Date of Award

Summer 1981

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



Committee Director

John W. Kuehl

Committee Member

Peter C. Stewart

Committee Member

James R. Sweeney

Call Number for Print

Special Collections LD4331.H47 S78


Timothy Dwight and Jedidiah Morse were New England Congregational clergymen during America's early national period. Due to their criticisms of the French Revolution and their belief in a fictional plot by the Bavarian Illuminati to destroy religion and civil government both men have been judged by historians as backward-looking, unenlightened reactionaries. The evidence, however, reveals that Dwight and Morse were well educated, devoted to the advancement of learning, and filled with great visions of America as God's New Israel, destined to lead the zest of the world into religious and civil liberty. They espoused the ideology of Christian Republicanism and, in the 1790's, waged a battle against what they believed to be the anarchic principles of the French Revolution. They fought license in order to preserve liberty.


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