeared. He has since, both in speech and writing,

repeatedly avowed his Freethought, and has had several controversies

with the clergy.


Blagosvyetlov (Grigorevich E.), Russian author, b. in the Caucasus,

1826. Has written on Shelley, Buckle, and Mill, whose Subjection

of Women he translated into Russian. He edited a magazine Djelo

(Cause). Died about 1885.


Blanqui (Louis Auguste), French politician, b. near Nice, 7 Feb. 1805,

a younger brother of Jerome Adolphe Blanqui, the economist. Becoming

a Communist, his life was spent in conspiracy and imprisonment

under successive governments. In '39 he was condemned to death, but

his sentence commuted to imprisonment for life, and was subject to

brutal treatment till the revolution of '48 set him at liberty. He

was soon again imprisoned. In '65 he wrote some remarkable articles

on Monotheism in Le Candide. After the revolution of 4 Sept. '70,

Blanqui demanded the suppression of worship. He was again imprisoned,

but was liberated and elected member of the Commune, and arrested by

Thiers. In his last imprisonment he wrote a curious book, Eternity

and the Stars, in which he argues from the eternity and infinity of

matter. Died Paris, 31 Dec. 1880. Blanqui took as his motto "Ni Dieu

ni maître"--Neither God nor master.


Blasche (Bernhard Heinrich), German Pantheist, b. Jena 9 April,

1776. His father was a professor of theology and philosophy. He wrote

Kritik des Modernen Geisterglaubens (Criticism of Modern Ghost Belief),

Philosophische Unsterblichkeitslehre (Teaching of Philosophical

Immortality), and other works. Died near Gotha 26 Nov. 1832.


Blignieres (Célestin de), French Positivist, of the Polytechnic

school. Has written a popular exposition of Positive philosophy and

religion, Paris 1857; The Positive Doctrine, 1867; Studies of Positive

Morality, 1868; and other works.


Blind (Karl), German Republican, b. Mannheim, 4 Sept. 1826. Studied

at Heidelberg and Bonn. In 1848 he became a revolutionary leader

among the students and populace, was wounded at Frankfort, and

proscribed. In Sept. '48 he led the second republican revolution in

the Black Forest. He was made prisoner and sentenced to eight year's

imprisonment. In the spring of '49 he was liberated by the people

breaking open his prison. Being sent on a mission to Louis Napoleon,

then president of the French Republic at Paris, he was arrested and

banished from France. He went to Brussels, but since '52 has lived

in in England, where he has written largely on politics, history,

and mythology. His daughter Mathilde, b. at Mannheim, opened her

literary career by publishing a volume of poems in 1867 under the

name of Claude Lake. She has since translated Straus's Old Faith and

the New, and written the volumes on George Eliot and Madame Roland

in the Eminent Women series.


Blount (Charles), English Deist of noble family, b. at Holloway 27

April, 1654. His father, Sir Henry Blount, probably shared in his

opinions, and helped him in his anti-religious work, Anima Mundi,

1678. This work Bishop Compton desired to see suppressed. In 1680 he

published Great is Diana of the Ephesians, or the Origin of Idolatry,

and the two first books of Apollonius Tyanius, with notes, in which

he attacks priestcraft and superstition. This work was condemned and

suppressed. Blount also published The Oracles of Reason, a number

of Freethought Essays. By his Vindication of Learning and Liberty

of the Press, and still more by his hoax on Bohun entitled William

and Mary Conquerors, he was largely instrumental in doing away with

the censorship of the press. He shot himself, it is said, because

he could not marry his deceased wife's sister (August, 1693). His

miscellaneous works were printed in one volume, 1695.


Blumenfeld (J. C.), wrote The New Ecce Homo or the Self Redemption of

Man, 1839. He is also credited with the authorship of The Existence of

Christ Disproved in a series of Letters by "A German Jew," London,



Boerne (Ludwig), German man of letters and politician, b. Frankfort

22 May, 1786. In 1818 he gave up the Jewish religion, in which he had

been bred, nominally for Protestantism, but really he had, like his

friend Heine, become a Freethinker. He wrote many works in favor of

political liberty and translated Lammenais' Paroles d'un Croyant. Died

12 Feb. 1837.


Bodin (Jean), French political writer, b. Angers 1530. He studied

at Toulouse and is said to have been a monk but turned to the law,

and became secretary to the Duc d'Alençon. His book De la Republique

is highly praised by Hallam, and is said to have contained the germ of

Montesquieu's "Spirit of the Laws." He wrote a work on demonomania, in

which he seems to have believed, but in his Colloquium Heptaplomeron

coloquies of seven persons: a Catholic, a Lutheran, a Calvinist, a

Pagan, a Muhammadan, a Jew, and a Deist, which he left in manuscript,

he put some severe attacks on Christianity. Died of the plague at

Laon in 1596.


Boggis (John) is mentioned by Edwards in his Gangrena, 1645, as an

Atheist and disbeliever in the Bible.


Boichot (Jean Baptiste), b. Villier sur Suize 20 Aug. 1820, entered

the army. In '49 he was chosen representative of the people. After

the coup d'état he came to England, returned to France in '54,

was arrested and imprisoned at Belle Isle. Since then he has lived

at Brussels, where he has written several works and is one of the

council of International Freethinkers.


Boindin (Nicolas) French litterateur, wit, playwright and academician,

b. Paris 29 May, 1676. He publicly professed Atheism, and resorted

with other Freethinkers to the famous café Procope. There, in order to

speak freely, they called the soul Margot, religion Javotte, liberty

Jeanneton, and God M. de l'Etre. One day a spy asked Boindin, "Who

is this M. de l'Etre with whom you seem so displeased?" "Monsieur,"

replied Boindin, "he is a police spy." Died 30 Nov. 1751. His corpse

was refused "Christian burial."


Boissiere (Jean Baptiste Prudence), French writer, b. Valognes

Dec. 1806, was for a time teacher in England. He compiled an analogical

dictionary of the French language. Under the name of Sièrebois he

has published the Autopsy of the Soul and a work on the foundations

of morality, which he traces to interest. He has also written a book

entitled The Mechanism of Thought, '84.


Boissonade (J. A.), author of The Bible Unveiled, Paris, 1871.


Boito (Arrigo), Italian poet and musician, b. at Padua, whose opera

"Mefistofele," has created considerable sensation by its boldness.


Bolingbroke (Henry Saint John) Lord, English statesman and philosopher,

b. at Battersea, 1 Oct. 1672. His political life was a stormy

one. He was the friend of Swift and of Pope, who in his Essay on Man

avowedly puts forward the views of Saint John. He died at Battersea

12 Dec. 1751, leaving by will his MSS. to David Mallet, who in 1754

published his works, which included Essays Written to A. Pope, Esq.,

on Religion and Philosophy, in which he attacks Christianity with

both wit and eloquence. Bolingbroke was a Deist, believing in God

but scornfully rejecting revelation. He much influenced Voltaire,

who regarded him with esteem.


Bonavino (Francesco Cristoforo) see Franchi (Ausonio).


Boni (Filippo de), Italian man of letters, b. Feltre, 1820. Editor of

a standard Biography of Artists, published at Venice, 1840. He also

wrote on the Roman Church and Italy and on Reason and Dogma, Siena,

'66, and contributed to Stefanoni's Libero Pensiero. De Boni was

elected deputy to the Italian Parliament. He has written on "Italian

Unbelief in the Middle Ages" in the Annuario Filosofico del Libero

Pensiero, '68.


Boniface VIII., Pope (Benedetto Gaetano), elected head of Christendom,

24 Dec. 1294. During his quarrel with Philip the Fair of France charges

were sworn on oath against Pope Boniface that he neither believed in

the Trinity nor in the life to come, that he said the Virgin Mary

"was no more a virgin than my mother"; that he did not observe the

fasts of the Church, and that he spoke of the cardinals, monks,

and friars as hypocrites. It was in evidence that the Pope had said

"God may do the worst with me that he pleases in the future life; I

believe as every educated man does, the vulgar believe otherwise. We

have to speak as they do, but we must believe and think with the

few." Died 11 Oct. 1303.


Bonnycastle (John), mathematician, b. Whitchurch, Bucks, about

1750. He wrote several works on elementary mathematics and became

Professor of mathematics at the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich,

where he died 15 May, 1821. He was a friend of Fuseli, and private

information assures me he was a Freethinker.


Booms (Marinus Adriaansz), Dutch Spinozist, a shoemaker by trade,

who wrote early in the eighteenth century, and on 1 Jan. 1714,

was banished.


Bonnot de Condillac (Etienne) see Condillac.


Bonstetten (Karl Victor von), Swiss Deist, b. Berne, 3 Sept

1745. Acquainted with Voltaire and Rousseau he went to Leyden and

England to finish his education. Among his works are Researches on

the Nature and Laws of the Imagination, 1807; and Studies on Man,

1821. Died Geneva, 3 Feb. 1832.


Borde (Frédéric), editor of La Philosophie de l'Avenir, Paris, 1875,

etc. Born La Rochelle 1841. Has written on Liberty of Instruction, etc.


Born (Ignaz von) baron, b. Carlsruhe, 26 Dec. 1742. Bred by the

Jesuits, he became an ardent scientist and a favorite of the

Empress Marie Theresa, under whose patronage he published works

on Mineralogy. He was active as a Freemason, and Illuminati, and

published with the name Joannes Physiophilus a stinging illustrated

satire entitled Monchalogia, or the natural history of monks.


Bosc (Louis Augustin Guillaume), French naturalist, b. Paris, 29

Jan. 1759; was tutor and friend to Madame Roland whose Memoirs he

published. He wrote many works on natural history. Died 10 July, 1828.


Boucher (E. Martin), French writer, b. Beaulieu, 1809; contributed to

the Rationalist of Geneva, where he died 1882. Author of a work on

Revelation and Rationalism, entitled Search for the Truth, Avignon,



Bougainville (Louis Antoine de) Count, the first French voyager

who made the tour around the world; b. Paris, 11 Nov. 1729. Died 31

Aug. 1811. He wrote an interesting account of his travels.


Bouillier (Francisque), French philosopher, b. Lyons 12 July 1813, has

written several works on psychology, and contributed to la Liberté de

Penser. His principal work is a History of the Cartesian Philosophy. He

is a member of the Institute and writes in the leading reviews.


Bouis (Casimir), French journalist, b. Toulon 1848, edited La Libre

Pensée and wrote a satire on the Jesuits entitled Calottes et Soutanes,

1870. Sent to New Caledonia for his participation in the Commune, he

has since his return published a volume of political verses entitled

Après le Naufrage, After the Shipwreck, 1880.


Boulainvilliers (Henri de), Comte de St. Saire, French historian and

philosopher, b. 11 Oct. 1658. His principal historical work is an

account of the ancient French Parliaments. He also wrote a defence of

Spinozism under pretence of a refutation of Spinoza, an analysis of

Spinoza's Tractus Theologico-Politicus, printed at the end of Doubts

upon Religion, Londres, 1767. A Life of Muhammad, the first European

work doing justice to Islam, and a History of the Arabs also proceeded

from his pen, and he is one of those to whom is attributed the treatise

with the title of the Three Impostors, 1755. Died 23 Jan. 1722.


Boulanger (Nicolas-Antoine), French Deist, b. 11 Nov. 1722. Died

16 Sept. 1759. He was for some time in the army as engineer, and

afterwards became surveyor of public works. After his death his works

were published by D'Holbach who rewrote them. His principal works

are Antiquity Unveiled and Researches on the Origin of Oriental

Despotism. Christianity Unveiled, attributed to him and said by

Voltaire to have been by Damilavile, was probably written by D'Holbach,

perhaps with some assistance from Naigeon. It was burnt by order of

the French Parliament 18 Aug. 1770. A Critical Examination of the

Life and Works of St. Paul, attributed to Boulanger, was really made

up by d'Holbach from the work of Annet. Boulanger wrote dissertations

on Elisha, Enoch and St. Peter, and some articles for the Encyclopédie.


Bourdet (Dr.) Eugene, French Positivist, b. Paris, 1818. Author of

several works on medicine and Positivist philosophy and education.


Boureau-Deslands (A. F.) See Deslandes.


Bourget (Paul), French littérateur, b. at Amiens in 1852. Has made

himself famous by his novels, essays on contemporary psychology,

studies of M. Rénan, etc. He belongs to the Naturalist School, but

his methods are less crude than those of some of his colleagues. His

insight is most subtle, and his style is exquisite.


Boutteville (Marc Lucien), French writer, professor at the Lycée

Bonaparte; has made translations from Lessing and published an

able work on the Morality of the Church and Natural Morality, 1866,

for which the clergy turned him out of a professorship he held at



Bovio (Giovanni), Professor of Political Economy in the University

of Naples and deputy to the Italian parliament; is an ardent

Freethinker. Both in his writings and in parliament Prof. Bovio

opposes the power of the Vatican and the reconciliation between

Church and State. He has constantly advocated liberty of conscience

and has promoted the institution of a Dante chair in the University

of Rome. He has written a work on The History of Law, a copy of which

he presented to the International Congress of Freethinkers, 1887.


Bowring (Sir John, K.B., LL D.), politician, linguist and writer,

b. Exeter, 17 Oct., 1792. In early life a pupil of Dr. Lant

Carpenter and later a disciple of Jeremy Bentham, whose principles

he maintained in the Westminster Review, of which he was editor,

1825. Arrested in France in 1822, after a fortnight's imprisonment

he was released without trial. He published Bentham's Deontology

(1834), and nine years after edited a complete collection of the

works of Bentham. Returned to Parliament in '35, and afterwards was

employed in important government missions. In '55 he visited Siam,

and two years later published an account of The Kingdom and People

of Siam. He translated Goethe, Schiller, Heine, and the poems of

many countries; was an active member of the British Association and

of the Social Science Association, and did much to promote rational

views on the Sunday question. Died 23 Nov. 1872.


Boyle (Humphrey), one of the men who left Leeds for the purpose of

serving in R. Carlile's shop when the right of free publication was

attacked in 1821. Boyle gave no name, and was indicted and tried as

"a man with name unknown" for publishing a blasphemous and seditious

libel. In his defence he ably asserted his right to hold and publish

his opinions. He read portions of the Bible in court to prove he was

justified in calling it obscene. Upon being sentenced, 27 May, 1822,

to eighteen months' imprisonment and to find sureties for five years,

he remarked "I have a mind, my lord, that can bear such a sentence

with fortitude."


Bradlaugh (Charles). Born East London, 26 Sept. 1833. Educated

in Bethnal Green and Hackney. He was turned from his Sunday-school

teachership and from his first situation through the influence of the

Rev. J. G. Packer, and found refuge with the widow of R. Carlile. In

Dec. 1850 he entered the Dragoon Guards and proceeded to Dublin. Here

he met James Thomson, the poet, and contracted a friendship which

lasted for many years. He got his discharge, and in '53 returned to

London and became a solicitor's clerk. He began to write and lecture

under the nom de guerre of "Iconoclast," edited the Investigator, '59;

and had numerous debates with ministers and others. In 1860 he began

editing the National Reformer, which in '68-9 he successfully defended

against a prosecution of the Attorney General, who wished securities

against blasphemy. In '68 he began his efforts to enter Parliament,

and in 1880 was returned for Northampton. After a long struggle

with the House, which would not admit the Atheist, he at length took

his seat in 1885. He was four times re-elected, and the litigation

into which he was plunged will become as historic as that of John

Wilkes. Prosecuted in '76 for publishing The Fruits of Philosophy, he

succeeded in quashing the indictment. Mr. Bradlaugh has had numerous

debates, several of which are published. He has also written many

pamphlets, of which we mention New Lives of Abraham, David, and

other saints, Who was Jesus Christ? What did Jesus Teach? Has Man

a Soul, Is there a God? etc. His Plea for Atheism reached its 20th

thousand in 1880. Mr. Bradlaugh has also published When were our

Gospels Written?, 1867; Heresy, its Utility and Morality, 1870;

The Inspiration of the Bible, 1873; The Freethinker's Text Book,

part i., dealing with natural religion, 1876; The Laws Relating to

Blasphemy and Heresy, 1878; Supernatural and Rational Morality,

1886. In 1857 Mr. Bradlaugh commenced a commentary on the Bible,

entitled The Bible, What is it? In 1865 this appeared in enlarged form,

dealing only with the Pentateuch. In 1882 he published Genesis, Its

Authorship and Authenticity. In Parliament Mr. Bradlaugh has become

a conspicuous figure, and has introduced many important measures. In

1888 he succeeded in passing an Oaths Bill, making affirmations

permissible instead of oaths. His elder daughter, Alice, b. 30

April, 1856, has written on Mind Considered as a Bodily Function,

1884. Died 2 Dec. 1888. His second daughter, Hypatia Bradlaugh Bonner,

b. 31 March, 1858, has written "Princess Vera" and other stories,

"Chemistry of Home," etc.


Brækstad (Hans Lien), b. Throndhjem, Norway, 7 Sept. 1845. Has made

English translations from Björnson, Asbjörnsen, Andersen, etc., and

has contributed to Harper's Magazine and other periodical literature.


Brandes (Georg Morris Cohen), Danish writer, by birth a Jew,

b. Copenhagen, 4 Feb. 1842. In 1869 he translated J. S. Mills'

Subjection of Women, and in the following year took a doctor's

degree for a philosophical treatise. His chief work is entitled the

Main Current of Literature in the Nineteenth Century. His brother,

Dr. Edvard Brandes, was elected to the Danish Parliament in 1881,

despite his declaration that he did not believe either in the God of

the Christians or of the Jews.


Bray (Charles), philosophic writer, b. Coventry, 31 Jan. 1811. He was

brought up as an Evangelical, but found his way to Freethought. Early

in life he took an active part in promoting unsectarian education. His

first work (1835) was on The Education of the Body. This was followed

by The Education of the Feelings, of which there were several

editions. In 1836 he married Miss Hennell, sister of C. C. Hennell,

and took the System of Nature and Volney's Ruins of Empires "to

enliven the honeymoon." Among his friends was Mary Ann Evans ("George

Eliot"), who accompanied Mr. and Mrs. Bray to Italy. His works on

The Philosophy of Necessity (1841) and Cerebral Psychology (1875)

give the key to all his thought. He wrote a number of Thomas Scott's

series of tracts: Illusion and Delusion, The Reign of Law in Mind as

in Matter, Toleration with remarks on Professor Tyndall's "Address,"

and a little book, Christianity in the Light of our Present Knowledge

and Moral Sense (1876). He also wrote A Manual of Anthropology and

similar works. In a postscript to his last volume, Phases of Opinion

and Experience During a Long Life, dated 18 Sept. 1884, he stated

that he has no hope or expectation or belief even in the possibility

of continued individuality after death, and that as his opinions have

done to live by "they will do to die by." He died 5 Oct. 1884.


Bresson (Léopold), French Positivist, b. Lamarche, 1817. Educated at

the Polytechnic School, which he left in 1840 and served on public

works. For seventeen years was director of an Austrian Railway

Company. Wrote Idées Modernes, 1880.


Bridges (John Henry), M.D. English Positivist, b. 1833, graduated

B.A. at Oxford 1855, and B.M. 1859; has written on Religion and

Progress, contributed to the Fortnightly Review, and translated Comte's

General View of Positivism (1865) and System of Positive Polity (1873).


Bril (Jakob), Dutch mystical Pantheist, b. Leyden, 21 Jan. 1639. Died

1700. His works were published at Amsterdam, 1705.


Brissot (Jean Pierre) de Warville, active French revolutionist,

b. Chartres, 14 Jan. 1754. He was bred to the law, but took to

literature. He wrote for the Courier de l'Europe, a revolutionary

paper suppressed for its boldness, published a treatise on Truth,

and edited a Philosophical Law Library, 1782-85. He wrote against the

legal authority of Rome, and is credited with Philosophical Letters

upon St. Paul and the Christian Religion, Neufchatel, 1783. In 1784

he was imprisoned in the Bastille for his writings. To avoid a second

imprisonment he went to England and America, returning to France

at the outbreak of the Revolution. He wrote many political works,

became member of the Legislative Assembly, formed the Girondist party,

protested against the execution of Louis XVI., and upon the triumph

of the Mountain was executed with twenty-one of his colleagues,

31 Oct., 1793. Brissot was a voluminous writer, honest, unselfish,

and an earnest lover of freedom in every form.


