1902 Encyclopedia > Quakers

Quakers




QUAKERS. The Quakers, or, as they call themselves, the Society of Friends, are a body of Christians small in number but presenting several features of interest. To the student of ecclesiastical history they are curious as exhibit-ing a form of Christianity widely aberrant from the preva-lent types, and as a body of worshippers without a creed, a liturgy, a priesthood, or a sacrament; to the student of social science they are interesting as having given to women an almost equal place with men in their church organization, and as having attempted to eliminate war, oaths, and litigation from their midst. The student of English constitutional history will observe the success with which they have, by the mere force of passive resistance, obtained from the legislature and the courts indulgence for all their scruples and a recognition of the legal validity of their customs; whilst to the student of American history the Quakers will ever be remarkable for the pro-minent part they played in the colonization of New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

History.—The history of Quakerism in England may conveniently be divided into four periods :—(1) from the first preaching of Fox in 1648 to the establishing of a church organization in 1666; (2) from that date to the Revolution of 1688; (3) from the Revolution to 1835; and (4) from 1835 to the present time.

1. George Fox (q.v.), the son of a weaver of Drayton in Leicestershire, was the founder of the Quakers. He began to preach in 1648, and in a few years gathered around him a great body of followers and a considerable number of itinerant preachers like himself, who zealously promul-gated his doctrines. Amongst these Edward Burrough, was one of the most remarkable. In 1655 these preachers num-bered seventy-three. Fox and his fellow-preachers spoke whenever opportunity offered — sometimes in churches, sometimes in barns, sometimes at market-crosses. There is some evidence to show that the arrangement of this mission, as it would now be called, rested mainly with Fox, and that the expenses of it and of the foreign missions were borne out of a common fund. Margaret Fell, the wife and afterwards the widow of Judge Fell—who sub-sequently married George Fox—opened her house at Swarthmore Hall, near Ulverston, to these preachers, and probably contributed largely to the common fund from which the expenses were paid. Fox's teaching was primarily a preaching of repentance; and he and his friends addressed vast congregations much as Wesley and Whitefield did at a later date. But his teaching had certain marked peculiarities—especially his insistence on the universality and sufficiency of the light of God's Spirit. He regarded the work in which he was engaged as in no wise the founding of a new sect or society, but, to use his own words, as " the appearance of the Lord's everlasting truth, and breaking forth again in His eternal power in this our day and age in England." Such teaching and such views necessarily brought Fox and his friends into direct conflict with all the religious bodies of England, and they were continually engaged in strife with the Pres-byterian ministers who then filled the pulpits of English churches, with the Independents, with the Baptists, with the Episcopal Church, and with the wilder sectaries, like the Fifth Monarchy men, the Ranters, the Seekers, and the Muggletonians. This strife was conducted on both sides with a zeal and an acerbity of language not consoaant with our present notions of decorum. The movement was accompanied, too, by most of those physical symptoms which usually go with vehement appeals to the conscience and the emotions of a rude multitude. The trembling amongst the listening crowd caused or confirmed the name of Quakers given to the body: men and women some-times fell down and lay grovelling on the earth and struggling as if for life. But the Quaker preachers seem not to have encouraged these manifestations, but rather to have sought to assuage them by such reasonable means as carrying the affected to bed or administering a cordial or medicine.

Some of the early Quakers indulged in eccentricities and extravagances of no measured kind. Some travelled and preached naked or barefoot or dressed in sackcloth; others imitated the Hebrew prophets in the performance of symbolical acts of denunciation or warning; even the women in some cases distinguished themselves by the impropriety and folly of their conduct. In some cases religious excitement seems to have produced or been attended by insanity, and the aberrations of Naylor and Ibbit can only be attributed to that cause. For, though not altogether free from acts of fanaticism, the Quaker leaders discouraged and disowned the grosser acts of enthusiasm.

The activity and zeal of the early Quakers were not confined to England; they passed into Scotland and Ireland. Fox and others travelled to America and the West Indian Islands; another reached Jerusalem, and testified against the superstition of the monks ; Mary Fisher, " a religious maiden," visited Smyrna, the Morea, and the court of Mohammed IV. at Adrianople; others made their way to Rome; two women suffered imprisonment from the Inquisition in Malta; two men passed into Austria and Hungary; and William Penn, George Fox, and others preached Quakerism in Holland and Germany.

As early as 1652 meetings of the followers of Fox, calling themselves at first the Children of Light, gathered together in various places in England, and were soon established in considerable numbers. The meetings at Bristol were often attended by from three to four thousand people.

