The Shortest Way with the Dissenters  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

The Shortest-Way with the Dissenters; Or, Proposals for the Establishment of the Church, is a pamphlet by Daniel Defoe.

It purports to argue for the extermination of the church. In it he ruthlessly satirised both the High church Tories and those Dissenters who hypocritically practiced so-called "occasional conformity", such as his Stoke Newington neighbour Sir Thomas Abney.

Defoe's pamphleteering and political activities resulted in his arrest and placement in a pillory on 31 July 1703. According to legend, the publication of his poem Hymn to the Pillory caused his audience at the pillory to throw flowers instead of the customary harmful and noxious objects and to drink to his health. The historicity of this story is questioned by most scholars, although J. R. Moore later said that “no man in England but Defoe ever stood in the pillory and later rose to eminence among his fellow men.” Thomas Cochrane, the 10th Earl of Dundonald and famous Royal Navy officer, was sentenced to the pillory but was excused for fear his popularity would cause a riot.



Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "The Shortest Way with the Dissenters" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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