Bristol (Augusta), née Cooper, American educator, b. Croydon, New

Haven, 17 April, 1835. In 1850 became teacher and gained repute by

her Poems. In Sept. 1880, she represented American Freethinkers at

the International Conference at Brussels. She has written on Science

and its Relations to Human Character and other works.


Broca (Pierre Paul), French anthropologist, b. 28 June, 1824. A

hard-working scientist, he paid special attention to craniology. In

1875 he founded the School of Anthropology and had among his pupils

Gratiolet, Topinard, Hovelacque and Dr. Carter Blake, who translated

his treatise on Hybridity. He established The Review of Anthropology,

published numerous scientific works and was made a member of the

Legion of Honor. In philosophy he inclined to Positivism. Died Paris,

9 July, 1880.


Brooksbank (William), b. Nottingham 6 Dec. 1801. In 1824 he wrote

in Carlile's Lion, and has since contributed to the Reasoner, the

Pathfinder, and the National Reformer. He was an intimate friend

of James Watson. He wrote A Sketch of the Religions of the Earth,

Revelation Tested by Astronomy, Geography, Geology, etc., 1856, and

some other pamphlets. Mr. Brooksbank is still living in honored age

at Nottingham.


Brothier (Léon), author of a Popular History of Philosophy, 1861,

and other works in the Bibliothèque Utile. He contributed to the

Rationalist of Geneva.


Broussais (François Joseph Victor), French physician and philosopher,

b. Saint Malo, 17 Dec. 1772. Educated at Dinan, in 1792 he served

as volunteer in the army of the Republic. He studied medicine at

St. Malo and Brest, and became a naval surgeon. A disciple of Bichat,

he did much to reform medical science by his Examination of Received

Medical Doctrines and to find a basis for mental and moral science in

physiology by his many scientific works. Despite his bold opinions, he

was made Commander of the Legion of Honor. He died poor at St. Malo 17

Nov. 1838, leaving behind a profession of faith, in which he declares

his disbelief in a creator and his being "without hope or fear of

another life."


Brown (George William), Dr., of Rockford, Illinois, b. in Essex Co.,

N.Y., Oct. 1820, of Baptist parents. At 17 years of age he was expelled

the church for repudiating the dogma of an endless hell. Dr. Brown

edited the Herald of Freedom, Kansas. In 1856 his office was destroyed

by a pro-slavery mob, his type thrown into the river, and himself

and others arrested but was released without trial. Dr. Brown has

contributed largely to the Ironclad Age and other American Freethought

papers, and is bringing out a work on the Origin of Christianity.


Brown (Titus L.), Dr., b. 16 Oct. 1823, at Hillside (N.Y.). Studied

at the Medical College of New York and graduated at the Homoeopathic

College, Philadelphia. He settled at Binghamton where he had a large

practice. He contributed to the Boston Investigator and in 1877 was

elected President of the Freethinkers Association. Died 17 Aug. 1887.


Browne (Sir Thomas), physician and writer, b. London, 19 Oct. 1605. He

studied medicine and travelled on the Continent, taking his doctor's

degree at Leyden (1633). He finally settled at Norwich, where he had

a good practice. His treatise Religio Medici, famous for its fine

style and curious mixture of faith and scepticism, was surreptitiously

published in 1642. It ran through several editions and was placed on

the Roman Index. His Pseudodoxia Epidemica; Enquiries into Vulgar

and Common Errors, appeared in 1646. While disputing many popular

superstitions he showed he partook of others. This curious work

was followed by Hydriotaphia, or Urn-Burial, in which he treats

of cremation among the ancients. To this was added The Garden of

Cyrus. He died 19 Oct. 1682.


Bruno (Giordano), Freethought martyr, b. at Nola, near Naples, about

1548. He was christened Filippo which he changed to Filoteo, taking

the name of Giordano when he entered the Dominican order. Religious

doubts and bold strictures on the monks obliged him to quit Italy,

probably in 1580. He went to Geneva but soon found it no safe abiding

place, and quitted it for Paris, where he taught, but refused to attend

mass. In 1583 he visited England, living with the French ambassador

Castelnau. Having formed a friendship with Sir Philip Sidney, he

dedicated to him his Spaccio della Bestia Triomfante, a satire on all

mythologies. In 1585 he took part in a logical tournament, sustaining

the Copernican theory against the doctors of Oxford. The following year

he returned to Paris, where he again attacked the Aristotelians. He

then travelled to various cities in Germany, everywhere preaching

the broadest heresy. He published several Pantheistic, scientific and

philosophical works. He was however induced to return to Italy, and

arrested as an heresiarch and apostate at Venice, Sept. 1592. After

being confined for seven years by the Inquisitors, he was tried,

and burnt at Rome 17 Feb. 1600. At his last moments a crucifix was

offered him, which he nobly rejected. Bruno was vastly before his age

in his conception of the universe and his rejection of theological

dogmas. A statue of this heroic apostle of liberty and light, executed

by one of the first sculptors of Italy, is to be erected on the spot

where he perished, the Municipal Council of Rome having granted the

site in face of the bitterest opposition of the Catholic party. The

list of subscribers to this memorial comprises the principal advanced

thinkers in Europe and America.


Brzesky (Casimir Liszynsky Podsedek). See Liszinski.


Bucali or Busali (Leonardo), a Calabrian abbot of Spanish descent,

who became a follower of Servetus in the sixteenth century, and had

to seek among the Turks the safety denied him in Christendom. He died

at Damascus.


Buchanan (George), Scotch historian and scholar, b. Killearn,

Feb. 1506. Evincing an early love of study, he was sent to

Paris at the age of fourteen. He returned to Scotland and became

distinguished for his learning. James V. appointed him tutor to his

natural son. He composed his Franciscanus et Fratres, a satire on the

monks, which hastened the Scottish reformation. This exposed him to

the vengeance of the clergy. Not content with calling him Atheist,

Archbishop Beaton had him arrested and confined in St. Andrew's

Castle, from whence he escaped and fled to England. Here he found,

as he said, Henry VIII. burning men of opposite opinions at the same

stake for religion. He returned to Paris, but was again subjected to

the persecution of Beaton, the Scottish Ambassador. On the death of

a patron at Bordeaux, in 1548, he was seized by the Inquisition and

immured for a year and a half in a monastery, where he translated

the Psalms into Latin. He eventually returned to Scotland, where he

espoused the party of Moray. After a most active life, he died 28

Sept. 1582, leaving a History of Scotland, besides numerous poems,

satires, and political writings, the most important of which is a

work of republican tendency, De Jure Regni, the Rights of Kings.


Buchanan (Robert), Socialist, b. Ayr, 1813. He was successively a

schoolmaster, a Socialist missionary and a journalist. He settled in

Manchester, where he published works on the Religion of The Past and

Present, 1839; the Origin and Nature of Ghosts, 1840. An Exposure

of Joseph Barker, and a Concise History of Modern Priestcraft also

bear the latter date. At this time the Socialists were prosecuted for

lecturing on Sunday, and Buchanan was fined for refusing to take the

oath of supremacy, etc. After the decline of Owenism, he wrote for

the Northern Star, and edited the Glasgow Sentinel. He died at the

home of his son, the poet, at Bexhill, Sussex, 4 March, 1866.


Buchanan (Joseph Rhodes), American physician, b. Frankfort, Kentucky,

11 Dec. 1814. He graduated M.D. at Louisville University, 1842, and

has been the teacher of physiology at several colleges. From 1849-56

he published Buchanan's Journal of Man, and has written several works

on Anthropology.


Buchner (Ludwig). See Buechner.


Buckle (Henry Thomas), philosophical historian, b. Lee, Kent, 24

Nov. 1821. In consequence of his delicate health he was educated at

home. His mother was a strict Calvinist, his father a strong Tory,

but a visit to the Continent made him a Freethinker and Radical. He

ever afterwards held travelling to be the best education. It was his

ambition to write a History of Civilisation in England, but so vast was

his design that his three notable volumes with that title form only

part of the introduction. The first appeared in 1858, and created a

great sensation by its boldness. In the following year he championed

the cause of Pooley, who was condemned for blasphemy, and dared the

prosecution of infidels of standing. In 1861 he visited the East,

in the hope of improving his health, but died at Damascus, 29 May,

1862. Much of the material collected for his History has been published

in his Miscellaneous and Posthumous Works, edited by Helen Taylor,

1872. An abridged edition, edited by Grant Allen, appeared in 1886.


Buechner (Friedrich Karl Christian Ludwig), German materialist,

b. Darmstadt, 29 March, 1824. Studied medicine in Geissen, Strassburg

and Vienna. In '55 he startled the world with his bold work on

Force and Matter, which has gone through numerous editions and been

translated into nearly all the European languages. This work lost

him the place of professor which he held at Tübingen, and he has

since practised in his native town. Büchner has developed his ideas

in many other works such as Nature and Spirit (1857), Physiological

Sketches, '61; Nature and Science, '62; Conferences on Darwinism,

'69; Man in the Past, Present and Future, '69; Materialism its History

and Influence on Society, '73; The Idea of God, '74; Mind in Animals,

'80; and Light and Life, '82. He also contributes to the Freidenker,

the Dageraad, and other journals.


Buffon (Georges Louis Leclerc), Count de, French naturalist,

b. Montford, Burgundy, 7 Sept. 1707. An incessant worker. His Natural

History in 36 volumes bears witness to the fertility of his mind

and his capacity for making science attractive. Buffon lived much in

seclusion, and attached himself to no sect or religion. Some of his

sentences were attacked by the Sorbonne. Hérault de Sêchelles says

that Buffon said: "I have named the Creator, but it is only necessary

to take out the word and substitute the power of nature." Died at

Paris 16 April, 1788.


Buitendijk or Buytendyck (Gosuinus van), Dutch Spinozist, who wrote an

Apology at the beginning of the eighteenth century and was banished



Bufalini (Maurizio), Italian doctor, b. Cesena 2 June, 1787. In 1813 he

published an essay on the Doctrine of Life in opposition to vitalism,

and henceforward his life was a conflict with the upholders of that

doctrine. He was accused of materialism, but became a professor at

Florence and a member of the Italian Senate in 1860. Died at Florence

31 March, 1875.


Burdach (Karl Friedrich), German physiologist, b. Leipsic 12 June,

1776. He occupied a chair at the University of Breslau. His works on

physiology and anthropology did much to popularise those sciences,

and the former is placed on the Index Librorum Prohibitorum for its

materialistic tendency. He died at Konigsberg, 16 July, 1847.


Burdon (William), M.A., writer, b. Newcastle, 11 Sept. 1764. Graduated

at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, 1788. He was intended for a clergyman,

but want of faith made him decline that profession. His principal work

is entitled Materials for Thinking. Colton largely availed himself of

this work in his Lacon. It went through five editions in his lifetime,

and portions were reprinted in the Library of Reason. He also addressed

Three Letters to the Bishop of Llandaff, wrote a Life and Character of

Bonaparte, translated an account of the Revolution in Spain, edited the

Memoirs of Count Boruwlaski, and wrote some objections to the annual

subscription to the Sons of the Clergy. Died in London, 30 May, 1818.


Burigny (Jean Levesque de), French writer, b. Rheims, 1692. He became

a member of the French Academy, wrote a treatise on the Authority

of the Pope, a History of Pagan Philosophy and other works, and

is credited with the Critical Examination of the Apologists of the

Christian Religion, published under the name of Freret by Naigeon,

1766. Levesque de Burigny wrote a letter in answer to Bergier's

Proofs of Christianity, which is published in Naigeon's Recueil

Philosophique. Died at Paris, 8 Oct. 1785.


Burmeister (Hermann), German naturalist, b. Stralsund, 15 Jan. 1807. In

1827 he became a doctor at Halle. In '48 he was elected to the National

Assembly. In 1850 he went to Brazil. His principal work is The History

of Creation, 1843.


Burmeister or Baurmeister (Johann Peter Theodor) a German Rationalist

and colleague of Ronge. Born at Flensburg, 1805. He resided in

Hamburg, and wrote in the middle of the present century under the

name of J. P. Lyser.


Burnet (Thomas), b. about 1635 at Croft, Yorkshire. Through the

interest of a pupil, the Duke of Ormonde, he obtained the mastership

of the Charterhouse, 1685. In 1681 the first part of his Telluris

Theoria Sacra, or Sacred Theory of the Earth, appeared in Latin, and

was translated and modified in 1684. In 1692 Burnet published, both

in English and in Latin, his Archæologiæ Philosophicæ, or the Ancient

Doctrine of the Origin of Things. He professes in this to reconcile

his theory with Genesis, which receives a figurative interpretation;

and a ludicrous dialogue between Eve and the serpent gave great

offence. In a popular ballad Burnet is represented as saying--



                That all the books of Moses

                Were nothing but supposes.



He had to resign a position at court. In later life he wrote De Fide

et Officiis Christianorum (on Christian Faith and Duties), in which

he regards historical religions as based on the religion of nature,

and rejects original sin and the "magical" theory of sacraments;

and De Statu Mortuorum et Resurgentium, on the State of the Dead and

Resurrected, in which he opposed the doctrine of eternal punishment

and shadowed forth a scheme of Deism. These books he kept to himself

to avoid a prosecution for heresy, but had a few copies printed for

private friends. He died in the Charterhouse 27 Sept. 1715. A tract

entitled Hell Torments not Eternal was published in 1739.


Burnett (James), Lord Monboddo, a learned Scotch writer and judge,

was b. Monboddo, Oct. 1714. He adopted the law as his profession,

became a celebrated advocate, and was made a judge in 1767. His

work on the Origin and Progress of Language (published anonymously

1773-92), excited much derision by his studying man as one of the

animals and collecting facts about savage tribes to throw light on

civilisation. He first maintained that the orang-outang was allied

to the human species. He also wrote on Ancient Metaphysics. He was

a keen debater and discussed with Hume, Adam Smith, Robertson, and

Lord Kames. Died in Edinburgh, 26 May, 1799.


Burnouf (Emile Louis), French writer, b. Valonges, 25 Aug. 1821. He

became professor of ancient literature to the faculty of Nancy. Author

of many works, including a translation of selections from the Novum

Organum of Bacon, the Bhagvat-Gita, an Introduction to the Vedas,

a history of Greek Literature, Studies in Japanese, and articles

in the Revue des deux Mondes. His heresy is pronounced in his work

on the Science of Religions, 1878, in his Contemporary Catholicism,

and Life and Thought, 1886.


Burnouf (Eugène), French Orientalist, cousin of the preceding;

b. Paris, 12 Aug. 1801. He opened up to the Western world the Pali

language, and with it the treasures of Buddhism, whose essentially

Atheistic character he maintained. To him also we are largely indebted

for a knowledge of Zend and of the Avesta of the Zoroastrians. He

translated numerous Oriental works and wrote a valuable Introduction

to the History of Indian Buddhism. Died at Paris, 28 May, 1852.


Burns (Robert), Scotland's greatest poet, b. near Ayr, 25

Jan. 1759. His father was a small farmer, of enlightened views. The

life and works of Burns are known throughout the world. His

Freethought is evident from such productions as the "Holy Fair,"

"The Kirk's Alarm," and "Holy Willie's Prayer," and many passages in

private letters to his most familiar male friends. Died at Dumfries,

21 July, 1796.


Burr (William Henry), American author, b. 1819, Gloversville, N.Y.,

graduated at Union College, Schenectady, became a shorthand reporter

to the Senate. In 1869 he retired and devoted himself to literary

research. He is the anonymous author of Revelations of Antichrist, a

learned book which exposes the obscurity of the origin of Christianity,

and seeks to show that the historical Jesus lived almost a century

before the Christian era. He has also written several pamphlets:

Thomas Paine was Junius, 1880: Self Contradictions of the Bible;

Is the Bible a Lying Humbug? A Roman Catholic Canard, etc. He has

also frequently contributed to the Boston Investigator, the New York

Truthseeker, and the Ironclad Age of Indianapolis.


Burton (Sir Richard Francis), traveller, linguist, and author,

b. Barham House, Herts, 19 March, 1821. Intended for the Church,

he matriculated at Oxford, but in 1842 entered the East India

Company's service, served on the staff of Sir C. Napier, and soon

acquired reputation as an intrepid explorer. In '51 he returned to

England and started for Mecca and Medina, visiting those shrines

unsuspected, as a Moslem pilgrim. He was chief of the staff of the

Osmanli cavalry in the Crimean war, and has made many remarkable and

dangerous expeditions in unknown lands; he discovered and opened

the lake regions in Central Africa and explored the highlands of

Brazil. He has been consul at Fernando Po, Santos, Damascus, and

since 1872 at Trieste, and speaks over thirty languages. His latest

work is a new translation of The Thousand Nights and a Night in 10

vols. Being threatened with a prosecution, he intended justifying

"literal naturalism" from the Bible. Burton's knowledge of Arabic is

so perfect that when he used to read the tales to Arabs, they would

roll on the ground in fits of laughter.


Butler (Samuel), poet, b. in Strensham, Worcestershire, Feb. 1612. In

early life he came under the influence of Selden. He studied painting,

and is said to have painted a head of Cromwell from life. He became

clerk to Sir Samuel Luke, one of Cromwell's Generals, whom he has

satirised as Hudibras. This celebrated burlesque poem appeared in 1663

and became famous, but, although the king and court were charmed with

its wit, the author was allowed to remain in poverty and obscurity

till he died at Covent Garden, London, 25 Sept. 1680. Butler expressed

the opinion that



        "Religion is the interest of churches

        That sell in other worlds in this to purchase."



Buttmann (Philipp Karl), German philologist, b. Frankfort, 5

Dec. 1764. Became librarian of the Royal Library at Berlin. He edited

many of the Greek Classics, wrote on the Myth of the Deluge, 1819,

and a learned work on Mythology, 1828. Died Berlin, 21 June, 1829.


Buzot (François Léonard Nicolas), French Girondin, distinguished as

an ardent Republican and a friend and lover of Madame Roland. Born

at Evreux, 1 March, 1760; he died from starvation when hiding after

the suppression of his party June, 1793.


Byelinsky (Vissarion G.) See Belinsky.


Byron (George Gordon Noel) Lord, b. London, 22 Jan. 1788. He succeeded

his grand-uncle William in 1798; was sent to Harrow and Cambridge. In

1807 he published his Hours of Idleness, and awoke one morning to find

himself famous. His power was, however, first shown in his English

Bards and Scotch Reviewers, in which he satirised his critics, 1809. He

then travelled on the Continent, the result of which was seen in his

Childe Harold's Pilgrimage and other works. He married 2 Jan. 1815,

but a separation took place in the following year. Lord Byron then

resided in Italy, where he made the acquaintance of Shelley. In 1823

he devoted his name and fortune to the cause of the Greek revolution,

but was seized with fever and died at Missolonghi, 19 April, 1824. His

drama of Cain: a Mystery, 1822, is his most serious utterance,

and it shows a profound contempt for religious dogma. This feeling

is also exhibited in his magnificent burlesque poem, The Vision

of Judgment, which places him at the head of English satirists. In

his letters to the Rev. Francis Hodgson, 1811, he distinctly says:

"I do not believe in any revealed religion.... I will have nothing

to do with your immortality; we are miserable enough in this life,

without the absurdity of speculating upon another.... The basis of

your religion is injustice; the Son of God, the pure, the immaculate,

the innocent, is sacrificed for the guilty," etc.


Cabanis (Pierre Jean George), called by Lange "the father of the

materialistic physiology," b. Conac, 5 June, 1757. Became pupil

of Condillac and friend of Mirabeau, whom he attended in his last

illness, of which he published an account 1791. He was also intimate

with Turgot, Condorcet, Holbach, Diderot, and other distinguished

Freethinkers, and was elected member of the Institute and of the

Council of Five Hundred in the Revolution. His works are mostly

medical, the chief being Des Rapports du Physique et du Morale de

l'Homme, in which he contends that thoughts are a secretion of the

brain. Died Rueil, near Paris, 5 May, 1808.