2. The second period in the history of Quakerism is marked by the introduction into the body, hitherto unorganized, of an organization and a discipline principally due to the mind and energy of Fox, by a more scholarly and learned air given to the Quaker productions by the writings of William Penn and Robert Barclay, and by the part which the Quakers played in the colonization of New Jersey and of Pennsylvania. It is not wonderful that the introduction of an organization and a discipline met with great opposition amongst a people taught to believe that the inward light of each individual man was the only true guide for his conduct. The project met with some oppo-sition at the time, and at a later period (1683), from persons of considerable reputation in the body. Wilkin-son, Rogers, Story, and others raised a party against Fox as regards the management of the affairs of the society, and asserted that the meetings for discipline which had been established were useless, and that every man ought to be guided by the Spirit of God in his own mind, and not to be governed by rules of man. They drew a consider-able following away with them, but the greater number adhered to their original leader.

Robert BARCLAY (q.v.), a Scotsman of family, who had received a polite education, principally in France, joined the Quakers about 1666, and William PENS (q.v.) joined the body about two years later. The Quakers had always been active controversialists, and a great body of tracts and papers was issued by them; but hitherto they had not been of much account in a literary point of view. Now the writings of Barclay, especially his celebrated Apology for the True Christian Divinity (1675), published by him in Latin and English, and the works of William Penn (amongst which his No Cross no Crown was one of the best known) gave to the Quaker literature a more logical and a more scholarly aspect.

One peculiarity of the conduct of the Friends down to the Revolution of 1688, and more or less down to the present time, must not be overlooked. They were essenti-ally non-political. They opposed the most dogged per-sonal and individual resistance to what they thought wrong; but they never attempted by combination or otherwise to exert political influence. " Keep out of the powers of the earth" was Fox's exhortation3 and, when in 1688 a discussion was introduced into the yearly gathering of the body on the choice of parliament men, Fox strenuously opposed the introduction of politics into the meetings of his followers.
During the whole time between the rise of the Quakers and the passing of the Toleration Act they were the objects of an almost continuous persecution, which they endured with extraordinary constancy and patience. In 1656 Fox computed that there were seldom less than a thousand in prison, and it has been asserted that between 1661 and 1697 13,562 Quakers were imprisoned, 152 were transported, and 338 died in prison or of their wounds. Having come into being after the death of Charles I., the Quakers first endured persecution under the Parliament and then under Cromwell. In 1645 an ordinance of the Parliament had made the directory of the Westminster divines obligatory ; and ordinances of the years 1646 and 1648 were passed for the preventing of blasphemies and heresies, which comprehended under these hard names some doctrines afterwards promulgated by the Quakers, as that the two sacraments of baptism and the Lord's supper are not commanded by the word of God, and that the use of arms for defence, be the cause ever so just, is unlawful. Furthermore these or other ordinances of the Parliament placed the decision of questions as to tithes in the hands of the justices of the peace. The instrument of government under which Cromwell assumed power as the Lord Protector had held out a promise of protection in the exercise of their religion to '' such as professed faith in God by Jesus Christ" (art. 37); and the Protector himself, in a speech addressed to Parliament on the 12th September 1654, had declared liberty of conscience to be a natural right; nevertheless the Quakers found that they were still the subjects of bitter per-secution. They were sometimes dealt with under the ordinances already referred to, sometimes as Sabbath-breakers because they travelled to their meetings for worship, sometimes as disturbers of the clergy in their office because they spoke in churches, sometimes as guilty of breaches of the peace because they preached in streets or markets, sometimes for refusing to pay tithes, sometimes for refusing to take off their hats, sometimes for refusing to swear. So matters remained till the Restoration of Charles II., when the publication from Breda of his declaration for liberty of conscience again raised hopes of ease in the hearts of the Friends. But these hopes were again destined to disappointment. The laws under which the Quakers were persecuted during the revived Stuart period were (1) the common law, (2) the old legislation in ecclesi-astical matters which was revived on Charles's accession, (3) the special legislation of the period, and (4) the ecclesiastical laws as administered by the ecclesiastical courts. In the first class was the general law as to breakers of the peace ; in the second class may be mentioned the statute of 6 Hen. VIII. by which im-prisonment was appointed as a punishment for non-payment of tithes, the statute of Elizabeth imposing the oath of supremacy, the Act of Uniformity passed in the first year of Elizabeth, the Acts of the 23rd and 29th years of the same queen which im-posed fines and penalties for non-attendance of church and the statute of the 35th year of Elizabeth by which an obstinate offender in that matter was made a felon without benefit of clergy, and, lastly, the statute of 3 James I. imposing the oath of alle-giance. (3) The special legislation during this period under which the Quakers suffered included (a) a statute 13 & 14 Car. II. c. 1, especially directed against them and punishing their refusal to take an oath, or the taking part in assemblies for worship, with fine, and a second conviction with an obligation to abjure the realm, or transportation to any of the king's plantations ; (b) the Act of Uniformity (13 & 14 Car. II. c. 4), more stringent than that of Elizabeth ; (c) the Five-Mile Act passed in 1665 (17 Car. II. c. 4) ; and, lastly, the Conventicle Act of 1670 (22 Car. II. c. 1). (4) The ecclesiastical courts, on the return of the Stuarts, were restored to their former vigour, and Quakers were continually proceeded against in them for non-payment of tithes, oblations, and other church claims, and also for non-attendance at the parish churches, and for contempt of the discipline and censures of the church. Many of their body were accordingly excommunicated, and under the writ do excommunicato capiendo confined to prison.
The passing of the Conventicle Act gave fresh vigour to the persecution of Dissenters. But, on loth March 1671-72, King Charles II. issued his declaration for suspending the penal laws in matters ecclesiastical, and shortly afterwards by pardon under the great seal released above four hundred Quakers from prison, remitted their fines, and released such of their estates as were forfeited by praemunire. The dissatisfaction which this exercise of the royal prerogative created induced the king in the following year to recall his proclamation, and the suffer-ings of the Quakers revived ; and, notwithstanding repre-sentations and appeals to King Charles II., the persecution contiuued throughout his reign. On the accession of James II., the Quakers addressed him with some hope from his known friendship for William Penn, and pre-sented to him a list of the numbers of their members undergoing imprisonment in each county, amounting in all to fourteen hundred and sixty. King James not long afterwards directed a stay of proceedings in all matters pending in the Exchequer against Quakers on the ground of non-attendance on national worship. In 1G87 came the king's celebrated declaration for liberty of conscience, and in the following year the Revolution, which put an end to all persecution of the Quakers, though they remained for many years liable to imprisonment for non-payment of tithes, and though they long laboured together with other Dissenters under various disabilities—the gradual removal of which is part of the general history of England.





