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S.A. Bent, comp. Familiar Short Sayings of Great Men. 1887.

William Penn

  • [The founder of Pennsylvania; born in London, Oct. 14, 1644; educated at Oxford; joined the Quakers; obtained a grant of land in America in payment of a claim against government; sailed 1682, and made a treaty with the Indians on the site of Philadelphia; returned 1684, and obtained relief for Quakers from James II.; tried for treason, but acquitted; visited America, 1699; died 1718.]
  • The Tower is to me the worst argument in the world.

  • When threatened with imprisonment for joining the Quakers. Of their preachers he said, “Poor mechanics are wont to be God’s great ambassadors to mankind.”
  • When asked why he, an “ingenious” gentleman, joined the “simple” Quakers, he replied, “I prefer the honestly simple to the ingeniously wicked.”
  • The maxim on which he preached religious toleration in Pennsylvania was, “Whoever is right, the persecutor must be wrong.”