Cæsalpinus (Andreas), Italian philosopher of the Renaissance,

b. Arezzo, Tuscany, 1519. He became Professor of Botany at Pisa, and

Linnæus admits his obligations to his work, De Plantis, 1583. He also

wrote works on metals and medicine, and showed acquaintance with the

circulation of the blood. In a work entitled Demonum Investigatio,

he contends that "possession" by devils is amenable to medical

treatment. His Quæstionum Peripateticarum, in five books, Geneva,

1568, was condemned as teaching a Pantheistic doctrine similar to

that of Spinoza. Bishop Parker denounced him. Died 23 Feb. 1603.


Cæsar (Caius Julius), the "foremost man of all this world," equally

renowned as soldier, statesman, orator, and writer, b. 12 July,

100 B.C., of noble family. His life, the particulars of which are

well known, was an extraordinary display of versatility, energy,

courage, and magnanimity. He justified the well-known line of Pope,

"Cæsar the world's great master and his own." His military talents

elevated him to the post of dictator, but this served to raise against

him a band of aristocratic conspirators, by whom he was assassinated,

15 March, 44 B.C. His Commentaries are a model of insight and clear

expression. Sallust relates that he questioned the existence of

a future state in the presence of the Roman senate. Froude says:

"His own writings contain nothing to indicate that he himself had any

religious belief at all. He saw no evidence that the gods practically

interfered in human affairs.... He held to the facts of this life and

to his own convictions; and as he found no reason for supposing that

there was a life beyond the grave he did not pretend to expect it."


Cahuac (John), bookseller, revised an edition of Palmer's Principles

of Nature, 1819. For this he was prosecuted at the instance of the

"Vice Society," but the matter was compromised. He was also prosecuted

for selling the Republican, 1820.


Calderino (Domizio), a learned writer of the Renaissance, b. in 1445,

in the territory of Verona, and lived at Rome, where he was professor

of literature, in 1477. He edited and commented upon many of the

Latin poets. Bayle says he was without religion. Died in 1478.


Calenzio (Eliseo), an Italian writer, b. in the kingdom of Naples about

1440. He was preceptor to Prince Frederic, the son of Ferdinand, the

King of Naples. He died in 1503, leaving behind a number of satires,

fables and epigrams, some of which are directed against the Church.


Call (Wathen Mark Wilks), English author, b. 7 June, 1817. Educated at

Cambridge, entered the ministry in 1843, but resigned his curacy about

1856 on account of his change of opinions, which he recounts in his

preface to Reverberations, 1876. Mr. Call is of the Positivist school,

and has contributed largely to the Fortnightly and Westminster Reviews.


Callet (Pierre Auguste), French politician, b. St. Etienne, 27

Oct. 1812; became editor of the Gazette of France till 1840. In 1848

he was nominated Republican representative. At the coup d'état of 2

Dec. 1851, he took refuge in Belgium. He returned to France, but was

imprisoned for writing against the Empire. In 1871, Callet was again

elected representative for the department of the Loire. His chief

Freethought work is L'Enfer, an attack upon the Christian doctrine

of hell, 1861.


Camisani (Gregorio), Italian writer, b. at Venice, 1810. A Professor

of Languages in Milan. He has translated the Upas of Captain R. H. Dyas

and other works.


Campanella (Tommaso), Italian philosopher, b. Stilo, Calabria,

5 Sept. 1568. He entered the Dominican order, but was too much

attracted by the works of Telesio to please his superiors. In 1590

his Philosophia Sensibus Demonstratio was printed at Naples. Being

prosecuted, he fled to Rome, and thence to Florence, Venice,

and Padua. At Bologna some of his MS. fell into the hands of the

Inquisition, and he was arrested. He ably defended himself and was

acquitted. Returning to Calabria in 1599, he was arrested on charges

of heresy and conspiracy against the Spanish Government of Naples,

and having appealed to Rome, was sentenced to perpetual imprisonment

in the prison of the Holy Office. He was put to the torture seven

times, his torments on one occasion extending over forty hours, but

he refused to confess. He was dragged from one prison to another for

twenty-seven years, during which he wrote some sonnets, a history of

the Spanish monarchy, and several philosophical works. On 15 May,

1626, he was released by the intervention of Pope Urban VIII. He

was obliged to fly from Rome to France, where he met Gassendi. He

also visited Descartes in Holland. Julian Hibbert remarked that

his Atheismus Triumphatus--Atheism Subdued, 1631, would be better

entitled Atheismus Triumphans--Atheism Triumphant--as the author puts

his strongest arguments on the heterodox side. In his City of the Sun,

Campanella follows Plato and More in depicting an ideal republic and a

time when a new era of earthly felicity should begin. Hallam says "The

strength of Campanella's genius lay in his imagination." His "Sonnets"

have been translated by J. A. Symonds. Died Paris, 21 May, 1639.


Campbell (Alexander), Socialist of Glasgow, b. about the beginning

of the century. He early became a Socialist, and was manager at

the experiment at Orbiston under Abram Combe, of whom he wrote

a memoir. Upon the death of Combe, 1827, he became a Socialist

missionary in England. He took an active part in the co-operative

movement, and in the agitation for an unstamped press, for which he

was tried and imprisoned at Edinburgh, 1833-4. About 1849 he returned

to Glasgow and wrote on the Sentinel. In 1867 he was presented with

a testimonial and purse of 90 sovereigns by admirers of his exertions

in the cause of progress. Died about 1873.


Campion (William), a shoemaker, who became one of R. Carlile's

shopmen; tried 8 June, 1824, for selling Paine's Age of Reason. After

a spirited defence he was found guilty and sentenced to three years'

imprisonment. In prison he edited, in conjunction with J. Clarke,

E. Hassell, and T. R. Perry, the Newgate Monthly Magazine, to which

he contributed some thoughtful papers, from Sept. 1824, to Aug. 1826,

when he was removed to the Compter.


Canestrini (Giovanni), Italian naturalist, b. Rerò, 1835. He studied

at Vienna, and in '60 was nominated Professor of Natural History at

Geneva. Signor Canestrini contributed to the Annuario Filosofico del

Libero Pensiero, and is known for his popularisation of the works

of Darwin, which he has translated into Italian. He has written

upon the Origin of Man, which has gone through two editions, Milan,

'66-'70, and on the Theory of Evolution, Turin, '77. He was appointed

Professor of Zoology, Anatomy and Comparative Physiology at Padua,

where he has published a Memoir of Charles Darwin, '82.


Cardano (Girolamo), better known as Jerome Cardan, Italian

mathematician, and physician, b. Pavia, 24 Sept. 1501. He studied

medicine, but was excluded from the Milan College of Physicians on

account of illegitimate birth. He and his young wife were at one time

compelled to take refuge in the workhouse. It is not strange that his

first work was an exposure of the fallacies of the faculty. A fortunate

cure brought him into notice and he journeyed to Scotland as the

medical adviser of the Archbishop of St. Andrews, 1551. In 1563 he was

arrested at Bologna for heresy, but was released, although deprived of

his professorship. He died at Rome, 20 Sept. 1576, having, it is said,

starved himself to verify his own prediction of his death. Despite

some superstition, Cardano did much to forward science, especially

by his work on Algebra, and in his works De Subtilitate Rerum and De

Varietate Rerum, amid much that is fanciful, perceived the universality

of natural law and the progressive evolution of life. Scaliger accused

him of Atheism. Pünjer says "Cardanus deserves to be named along with

Telesius as one of the principal founders of Natural Philosophy."


Carducci (Giosuè), Italian poet and Professor of Italian Literature at

the University of Bologna, b. Pietrasantra, in the province of Lucca,

27 July, 1836. As early as '49 he cried, Abasso tutti i re! viva la

republica--Down with all kings! Long live the republic! Sprung into

fame by his Hymn to Satan, '69, by which he intended the spirit of

resistance. He has written many poems and satires in which he exhibits

himself an ardent Freethinker and Republican. At the end of '57 he

wrote his famous verse "Il secoletto vil che cristianeggia"--"This

vile christianising century." In '60 he became professor of Greek

in Bologna University, being suspended for a short while in '67 for

an address to Mazzini. In '76 he was elected as republican deputy to

the Italian Parliament for Lugo di Romagna.


Carlile (Eliza Sharples), second wife of Richard Carlile, came from

Lancashire during the imprisonment of Carlile and Taylor, 1831,

delivered discourses at the Rotunda, and started a journal, the Isis,

which lasted from 11 Feb. to 15 Dec. 1832. The Isis was dedicated

to the young women of England "until superstition is extinct,"

and contained Frances Wright's discourses, in addition to those

by Mrs. Carlile, who survived till '61. Mr. Bradlaugh lodged with

Mrs. Carlile at the Warner Place Institute, in 1849. She had three

children, Hypatia, Theophila and Julian, of whom the second is

still living.


Carlile (Jane), first wife of R. Carlile, who carried on his business

during his imprisonment, was proceeded against, and sentenced to two

years' imprisonment, 1821. She had three children, Richard, Alfred,

and Thomas Paine Carlile, the last of whom edited the Regenerator,

a Chartist paper published at Manchester, 1839.


Carlile (Richard), foremost among the brave upholders of an English

free press, b. Ashburton, Devon, 8 Dec. 1790. He was apprenticed to a

tin-plate worker, and followed that business till he was twenty-six,

when, having read the works of Paine, he began selling works like

Wooler's Black Dwarf, which Government endeavored to suppress. Sherwin

offered him the dangerous post of publisher of the Republican, which

he accepted. He then published Southey's Wat Tyler, reprinted the

political works of Paine and the parodies for which Hone was tried, but

which cost Carlile eighteen weeks' imprisonment. In 1818 he published

Paine's Theological Works. The prosecution instituted induced him to

go on printing similar works, such as Palmer's Principles of Nature,

Watson Refuted, Jehovah Unveiled, etc. By Oct. 1819, he had six

indictments to answer, on two of which he was tried from 12 to 16

October. He read the whole of the Age of Reason in his defence, in

order to have it in the report of the trial. He was found guilty and

sentenced (16 Nov.) to fifteen hundred pounds fine and three years'

imprisonment in Dorchester Gaol. During his imprisonment his business

was kept on by a succession of shopmen. Refusing to find securities

not to publish, he was kept in prison till 18 Nov. 1835, when he

was liberated unconditionally. During his imprisonment he edited

the Republican, which extended to fourteen volumes. He also edited

the Deist, the Moralist, the Lion (four volumes), the Prompter (for

No. 3 of which he again suffered thirty-two months' imprisonment),

and the Gauntlet. Amongst his writings are An Address to Men of

Science, The Gospel according to R. Carlile, What is God? Every

Woman's Book, etc. He published Doubts of Infidels, Janus on Sion,

Sepher Toldoth Jeshu, D'Holbach's Good Sense, Volney's Ruins, and

many other Freethought works. He died 10 Feb. 1843, bequeathing his

body to Dr. Lawrence for scientific purposes.


Carlyle (Thomas), one of the most gifted and original writers of the

century, b. 4 Dec. 1795, at Ecclefechan, Dumfriesshire, where his

father, a man of intellect and piety, held a small farm. Showing early

ability he was intended for the Kirk, and educated at the University

of Edinburgh. He, however, became a tutor, and occupied his leisure

in translating from the German. He married Jane Welsh 17 Oct. 1826,

and wrote in the London Magazine and Edinburgh Review many masterly

critical articles, notably on Voltaire, Diderot, Burns, and German

literature. In 1833-4 his Sartor Resartus appeared in Fraser's

Magazine. In '34 he removed to London and began writing the French

Revolution, the MS. of the first vol. of which he confided to Mill,

with whom it was accidentally burnt. He re-wrote the work without

complaint, and it was published in '37. He then delivered a course

of lectures on "German Literature" and on "Heroes, Hero-Worship, and

the Heroic in History," in which he treats Mahomet as the prophet

"we are freest to speak of." His Past and Present was published in

'43. In '45 appeared Oliver Cromwell's Letters and Speeches. In

'50 he published Latter-Day Pamphlets, which contains his most

distinctive political and social doctrines, and in the following year

his Life of John Sterling, in which his heresy clearly appears. His

largest work is his History of the Life and Times of Frederick the

Great, in 10 vols. He was elected rector of Edinburgh University in

'65. Died 5 Feb. 1881. Mr. Froude, in his Biography of Carlyle, says,

"We have seen him confessing to Irving that he did not believe as his

friend did in the Christian religion." ... "the special miraculous

occurrences of sacred history were not credible to him."


Carneades, sceptical philosopher, b. Cyrene about B.C. 213. He went

early to Athens, and attended the lectures of the Stoics, learning

logic from Diogenes. In the year 155, he was chosen with other

deputies to go to Rome to deprecate a fine which had been placed on

the Athenians. During his stay at Rome he attracted great attention

by his philosophical orations. Carneades attacked the very idea of

a God at once infinite and an individual. He denied providence and

design. Many of his arguments are preserved in Cicero's Academics

and De Natura Deorum. Carneades left no written works; his views

seem to have been systematised by his follower Clitomachus. He died

B.C. 129. Carneades is described as a man of unwearied industry. His

ethics were of elevated character.


Carneri (Bartholomäus von), German writer, b. Trieste, 3

Nov. 1821. Educated at Vienna. In 1870 he sat in the Austrian

Parliament with the Liberals. Author of an able work on Morality and

Darwinism, Vienna, 1871. Has also written Der Mensch als Selbstweck,

"Humanity as its own proper object," 1877; Grundlegung der Ethik,

Foundation of Morals, 1881; and Ethical Essays on Evolution and

Happiness, Stuttgart, 1886.


Carra (Jean Louis), French man of letters and Republican, b. 1743 at

Pont de Veyle. He travelled in Germany, Italy, Turkey, Russia, and

Moldavia, where he became secretary to the hospodar. On returning to

France he became employed in the King's library and wrote a History

of Moldavia and an Essay on Aerial Navigation. He warmly espoused

the revolution and was one of the most ardent orators of the Jacobin

club. In the National Assembly he voted for the death of Louis XVI.,

but was executed with the Girondins, 31 Oct. 1793. His Freethought

sentiments are evident from his System of Reason, 1773; his Spirit

of Morality and Philosophy, 1777; New Principles of Physic, 1782-3,

and other works.


Carrel (Jean Baptiste Nicolas Armand), called by Saint Beuve "the

Junius of the French press," b. Rouen, 8 May, 1800. He became a

soldier, but, being a Republican, fought on behalf of the Spanish

revolution. Being taken prisoner, he was condemned to death, but

escaped through some informality. He became secretary to Thierry,

edited the works of P. L. Courier, and established the Nation in

conjunction with Thiers and Mignet. J. S. Mill writes of him in terms

of high praise. The leading journalist of his time, his slashing

articles led to several duels, and in an encounter with Emile de

Girardin (22 July, 1836) he was fatally wounded. On his death-bed,

says M. Littré, he said "Point de prêtres, point d'église"--no

priests nor church. Died 24 July, 1836. He wrote a History of the

Counter-Revolution in England, with an eye to events in his own



Carus (Julius Viktor), German zoologist, b. Leipsic, 25 Aug. 1825. Has

been keeper of anatomical museum at Oxford, and has translated Darwin's

works and the philosophy of G. H. Lewes.


Carus (Karl Gustav), German physiologist and Pantheist, b. Leipsic,

3 Jan. 1789. He taught comparative anatomy at the university of that

town, and published a standard introduction to that subject. He also

wrote Psyche, a history of the development of the human soul, 1846,

and Nature and Idea, 1861. Died at Dresden, 28 July, 1869.


Castelar y Ripoll (Emilio), Spanish statesman, b. Cadiz,

8 Sept. 1832. He began as a journalist, and became known by his

novel Ernesto, 1855. As professor of history and philosophy, he

delivered lectures on "Civilisation during the first three centuries of

Christendom." La Formula del Progresso contains a sketch of democratic

principles. On the outbreak of the revolution of '68 he advocated

a Federal Republic in a magnificent oration. The Crown was however

offered to Amadeus of Savoy. "Glass, with care," was Castelar's verdict

on the new dynasty, and in Feb. '73 Castelar drew up a Republican

Constitution; and for a year was Dictator of Spain. Upon his retirement

to France he wrote a sketchy History of the Republican Movement in

Europe. In '76 he returned to Spain and took part in the Cortes,

where he has continued to advocate Republican views. His Old Rome and

New Italy, and Life of Lord Byron have been translated into English.


Castelli (David), Italian writer, b. Livorno, 30 Dec. 1836. Since

1873 he has held the chair of Hebrew in the Institute of Superior

Studies at Florence. He has translated the book of Ecclesiastes with

notes, and written rationalistic works on Talmudic Legends, 1869;

The Messiah According to the Hebrews, '74; the Bible Prophets, '82;

and The History of the Israelites, 1887.


Castilhon (Jean Louis), French man of letters, b. at Toulouse in

1720. He wrote in numerous publications, and edited the Journal of

Jurisprudence. His history of dogmas and philosophical opinions had

some celebrity, and he shows himself a Freethinker in his Essay

on Ancient and Modern Errors and Superstitions, Amsterdam, 1765;

his Philosophical Almanack, 1767; and his History of Philosophical

Opinions, 1769. Died 1793.


Cattell (Christopher Charles), writer in English Secular journals,

author of Search for the First Man; Against Christianity; The Religion

of this Life, etc.


Caumont (Georges), French writer of genius, b. about 1845. Suffering

from consumption, he wrote Judgment of a Dying Man upon Life,

and humorous and familiar Conversations of a Sick Person with the

Divinity. Died at Madeira, 1875.


Cavalcante (Guido), noble Italian poet and philosopher, b. Florence,

1230. A friend of Dante, and a leader of the Ghibbelin party. He

married a daughter of Farinata delgi Uberti. Bayle says, "it is said

his speculation has as their aim to prove there is no God. Dante places

his father in the hell of Epicureans, who denied the immortality of

the soul." Guido died in 1300. An edition of his poems was published

in 1813.


Cavallotti (Felice Carlo Emanuel), Italian poet and journalist,

b. Milan, 6 Nov. 1842, celebrated for his patriotic poems; is a

pronounced Atheist. He was elected member of the Italian parliament

in 1873.


Cayla (Jean Mamert), French man of letters and politician b. Vigan

(Lot) 1812. Became in '37 editor of the Emancipator of Toulouse,

a city of which he wrote the history. At Paris he wrote to the

Siècle, the République Française and other journals, and published

European Celebrities and numerous anti-clerical brochures, such as

The Clerical Conspiracy, '61; The Devil, his Grandeur and Decay,

'64; Hell Demolished, '65; Suppression of Religious Orders, '70;

and The History of the Mass,'74. He died 2 May, 1877.


Cazelles (Emile), French translator of Bentham's Influence of Natural

Religion, Paris, 1875. Has also translated Mill's Subjection of Women

and his Autobiography and Essays on Religion.


Cecco d'Ascoli, i.e., Stabili (Francesco degli), Italian poet,

b. Ascoli, 1257. He taught astrology and philosophy at Bologna. In

1324 he was arrested by the Inquisition for having spoken against the

faith, and was condemned to fine and penitence. He was again accused

at Florence, and was publicly burnt as an heretic 16 Sept. 1327. His

best known work is entitled Acerba, a sort of encyclopædia in rhyme.


Cellarius (Martin), Anabaptist, who deserves mention as the first

avowed Protestant Anti-trinitarian. He studied Oriental languages

with Reuchlin and Melancthon, but having discussed with Anabaptists

acknowledged himself converted, 1522, and afterwards gave up the deity

of Christ. He was imprisoned, and on his release went to Switzerland,

where he died 11 Oct. 1564.


Celsus, a Pagan philosopher, who lived in the second century. He was

a friend of Lucian, who dedicated to him his treatise on the False

Prophet. He wrote an attack on Christianity, called The True Word. The

work was destroyed by the early Christians. The passages given by

his opponent, Origen, suffice to show that he was a man of high

attainments, well acquainted with the religion he attacked, and that

his power of logic and irony was most damaging to the Christian faith.