The Toleration Act was by no means the only legisla-tion of the reign of William and Mary which brought ease to the Quakers. The legislature early had regard to their refusal to take oaths; and from 1689 to a very recent date numerous enactments have respected the peculiar scruples of the Friends. This special legislation may be conveniently studied in Davis's Digest of Legislative Enact-ments relating to Friends (Bristol, 1820). _ 3, With the cessation of persecution in 1689 the zeal of the Quaker body abated. Foreign missions had no existence except in the occasional travels of some wandering minister. The notion that the whole Christian church would be absorbed in Quakerism, and that the Quakers were in fact the church, passed away; and in its place grew up the conception that they were " a peculiar people " to whom had been given a clearer insight into the truths of God than to the professing Christian world around them, and that this sacred deposit was to be guarded with jealous care. Hence the Quakerism of this period was mainly of a traditional kind: it dwelt with increasing emphasis on the peculiarities of dress and lan-guage which tended to shut Quakers off socially from their fellow-men; it rested much upon discipline, which developed and hardened into rigorous forms; and the correction or exclusion of its members was a larger part of the business of the body than the winning of converts either to Christi-anity or to Quakerism.

Excluded from political life by the constitution of the country, excluding themselves not only from the frivolous pursuits of pleasure but from music and art in general, with no high average of literary education (though they produced some men of eminence in medicine and science, as Dr Fothergill and Dr Dalton), the Quakers occupied themselves largely with trade, the business of their society, and the calls of philanthropy. In the middle and latter part of last century they founded several institutions for the more thorough education of their children, and entered upon many philanthropic labours.

During this period Quakerism was sketched from the outside by two very different men. Voltaire (Dictionnaire Philosophique, s.vv. "Quaker," "Toleration") has described the body, which attracted his curiosity, his sympathy, and his sneers, with all his brilliance. Clarkson (Portraiture of Quakerism) has given an elaborate and sympathetic ac-count of the Quakers as he knew them when he travelled amongst them from house to house on his crusade against the slave trade.

