Saturday, July 31, 2010

DeFoe Pilloried

Daniel DeFoe ended the month of July 1703 in a pillory, found guilty of seditious libel, largely in the pamphlet "The Shortest-Way with the Dissenters".  High Church Tories were this pamphlet's main targets.   Reportedly, the public barraged DeFoe with flowers, rather than something more disgusting during his confinement. 

Walter Scott had no say in Defoe's punishment, but he did make some critical comments regarding his work:  "Defoe seems to have written too rapidly to pay the least attention to his circumstances; the incidents are huddled together like paving-stones discharged from a cart, and as little connexion between the one and the other."

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