Cerutti (Giuseppe Antonio Gioachino), poet, converted Jesuit,

b. Turin, 13 June, 1738. He became a Jesuit, and wrote a defence of

the Society. He afterwards became a friend of Mirabeau, adopted the

principles of 1789, wrote in defence of the Revolution, and wrote

and published a Philosophical Breviary, or history of Judaism,

Christianity, and Deism, which he attributed to Frederick of

Prussia. His opinions may also be gathered from his poem, Les Jardins

de Betz, 1792. Died Paris, 3 Feb. 1792.


Chaho (J. Augustin), Basque man of letters, b. Tardets,

Basses-Pyrénées, 10 Oct. 1811. His principal works are a Philosophy of

Comparative Religion, and a Basque dictionary. At Bayonne he edited

the Ariel. In 1852 this was suppressed and he was exiled. Died 23

Oct. 1858.


Chaloner (Thomas), M.P., Regicide, b. Steeple Claydon, Bucks,

1595. Educated at Oxford, he became member for Richmond (Yorks),

1645. Was a witness against Archbishop Laud, and one of King Charles's

Judges. In 1651 he was made Councillor of State. Wood says he "was as

far from being a Puritan as the east is from the west," and that he

"was of the natural religion." He wrote a pretended True and Exact

Relation of the Finding of Moses His Tomb, 1657, being a satire

directed against the Presbyterians. Upon the Restoration he fled to

the Low Countries, and died at Middelburg, Zeeland, in 1661.


Chambers (Ephraim), originator of the Cyclopædia of Arts and Sciences,

b. Kendal about 1680. The first edition of his work appeared in 1728,

and procured him admission to the Royal Society. A French translation

gave rise to Diderot and D'Alembert's Encyclopédie. Chambers also

edited the Literary Magazine, 1836, etc. His infidel opinions were

well known, and the Cyclopædia was placed upon the Index, but he was

buried in the cloisters of Westminster Abbey. Died 15 May, 1740.


Chamfort (Sébastien Roch Nicolas), French man of letters, b. in

Auvergne, near Clermont, 1741. He knew no parent but his mother,

a peasant girl, to supply whose wants he often denied himself

necessaries. At Paris he gained a prize from the Academy for his

eulogy on Molière. About 1776 he published a Dramatic Dictionary

and wrote several plays. In 1781 he obtained a seat in the Academy,

being patronised by Mme. Helvetius. He became a friend of Mirabeau,

who called him une tête électrique. In 1790 he commenced a work called

Pictures of the Revolution. In the following year he became secretary

of the Jacobin Club and National Librarian. Arrested by Robespierre,

he desperately, but vainly, endeavored to commit suicide. He died 13

April, 1794, leaving behind numerous works and a collection of Maxims,

Thoughts, Characters, and Anecdotes, which show profound genius and

knowledge of human nature.


Chapman (John), M.R.C.S., b. 1839. Has written largely in the

Westminster Review, of which he is proprietor.


Chappellsmith (Margaret), née Reynolds, b. Aldgate, 22 Feb. 1806. Early

in life she read the writings of Cobbett. In '36 she began writing

political articles in the Dispatch, and afterwards became a Socialist

and Freethought lecturess. She married John Chappellsmith in '39,

and in '42 she began business as a bookseller. In '37 she expressed

a preference for the development theory before that of creation. In

'50 they emigrated to the United States, where Mrs. Chappellsmith

contributed many articles to the Boston Investigator.


Charles (Rudolf). See Giessenburg.


Charma (Antoine), French philosopher, b. 15 Jan. 1801. In '30 he was

nominated to the Chair of Philosophy at Caen. He was denounced for

his impiety by the Count de Montalembert in the Chamber of peers,

and an endeavor was made to unseat him. He wrote many philosophical

works, and an account of Didron's Histoire de Dieu. Died 5 Aug. 1869.


Charron (Pierre), French priest and sceptic, b. Paris, 1513. He was

an intimate friend of Montaigne. His principal work is a Treatise on

Wisdom, 1601, which was censured as irreligious by the Jesuits. Franck

says "the scepticism of Charron inclines visibly to 'sensualisme'

and even to materialism." Died Paris, 16 Nov. 1603.


Chasseboeuf de Volney (Constantin François). See Volney.


Chastelet du or Chatelet Lomont (Gabrielle Emilie le Tonnelier de

Breteuil), Marquise, French savante, b. Paris, 17 Dec 1706. She was

learned in mathematics and other sciences, and in Latin, English

and Italian. In 1740 she published a work on physical philosophy

entitled Institutions de Physique. She afterwards made a good French

translation of Newton's Principia. She lived some years with Voltaire

at Cirey between 1735 and 1747, and addressed to him Doubts on Revealed

Religions, published in 1792. She also wrote a Treatise on Happiness,

which was praised by Condorcet.


Chastellux (François Jean de), Marquis. A soldier, traveller and

writer, b. Paris 1734. Wrote On Public Happiness (2 vols., Amst. 1776),

a work Voltaire esteemed highly. He contributed to the Encyclopédie;

one article on "Happiness," being suppressed by the censor because

it did not mention God. Died Paris, 28 Oct. 1788.


Chatterton (Thomas), the marvellous boy poet, b. Bristol, 20 Nov,

1752. His poems, which he pretended were written by one Thomas Rowley

in the fourteenth century and discovered by him in an old chest in

Redcliffe Church, attracted much attention. In 1769 he visited London

in hopes of rising by his talents, but after a bitter experience of

writing for the magazines, destroyed himself in a fit of despair 25

Aug. 1770. Several of his poems betray deistic opinions.


Chaucer (Geoffrey), the morning star of English poetry and first

English Humanist, b. London about 1340. In 1357 he was attached to

the household of Lionel, third son of Edward III. He accompanied the

expedition to France 1359-60, was captured by the French, and ransomed

by the king. He was patronised by John of Gaunt, and some foreign

missions were entrusted to him, one of them being to Italy, where he

met Petrarch. All his writings show the influence of the Renaissance,

and in his Canterbury Pilgrims he boldly attacks the vices of the

ecclesiastics. Died 25 Oct. 1400, and was buried in Westminster Abbey.


Chaumette (Pierre Gaspard), afterwards Anaxagoras, French

revolutionary, b. Nevers, 24 May, 1763. The son of a shoemaker, he was

in turn cabin boy, steersman, and attorney's clerk. In early youth he

received lessons in botany from Rousseau. He embraced the revolution

with ardor, was the first to assume the tri-color cockade, became

popular orator at the club of the Cordeliers, and was associated with

Proudhomme in the journal Les Revolutions de Paris. Nominated member

of the Commune 10 Aug. 1792, he took the name of Anaxagoras to show

his little regard for his baptismal saints. He was elected Procureur

Syndic, in which capacity he displayed great activity. He abolished

the rod in schools, suppressed lotteries, instituted workshops for

fallen women, established the first lying-in-hospital, had books

sent to the hospitals, separated the insane from the sick, founded

the Conservatory of Music, opened the public libraries every day

(under the ancien régime they were only open two hours per week),

replaced books of superstition by works of morality and reason, put

a graduated tax on the rich to provide for the burial of the poor,

and was the principal mover in the feasts of Reason and closing of

the churches. He was accused by Robespierre of conspiring with Cloots

"to efface all idea of the Deity," and was guillotined 13 April, 1794.


Chaussard (Pierre Jean Baptiste), French man of letters, b. Paris,

8 Oct. 1766. At the Revolution he took the name of Publicola, and

published patriotic odes, Esprit de Mirabeau, and other works. He was

preacher to the Theophilanthropists, and became professor of belles

lettres at Orleans. Died 9 Jan. 1823.


Chemin-Dupontes (Jean Baptiste), b. 1761. One of the founders of

French Theophilanthropy; published many writings, the best known of

which is entitled What is Theophilanthropy?


Chenier (Marie André de), French poet, b. Constantinople, 29

Oct. 1762. His mother, a Greek, inspired him with a love for ancient

Greek literature. Sent to college at Paris, he soon manifested his

genius by writing eclogues and elegies of antique simplicity and

sensibility. In 1787 he came to England as Secretary of Legation. He

took part in the legal defence of Louis XVI., eulogised Charlotte

Corday, and gave further offence by some letters in the Journal de

Paris. He was committed to prison, and here met his ideal in the

Comtesse de Coigny. Confined in the same prison, to her he addressed

the touching verses, The Young Captive (La jeune Captive). He was

executed 25 July, 1794, leaving behind, among other poems, an imitation

of Lucretius, entitled Hermes, which warrants the affirmation of de

Chênedolle, that "André Chénier était athée avec délices."


Chenier (Marie Joseph de), French poet and miscellaneous writer,

brother of the preceding, b. Constantinople, 28 Aug. 1764. He served

two years in the army, and then applied himself to literature. His

first successful drama, "Charles IX.," was produced in 1789, and was

followed by others. He wrote many patriotic songs, and was made member

of the Convention. He was a Voltairean, and in his Nouveaux Saints

(1801) satirised those who returned to the old faith. He wrote many

poems and an account of French literature. Died Paris, 10 Jan. 1811.


Chernuishevsky or Tchernycheiosky (Nikolai Gerasimovich),

Russian Nihilist, b. Saratof, 1829. Educated at the University of

St. Petersburg, translated Mill's Political Economy, and wrote on

Superstition and the Principles of Logic, '59. His bold romance,

What is to be Done? was published '63. In the following year he was

sentenced to the Siberian mines, where, after heartrending cruelties,

he has become insane.


Chesneau Du Marsais (César). See Dumarsais.


Chevalier (Joseph Philippe), French chemist, b. Saint Pol, 21 March,

1806, is the author of an able book on "The Soul from the standpoint

of Reason and Science," Paris, '61. He died at Amiens in 1865.


Chies y Gomez (Ramon), Spanish Freethinker, b. Medina de Pomar,

Burgos, 13 Oct. 1845. His father, a distinguished Republican,

educated him without religion. In '65 Chies went to Madrid, and

followed a course of law and philosophy at the University, and soon

after wrote for a Madrid paper La Discusion. He took an active part

in the Revolution of '65, and at the proclamation of the Republic,

'73, became civil governor of Valencia. In '81 he founded a newspaper

El Voto Nacional, and since '83 has edited Las Dominicales del Libre

Pensamiento, which he also founded. Ramon Chies is one of the foremost

Freethought champions in Spain and lectures as well as writes.


Child (Lydia Maria) née Francis, American authoress, b. Medford, Mass.,

11 Feb. 1802. She early commenced writing, publishing Hobomok, a Tale

of Early Times, in '21. From '25 she kept a private school in Watertown

until '28, when she married David Lee Child, a Boston lawyer. She, with

him, edited the Anti-Slavery Standard, '41, etc., and by her numerous

writings did much to form the opinion which ultimately prevailed. She

was, however, long subjected to public odium, her heterodoxy being well

known. Her principal work is The Progress of Religious Ideas, 3 vols.;

'55. Died Wayland, Mass., 20 Oct. 1880. She was highly eulogised by

Wendell Phillips.


Chilton (William), of Bristol, was born in 1815. In early life he was

a bricklayer, but in '41 he was concerned with Charles Southwell in

starting the Oracle of Reason, which he set up in type, and of which

he became one of the editors. He contributed some thoughtful articles

on the Theory of Development to the Library of Reason, and wrote in

the Movement and the Reasoner. Died at Bristol, 28 May, 1855.


Chubb (Thomas), English Deist, b. East Harnham, near Salisbury, 29

Sept. 1679, was one of the first to show Rationalism among the common

people. Beginning by contending for the Supremacy of the Father, he

gradually relinquished supernatural religion, and considered that Jesus

Christ was of the religion of Thomas Chubb. Died 8 Feb. 1747, leaving

behind two vols. which he calls A Farewell to his Readers, from which

it appears that he rejected both revelation and special providence.


Church (Henry Tyrell), lecturer and writer, edited Tallis's

Shakespeare, wrote Woman and her Failings, 1858, and contributed to

the Investigator when edited by Mr. Bradlaugh. Died 19 July, 1859.


Clapiers (Luc de). See Vauvenargues.


Claretie (Jules Armand Arsène), French writer, b. Limoges, 3

Dec. 1840. A prolific writer, of whose works we only cite Free Speech,

'68; his biographies of contemporary celebrities; and his work Camille

Desmoulins, '75.


Clarke (John), brought up in the Methodist connection, changed his

opinion by studying the Bible, and became one of Carlile's shopmen. He

was tried 10 June, 1824, for selling a blasphemous libel in number 17,

vol. ix., of The Republican, and after a spirited defence, in which

he read many of the worst passages in the Bible, was sentenced to

three years' imprisonment, and to find securities for good behavior

during life. He wrote while in prison, A Critical Review of the Life,

Character, and Miracles of Jesus, a work showing with some bitterness

much bold criticism and Biblical knowledge. It first appeared in the

Newgate Magazine and was afterwards published in book form, 1825 and



Clarke (Marcus), Australian writer, b. Kensington, 1847. Went to

Victoria, '63; joined the staff of Melbourne Argus. In '76 was made

assistant librarian of the Public Library. He has compiled a history of

Australia, and written The Peripatetic Philosopher (a series of clever

sketches), His Natural Life (a powerful novel), and some poems. An able

Freethought paper, "Civilisation without Delusion," in the Victoria

Review, Nov. '79, was replied to by Bishop Moorhouse. The reply, with

Clarke's answer, which was suppressed, was published in '80. Died 1884.


Claude-Constant, author of a Freethinkers' Catechism published at

Paris in 1875.


Clavel (Adolphe), French Positivist and physician, b. Grenoble,

1815. He has written on the Principles of 1789, on those of the

nineteenth century, on Positive Morality, and some educational works.


Clavel (F. T. B.), French author of a Picturesque History of

Freemasonry, and also a Picturesque History of Religions, 1844,

in which Christianity takes a subordinate place.


Clayton (Robert), successively Bishop of Killala, Cork, and Clogher,

b. Dublin, 1695. By his benevolence attracted the friendship of

Samuel Clarke, and adopted Arianism, which he maintained in several

publications. In 1756 he proposed, in the Irish House of Lords, the

omission of the Nicene and Athanasian Creeds from the Liturgy, and

stated that he then felt more relieved in his mind than for twenty

years before. A legal prosecution was instituted, but he died, it

is said, from nervous agitation (26 Feb. 1758) before the matter

was decided.


Cleave (John), bookseller, and one of the pioneers of a cheap

political press. Started the London Satirist, and Cleave's Penny

Gazette of Variety, Oct. 14, 1837, to Jan. 20, '44. He published

many Chartist and Socialistic works, and an abridgment of Howitt's

History of Priestcraft. In May, '40, he was sentenced to four months'

imprisonment for selling Haslam's Letters to the Clergy.


Clemenceau (Georges Benjamin Eugene), French politician,

b. Moulleron-en-Pareds, 28 Sept. 1841. Educated at Nantes and Paris,

he took his doctor's degree in '65. His activity as Republican

ensured him a taste of gaol. He visited the United States and acted

as correspondent on the Temps. He returned at the time of the war

and was elected deputy to the Assembly. In Jan. 1880 he founded La

Justice, having as collaborateurs M. C. Pelletan, Prof. Acollas and

Dr. C. Letourneau. As one of the chiefs of the Radical party he was

largely instrumental in getting M. Carnot elected President.


Clemetshaw (C.), French writer, using the name Cilwa. B. 14 Sept. 1864

of English parents; has contributed to many journals, was delegate to

the International Congress, London, of '87, and is editor of Le Danton.


Clemens (Samuel Langhorne), American humorist, better known as

"Mark Twain," b. Florida, Missouri, 30 Nov. 1835. In '55 he served

as Mississippi pilot, and takes his pen name from the phrase used

in sounding. In Innocents Abroad, or the New Pilgrim's Progress,

'69, by which he made his name, there is much jesting with "sacred"

subjects. Mr. Clemens is an Agnostic.


Clifford (Martin), English Rationalist. Was Master of the Charterhouse,

1671, and published anonymously a treatise of Human Reason, London,

'74, which was reprinted in the following year with the author's

name. A short while after its publication Laney, Bishop of Ely, was

dining in Charterhouse and remarked, not knowing the author, "'twas no

matter if all the copies were burnt and the author with them, because

it made every man's private fancy judge of religion." Clifford died 10

Dec. 1677. In the Nouvelle Biographie Générale Clifford is amusingly

described as an "English theologian of the order des Chartreux," who,

it is added, was "prior of his order."


Clifford (William Kingdon), mathematician, philosopher, and moralist,

of rare originality and boldness, b. Exeter 4 May, 1845. At the age

of fifteen he was sent to King's College, London, where he showed an

early genius for mathematics, publishing the Analogues of Pascal's

Theorem at the age of eighteen. Entered Trinity College, Cambridge,

in '63. In '67 he was second wrangler. Elected fellow of his college,

he remained at Cambridge till 1870, when he accompanied the eclipse

expedition to the Mediterranean. The next year he was appointed

Professor of mathematics at London University, a post he held till

his death. He was chosen F.R.S. '74. Married Miss Lucy Lane in April,

'75. In the following year symptoms of consumption appeared, and he

visited Algeria and Spain. He resumed work, but in '79 took a voyage to

Madeira, where he died 3 March. Not long before his death appeared the

first volume of his great mathematical work, Elements of Dynamic. Since

his death have been published The Common Sense of the Exact Sciences,

and Lectures and Essays, in two volumes, edited by Leslie Stephen and

Mr. F. Pollock. These volumes include his most striking Freethought

lectures and contributions to the Fortnightly and other reviews. He

intended to form them into a volume on The Creed of Science. Clifford

was an outspoken Atheist, and he wrote of Christianity as a religion

which wrecked one civilisation and very nearly wrecked another.


Cloots or Clootz (Johann Baptist, afterwards Anacharsis) Baron du Val

de Grâce, Prussian enthusiast, b. near Cleves, 24 June, 1755, was a

nephew of Cornelius de Pauw. In 1780 he published the The Certainty

of the Proofs of Mohammedanism, under the pseudonym of Ali-gier-ber,

an anagram of Bergier, whose Certainty of the Proofs of Christianity

he parodies. He travelled widely, but became a resident of Paris

and a warm partisan of the Revolution, to which he devoted his large

fortune. He wrote a reply to Burke, and continually wrote and spoke

in favor of a Universal Republic. On 19 June, 1790, he, at the head

of men of all countries, asked a place at the feast of Federation,

and henceforward was styled "orator of the human race." He was, with

Paine, Priestley, Washington and Klopstock, made a French citizen,

and in 1792 was elected to the Convention by two departments. He

debaptised himself, taking the name Anacharsis, was a prime mover

in the Anti-Catholic party, and induced Bishop Gobel to resign. He

declared there was no other God but Nature. Incurring the enmity of

Robespierre, he and Paine were arrested as foreigners. After two

and a half months' imprisonment at St. Lazare, he was brought to

the scaffold with the Hébertistes, 24 March, 1794. He died calmly,

uttering materialist sentiments to the last.


Clough (Arthur Hugh), poet, b. Liverpool, 1 Jan. 1819. He was

educated at Rugby, under Dr. Arnold, and at Oxford, where he showed

himself of the Broad School. Leslie Stephen says, "He never became

bitter against the Church of his childhood, but he came to regard its

dogmas as imperfect and untenable." In '48 he visited Paris, and the

same year produced his Bothie of Toper-na-Fuosich: a Long-Vacation

Pastoral. Between '49 and '52 he was professor of English literature

in London University. In '52 he visited the United States, where

he gained the friendship of Emerson and Longfellow, and revised

the Dryden translation of Plutarch's Lives. Died at Florence, 13

Nov. 1861. His Remains are published in two volumes, and include

an essay on Religious Tradition and some notable poems. He is the

Thyrsis of Matthew Arnold's exquisite Monody.


Cnuzius (Matthias). See Knutzen.


Coke (Henry), author of Creeds of the Day, or collated opinions of

reputable thinkers, in 2 vols, London, 1883.


Cole (Peter), a tanner of Ipswich, was burnt for blasphemy in the

castle ditch, Norwich, 1587. A Dr. Beamond preached to him before the

mayor, sheriffs, and aldermen, "but he would not recant." See Hamont.