4. It cannot be denied that the theology of Quakerism had become somewhat mystic and quietist during the long period we have just considered. About the year 1826 an American Quaker named HICKS (q.v.) openly denied the divinity of Christ, depreciated the value of the Scrip-tures, and recognized no other Saviour than the inward light. A large body of the American Quakers followed him, and still maintain a separate existence. It was this movement which led to a counter movement in England, known in the Quaker body as the Beacon controversy, from the name of a book published in 1835, advocating views more nearly akin to those known as evangelical than were held by many Quakers. A considerable discussion ensued, and a certain number of the Friends holding these more evangelical doctrines departed from the parent stock, leaving, however, behind them many influential members of the society who strove to give a more evangelical tone to the Quaker theology. Joseph John Gurney, by his various writings (some published before 1835), was the most prominent actor in this movement. This period lias also been marked, especially within the last few years, by some revival of aggressive action, and Quakers have taken far more part in the teaching in Sunday schools, in the preaching of the gospel to the poor, and in the establish-ment of foreign missions than in the period immediately preceding. In 1847 an association was established to promote Sunday schools in the body; in 1859 a Friends' foreign mission was established; and the Quakers have now a few regular labourers in Madagascar, India, Syria, and Constantinople.

Other causes have been at work modifying the Quaker body. The repeal of the Test Act, the admission of Quakers to parliament, the establishment of the university of London, and more recently still the opening to Dis-senters of Oxford and Cambridge, have all operated on the body. It has almost entirely abandoned its peculiarities of dress and language; the cultivation of music and the other arts is no longer discouraged except by a very few; and literary and scientific tastes have been cultivated all the more because their attention was not preoccupied with the love of field sports or of dancing. In fact a number of men either Quakers or of Quaker origin and proclivi-ties, large in proportion to the small body with which they are connected, occupy positions of influence in English society, and carry with them, not the fall body of Quaker doctrine, but some leaven of Quaker habits and thoughts and feelings.

Doctrine.—It is not easy to state with certainty the doctrines of a body which has never adopted any creed, and whose views have undoubtedly undergone from time to time changes more or less definite. But the accepted writings of its members and the statements as to doctrine contained in the Boole of Christian Discipline of the society furnish materials.

The most characteristic doctrine of Quakerism is undoubtedly this—that there is an immediate revelation of the Spirit of God to each individual soul, that this light is universal and comes both to the heathen and the Chris-tian, and thereby the love and grace of God towards man-kind are universal. It is almost needless to call attention to the direct antithesis between this doctrine of the Quakers and the various doctrines of election held by the Puritans, so that, if Quakerism be called the climax of Puritanism, it is so only as the rebound is the climax of the wave. From the doctrine of the sufficiency of the inward light proceed several other of the peculiar views of Quakers. They have denied the necessity and abstained from the practice of the sacraments of baptism and the Lord's supper. The one baptism, says Barclay (12th pro-position), " is a pure and spiritual thing, to wit, the baptism
of the spirit and fire of which the baptism of John was a figure which was commanded for a time, and not to continue for ever." " The communion of the body and blood of Christ," says the same author (13th proposi-tion), " is inward and spiritual, which is the participation of his flesh and blood by which the inward man is daily nourished in the hearts of those in whom Christ dwells, of which things the breaking of bread by Christ with his disciples was a figure."

But not merely do the Quakers dispense with the sacraments ; they exist without any priesthood or regular or ordained ministry; they allow the liberty of unlicensed preaching and prayer to every member of their society in their assemblies, and those in whom the body recognizes the true gifts are publicly acknowledged as ministers. But by this act they attain to no greater power in the society than they possessed before. By the strength and power of the light of God, says Barclay in his 10th pro-position, " every true minister of the gospel is ordained, prepared, and supplied in the work of the ministry; and by the leading, moving, and drawing thereof ought every evangelist and Christian pastor to be led and ordered in his labour and work of the gospel both as to the place where, the persons to whom, and as to the times when he is to minister."

The Quakers not only have no stated ministry, but they hold that no form of worship is so good as a patient waiting upon God in silence " by such as find no outward ceremony, no observations, no words, yea not the best and purest words, even the words of Scripture, able to satisfy their weary and afflicted souls." Hence, although per-mitting addresses from their members, they sit frequently silent both in family worship and in their meetings. Of late years, however, in some places passages from the Bible are read in their meetings for worship. Furthermore the Quakers maintain the equal right of women with men to preach and pray in their assemblies; and they cite the four daughters of Philip who prophesied, and other women who are mentioned in the New Testament as having laboured much in the Lord, as showing that their practice is in accord with that of the early church.

