Essay on the Evils of Popular Ignorance.


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FOSTER, JOHN. An Essay on the Evils of Popular Ignorance. By John Foster. London: Printed by J.S. Hughes, 66, Paternoster Row; for B.J. Holdsworth, 18, (South Side,) St. Paul's Church-Yard; and sold by William Oliphant, and Adam Black, Edinburgh; and Chalmers and Collins, Glasgow. 1820. Octavo, 15 x 23.1cm. Bound original textured brown cloth spine with gilt lettering and plain gray paper over boards, chipped & worn through cloth at spine ends--consolidated with flexible book adhesive, worn through paper at corners and spots on edges of covers--also consolidated with book adhesive, two small holes (2mm) in spine cloth, spine cloth faded from brownish maroon to a light tan, untrimmed page edges, light foxing. Bookplate of Rutgers College Library "Present by Prof. P. T. Austen, Ph.D." His name stamp on front free endpaper. "Withdrawn" stamp over library bookplate. Collation: 7 unsigned leaves, B-U8, 1 leaf ads; errata slip tipped in after title page. Pagination: (1) half-title, (1) blank, (1) title, (1) blank, [v]-xiii advertisement, (1) blank, [1]-304pp, (2)pp List of Books Publ. by Holdsworth. First Edition. John Foster (1770-1843) English Baptist minister & author. "In 1792 he commenced preaching, and officiated among the Baptists at Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Dublin, Chichester, Downend, near Bristol, and Frome in Somersetshire, in succession. Obliged by a glandular affection of the neck to discontinue preaching, he retired to Stapleton, near Bristol, and here he devoted himself to literary composition, for which few have been so well qualified.... In 1819 sic [1820] appeared the Essays on the Evils of Popular Ignorance... This the author considered his best work, and is the one by which he wished his literary claims to be estimated. The fact of its not having sold so well as his other Essays, was, he used to say, a proof of Popular Ignorance. The author was not the only admirer of his performance: 'A work which, popular and admired as it confessedly is, has never met with the thousandth part of attention which it deserves. It appears to me that we are now at a crisis in the state of our country and of the world, which renders the reasoning and exhortations of that eloquent production applicable and urgent beyond all power of mine to express--Dr. J. Pye Smith'"--Allibone's Critical Dict. of Engl. Lit. and British and American Authors, p.621. "He [Foster] became involved in a controversy between the Serampore missionaries and the committee of the Baptist Missionary Society, strongly siding with the missionaries... Foster's opinions were often controversial. He believed that `churches are useless and mischievous institutions, and the sooner they are dissolved the better' (letter, 10 Sept 1828). Though a Baptist minister, he never once administered baptism; nor did he believe in eternal punishment or the rite of ordination. Politically, he was a republican, and `never ceased to regard royalty and all its gaudy paraphernalia as a sad satire on human nature' (letter, 22 Feb 1842). He favoured parliamentary reform, Catholic emancipation, and popular education, and opposed the corn laws. The Bristol Mirror called him `an unaffectedly great and good man'.--Thomas Hamilton, `Foster, John (1770-1843)', rev. Jessica Hinings, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 [, accessed 21 Feb 2013] (17667)

Title: Essay on the Evils of Popular Ignorance.

Author Name: FOSTER,JOHN



Edition: First Edition

Publisher: J. S. Hughes: 1820

Binding: Cloth spine with paper over boards

Size: Octavo, 15 x 23.1cm

Book Number: 17667