Colenso (John William), b. 24 Jan. 1814. Was educated at St. John's,

Cambridge, and became a master at Harrow. After acquiring fame by his

valuable Treatise on Algebra, '49, he became first Bishop of Natal,

'54. Besides other works, he published The Pentateuch and Book of

Joshua Critically Examined, 1862-79, which made a great stir, and

was condemned by both Houses of Convocation and its author declared

deposed. The Privy Council, March '65, declared this deposition

"null and void in law." Colenso pleaded the cause of the natives at

the time of the Zulu War. He died 20 June, 1883.


Colins (Jean Guillaume César Alexandre Hippolyte) Baron de,

Belgian Socialist and founder of "Collectivism," b. Brussels, 24

Dec. 1783. Author of nineteen volumes on Social Science. He denied

alike Monotheism and Pantheism, but taught the natural immortality of

the soul. Died at Paris, 12 Nov. 1859. A number of disciples propagate

his opinions in the Philosophie de l'Avenir.


Collins (Anthony), English Deist, b. Heston, Middlesex, 21 June,

1676. He studied at Cambridge and afterwards at the Temple, and

became Justice of the Peace and Treasurer of the County of Essex. He

was an intimate friend of Locke, who highly esteemed him and made

him his executor. He wrote an Essay on Reason, 1707; Priestcraft

in Perfection, 1710; a Vindication of the Divine Attributes, and a

Discourse on Freethinking, 1713. This last occasioned a great outcry,

as it argued that all belief must be based on free inquiry, and

that the use of reason would involve the abandonment of supernatural

revelation. In 1719 he published An Inquiry Concerning Human Liberty,

a brief, pithy defence of necessitarianism, and in 1729 A Discourse

on Liberty and Necessity. In 1724 appeared his Discourse on the

Grounds and Reasons of the Christian Religion, and this was followed

by The Scheme of Literal Prophecy Considered, 1726. He was a skilful

disputant, and wrote with great ability. He is also credited with A

Discourse Concerning Ridicule and Irony in Writing. Died at London,

13 Dec. 1729. Collins, says Mr. Leslie Stephen, "appears to have been

an amiable and upright man, and to have made all readers welcome to

the use of a free library." Professor Fraser calls him "a remarkable

man," praises his "love of truth and moral courage," and allows that in

answering Dr. Samuel Clarke on the question of liberty and necessity

he "states the arguments against human freedom with a logical force

unsurpassed by any necessitarian." A similar testimony to Collins as

a thinker and dialectician is borne by Professor Huxley.


Colman (Lucy N.), American reformer, b. 26 July, 1817, has spent

most of her life advocating the abolition of slavery, women's rights,

and Freethought. She has lectured widely, written Reminisences in the

Life of a Reformer of Fifty Years, and contributed to the Truthseeker

and Boston Investigator.


Colotes, of Lampsacus, a hearer and disciple of Epicurus, with whom he

was a favorite. He wrote a work in favor of his master's teachings. He

held it was unworthy of a philosopher to use fables.


Combe (Abram), one of a noted Scotch family of seventeen, b. Edinburgh,

15 Jan. 1785. He traded as a tanner, but, becoming acquainted with

Robert Owen, founded a community at Orbiston upon the principle of

Owen's New Lanark, devoting nearly the whole of his large fortune

to the scheme. But his health gave way and he died 11 Aug. 1827. He

wrote Metaphysical Sketches of the Old and New Systems and other

works advocating Owenism.


Combe (Andrew), physician, brother of the above, b. Edinburgh,

27 Oct. 1797; studied there and in Paris; aided his brother George

in founding the Phrenological Society; wrote popular works on the

Principles of Physiology and the Management of Infancy. Died near

Edinburgh, 9 Aug. 1847.


Combe (George), phrenologist and educationalist, b. Edinburgh,

21 Oct. 1788. He was educated for the law. Became acquainted with

Spurzheim, and published Essays on Phrenology, 1819, and founded the

Phrenological Journal. In '28 he published the Constitution of Man,

which excited great controversy especially for removing the chimeras of

special providence and efficacy of prayer. In '33 he married a daughter

of Mrs. Siddons. He visited the United States and lectured on Moral

Philosophy and Secular Education. His last work was The Relations

between Science and Religion, '57, in which he continued to uphold

Secular Theism. He also published many lectures and essays. Among his

friends were Miss Evans (George Eliot), who spent a fortnight with him

in '52. He did more than any man of his time, save Robert Owen, for the

cause of Secular education. Died at Moor Park, Surrey, 14 Aug. 1858.


Combes (Paul), French writer, b. Paris, 13 June, 1856. Has written

on Darwinism, '83, and other works popularising science.


Commazzi (Gian-Battista), Count author of Politica e religione trovate

insieme nella persona di Giesù Cristo, Nicopoli [Vienna] 4 vols.,

1706-7, in which he makes Jesus to be a political impostor. It was

rigorously confiscated at Rome and Vienna.


Comparetti (Domenico), Italian philologist, b. Rome in 1835. Signor

Comparetti is Professor at the Institute of Superior Studies, Rome,

and has written many works on the classic writers, in which he evinces

his Pagan partialities.


Comte (Isidore Auguste Marie François Xavier), French philosopher,

mathematician and reformer, b. at Montpelier, 12 Jan. 1798. Educated at

Paris in the Polytechnic School, where he distinguished himself by his

mathematical talent. In 1817 he made the acquaintance of St. Simon,

agreeing with him as to the necessity of a Social renovation based

upon a mental revolution. On the death of St. Simon ('25) Comte

devoted himself to the elaboration of an original system of scientific

thought, which, in the opinion of some able judges, entitles him to

be called the Bacon of the nineteenth century. Mill speaks of him as

the superior of Descartes and Leibniz. In '25 he married, but the

union proved unhappy. In the following year he lectured, but broke

down under an attack of brain fever, which occasioned his detention

in an asylum. He speedily recovered, and in '28 resumed his lectures,

which were attended by men like Humboldt, Ducrotay, Broussais, Carnot,

etc. In '30 he put forward the first volumes of his Course of Positive

Philosophy, which in '42 was completed by the publication of the sixth

volume. A condensed English version of this work was made by Harriet

Martineau, '53. In '45 Comte formed a passionate Platonic attachement

to Mme. Clotilde de Vaux, who died in the following year, having

profoundely influenced Comte's life. In consequence of his opinions,

he lost his professorship, and was supported by his disciples--Mill,

Molesworth and Grote, in England, assisting. Among other works, Comte

published A General View of Positivism, '48, translated by Dr. Bridges,

'65; A System of Positive Polity, '51, translated by Drs. Bridges,

Beesley, F. Harrison, etc., '75-79; and A Positive Catechism, '54,

translated by Dr. Congreve, '58. He also wrote on Positive Logic,

which he intended to follow with Positive Morality and Positive

Industrialism. Comte was a profound and suggestive thinker. He

resolutely sets aside all theology and metaphysics, coordinates

the sciences and substitutes the service of man for the worship of

God. Mr. J. Cotter Morison says "He belonged to that small class

of rare minds, whose errors are often more valuable and stimulating

than other men's truths." He died of cancer in the stomach at Paris,

5 Sept. 1857.


Condillac (Etienne Bonnot de), French philosopher, b. Grenoble,

about 1715. His life was very retired, but his works show much

acuteness. They are in 23 vols., the principal being A Treatise on the

Sensations, 1764; A Treatise on Animals, and An Essay on the Origin

of Human Knowledge. In the first-named he shows that all mental life

is gradually built up out of simple sensations. Died 3 Aug. 1780.


Condorcet (Marie Jean Antoine Nicolas Caritat, Marquis de),

French philosopher and politician, b. Ribemont, Picardy, 17

Sept. 1743. Dedicated to the Virgin by a pious mother, he was kept

in girl's clothes until the age of 11. Sent to a Jesuit's school,

he soon gave up religion. At sixteen he maintained a mathematical

thesis in the presence of Alembert. In the next year he dedicated

to Turgot a Profession of Faith. After some mathematical works, he

was made member of the Academy, of which he was appointed perpetual

secretary, 1773. In 1776 he published his atheistic Letters of a

Theologian. He also wrote biographies of Turgot and Voltaire, and

in favor of American independence and against negro slavery. In

1791 he represented Paris in the National Assembly, of which he

became Secretary. It was on his motion that, in the following year,

all orders of nobility were abolished. Voting against the death of

the king and siding with the Gironde drew on him the vengeance of

the extreme party. He took shelter with Madame Vernet, but fearing to

bring into trouble her and his wife, at whose instigation he wrote his

fine Sketch of the Progress of the Human Mind while in hiding, he left,

but, being arrested, died of exhaustion or by poison self-administered,

at Bourg la Reine, 27 March, 1794.


Condorcet (Sophie de Grouchy Caritat, Marquise de), wife of above,

and sister of General Grouchy and of Mme. Cabanis, b. 1765. She

married Condorcet 1786, and was considered one of the most beautiful

women of her time. She shared her husband's sentiments and opinions

and, while he was proscribed, supported herself by portrait

painting. She was arrested, and only came out of prison after the

fall of Robespierre. She translated Adam Smith's Theory of the Moral

Sentiments, which she accompanied with eight letters on Sympathy,

addressed to Cabanis. She died 8 Sept. 1822. Her only daughter married

Gen. Arthur O'Connor.


Confucius (Kung Kew) or Kung-foo-tsze, the philosopher Kung, a

Chinese sage, b. in the State of Loo, now part of Shantung, about

B.C. 551. He was distinguished by filial piety and learning. In his

nineteenth year he married, and three years after began as a teacher,

rejecting none who came to him. He travelled through many states. When

past middle age he was appointed chief minister of Loo, but finding

the Duke desired the renown of his name without adopting his counsel,

he retired, and devoted his old age to editing the sacred classics

of China. He died about B.C. 478. His teaching, chiefly found in the

Lun-Yu, or Confucian Analects, was of a practical moral character,

and did not include any religious dogmas.


Congreve (Richard), English Positivist, born in 1819. Educated at

Rugby under T. Arnold, and Oxford 1840, M.A. 1843; was fellow of

Wadham College 1844-54. In '55 he published his edition of Aristotle

Politics. He became a follower of Comte and influenced many to embrace

Positivism. Translated Comte's Catechism of Positive Philosophy, 1858,

and has written many brochures. Dr. Congreve is considered the head

of the strict or English Comtists, and has long conducted a small

"Church of Humanity."


Connor (Bernard), a physician, b. Co. Kerry, of Catholic family,

1666. He travelled widely, and was made court physician to John

Sobieski, King of Poland. He wrote a work entitled Evangelium Medici

(1697), in which he attempts to account for the Christian miracles

on natural principles. For this he was accused of Atheism. He died

in London 27 Oct. 1698.


Constant de Rebecque (Henri Benjamin), Swiss writer, b. Lausanne,

25 Oct. 1767, and educated at Oxford, Erlangen and Edinburgh. In

1795 he entered Paris as a protégé of Mme. de Stael, and in 1799

became a member of the Tribunal. He opposed Buonaparte and wrote

on Roman Polytheism and an important work on Religion Considered in

its Source, its Forms and its Developments (6 vols.; 1824-32). Died

8 Dec. 1830. Constant professed Protestantism, but was at heart a

sceptic, and has been called a second Voltaire. A son was executor

to Auguste Comte.


Conta (Basil), Roumanian philosopher, b. Neamtza 27 Nov. 1845. Studied

in Italy and Belgium, and became professor in the University of Jassy,

Moldavia. In '77 he published in Brussels, in French, a theory of

fatalism, which created some stir by its boldness of thought.


Conway (Moncure Daniel), author, b. in Fredericksburg, Stafford

co. Virginia, 17 March, 1832. He entered the Methodist ministry '50,

but changing his convictions through the influence of Emerson and

Hicksite Quakers, entered the divinity school at Cambridge, where

he graduated in '54 and became pastor of a Unitarian church until

dismissed for his anti-slavery discourses. In '57 he preached in

Cincinnati and there published The Natural History of the Devil, and

other pamphlets. In '63 Mr. Conway came to England and was minister

of South Place from the close of '63 until his return to the States

in '84. Mr. Conway is a frequent contributor to the press. He has

also published The Earthward Pilgrimage, 1870, a theory reversing

Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress; collected a Sacred Anthology from the

various sacred books of the world 1873, which he used in his pulpit;

has written on Human Sacrifices, 1876, and Idols and Ideals, 1877. His

principal work is Demonology and Devil Lore, 1878, containing much

information on mythology. He also issued his sermons under the title of

Lessons for the Day, two vols., 1883, and has published a monograph on

the Wandering Jew, a biography of Emerson, and is at present engaged

on a life of Thomas Paine.


Cook (Kenningale Robert), LL.D., b. in Lancashire 26 Sept. 1845, son

of the vicar of Stallbridge. When a boy he used to puzzle his mother

by such questions as, "If God was omnipotent could he make what had

happened not have happened." He was intended for the Church, but

declined to subscribe the articles. Graduated at Dublin in '66, and

took LL.D. in '75. In '77 he became editor of the Dublin University

Magazine, in which appeared some studies of the lineage of Christian

doctrine and traditions afterwards published under the title of The

Fathers of Jesus. Dr. Cook wrote several volumes of choice poems. Died

July, 1886.


Cooper (Anthony Ashley), see Shaftesbury.


Cooper (Henry), barrister, b. Norwich about 1784. He was a schoolfellow

of Wm. Taylor of Norwich. He served as midshipman at the battle of the

Nile, but disliking the service became a barrister, and acquired some

fame by his spirited defence of Mary Ann Carlile, 21 July, 1821, for

which the report of the trial was dedicated to him by R. Carlile. He

was a friend of Lord Erskine, whose biography he commenced. Died 19

Sept. 1824.


Cooper (John Gilbert), poet, b. Thurgaton Priory, Notts, 1723. Educated

at Westminster School and Trinity College, Cambridge. An enthusiastic

disciple of Lord Shaftesbury. Under the name of "Philaretes" he

contributed to Dodsley's Museum. In 1749 he published a Life of

Socrates, for which he was coarsely attacked by Warburton. He wrote

some poems under the signature of Aristippus. Died Mayfair, London,

14 April, 1769.


Cooper (Peter), a benevolent manufacturer, b. N. York, 12 Feb. 1791. He

devoted over half a million dollars to the Cooper Institute, for

the secular instruction and elevation of the working classes. Died

4 April, 1883.


Cooper (Robert), Secularist writer and lecturer, b. 29 Dec. 1819,

at Barton-on-Irwell, near Manchester. He had the advantage of being

brought up in a Freethought family. At fourteen he became teacher

in the Co-operative Schools, Salford, lectured at fifteen, and

by seventeen became an acknowledged advocate of Owenism, holding a

public discussion with the Rev. J. Bromley. Some of his lectures were

published--one on Original Sin sold twelve thousand copies--when he was

scarcely eighteen. The Holy Scriptures Analysed (1832) was denounced

by the Bishop of Exeter in the House of Lords. Cooper was dismissed

from a situation he had held ten years, and in 1841 became a Socialist

missionary in the North of England and Scotland. At Edinburgh (1845)

he wrote Free Agency and Orthodoxy, and compiled the Infidel's Text

Book. About '50 he came to London, lecturing with success at John

Street Institution. In '54 he started the London Investigator, which

he edited for three years. In it appears his lectures on "Science

v. Theology," "Admissions of Distinguished Men," etc. Failing health

obliged him to retire leaving the Investigator to "Anthony Collins"

(W. H. Johnson), and afterwards to "Iconoclast" (C. Bradlaugh). At

his last lecture he fainted on the platform. In 1858 he remodelled

his Infidel Text-Book into a work on The Bible and Its Evidences. He

devoted himself to political reform until his death, 3 May, 1868.


Cooper (Thomas), M.D., LL.D., natural philosopher, politician,

jurist and author, b. London, 22 Oct. 1759. Educated at Oxford, he

afterwards studied law and medicine; was admitted to the bar and lived

at Manchester, where he wrote a number of tracts on "Materialism,"

"Whether Deity be a Free Agent," etc., 1789. Deputed with James

Watt, the inventor, by the Constitutional clubs to congratulate

the Democrats of France (April, 1792), he was attacked by Burke

and replied in a vigorous pamphlet. In '94 he published Information

Concerning America, and in the next year followed his friend Priestly

to Philadelphia, established himself as a lawyer and was made judge. He

also conducted the Emporium of Arts and Sciences in that city. He was

Professor of Medicine at Carlisle College, '12, and afterwards held

the chairs both of Chemistry and Political Economy in South Carolina

College, of which he became President, 1820-34. This position he was

forced to resign on account of his religious views. He translated

from Justinian and Broussais, and digested the Statutes of South

Carolina. In philosophy a Materialist, in religion a Freethinker,

in politics a Democrat, he urged his views in many pamphlets. One on

The Right of Free Discussion, and a little book on Geology and the

Pentateuch, in reply to Prof. Silliman, were republished in London

by James Watson. Died at Columbia, 11 May, 1840. [1]


[1] So varied was the activity of T. Cooper during his long life that

his works in the British Museum were catalogued as by six different

persons of the same name. I pointed this out, and the six single

gentlemen will be rolled into one.


Coornhert (Dirk Volkertszoon), Dutch humanist, poet and writer,

b. Amsterdam, 1522. He travelled in his youth through Spain

and Portugal. He set up as an engraver at Haarlem, and became

thereafter notary and secretary of the city of Haarlem. He had a

profound horror of intolerance, and defended liberty against Beza and

Calvin. The clergy vituperated him as a Judas and as instigated by

Satan, etc. Bayle, who writes of him as Theodore Koornhert, says he

communed neither with Protestants nor Catholics. The magistrates of

Delft drove him out of their city. He translated Cicero's De Officiis,

and other works. Died at Gouda, 20 Oct. 1590.


Cordonnier de Saint Hyacinthe. See Saint-Hyacinthe (Themiseuil de).


Corvin-Wiersbitski (Otto Julius Bernhard von), Prussian Pole of noble

family, who traced their descent from the Roman Corvinii, b. Gumbinnen,

12 Oct. 1812. He served in the Prussian army, where he met his friend

Friedrich von Sallet; retired into the Landwehr 1835, went to Leipsic

and entered upon a literary career, wrote the History of the Dutch

Revolution, 1841; the History of Christian Fanaticism, 1845, which

was suppressed in Austria. He took part with the democrats in '48;

was condemned to be shot 15 Sept. '49, but the sentence was commuted;

spent six years' solitary confinement in prison; came to London,

became correspondent to the Times; went through American Civil War,

and afterwards Franco-Prussian War, as a special correspondent. He

has written a History of the New Time, 1848-71. Died since 1886.


Cotta (Bernhard), German geologist, b. Little Zillbach, Thuringia,

24 Oct. 1808. He studied at the Academy of Mining, in Freiberg,

where he was appointed professor in '42. His first production, The

Dendroliths, '32, proved him a diligent investigator. It was followed

by many geological treatises. Cotta did much to support the nebular

hypothesis and the law of natural development without miraculous

agency. He also wrote on phrenology. Died at Freiburg, 13 Sept 1879.


Cotta (C. Aurelius), Roman philosopher, orator and statesman,

b. B.C. 124. In '75 he became Consul. On the expiration of his

office he obtained Gaul as a province. Cicero had a high opinion of

him and gives his sceptical arguments in the third book of his De

Natura Deorum.


Courier (Paul Louis), French writer, b. Paris, 4 Jan. 1772. He entered

the army and became an officer of artillery, serving with distinction

in the Army of the Republic. He wrote many pamphlets, directed against

the clerical restoration, which place him foremost among the literary

men of the generation. His writings are now classics, but they brought

him nothing but imprisonment, and he was apparently assassinated,

10 April, 1825. He had a presentiment that the bigots would kill him.


Coventry (Henry), a native of Cambridgeshire, b. about 1710, Fellow

of Magdalene College, author of Letters of Philemon to Hydaspus on

False Religion (1736). Died 29 Dec. 1752.


Coward (William), M.D., b. Winchester, 1656. Graduated at Wadham

College, Oxford, 1677. Settled first at Northampton, afterwards

at London. Published, besides some medical works, Second Thoughts

Concerning Human Soul, which excited much indignation by denying

natural immortality. The House of Commons (17 March, 1704) ordered

his work to be burnt. He died in 1725.