Refusing to acknowledge the ministry of the Estab-lished Church, and holding that they could thus best testify to " the spiritual reign and government of Christ," the Quakers refused to pay all church rates, tithes, and other ecclesiastical demands. To the year 1875 they maintained the same objection against tithe-rent charge, and then abandoned it.
The Quakers deny the lawfulness for a Christian of all war, defensive or otherwise, and have always refused, often at the expense of much suffering, to take any part in military matters; they equally deny the lawfulness for a Christian man to take any oath, even in a court of justice, and the law of England has long recognized their affirmations as giving validity to their evidence; they have denied themselves the cultivation of music, attend-ance at the theatres, and hunting, shooting, and field sports generally as vain amusements inconsistent with the gravity and seriousness of Christian life; they have insisted on the duty of using language not only free from that profanity which was so common until lately but stripped of all flattery and purged of all dross of heathen-ism ; they enforced the duty of plainness of dress and of excluding from it, and from the modes of salutation and address, everything calculated to satisfy vanity.

The result of these doctrines on Quaker manners was notorious, and proved a continual source of objection to them on the part of their fellow-men, and frequently led to persecutions. They adopted the singular number in addressing a single individual, however exalted; and the " thou" and " thee" used to a magistrate or a judge was often a cause of great irritation. They refused to say "good night," "good morrow," or "good speed"; they adopted a numerical nomenclature for the months of the year and the days of the week. They refused to bow or to remove their hats, and for this they suffered much. They forbore the drinking of healths, not merely as a vanity, but as " a provocation to drink more than did people good." They adopted a remarkable simplicity in their marriages and their funerals. They used also great plain-ness in their houses and furniture and in their dress; and, by their tenaciously adhering to forms of attire which had fallen into disuse, their dress both for men and women became antique and peculiar, and Quakers were easily re-cognized as such by the garments they wore. Further-more they discarded the usual symbols of grief on the death of their relations.

One point of morality on which the Friends have long insisted deserves notice. They require their members who may have been released from their debts by bank-ruptcy or composition, when able to pay their debts in full, to do so notwithstanding their legal discharge.

In the great doctrines of Christianity embodied in the apostles' creed the Quakers are in accord with their fellow-Christians : they believe in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, in the atonement by Christ, and in sanctification by the Spirit; they receive and believe the Scriptures as proceeding from the Spirit of God. A letter addressed by George Fox and others to the governor of Barbados in 1671 (Journal, 1st ed., p. 358), and the " General Advices" in the Book of Discipline, may usefully be consulted on this point.

Organization and Discipline.—The duty of watching over one another for good was insisted on by the early Friends, and has been embodied in a system of discipline. Its objects embrace (a) exhortation and admonition to those who walk contrary to the standard of Quaker ethics, and the exclusion of obstinate or gross offenders from the body, and as incident to this the hearing of appeals from individuals or meetings considering them-selves aggrieved; (6) the care and maintenance of the poor and provision for the Christian education of their children, for which purpose the society has established numerous boarding schools in different parts of the country; (c) the amicable settlement of " all differences about outward things," either by the parties in contro-versy or by the submission of the dispute to arbitration, and the restraint of all proceedings at law between members except by leave; (d) the recognition of ministers as such; (e) the cognizance of all steps preceding marriage according to Quaker forms; (/) the registration of births, deaths, and marriages; (g) the issuing of certificates or letters of approval granted to ministers travelling away from their homes, or to members removing from one meeting to another; and (A) the management of the pro-perty belonging to the society. The present organization of the Quaker church is essentially democratic—it has not and never had any president or head; and in theory every person born of Quaker parents is a Quaker and entitled to take part in all the general assemblies of the body. The members are grouped together in a series of subordinated meetings which recall to the mind the Pres-byterian model. The unit is known as a " particular meeting"; next in order comes " the monthly meeting," usually embracing several particular meetings called to-gether, as its name indicates, monthly; then " the quarterly meeting," embracing several monthly meetings; and lastly " the yearly meeting," embracing the whole of Great Britain. Representatives are sent from each inferior to each superior meeting; but all Quakers may attend and take part in any of these meetings. This system is double, each meeting of " men Friends" having its counterpart in a meeting of "women Friends"; and they usually meet at the same time, and join together in the devotional gatherings which take place before or after the meetings for discipline. The mode of conducting these meetings is noteworthy. There is ho president, but only a secretary or clerk ; there are no formal resolutions; and there is no voting. The clerk ascertains what he con-siders to be the judgment of the assembly, and records it in a minute.

The offices known to the Quaker body are—(1) that of minister; (2) of elder, whose duty it is " to encourage and help young ministers, and advise others as they in the wisdom of God see occasion"; and (3) overseers to whom is especially entrusted that duty of Christian care for and interest in one another which Quakers recognize as obligatory in all the members of a church. These officers hold from time to time meetings separate from the general assemblies of the members.

