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By William J. Frost

Using a large choice of sources--laws, lawsuits, church documents, sermons, political tracts, diaries, newspapers, and executive records--Frost strains the improvement of non secular freedom in Pennsylvania from the founding of the colony as much as global battle II.

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Extra resources for A Perfect Freedom: Religious Liberty in Pennsylvania

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Quakers in the assembly attempted to defend their distinctive testimonies in a series of statutes protecting the right of diversity and the equality of all Protestant churches. By 1725 the outlines of the Pennsylvania pattern of church and state were clear and accepted as a given by virtually all denominations. The Pennsylvania pattern began with the theories of William Penn. There remained a Quaker tone to the government, but this rested upon 28 A PERFECT FREEDOM the free election of Friends to the assembly.

Because there was a time interval of up to five years before laws had to be submitted to the Privy Council, Quaker justices could function, at least during these intervals. 59 In 1711 the assembly yielded enough to guarantee that all who wished an oath should be allowed to take one. In 1714 the assembly passed two different affirmations, one using the name of God and one not, and the king did not disallow the law using the name of God. Queen Anne in an Order in Council had permitted affirmations to be substituted for oaths in THE CREATION OF RELIGIOUS LIBERTY IN PENNSYLVANIA 25 1702.

18 A PERFECT FREEDOM it was "convenient" and "suitable" for the inhabitants to build forts, and whether such defense was necessary. Two-thirds of the council and twelve of the proprietors had to agree. If they did, then the conduct of the military measures or war would be entrusted to the original committee who believed in defense. The pacifists would have no responsibility for the actual conduct of the war. " The law was a fascinating attempt, however unworkable in practice, to guarantee the civil and religious liberties of two groups.

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