Cox (the Right Rev. Sir George William), b. 1827, was educated at

Rugby and Oxford, where he took B.C.L. in 1849. Entered the Church,

but has devoted himself to history and mythology. His most pretentious

work is Mythology of the Aryan Nations (1870). He has also written

an Introduction to Comparative Mythology and several historical

works. In 1886 he became Bishop of Bloemfontein. He is credited with

the authorship of the English Life of Jesus, published under the name

of Thomas Scott. At the Church Congress of 1888 he read an heretical

paper on Biblical Eschatology. His last production is a Life of Bishop

Colenso, 2 vols, 1888.


Coyteux (Fernand), French writer, b. Ruffec, 1800. Author of a

materialistic system of philosophy, Brussels, 1853 Studies on

physiology, Paris, 1875, etc.


Craig (Edward Thomas), social reformer, b. at Manchester 4

Aug. 1804. He was present at the Peterloo massacre '19; helped to form

the Salford Social Institute and became a pioneer of co-operation. In

'31 he became editor of the Lancashire Co-operator. In Nov. of the same

year he undertook the management of a co-operative farm at Rahaline,

co. Clare. Of this experiment he has written an history, '72. Mr. Craig

has edited several journals and contributed largely to Radical and

co-operative literature. He has published a memoir of Dr. Travis and

at the age of 84 he wrote on The Science of Prolonging Life.


Cramer (Johan Nicolai), Swedish writer, b. Wisby, Gottland, 18

Feb. 1812. He studied at Upsala and became Doctor of Philosophy

'36; ordained priest in '42; he resigned in '58. In religion he

denies revelation and insists on the separation of Church and

State. Among his works we mention Separation from the Church, a

Freethinker's annotations on the reading of the Bible, Stockholm,

1859. A Confession of Faith; Forward or Back? (1862). He has also

written on the Punishment of Death (1868), and other topics.


Cranbrook (Rev. James.) Born of strict Calvinistic parents about

1817. Mr. Cranbrook gradually emancipated himself from dogmas, became

a teacher, and for sixteen years was minister of an Independent Church

at Liscard, Cheshire. He also was professor at the Ladies' College,

Liverpool, some of his lectures there being published '57. In Jan. '65,

he went to Albany Church, Edinburgh, but his views being too broad

for that congregation, he left in Feb. '67 but continued to give

Sunday lectures until his death, 6 June, 1869. In '66 he published

Credibilia: an Inquiry into the grounds of Christian faith and two

years later The Founders of Christianity, discourses on the origin of

Christianity. Other lectures on Human Depravity, Positive Religion,

etc., were published by Thomas Scott.


Cranch (Christopher Pearse), American painter and poet, b. Alexandria,

Virginia, 8 March, 1813, graduated at divinity school, Cambridge,

Mass. '35, but left the ministry in '42. He shows his Freethought

sentiments in Satan, a Libretto, Boston, '74, and other works.


Craven (M. B.), American, author of a critical work on the Bible

entitled Triumph of Criticism, published at Philadelphia, 1869.


Cremonini (Cesare), Italian philosopher, b. Cento, Ferrara, 1550, was

professor of philosophy at Padua from 1591 to 1631, when he died. A

follower of Aristotle, he excited suspicion by his want of religion and

his teaching the mortality of the soul. He was frequently ordered by

the Jesuits and the Inquisition to refute the errors he gave currency

to, but he was protected by the Venetian State, and refused. Like most

of the philosophers of his time, he distinguished between religious

and philosophic truth. Bayle says. "Il a passé pour un esprit fort,

qui ne croyait point l'immortalité de l'âme." Larousse says, "On peut

dire qu'il n'était pas chrétien." Ladvocat says his works "contain

many things contrary to religion."


Cross (Mary Ann). See Eliot (George).


Crousse (Louis D.), French Pantheistic philosopher, author of

Principles, or First Philosophy, 1839, and Thoughts, 1845.


Curtis (S. E.), English Freethinker, author of Theology Displayed,

1842. He has been credited with The Protestant's Progress to

Infidelity. See Griffith (Rees). Died 1847.


Croly (David Goodman), American Positivist, b. New York, 3

Nov. 1829. He graduated at New York University in '54, and was

subsequently a reporter on the New York Herald. He became editor of

the New York World until '72. From '71 to '73 he edited The Modern

Thinker, an organ of the most advanced thought, and afterwards the

New York Graphic. Mr. Croly has written a Primer of Positivism, '76,

and has contributed many articles to periodicals. His wife, Jane

Cunningham, who calls herself "Jennie June," b. 1831, also wrote in

The Modern Thinker.


Cross (Mary Ann), see Eliot (George).


Crozier (John Beattie), English writer of Scottish border parentage,

b. Galt, Ontario, Canada, 23 April, 1849. In youth he won a scholarship

to the grammar school of the town, and thence won another scholarship

to the Toronto University, where he graduated '72, taking the

University and Starr medals. He then came to London determined to study

the great problems of religion and civilisation. He took his diploma

from the London College of Physicians in '73. In '77 he wrote his first

essay, "God or Force," which, being rejected by all the magazines, he

published as a pamphlet. Other essays on the Constitution of the World,

Carlyle, Emerson, and Spencer being also rejected, he published them in

a book entitled The Religion of the Future, '80, which fell flat. He

then started his work Civilisation and Progress, which appeared in

'85, and was also unsuccessful until republished with a few notices

in '87, when it received a chorus of applause, for its clear and

original thoughts. Mr. Crozier is now engaged on his Autobiography,

after which he proposes to deal with the Social question.


Cuffeler (Abraham Johann), a Dutch philosopher and doctor of law,

who was one of the first partizans of Spinoza. He lived at Utrecht

towards the end of the seventeenth century, and wrote a work on

logic in three parts entitled Specimen Artis Ratiocinandi, etc.,

published ostensibly at Hamburg, but really at Amsterdam or Utrecht,

1684. It was without name but with the author's portrait.


Cuper (Frans), Dutch writer, b. Rotterdam. Cuper is suspected to have

been one of those followers of Spinoza, who under pretence of refuting

him, set forth and sustained his arguments by feeble opposition. His

work entitled Arcana Atheismi Revelata, Rotterdam 1676, was denounced

as written in bad faith. Cuper maintained that the existence of God

could not be proved by the light of reason.


Cyrano de Bergerac (Savinien), French comic writer, b. Paris 6 March,

1619. After finishing his studies and serving in the army in his youth

he devoted himself to literature. His tragedy "Agrippine" is full of

what a bookseller called "belles impiétés," and La Monnoye relates that

at its performance the pit shouted "Oh, the wretch! The Atheist! How

he mocks at holy things!" Cyrano knew personally Campanella, Gassendi,

Lamothe Le Vayer, Linière, Rohault, etc. His other works consist of

a short fragment on Physic, a collection of Letters, and a Comic

History of the States and Empires of the Moon and the Sun. Cyrano

took the idea of this book from F. Godwin's Man in the Moon, 1583,

and it in turn gave rise to Swift's Gulliver's Travels and Voltaire's

Micromegas. Died Paris, 1655.


Czolbe (Heinrich), German Materialist, b. near Dantzic, 30 Dec. 1819,

studied medicine at Berlin, writing an inaugural dissertation on

the Principles of Physiology, '44. In '55 he published his New

Exposition of Sensationalism, in which everything is resolved into

matter and motion, and in '65 a work on The Limits and Origin of Human

Knowledge. He was an intimate friend of Ueberweg. Died at Königsberg,

19 Feb. 1873. Lange says "his life was marked by a deep and genuine



D'Ablaing. See Giessenburg.


Dale (Antonius van), Dutch writer, b. Haarlem, 8 Nov. 1638. His work

on oracles was erudite but lumbersome, and to it Fontenelle gave the

charm of style. It was translated into English by Mrs. Aphra Behn,

under the title of The History of Oracles and the Cheats of Pagan

Priests, 1699. Van Dale, in another work on The Origin and Progress

of Idolatry and Superstition, applied the historical method to his

subject, and showed that the belief in demons was as old and as

extensive as the human race. He died at Haarlem, 28 Nov. 1708.


Damilaville (Etienne Noël), French writer, b. at Bordeaux, 1721. At

first a soldier, then a clerk, he did some service for Voltaire, who

became his friend. He also made the friendship Diderot, d'Alembert,

Grimm, and d'Holbach. He contributed to the Encyclopédie, and in

1767 published an attack on the theologians, entitled Theological

Honesty. The book entitled Christianity Unveiled [see Boulanger and

Holbach] was attributed by Voltaire, who called it Impiety Unveiled,

and by La Harpe and Lalande to Damilaville. Voltaire called him

"one of our most learned writers." Larousse says "he was an ardent

enemy of Christianity." He has also been credited with a share in

the System of Nature. Died 15 Dec. 1768.


Dandolo (Vincenzo) Count, Italian chemist, b. Venice, 26 Oct. 1758,

wrote Principles of Physical Chemistry, a work in French on The New

Men, in which he shows his antagonism to religion, and many useful

works on vine, timber, and silk culture. Died Varessa, 13 Dec. 1819.


Danton (Georges Jacques), French revolutionist, b. Arcis sur Aube, 28

Oct. 1759. An uncle wished him to enter into orders, but he preferred

to study law. During the Revolution his eloquence made him conspicuous

at the Club of Cordeliers, and in Feb. 1791, he became one of the

administrators of Paris. One of the first to see that after the flight

of Louis XVI. he could no longer be king, he demanded his suspension,

and became one of the chief organisers of the Republic. In the alarm

caused by the invasion he urged a bold and resolute policy. He was a

member of the Convention and of the Committee of Public Safety. At the

crisis of the struggle with Robespierre, Danton declined to strike

the first blow and disdained to fly. Arrested March, 1794, he said

when interrogated by the judge, "My name is Danton, my dwelling will

soon be in annihilation; but my name will live in the Pantheon of

history." He maintained his lofty bearing on the scaffold, where he

perished 5 April, 1794. For his known scepticism Danton was called

fils de Diderot. Carlyle calls him "a very Man."


Dapper (Olfert), Dutch physician, who occupied himself with history and

geography, on which he produced important works. He had no religion

and was suspected of Atheism. He travelled through Syria, Babylonia,

etc., in 1650. He translated Herodotus (1664) and the orations of

the late Prof. Caspar v. Baerli (1663), and wrote a History of the

City of Amsterdam, 1663. Died at Amsterdam 1690.


Darget (Etienne), b. Paris, 1712; went to Berlin in 1744 and became

reader and private secretary to Frederick the Great (1745-52), who

corresponded with him afterwards. Died 1778.


Darwin (Charles Robert), English naturalist, b. Shrewsbury,

12 Feb. 1809. Educated at Shrewsbury, Edinburgh University, and

Cambridge. He early evinced a taste for collecting and observing

natural objects. He was intended for a clergyman, but, incited by

Humboldt's Personal Narrative, resolved to travel. He accompanied

Captain Fitzroy in the "Beagle" on a voyage of exploration, '31-36,

which he narrated in his Voyage of a Naturalist Round the World, which

obtained great popularity. In '39 he married, and in '42 left London

and settled at Down, Kent. His studies, combined with the reading of

Lamarck and Malthus, led to his great work on The Origin of Species

by means of Natural Selection, '59, which made a great outcry and

marked an epoch. Darwin took no part in the controversy raised by the

theologians, but followed his work with The Fertilisation of Orchids,

'62; Cross and Self Fertilisation of Plants, '67; Variations of

Plants and Animals under Domestication, '65; and in '71 The Descent

of Man and Selection in relation to Sex, which caused yet greater

consternation in orthodox circles. The following year he issued The

Expression of the Emotions of Men and Animals. He also published

works on the Movements of Plants, Insectivorous Plants, the Forms of

Flowers, and Earthworms. He died 19 April, 1882, and was buried in

Westminster Abbey, despite his expressed unbelief in revelation. To

a German student he wrote, in '79, "Science has nothing to do with

Christ, except in so far as the habit of scientific research makes

a man cautious in admitting evidence. For myself I do not believe

that there ever has been any revelation." In his Life and Letters

he relates that between 1836 and 1842 he had come to see "that the

Old Testament was no more to be trusted than the sacred books of the

Hindoos." He rejected design and said "I for one must be content to

remain an Agnostic."


Darwin (Erasmus), Dr., poet, physiologist and philosopher, grandfather

of the above, was born at Elston, near Newark, 12 Dec. 1731. Educated

at Chesterfield and Cambridge he became a physician, first at Lichfield

and afterwards at Derby. He was acquainted with Rousseau, Watt and

Wedgwood. His principal poem, The Botanic Garden was published in 1791,

and The Temple of Nature in 1803. His principal work is Zoomania,

or the laws of organic life (1794), for which he was accused of

Atheism. He was actually a Deist. He also wrote on female education

and some papers in the Philosophical Transactions. Died at Derby,

18 April, 1802.


Daubermesnil (François Antoine), French conventionalist. Elected

deputy of Tarn in 1792. Afterwards became a member of the Council of

Five Hundred. He was one of the founders of Theophilanthropy. Died

at Perpignan 1802.


Daudet (Alphonse), French novelist, b. at Nîmes, 13 May 1840, author

of many popular romances, of which we mention L'Evangeliste, '82,

which has been translated into English under the title Port Salvation.


Daunou (Pierre Claude François), French politician and historian,

b. Boulogne, 18 Aug. 1761. His father entered him in the congregation

of the Fathers of the Oratory, which he left at the Revolution. The

department of Calais elected him with Carnot and Thomas Paine to

the Convention. After the Revolution he became librarian at the

Pantheon. He was a friend of Garat, Cabanis, Chenier, Destutt Tracy,

Ginguené and Benj. Constant. Wrote Historical Essay on the Temporal

Power of the Popes, 1810. Died at Paris, 20 June, 1840, noted for

his benevolence.


Davenport (Allen), social reformer, b. 1773. He contributed to

Carlile's Republican; wrote an account of the Life, Writings and

Principles of Thomas Spence, the reformer (1826); and published a

volume of verse, entitled The Muses' Wreath (1827). Died at Highbury,

London, 1846.


Davenport (John), Deist, b. London, 8 June, 1789, became a teacher. He

wrote An Apology for Mohammed and the Koran, 1869; Curiositates

Eroticoe Physiologæ, or Tabooed Subjects Freely Treated, and several

educational works. Died in poverty 11 May, 1877.


David of Dinant, in Belgium, Pantheistic philosopher of the twelfth

century. He is said to have visited the Papal Court of Innocent

III. He shared in the heresies of Amalric of Chârtres, and his work

Quaterini was condemned and burnt (1209). He only escaped the stake

by rapid flight. According to Albert the Great he was the author of

a philosophical work De Tomis, "Of Subdivisions," in which he taught

that all things were one. His system was similar to that of Spinoza.


David (Jacques Louis), French painter, born at Paris, 31 Aug. 1748,

was made painter to the king, but joined the Jacobin Club, became

a member of the Convention, voted for the king's death and for the

civic festivals, for which he made designs. On the restoration he

was banished. Died at Brussels, 29 Dec. 1825. David was an honest

enthusiast and a thorough Freethinker.


Davidis or David (Ferencz), a Transylvanian divine, b. about

1510. He was successively a Roman Catholic, a Lutheran and an

Antitrinitarian. He went further than F. Socinus and declared there

was "as much foundation for praying to the Virgin Mary and other

dead saints as to Jesus Christ." He was in consequence accused of

Judaising and thrown into prison at Deva, where he died 6 June, 1579.


Davies (John C.), of Stockport, an English Jacobin, who in 1797

published a list of contradictions of the Bible under the title of The

Scripturian's Creed, for which he was prosecuted and imprisoned. The

work was republished by Carlile, 1822, and also at Manchester, 1839.


Davidson (Thomas), bookseller and publisher, was prosecuted by the Vice

Society in Oct. 1820, for selling the Republican and a publication

of his own, called the Deist's Magazine. For observations made in

his defence he was summoned and fined £100, and he was sentenced to

two years' imprisonment in Oakham Gaol. He died 16 Dec. 1826.


Debierre (Charles), French writer, author of Man Before History, 1888.


De Dominicis. See Dominicis.


De Felice (Francesco), Italian writer, b. Catania, Sicily, 1821,

took part in the revolution of '43, and when Garibaldi landed in

Sicily was appointed president of the provisional council of war. Has

written on the reformation of elementary schools.


De Greef (Guillaume Joseph), advocate at Brussels Court of Appeal,

b. at Brussels, 9 Oct. 1842. Author of an important Introduction to

Sociology, 1886. Wrote in La Liberté, 1867-73, and now writes in La

Societé Nouvelle.


De Gubernatis (Angelo), Italian Orientalist and writer, b. Turin,

7 April, 1840; studied at Turin University and became doctor of

philosophy. He studied Sanskrit under Bopp and Weber at Berlin. Sig. de

Gubernatis has adorned Italian literature with many important

works, of which we mention his volumes on Zoological Mythology,

which has been translated into English, '72: and on the Mythology of

Plants. He has compiled and in large part written a Universal History

of Literature, 18 vols. '82-85; edited La Revista Europea and the

Revue Internationale, and contributed to many publications. He is a

brilliant writer and a versatile scholar.


De Harven (Emile Jean Alexandre), b. Antwerp, 23 Sept. 1837, the

anonymous author of a work on The Soul: its Origin and Destiny

(Antwerp, 1879).


Dekker (Eduard Douwes), the greatest Dutch writer and Freethinker of

this century, b. Amsterdam, 2 March, 1820. In '39 he accompanied his

father, a ship's captain, to the Malayan Archipelago. He became officer

under the Dutch government in Sumatra, Amboina, and Assistant-Resident

at Lebac, Java. He desired to free the Javanese from the oppression of

their princes, but the government would not help him and he resigned

and returned to Holland, '56. The next four years he spent, in poverty,

vainly seeking justice for the Javanese. In '60 he published under the

pen name of "Multatuli" Max Havelaar, a masterly indictment of the

Dutch rule in India, which has been translated into German, French

and English. Then follow his choice Minnebrieven (Love Letters),

'61; Vorstenschool (A School for Princes), and Millioenen Studiën

(Studies on Millions). His Ideën, 7 vols. '62-79, are full of the

boldest heresy. In most of his works religion is attacked, but in the

Ideas faith is criticised with much more pungency and satire. He wrote

"Faith is the voluntary prison-cell of reason." He was an honorary

member of the Freethought Society, De Dageraad, and contributed to its

organ. During the latter years of his life he lived at Wiesbaden, where

he died 19 Feb. 1887. His corpse was burned in the crematory at Gotha.


De Lalande (see Lalande).


Delambre (Jean Baptiste Joseph), French astronomer, b. Amiens,

19 Sept. 1749, studied under Lalande and became, like his master,

an Atheist. His Tables of the Orbit of Uranus were crowned by the

Academy, 1790. In 1807 he succeeded Lalande as Professor of Astronomy

at the Collége de France. He is the author of a History of Astronomy

in five volumes, and of a number of astronomical tables and other

scientific works He was appointed perpetual secretary of the Academy of

Sciences. Died 19 Aug. 1822, and was buried at Père la Chaise. Cuvier

pronouncing a discourse over his grave.


De la Ramee. See Ramée.


Delboeuf (Joseph Remi Léopold), Belgian writer, b. Liège, 30

Sept. 1831; is Professor at the University of Liège, and has

written Psychology as a Natural Science, its Present and its Future;

Application of the Experimental Method to the Phenomena of the Soul,

'73, and other works. In his Philosophical Prolegomena to Geometry

he suggests that even mathematical axioms may have an empirical origin.


Delbos (Léon), linguist, b. 20 Sept. 1849 of Spanish father and Scotch

mother. Educated in Paris, Lycée Charlemagne. Is an M.A. of Paris and

officier d'Académie. Speaks many languages, and is a good Arabic and

Sanskrit scholar. Has travelled widely and served in the Franco-German

War. Besides many educational works, M. Delbos has written L'Athée,

the Atheist, a Freethought romance '79, and in English The Faith in

Jesus not a New Faith, '85. He has contributed to the Agnostic Annual,

and is a decided Agnostic.