This present form both of organization and discipline has been reached only by a process of development. The quarterly or general meetings seem to have been the first union of separate congregations. In 1666 Fox established monthly meetings. In 1672 was held the first yearly meeting in London. In 1675 certain " canons and institu-tions" were issued to the quarterly meetings. In 1727 elders were first appointed. In 1752 overseers were added; and in 1737 the right of children of Quakers to be considered as Quakers was fully recognized. From t these dates it is obvious that the last century saw a vigor-ous development of the disciplinary element in Quaker-ism ; it was probably the time of greatest rigour as regards external matters and of the greatest severity in punishing so-called delinquencies. In Aberdeen the meet-ing entered on their minutes an elaborate description of what was and what was not to be endured in the dress of men and women; and York quarterly meeting was so disturbed at the presence of young women in long cloaks and bonnets that they were ordered to take advice before coming to York, and one monthly meeting directed that those young women who intended to go to York were to appear before their own meeting "in their clothes that they intend to have on at York."

Of late years the stringency of the Quaker discipline has been relaxed: the peculiarities of dress and language have been abandoned; marriage with an outsider has ceased to be a certain ground for exclusion from the body; and, above all, many of its members have come to " the conviction, which is not new, but old, that the virtues which can be rewarded and the vices which can be punished by external discipline are not as a rule the virtues and the vices that make or mar the soul" (Hatch, Bampton Lectures, 81).

The Quakers maintain that their system of church government and of discipline is in close accordance with that of the early church. That it has some great differ-ences cannot be denied, especially when we think of baptism and the Lord's supper; that it has some import-ant points of likeness, especially in the care of each member for the others arid in the maintenance of the poor, is equally certain. The portraiture of the early Christian church recently drawn by Dr Hatch in his Bampton Lectures is in many respects likely to recall the lineaments of Quakerism.

Philanthropic Interests.—A genuine vein of philanthropy has always existed in the Quaker body. In nothing has this been more conspicuous than in the matter of slavery. George Fox and William Penn laboured to secure the religious teaching of slaves. As early as 1676 the assembly of Barbados passed "An Act to prevent the people called Quakers from bringing negroes to their meetings." John Woolman laboured amongst the Quakers of America for the liberation of the slaves with the most winning tenderness. The Quakers were the first Christian body that purged themselves of the stain of dealing in slaves. As early as 1780 not a slave was owned by any Friend in England or America with the knowledge and consent of the society. In 1783 the first petition to the House of Commons for the abolition of the slave trade and slavery went up from the Quakers; and throughout the long agitations which ensued before that prayer was granted the society took an active and pro-minent part.





In 1798 Lancaster opened his first school for the education of the poor; and the cause of unsectarian religious education found in the Quakers steady support. They have taken also an active part in Sir Samuel Romilly's efforts to ameliorate the penal code; in prison reformation (1813), with which the name of Elizabeth Fry is especially connected; in the efforts to ameliorate the condition of lunatics in England (the Friends' Retreat at York, founded in 1792, having been remarkable as an early example of kindly treatment of the insane) ; and in many other phil-anthropic movements.

One thing is noteworthy in Quaker efforts for the education of the poor and philanthropy in general: whilst they have always been Christian in character, they have not to any considerable extent been used as a means of bringing proselytes within the body.
Quakerism in Scotland.—Quakerism was preached in Scotland very soon after its rise in England; but in the north and south of Scotland there existed independently of and before this preaching groups of persons who were dissatisfied with the national form of worship and met together in silence for devotion. They naturally fell into this society. In Aberdeen the Quakers took considerable hold, and were there joined by some persons of influence and position, especially Alexander Jaffray, some time pro-vost of Aberdeen, and Colonel David Barclay of Ury and his son Robert, the author of the Apology. Much light has been thrown on the history of the Quakers in Aber-deenshire by the discovery in 1826 at Ury of a MS. Diary of Jaffray, since published with elucidations (2nd ed., London, 1836).

Ireland.—-The father of Quakerism in Ireland was William Edmondson; his preachings began in 1653-54. The History of the Quakers in Ireland (from 1653 to 1752), by Wright and Rutty, may be consulted.

America.—The earliest appearance of Quakers in America is a remarkable one. In July 1656 two women Quakers, Mary Fisher and Ann Austin, arrived at Boston. Under the general law against heresy their books were burnt by the hangman, they were searched for signs of witchcraft, they were imprisoned for five weeks and then sent away. During the same year eight others were sent back to England.

In 1657 and 1658 laws were passed to prevent the introduction of Quakers into Massachusetts, and it was enacted that on the first conviction one ear should be cut off, on the second the remaining ear, and that on the third conviction the tongue should be bored with a hot iron. Fines were laid upon all who entertained Quakers or were present at their meetings. Thereupon the Quakers, who were perhaps not without the obstinacy of which Marcus Antoninus complained in the early Christians, rushed to Massachusetts as if invited, and the result was that the general court of the colony banished them on pain of death, and four Quakers, three men and one woman, were hanged for refusing to depart from the jurisdiction or obstinately returning within it. That the Quakers were irritating cannot be denied : some of them appear to have publicly mocked the institutions and the rulers of the colony and to have interrupted public worship ; and some of their men and women too acted with fanaticism and disorder. But even such conduct furnishes but a poor apology for inflicting stripes and death on men and women. The particulars of the proceedings of Governor Endicott and the magistrates of New England as given in Besse are startling to read. On the Restoration of Charles II. a memorial was presented to him by the Quakers in England stating the persecutions which their fellow-members had undergone in New England. Even the careless Charles was moved to issue an order to the colony which effectually stopped the hanging of Quakers for their religion, though it by no means put an end to the persecution of the body in New England.

It is not wonderful that the Quakers, persecuted and oppressed at home and in New England, should turn their eyes to the unoccupied parts of America, and nourish the hope of founding amidst their woods some refuge from oppression and some likeness of a city of God upon earth. In 1671-73 George Fox had visited the American planta-tions from Carolina to Rhode Island and had preached alike to Indians and to settlers ; and in 1674 a moiety of New Jersey was sold by Lord Berkeley to John Fenwick in trust for Edward Byllinge. Both these men were Quakers, and in 1678 Fenwick with a large company ol his co-religionists crossed the Atlantic, sailed up the Dela-ware, and landed at a fertile spot which he called Salem. Byllinge, having become embarrassed in his circumstances, placed his interest in the State in the hands of Penn and others as trustees for his creditors, and they invited buyers, and companies of Quakers in Yorkshire and London were amongst the largest purchasers. In 1677-78 five vessels with eight hundred emigrants, chiefly Quakers, arrived in the colony (then separated from the rest of New Jersey under the name of West New Jersey), and the town of Burlington was established. In 1677 the fundamental laws of West New Jersey were published, and recognized in a most absolute form the principles of democratic equality and perfect freedom of conscience. Notwith-standing certain troubles from claims of the governor of New York and of the duke of York, the colony prospered, and in 1681 the first legislative assembly of the colony, consisting mainly of Quakers, was held. They agreed to raise an annual sum of £200 for the expenses of their commonwealth ; they assigned their governor a salary of £20; they prohibited the sale of ardent spirits to the Indians, and forbade imprisonment for debt.

But beyond question the most interesting event in connexion with Quakerism in America is the foundation by William PENN (q.v.) of the colony of Pennsylvania, where he hoped to carry into effect the principles of his sect—to found and govern a colony without armies or military power, to reduce the Indians by justice and kindness to civilization and Christianity, to administer justice without oaths, and to extend an equal toleration to all persons professing theism. Such was " the holy experiment," as Penn called it, which he tried, and which seemed as if it was destined to put Quakerism to practical proof. In 1681 he obtained a grant of the colony from Charles II., and in the following year settled the frame of government for the State and sailed for America. Here he entered into his celebrated treaty of unity with the Indians, " le seul traité entre ces peuples et les Chrétiens qui n'est point été juré et qui n'est point été rompu." What was the result of this attempt to realize Quaker principles in a new country and on a virgin soil 1 The answer is in some respects indecisive. During the time that the Quaker influence was predominant, and for seventy years after the founda-tion of Pennsylvania, the Indians are said never to have taken the life of a white man ; and once when five hundred Indians were assembled to concert a massacre they were turned from their purpose by six unarmed Friends. From England and Wales, from Scotland and Ireland, from the Low Countries and the banks of the Rhine, where Penn's missionary visit had made a deep impression, emigrants crowded to Pennsylvania ; in two years Philadelphia had risen to be a town of six hundred houses, and in three years from its foundation that city had increased more than New York in fifty years ; and the first century of the life of the colony exhibited in an unusual degree a scene of happiness and peace. But, on the other hand, little progress was made in winning the Indians to Christianity, and the annals of the infant State were full of petty quarrels and jealousies. Penn was a feudal sovereign, having over him a Stuart king as his lord paramount at home, and the absolute democracy which he had estab-lished as his immediate dependents beneath him. In such relations there were necessarily elements of difficulty, and soon dissensions broke out between the governor and the colonists ; a popular party was headed by members of the Quaker body and opposed the founder, and the influx of members of other religious persuasions led to dissensions in the assembly. The officials of the Court of Admiralty set up claims at variance with Penn's notions ; differences broke out between the province properly so-called and the territories which afterwards became .the State of Delaware. Penn was engaged in protracted quarrels as to the bound-aries of his State; the English crown made requisitions on the colonists for men and money to support the war in America against France. Penn was during some years suspended by the crown from his rights as governor; his son and one of the deputy governors whom he sent out disgraced themselves by their licentious conduct; the colony gradually passed away from under the influence of Quakerism; and Penn's " Civitas Dei" faded into an American republic. For many years large numbers of Quakers emigrated from England to America. The most noteworthy incidents in their history are the part which they have taken in that movement which has ended in the abolition of slavery in the United States and the interest which they have exhibited in the native Indians.