Delepierre (Joseph Octave), Belgian bibliophile, b. Bruges, 12 March,

1802. Was for thirty-five years secretary of Legation to England. His

daughter married N. Truebner, who published his work L'Enfer, 1876,

and many other bibliographical studies. Died London, 18 Aug. 1879.


Delescluze (Louis Charles), French journalist and revolutionary,

b. Dreux, 2 Oct. 1809, was arrested in '34 for sedition. Implicated in

a plot in '35, he took refuge in Belgium. In '48 he issued at Paris La

Revolution Démocratique et Sociale, but was soon again in prison. He

was banished, came to England with Ledru Rollin, but returning to

France in '53 was arrested. In '68 he published the Réveil, for

which he was again fined and sentenced to prison for ten years. In

'59 he was amnestied and imprisoned. He became head of the Commune

Committee of Public Safety, and died at the barricade, 25 May, 1871.


Deleyre (Alexandre), French writer, b. Porbats, near Bordeaux, 6

Jan. 1726. Early in life he entered the order of Jesuits, but changed

his faith and became the friend of Rousseau and Diderot. He contributed

to the Encyclopédie, notably the article "Fanatisme," and published

an analysis of Bacon and works on the genius of Montesquieu and Saint

Evremond, and a History of Voyages. He embraced the Revolution with

ardor, was made deputy to the Convention, and in 1795 was made member

of the Institute. Died at Paris, 27 March, 1797.


Delisle de Sales. See Isoard Delisle (J. B. C.)


Dell (John Henry), artist and poet, b. 11 Aug. 1832. Contributed

to Progress, wrote Nature Pictures, '71, and The Dawning Grey, '85,

a volume of vigorous verse, imbued with the spirit of democracy and

freethought. Died 31 Jan. 1888.


Deluc (Adolphe), Professor of Chemistry at Brussels, b. Paris,

1 Sept. 1811. Collaborated on La Libre Recherche.


De Maillet. See Maillet (Benoît de).


Democritus, a wealthy Atheistic philosopher, b. Abdera, Thrace,

B.C. 460. He travelled to Egypt and over a great part of Asia,

and is also said to have visited India. He is supposed to have

been acquainted with Leucippus, and sixty works were ascribed to

him. Died B.C. 357. He taught that all existence consisted of atoms,

and made the discovery of causes the object of scientific inquiry. He

is said to have laughed at life in general, which Montaigne says

is better than to imitate Heraclitus and weep, since mankind are

not so unhappy as vain. Democritus was the forerunner of Epicurus,

who improved his system.


Demonax, a cynical philosopher who lived in the second century of

the Christian era and rejected all religion. An account of him was

written by Lucian.


Demora (Gianbattista), director of the Libero Pensatore of Milan,

and author of some dramatic works.


Denis (Hector), Belgian advocate and professor of political economy

and philosophy at Brussels University, b. Braine-le-Comte, 29 April,

1842. Has written largely on social questions and contributed to La

Liberté, la Philosophie Positive, etc. Is one of the Council of the

International Federation of Freethinkers.


Denslow (Van Buren), American writer, author of essays on Modern

Thinkers, 1880, to which Colonel Ingersoll wrote an introduction. He

contributed a paper on the value of irreligion to the Religio

Philosophic journal of America, Jan. '78, and has written in the

Truthseeker and other journals.


Denton (William F.), poet, geologist, and lecturer, b. Darlington,

Durham, 8 Jan. 1823. After attaining manhood he emigrated to the

United States, '48, and in '56 published Poems for Reformers. He was

a prolific writer, and constant lecturer on temperance, psychology,

geology, and Freethought. In '72 he published Radical Discourses

on Religious Subjects (Boston, '72), and Radical Rhymes, '79. He

travelled to Australasia, and died of a fever while conducting

scientific explorations in New Guinea 26 Aug. 1883.


De Paepe (César) Dr., Belgian Socialist, b. Ostend, 12 July, 1842. He

was sent to the college of St. Michel, Brussels. He obtained the

Diploma of Candidate of Philosophy, but on the death of his father

became a printer with Désiré Brismée (founder of Les Solidaires,

a Rationalist society). Proudhon confided to him the correction of

his works. He became a physician and is popular with the workmen's

societies. He was one of the foremost members of the International and

attended all its congresses, as well as those of the International

Federation of Freethinkers. He has written much on public hygiene,

political economy, and psychology, collaborating in a great number of

the most advanced journals. Dr. De Paepe is a short, fair, energetic

man, capable both as a speaker and writer.


Depasse (Hector), French writer, b. at Armentières in 1843, is

editor of La République Française, and member of the Paris Municipal

Council. He has written a striking work on Clericalism, in which he

urges the separation of Church and State, 1877; and is author of many

little books on Contemporary Celebrities, among them are Gambetta,

Bert, Ranc, etc.


De Ponnat. See Ponnat (--de), Baron.


De Pontan. See Ponnat.


De Potter (Agathon Louis), Belgian economist, b. Brussels, 11

Nov. 1827. Has written many works on Social Science, and has

collaborated to La Ragione (Reason), '56, and La Philosophie de



De Potter (Louis Antoine Joseph), Belgian politician and writer,

father of the above, b. of noble family, Bruges, 26 April, 1786. In

1811 he went to Italy and lived ten years at Rome. In '21 he wrote the

Spirit of the Church, in 6 vols., which are put on the Roman Index. A

strong upholder of secular education in Belgium, he was arrested

more than once for his radicalism, being imprisoned for eighteen

months in '28. In Sept. '30 he became a member of the provisional

government. He was afterwards exiled and lived in Paris, where he wrote

a philosophical and anti-clerical History of Christianity, in 8 vols.,

1836-37. He also wrote a Rational Catechism, 1854, and a Rational

Dictionary, 1859, and numerous brochures. Died Bruges, 22 July, 1859.


Deraismes (Maria), French writer and lecturer, b. Paris, 15

Aug. 1835. She first made her name as a writer of comedies. She wrote

an appeal on behalf of her sex, Aux Femmes Riches, '65. The Masonic

Lodge of Le Pecq, near Paris, invited her to become a member, and she

was duly installed under the Grand Orient of France. The first female

Freemason, was president of the Paris Anti-clerical Congress of 1881,

and has written much in her journal, Le Républicain de Seine et Oise.


De Roberty (Eugene). See Roberty.


Desbarreaux (Jacques Vallée), Seigneur, French poet and sceptic,

b. Paris, 1602, great-nephew of Geoffrey Vallée, who was burnt in

1574. Many stories are related of his impiety, e.g. the well-known

one of his having a feast of eggs and bacon. It thundered, and Des

Barreaux, throwing the plate out of window, exclaimed, "What an amount

of noise over an omelette." It was said he recanted and wrote a poem

beginning, "Great God, how just are thy chastisements." Voltaire,

however, assigns this poem to the Abbé Levau. Died at Chalons,

9 May, 1673.


Descartes (René), French philosopher, b. at La Haye, 31 March,

1596. After leaving college he entered the army in '16, and fought

in the battle of Prague. He travelled in France and Italy, and in

'29 settled in Holland. In '37 he produced his famous Discourses upon

the Method of Reasoning Well, etc., and in '41 his Meditations upon

First Philosophy. This work gave such offence to the clergy that he

was forced to fly his country "parce qu'il y fait trop chaud pour

lui." He burnt his Traite du Monde (Treatise on the World) lest

he should incur the fate of Gallilei. Though a Theist, like Bacon,

he puts aside final causes. He was offered an asylum by Christina,

Queen of Sweden, and died at Stockholm 11 Feb. 1650.


Deschamps (Léger-Marie), known also as Dom Deschamps, a French

philosopher, b. Rennes, Poitiers, 10 Jan. 1716. He entered the Order

of Benedictines, but lost his faith by reading an abridgment of

the Old Testament. He became correspondent of Voltaire, Rousseau,

d'Alembert, Helvetius, and other philosophers. "Ce prêtre athée,"

as Ad. Franck calls him, was the author of a treatise entitled La

Vérité, ou le Vrai Système, in which he appears to have anticipated

all the leading ideas of Hegel. God, he says, as separated from

existing things, is pure nothingness. An analysis of his remarkable

work, which remained in manuscript for three-quarters of a century,

has been published by Professor Beaussire (Paris, 1855). Died at

Montreuil-Bellay, 19 April 1774.


Deslandes (André François Boureau), b. Pondichery, 1690. Became member

of the Berlin Academy and wrote numerous works, mostly under the veil

of anonymity, the principal being A Critical History of Philosophy,

3 vols(1737). His Pygmalion, a philosophical romance, was condemned by

the parliament of Dijon, 1742. His Reflexions sur les grands hommes

qui sont mort en Plaisantant (Amsterdam, 1732) was translated into

English and published in 1745 under the title, Dying Merrily. Another

work directed against religion was On the certainty of Human Knowledge,

a philosophical examination of the different prerogatives of reason

and faith (London, 1741). Died Paris, 11 April, 1757.


Des Maizeaux (Pierre), miscellaneous writer, b. Auvergne, 1673. He

studied at Berne and Geneva, and became known to Bayle who introduced

him to Lord Shaftesbury, with whom he came to London, 1699. He edited

the works of Bayle, Saint Evremond and Toland, whose lives he wrote,

as well as those of Hales and Chillingworth. Anthony Collins was his

friend, and at his death left him his manuscripts. These he transferred

to Collins's widow and they were burnt. He repented and returned the

money, 6 Jan. 1730, as the wages of iniquity. He became Secretary of

the Royal Society of London, where he died, 11 July, 1745.


Desmoulins (Lucié Simplice Camille Benôit), French revolutionary

writer, b. Guise, 2 March, 1760. He was a fellow-student of Robespierre

at Paris, and became an advocate and an enthusiastic reformer. In

July '89 he incited the people to the siege of the Bastille,

and thus began the Revolution. On 29 Dec. 1790 he married Lucile

Laridon-Duplessis. He edited Le Vieux Cordelier and the Révolutions

de France et de Brabant, in which he stated that Mohammedanism was

as credible as Christianity. He was a Deist, preferring Paganism to

Christianity. Both creeds were more or less unreasonable; but, folly

for folly, he said, I prefer Hercules slaying the Erymanthean boar

to Jesus of Nazareth drowning two thousand pigs. He was executed

with Danton, 5 April 1794. His amiable wife, Lucile, who was an

Atheist (b. 1770), in a few days shared his fate (April 13). Carlyle

calls Desmoulins a man of genius, "a fellow of infinite shrewdness,

wit--nay, humor."


Des Periers (Jean Bonaventure), French poet and sceptic,

b. Arnay le Duc, about 1510. He was brought up in a convent,

only to detest the vices of the monks. In 1535 he lived in Lyons

and assisted Dolet. He probably knew Rabelais, whom he mentions as

"Francoys Insigne." Attached to the court of Marguerite of Valois,

he defended Clement Marot when persecuted for making a French version

of the Psalms. He wrote the Cymbalum Mundi, a satire upon religion,

published under the name of Thomas de Clenier à Pierre Tryocan,

i.e., Thomas Incrédule à Pierre Croyant, 1537. It was suppressed

and the printer, Jehan Morin, imprisoned. Des Periers fled and

died (probably by suicide, to escape persecution) 1544. An English

version of Cymbalum Mundi was published in 1712. P. G. Brunet, the

bibliographer, conjectures that Des Periers was the author of the

famous Atheistic treatise, The Three Impostors.


Destriveaux (Pierre Joseph), Belgian lawyer and politician, b. Liége,

13 March, 1780. Author of several works on public right. Died

Schaerbeck (Brussels), 3 Feb. 1853.


Destutt de Tracy (Antoine Louis de Claude) Count, French materialist

philosopher, b. 20 July, 1754. His family was of Scotch origin. At

first a soldier, he was one of the first noblemen at the Revolution

to despoil himself of his title. A friend of Lafayette, Condorcet,

and Cabanis, he was a complete sceptic in religion; made an analysis

of Dupuis' Origine de tous les Cultes (1804), edited Montesquieu and

Cabanis, was made a member of the French Academy (1808), and wrote

several philosophical works, of which the principal is Elements of

Ideology. He was a great admirer of Hobbes. Died Paris, 9 March, 1836.


Des Vignes (Pietro), secretary to Frederick II. (1245-49). Mazzuchelli

attributes to him the treatise De Tribus Impostoribus.


Detrosier (Rowland), social reformer and lecturer, b. 1796, the

illegitimate son of a Manchester man named Morris and a Frenchwoman. In

his early years he was "for whole days without food." Self-educated,

he established the first Mechanics' Institute in England at Hulme,

gave Sunday scientific lectures, and published several discourses

in favor of secular education. He became secretary of the National

Political Union. He was a Deist. Like Bentham, who became his friend,

he bequeathed his body for scientific purposes. Died in London,

23 Nov. 1834.


Deubler (Konrad). The son of poor parents, b. Goisern, near Ischl,

Upper Austria, 26 Nov. 1814. Self-taught amid difficulties,

he became the friend of Feuerbach and Strauss, and was known as

"the Peasant Philosopher." In 1854 he was indicted for blasphemy,

and was sentenced to two years' hard labor and imprisonment during

pleasure. He was incarcerated from 7 Dec. '54, till Nov. '56 at Brünn,

and afterwards at Olmutz, where he was released 24 March, 1857. He

returned to his native place, and was visited by Feuerbach. In '70

he was made Burgomaster by his fellow-townsmen. Died 30 March, 1884.


Deurhoff (Willem), Dutch writer, b. Amsterdam, March 1650. Educated

for the Church, he gave himself to philosophy, translated the works of

Descartes, and was accused of being a follower of Spinoza. Forced to

leave his country, he took refuge in Brabant, but returned to Holland,

where he died 10 Oct. 1717. He left some followers.


De Wette. (See Wette M. L. de).


D'Holbach. See Holbach (P. H. D. von), Baron.


Diagoras, Greek poet, philosopher, and orator, known as "the Atheist,"

b. Melos. A pupil of Democritus, who is said to have freed him from

slavery. A doubtful tradition reports that he became an Atheist after

being the victim of an unpunished perjury. He was accused (B.C. 411)

of impiety, and had to fly from Athens to Corinth, where he died. A

price was put upon the Atheist's head. His works are not extant,

but several anecdotes are related of him, as that he threw a wooden

statue of Hercules into the fire to cook a dish of lentils, saying the

god had a thirteenth task to perform; and that, being on his flight

by sea overtaken by a storm, hearing his fellow-passengers say it

was because an Atheist was on board, he pointed to other vessels

struggling in the same storm without being laden with a Diagoras.


Di Cagno Politi (Niccola Annibale), Italian Positivist, b. Bari,

1857. Studied at Naples under Angiulli, has written on modern culture

and on experimental philosophy in Italy, and contributed articles on

Positivism to the Rivista Europea.


Diderot (Denis), French philosopher, b. Langres, 6 Oct. 1713. His

father, a cutler, intended him for the Church. Educated by Jesuits,

at the age of twelve he received the tonsure. He had a passion for

books, but, instead of becoming a Jesuit, went to Paris, where he

supported himself by teaching and translating. In 1746 he published

Philosophic Thoughts, which was condemned to be burnt. It did much

to advance freedom of opinion. Three years later his Letters on the

Blind occasioned his imprisonment at Vincennes for its materialistic

Atheism. Rousseau, who called him "a transcendent genius," visited

Diderot in prison, where he remained three years. Diderot projected the

famous Encyclopédie, which he edited with Alembert, and he contributed

some of the most important articles. With very inadequate recompense,

and amidst difficulties that would have appalled an ordinary editor,

Diderot superintended the undertaking for many years (1751-65). He also

contributed to other important works, such as Raynal's Philosophic

History, L'Esprit, by Helvetius, and The System of Nature and other

works of his friend D'Holbach. Diderot's fertile mind also produced

dramas, essays, sketches, and novels. Died 30 July, 1784. Comte calls

Diderot "the greatest thinker of the eighteenth century."


Diercks (Gustav), German author of able works on the History of the

Development of Human Spirit (Berlin, 1881-2) and on Arabian Culture

in Spain, 1887. Is a member of the German Freethinkers' Union.


Dilke (Ashton Wentworth), b. 1850. Educated at Cambridge, travelled

in Russia and Central Asia, and published a translation of Turgenev's

Virgin Soil. He purchased and edited the Weekly Dispatch; was returned

as M.P. for Newcastle in 1880, but, owing to ill health, resigned in

favor of John Morley, and died at Algiers 12 March, 1883.


Dinter (Gustav Friedrich), German educationalist, b. Borna, near

Leipsic, 29 Feb. 1760. His Bible for Schoolmasters is his best-known

work. It sought to give rational notes and explanations of the Jew

books, and excited much controversy. Died at Konigsberg, 29 May, 1831.


Dippel (Johann Konrad), German alchemist and physician, b. 10

Aug. 1672, at Frankenstein, near Darmstadt. His Papismus vapulans

Protestantium (1698) drew on him the wrath of the theologians of

Giessen, and he had to flee for his life. Attempting to find out the

philosopher's stone, he discovered Prussian blue. In 1705 he published

his satires against the Protestant Church, Hirt und eine Heerde,

under the name of Christianus Democritos. He denied the inspiration

of the Bible, and after an adventurous life in many countries died

25 April, 1734.


Dobrolyubov (Nikolai Aleksandrovich), Russian author, b. 1836, at

Nijni Novgorod, the son of a priest. Educated at St. Petersburg, he

became a radical journalist. His works were edited in four vols. by

Chernuishevsky. Died 17 Nov. 1861.


Dodel-Port (Prof. Arnold), Swiss scientist, b. Affeltrangen, Thurgau,

16 Oct. 1843. Educated at Kreuzlingen, he became in '63 teacher in

the Oberschule in Hauptweil; then studied from '64-'69 at Geneva,

Zürich, and Munich, becoming privat docent in the University of

Zürich, '70. In '75 he published The New History of Creation. In

'78 he issued his world-famous Botanical Atlas, and was in '80 made

Professor of Botany in the Zürich University and Director of the

Botanical Laboratory. He has also written Biological Fragments (1885),

the Life and Letters of Konrad Deubler, "the peasant philosopher"

(1886), and has just published Moses or Darwin? a School Question,

1889. Dr. Dodel-Port is an hon. member of the London Royal Society

and Vice-President of the German Freethinkers' Union.


Dodwell (Henry), eldest son of the theologian of that name, was

b. Shottesbrooke, Berkshire, about the beginning of the eighteenth

century. He was educated at Magdalen Hall, when he proceeded B.A.,

9 Feb. 1726. In '42 he published a pamphlet entitled Christianity

not Founded on Argument, which in a tone of grave irony contends that

Christianity can only be accepted by faith. He was brought up to the

law and was a zealous friend of the Society for the Promotion of Arts,

Manufactures, and Commerce. Died 1784.


Doebereiner (Johann Wolfgang), German chemist, b. Bavaria, 15

Dec. 1780. In 1810 he became Professor of Chemistry at Jena, where

he added much to science. Died 24 March, 1849. He was friend and

instructor to Goethe.


Dolet (Etienne), a learned French humanist, b. Orleans 3 Aug. 1509. He

studied in Paris, Padua and Venice. For his heresy he had to fly

from Toulouse and lived for some time at Lyons, where he established

a printing-press and published some of his works, for which he was

imprisoned. He was acquainted with Rabelais, Des Periers, and other

advanced men of the time. In 1543 the Parliament condemned his books

to be burnt, and in the next year he was arrested on a charge of

Atheism. After being kept two years in prison he was strangled and

burnt, 3 Aug. 1546. It is related that seeing the sorrow of the crowd,

he said: "Non dolet ipe Dolet, sed pia turba dolet."--Dolet grieves

not, but the generous crowd grieves. His goods being confiscated,

his widow and children were left to beggary. "The French language,"

says A. F. Didot, "owes him much for his treatises, translations,

and poesies." Dolet's biographer, M. Joseph Boulmier, calls him "le

Christ de la pensée libre." Philosophy has alone the right, says

Henri Martin, to claim Dolet on its side. His English biographer,

R. C. Christie, says he was "neither a Catholic nor a Protestant."


Dominicis (Saverio Fausto de), Italian Positivist philosopher,

b. Buonalbergo, 1846. Is Professor of Philosophy at Bari, and has

written on Education and Darwinism.