France.—The origin of the few Quaker congregations which exist in France is curious. It seems that amongst the Camisards were found a few who disapproved of the military operations by which their friends resisted the persecution of Louis XIV., who believed in a spiritual light, who met for silent worship, and in other respects were like Quakers. Certain it is that towards the end of last century a small body of persons holding these views and these practices existed at Congenies and other villages at the foot of the Cevennes. During the war between England and France conse-quent on the American struggle for independence a Quaker was part owner in two luggers, which, against his protests, were employed as privateers and captured two valuable prizes ; he took his share of the spoil, invested and accumulated it, and on the conclusion of peace in 1783 advertised in the Gazette de France for the owners of the captured ships. This advertisement came to the knowledge of the little body at Congenies, and hence a communication was estab-lished between the French and English Quakers. Probably about the same time certain American Quakers, on the invitation of the French Government, migrated from Nantucket to Dunkirk, for the purpose of extending the fisheries. A curious episode in Quaker history is the presentation, on 10th February 1791, to the National Assembly of a petition from these two bodies of French Quakers, and the reply of the president. The petition and answer were printed by Baudoin, printer to the Assembly.

Germany and Norway.—In both these countries exist small bodies of persons who have adopted the views and practices of the Quakers. These bodies date from early in the present century.

Statistics of Quakerism.—The number of Quakers in England and Wales in 1680 was probably about 40,000, and in 1806 about 32,000. In 1883 the total number of members in England, Wales, and Scotland was returned as 15,219 (193 were in Scotland), an increase of 106 on the previous year, and the number of habitual attendors of meetings of the body, not members, was 5380, an increase of 150. In Ireland there were, in 1883, 2812 Quakers. The Quakers in America number probably (including all bodies which claim to be Friends) from 90,000 to 100,000 and upwards. Besides these there are in Norway about 200, in France from 70 to 80, in Germany from 50 to 60, and in Australia and New Zealand from 500 to 600 Quakers.

Bibliography.—The writings of the early Quakers are numerous; the most note worthy are the Journal of George Fox and the Life of Thomas Ellwood, both autobiographies, the Apology of Robert Barclay, and the works of Penn and Penington. The History of the Quakers by William Sewel, a Dutch Quaker, was translated into English, and has gone through several editions; a History of the Quakers by Gough may ati be consulted. The Sufferings of the Quakers, by Besse (London, 1753), is the chief authority as to the persecutions they endured. The Peculiarities of the Society of Friends, and the other writings of Joseph John Gurney, exhibit the modern Evangelical Quakerism. The Book of Discipline of the Society, in its successive editions from 1782 to 1888, is the only authoritative statement of the views of the Society on Christian practice and church government, and a comparison of the different editions would throw light on the changes of sentiment in the body. The Inner Life of the Religious Societies of the Commonwealth (London. 1876), by Robert Barclay, a descendant of the apologist, contains much curious information about the Quakers. Smith's Descriptive Catalogue of Friends' Books (London, 1S67) gives the infoimation which its title promises. Bancroft's History of the Colonization of the United States may be consulted for the American history of Quakers. The periodicals now issued by members of the Quaker body in Great Britain are The Friend, The British Friend, Friends' Quarterly Examiner, and Friends' Review. (E. F.)


Footnotes

See Thomas Ellwood's Journal for an account of his sufferings in this matter, at once pathetic and ludicrous. 4

Woolman's Journal and Works are remarkable. He had a vision of a political economy to be based not on selfishness but on love, not on desire but on self-denial,




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