Dondorf (Dr. A.), See Anderson (Marie) in Supplement.


Doray de Longrais (Jean Paul), French man of letters. b. Manvieux,

1736. Author of a Freethought romance, Faustin, or the Philosophical

Age. Died at Paris, 1800.


Dorsch (Eduard), German American Freethinker, b. Warzburg 10

Jan. 1822. He studied at Munich and Vienna. In '49 he went to America

and settled in Monroe, Michigan, where he published a volume of poems,

some being translations from Swinburne. Died 10 Jan. 1887.


Dorsey (J. M.), author of the The True History of Moses, and others,

an attack on the Bible, published at Boston in 1855.


Draparnaud (Jacques Philippe Raymond), French doctor, b. 3 June, 1772,

at Montpelier, where he became Professor of Natural History. His

discourses on Life and Vital Functions, and on the Philosophy of

the Sciences and Christianity (1801), show his scepticism. Died 1

Feb. 1805.


Draper (John William), scientist and historian, b. St. Helens,

near Liverpool, 5 May 1811. The son of a Wesleyan minister, he was

educated at London University. In '32 he emigrated to America,

where he was Professor of Chemistry and Natural History in New

York University. He was one of the inventors of photography and the

first who applied it to astronomy. He wrote many scientific works,

notably on Human Physiology. His history of the American Civil War

is an important work, but he is chiefly known by his History of the

Intellectual Development of Europe and History of the Conflict of

Religion and Science, which last has gone through many editions and

been translated into all the principal languages. Died 4 Jan. 1882.


Dreyfus (Ferdinand Camille), author of an able work on the Evolution

of Worlds and Societies, 1888.


Droysen (Johann Gustav), German historian, b. Treptoir, 6 July,

1808. Studied at Berlin; wrote in the Hallische Jahrbücher; was

Professor of History at Keil, 1840; Jena '51 and Berlin '59. Has edited

Frederick the Great's Correspondence, and written other important

works, some in conjunction with his friend Max Duncker. Died 15

June, 1882.


Drummond (Sir William), of Logie Almond, antiquary and author,

b. about 1770; entered Parliament as member for St. Mawes, Cornwall,

1795. In the following year he became envoy to the court of Naples,

and in 1801 ambassador to Constantinople. His principal work is

Origines, or Remarks on the Origin of several Empires, States,

and Cities (4 vols. 1824-29). He also printed privately The OEdipus

Judaicus, 1811. It calls in question, with much boldness and learning,

many legends of the Old Testament, to which it gave an astronomical

signification. It was reprinted in '66. Sir William Drummond also

wrote anonymously Philosophical Sketches of the Principles of Society,

1795. Died at Rome, 29 March, 1828.


Duboc (Julius) German writer and doctor of philosophy b. Hamburg, 10

Oct. 1829. Educated at Frankfurt and Giessen, is a clever journalist,

and has translated the History of the English Press. Has written

an Atheistic work, Das Leben Ohne Gott (Life without God), with the

motto from Feuerbach "No religion is my religion, no philosophy my

philosophy," 1875. He has also written on the Psychology of Love,

and other important works.


Dubois (Pierre), a French sceptic, who in 1835 published The True

Catechism of Believers--a work ordered by the Court of Assizes to

be suppressed, and for which the author (Sept. '35) was condemned to

six months' imprisonment and a fine of one thousand francs. He also

wrote The Believer Undeceived, or Evident Proofs of the Falsity and

Absurdity of Christianity; a work put on the Index in '36.


Du Bois-Reymond (Emil), biologist, of Swiss father and French

mother, b. Berlin, 7 Nov. 1818. He studied at Berlin and Bonn for

the Church, but left it to follow science, '37. Has become famous as

a physiologist, especially by his Researches in Animal Electricity,

'48-60. With Helmholtz he has done much to establish the new era

of positive science, wrongly called by opponents Materialism. Du

Bois-Reymond holds that thought is a function of the brain and nervous

system, and that "soul" has arisen as the gradual results of natural

combinations, but in his Limits of the Knowledge of Nature, '72, he

contends that we must always come to an ultimate incomprehensible. Du

Bois-Reymond has written on Voltaire and Natural Science, '68; La

Mettrie, '75; Darwin versus Galiani, '78; and Frederick II. and

Rousseau, '79. Since '67 he has been perpetual secretary of the

Academy of Sciences, Berlin.


Dubuisson (Paul Ulrich), French dramatist and revolutionary, b. Lauat,

1746. A friend of Cloots he suffered with him on the scaffold, 24

March, 1794.


Dubuisson (Paul), living French Positivist, author of Grand Types

of Humanity.


Du Chatelet Lomont. See Chastelet.


Duclos (Charles Pinot), witty French writer, b. Dinan, 12 Feb. 1704. He

was admitted into the French Academy, 1747 and became its secretary,

1755. A friend of Diderot and d'Alembert. His Considerations sur les

Moeurs is still a readable work. Died 27 March, 1772.


Ducos (Jean François), French Girondist, b. Bordeaux in 1765. Elected

to the Legislative Assembly, he, on the 26th Oct. 1791, demanded

the complete separation of the State from religion. He shared the

fate of the Girondins, 31 Oct. 1793, crying with his last breath,

"Vive la Republique!"


Du Deffand (Marie), Marchioness, witty literary Frenchwoman,

b. 1697. Chamfort relates that when young and in a convent she preached

irreligion to her young comrades. The abbess called in Massillon, to

whom the little sceptic gave her reasons. He went away saying "She

is charming." Her house in Paris was for fifty years the resort of

eminent authors and statesmen. She corresponded for many years with

Horace Walpole, D'Alembert and Voltaire. Many anecdotes are told of

her; thus, to the Cardinal de Polignac, who spoke of the miracle of

St. Denis walking when beheaded, she said "Il n'y a que le premier

pas qui coûte." Died 24 Sept. 1780. To the curé of Saint Sulpice,

who came to her death-bed, she said "Ni questions, ni raisons, ni

sermons." Larousse calls her "Belle, instruite, spirituelle mais

sceptique et materialiste."


Dudgeon (William), a Berwickshire Deist, whose works were published

(privately printed at Edinburgh) in 1765.


Dudnevant (A. L. A. Dupin), Baroness. See Sand (Georges).


Duehring (Eugen Karl), German writer, b. Berlin, 12 Jan. 1833; studied

law. He has, though blind, written many works on science and political

economy, also a Critical History of Philosophy, '69-78, and Science

Revolutionized, '78. In Oct. 1879, his death was maliciously reported.


Dulaure (Jacques Antoine), French archæologist and historian,

b. Clermont-Ferrand, 3 Dec. 1755. In 1788-90 he published six volumes

of a description of France. He wrote many pamphlets, including one

on the private lives of ecclesiastics. Elected to the Convention in

1792, he voted for the death of the King. Proscribed as a Girondist,

Sept. 1793, he fled to Switzerland. He was one of the Council of Five

Hundred, 1796-98. Dulaure wrote a learned Treatise on Superstitions,

but he is best known by his History of Paris, and his Short History

of Different Worships, 1825, in which he deals with ancient fetishism

and phallic worship. Died Paris, 9 Aug. 1835.


Dulaurens (Henri Joseph). French satirist, b. Douay, 27 March, 1719. He

was brought up in a convent, and made a priest 12 Nov. 1727. Published

a satire against the Jesuits, 1761, he was compelled to fly to

Holland, where he lived in poverty. He edited L'Evangile de la Raison,

a collection of anti-Christian tracts by Voltaire and others, and

wrote L'Antipapisme révelé in 1767. He was in that year condemned

to perpetual imprisonment for heresy, and shut in the convent of

Mariabaum, where he died 1797. Dulaurens was caustic, cynical and

vivacious. He is also credited with the Portfolios of a Philosopher,

mostly taken from the Analysis of Bayle, Cologne, 1770.


Dulk (Albert Friedrich Benno), German poet and writer, b. Konigsberg,

17 June, 1819; he became a physician, but was expelled for aiding

in the Revolution of '48. He travelled in Italy and Egypt. In '65

he published Jesus der Christ, embodying rationalism in prose and

verse. He has also written Stimme der Menschheit, 2 vols., '76,

'80, and Der Irrgang des Lebens Jesu, '84, besides numerous plays

and pamphlets. Died 29 Oct. 1884.


Dumont (Léon), French writer, b. Valenciennes, 1837. Studied for

the bar, but took to philosophy and literature. He early embraced

Darwinism, and wrote on Hæckel and the Theory of Evolution, '73. He

wrote in La Revue Philosophique, and other journals. Died Valenciennes,

17 Jan. 1877.


Dumarsais (César Chesneau), French grammarian and philosopher,

b. Marseilles, 17 July, 1676. When young he entered the congregation

of the oratory. This society he soon quitted, and went to Paris,

where he married. A friend of Boindin and Alembert, he wrote against

the pretensions of Rome and contributed to the Encyclopédie. He is

credited with An Analysis of the Christian Religion and with the

celebrated Essai sur les Préjugés, par Mr. D. M., but the latter was

probably written by Holbach, with notes by Naigeon. Le Philosophe,

published in L'Evangile de la Raison by Dulaurens, was written by

Voltaire. Died 11 June, 1756. Dumarsais was very simple in character,

and was styled by D'Alembert the La Fontaine of philosophers.


Dumont (Pierre Etienne Louis), Swiss writer, b. Geneva, 18 July,

1759. Was brought up as a minister, but went to France and became

secretary to Mirabeau. After the Revolution he came to England, where

he became acquainted with Bentham, whose works he translated. Died

Milan, 29 Sept. 1829.


Duncker (Maximilian Wolfgang), German historian, b. Berlin, 15

Oct. 1811. His chief work, the History of Antiquity, 1852-57,

thoroughly abolishes the old distinction of sacred and profane

history, and freely criticises the Jewish records. A translation in

six volumes has been made by E. Abbot. Duncker took an active part

in the events of '48 and '50, and was appointed Director-General of

the State Archives. Died 24 July, 1886.


Dupont (Jacob Louis), a French mathematician and member of the

National Convention, known as the Abbé Dupont, who, 14 Dec. 1792,

declared himself an Atheist from the tribune of the Convention. Died

at Paris in 1813.


Dupont de Nemours (Pierre Samuel), French economist, b. Paris, 14

Dec. 1739. He became President of the Constituent Assembly, and was

a Theophilantrophist. Died Delaware, U.S.A., 6 Aug. 1817.


Dupuis (Charles François), French astronomer and philosopher,

b. Trie-le-Chateau, 16 Oct. 1742. He was educated for the Church, which

he left, and married in 1775. He studied under Lalande, and wrote on

the origin of the constellations, 1781. In 1788 he became a member of

the Academy of Inscriptions. At the Revolution he was chosen a member

of the Convention. During the Reign of Terror he saved many lives at

his own risk. He was afterwards one of the Council of Five Hundred, and

president of the legislative body. His chief work is on the Origin of

Religions, 7 vols., 1795, in which he traces solar worship in various

faiths, including Christianity. This has been described as "a monument

of the erudition of unbelief." Dupuis died near Dijon, 29 Sept. 1809.


Dutrieux (Pierre Joseph), Belgian physician, b. Tournai, 19 July,

1848. Went to Cairo and became a Bey. Died 1 Jan. 1889.


Dutton (Thomas), M.A., theatrical critic, b. London, 1767. Educated

by the Moravians. In 1795 he published a Vindication of the Age of

Reason by Thomas Paine. He translated Kotzebue's Pizarro in Peru,

1799, and edited the Dramatic Censor, 1800, and the Monthly Theatrical

Reporter, 1815.


Duvernet (Théophile Imarigeon), French writer, b. at Ambert

1730. He was brought up a Jesuit, became an Abbé, but mocked at

religion. Duvernet became tutor to Saint Simon. For a political

pamphlet he was imprisoned in the Bastille. While here he wrote a

curious and rare romance, Les Devotions de Mme. de Bethzamooth. He

wrote on Religious Intolerance, 1780, and a History of the Sorbonne,

1790, but is best known by his Life of Voltaire (1787). In 1793

he wrote a letter to the Convention, in which he declares that

he renounces the religion "born in a stable between an ox and an

ass." Died in 1796.


Dyas (Richard H.), captain in the army. Author of The Upas. He resided

long in Italy and translated several of the works of C. Voysey.


Eaton (Daniel Isaac), bookseller, b. about 1752, was educated at the

Jesuits' College, St. Omer. Being advised to study the Bible, he did

so, with the result of discarding it as a revelation. In 1792 he was

prosecuted for publishing Paine's Rights of Man, but the prosecution

fell through. He afterwards published Politics for the People, which

was also prosecuted, 1793, as was his Political Dictionary, 1796. To

escape punishment, he fled to America, and lived there for three years

and a half. Upon returning to England, his person and property were

seized. Books to the value of £2,800 were burnt, and he was imprisoned

for fifteen months. He translated from Helvetius and sold at his

"Rationcinatory or Magazine for Truths and Good Sense," 8 Cornhill,

in 1810, The True Sense and Meaning of the System of Nature. The Law

of Nature had been previously translated by him. In '11 he issued

the first and second parts of Paine's Age of Reason, and on 6 March,

'12, was tried before Lord Ellenborough on a charge of blasphemy

for issuing the third and last part. He was sentenced to eighteen

months' imprisonment and to stand in the pillory. The sentence evoked

Shelley's spirited Letter to Lord Ellenborough. Eaton translated and

published Freret's Preservative against Religious Prejudices, 1812,

and shortly before his death, at Deptford, 22 Aug. 1814, he was again

prosecuted for publishing George Houston's Ecce Homo.


Eberhard (Johann August), German Deist, b. Halberstadt, 31 Aug. 1739,

was brought up in the church, but persecuted for heresy in his New

Apology for Socrates, 1772, was patronised by Frederick the Great,

and appointed Professor of Philosophy at Halle, where he opposed

the idealism of Kant and Fichte. He wrote a History of Philosophy,

1788. Died Halle, 7 Jan. 1809.


Eberty (Gustav), German Freethinker, b. 2 July, 1806. Author of some

controversial works. Died Berlin, 10 Feb. 1887.


Echtermeyer (Ernst Theodor), German critic, b. Liebenwerda, 1805. He

studied at Halle and Berlin, and founded, with A. Ruge, the Hallische

Jahrbücher, which contained many Freethought articles, 1837-42. He

taught at Halle and Dresden, where he died, 6 May, 1844.


Edelmann (Johann Christian), German Deist, b. Weissenfels, Saxony,

9 July, 1698; studied theology in Jena, joined the Moravians,

but left them and every form of Christianity, becoming an adherent

of Spinozism. His principal works are his Unschuldige Wahrheiten,

1735 (Innocent Truths), in which he argues that no religion is of

importance, and Moses mit Aufgedecktem Angesicht (Moses Unmasked),

1740, an attack on the Old Testament, which, he believed, proceeded

from Ezra; Die Göttlichkeit der Vernunft (The Divinity of Reason),

1741, and Christ and Belial. His works excited much controversy, and

were publicly burnt at Frankfort, 9 May, 1750. Edelmann was chased

from Brunswick and Hamburg, but was protected by Frederick the Great,

and died at Berlin, 15 Feb. 1767. Mirabeau praised him, and Guizot

calls him a "fameux esprit fort."


Edison (Thomas Alva), American inventor, b. Milan, Ohio, 10

Feb. 1847. As a boy he sold fruit and papers at the trains. He read,

however, Gibbon, Hume and other important works before he was ten. He

afterwards set up a paper of his own, then became telegraph operator,

studied electricity, invented electric light, the electric pen,

the telephone, microphone, phonograph, etc. Edison is known to be an

Agnostic and to pay no attention to religion.


Eenens (Ferdinand), Belgian writer, b. Brussels, 7 Dec. 1811. Eenens

was an officer in the Belgian army, and wrote many political and

anti-clerical pamphlets. He also wrote La Vérité, a work on the

Christian faith, 1859; Le Paradis Terrestre, '60, an examination of

the legend of Eden, and Du Dieu Thaumaturge, '76. He used the pen

names "Le Père Nicaise," "Nicodème Polycarpe" and "Timon III." Died

at Brussels in 1883.


Effen (Justus van), Dutch writer, b. Utrecht, 11 Feb. 1684. Edited the

Misanthrope, Amsterdam, 1712-16; translated Robinson Crusoe, Swift's

Tale of a Tub, and Mandeville's Thoughts on Religion, 1722; published

the Dutch Spectator, 1731-35. Died at Bois-le-Duc, 18 Sept. 1735.


Eichhorn (Johann Gottfried), German Orientalist and rationalist, b. 16

Oct. 1752, became Professor of Oriental Literature and afterwards

Professor of Theology at Gottingen. He published Introductions to

the Old and New Testaments and A Commentary on the Apocalypse, in

which his criticism tends to uproot belief in the Bible as a divine

revelation. He lectured every day for fifty-two years. Died 25 June,



"Elborch (Conrad von)," the pseudonym of a living learned Dutch writer,

whose position does not permit him to reveal his true name. Born

14 Jan. 1865, he has contributed to De Dageraad (The Daybreak),

under various pen-names, as "Fra Diavolo," "Denis Bontemps," "J. Van

den Ende," etc. He has given, in '88, a translation of the rare and

famous Latin treatise, De Tribus Impostoribus (On Three Impostors)

[Jesus, Moses, and Muhammad], with an important bibliographic and

historical introduction.


"Eliot (George)," the pen-name of Mary Ann Lewes (née Evans) one of

the greatest novelists of the century, b. at Arbury Farm, near Griff,

Warwickshire, 22 Nov. 1819. In '41 the family removed to Foleshill,

near Coventry. Here she made the friendship of the household of

Charles Bray, and changed her views from Evangelical Christianity

to philosophical scepticism. Influenced by The Inquiry into the

Origin of Christianity, by C. C. Hennell (Bray's brother-in-law),

she made an analysis of that work. Her first literary venture was

translating Strauss' Leben Jesu, published in 1846. After the death

of her father ('49) she travelled with the Brays upon the Continent,

and upon her return assisted Dr. Chapman in the editorship of the

Westminster Review, to which she contributed several articles. She

translated Feuerbach's Essence of Christianity, '54, the only work

published with her real name, and also translated from Spinoza's

Ethics. Introduced by Herbert Spencer to George Henry Lewes, she

linked her life with his in defiance of the conventions of society,

July, '54. Both were poor, but by his advice she turned to fiction,

in which she soon achieved success. Her Scenes of Clerical Life, Adam

Bede, Mill on the Floss, Silas Marner, Romola, Felix Holt, Middlemarch,

Daniel Deronda, and Theophrastus Such have become classics. As a poet,

"George Eliot" does not rank so high, but her little piece, "Oh,

may I join the choir invisible," well expresses the emotion of the

Religion of Humanity, and her Spanish Gipsy she allowed was "a mass

of Positivism." Lewes died in 1878, and within two years she married

his friend, J. W. Cross. Her new happiness was short-lived. She died

22 Dec. 1880, and is buried with Lewes at Highgate.


Ellero (Pietro) Italian jurisconsult, b. Pordenone, 8 Oct. 1833,

Counsellor of the High Court of Rome, has been Professor of Criminal

Law in the University of Bologna. Author of many works on legal and

social questions. His Scritti Minori, Scritti Politici and La Question

Sociale have the honor of a place on the Roman Index.


Elliotson (John, M.D., F.R.S.), an eminent medical man, b. London,

1791. He became physician at St. Thomas's Hospital in 1822, and made

many contributions to medical science. By new prescriptions of quinine,

creasote, etc., he excited much hostility in the profession. He was

the first in this country to advocate the use of the stethoscope. He

was also the first physician to discard knee-breeches and silk

stockings, and to wear a beard. In '31 he was chosen Professor at

University College, but, becoming an advocate of curative mesmerism,

he resigned his appointments, '38. He was founder and President of the

London Phrenological Society, and, in addition to many medical works,

edited the Zoist (thirteen vols.), translated Blumenbach's Physiology,

and wrote an introduction to Engledue's Cerebral Physiology