Thomas Paine was born at Thetford, Norfolk, on January 29, 1737. He was the son of a Quaker staymaker and he spent several years at sea after he tried some occupations on land. He only went to school up to the age of thirteen because he started to work for his father. After some time he took low-paying jobs in tax-collecting, and he winded up educating himself in his free time. Paine was fired for publishing an article arguing that raising tax-collectors’ salaries would reduce corruption in 1772. Thomas Paine eventually met Benjamin Franklin which was pretty much the turning point of his life.
Benjamin Franklin eventually convinced Paine to move to America at the age of 37. Thomas Paine wrote Right of Man in 1791, which was a guide to Enlightenment ideas. In 1973, his book The Age of Reason, argued against Christian doctrines. He has a claim to the title The Father of the American Revolution because of Common Sense, originally titled Plain Truth, which was the pro-independence monograph pamphlet he anonymously published on January 10, 1776. This quickly spread and it was the best selling work in eighteenth-century America.
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It made complex ideas understandable to average readers, with clear writing. He argued that the colonies should seek full independence from Britain. Common Sense supposedly convinced many who were unsure of the purpose of the war and played a profound role in influencing the opinion of laymen and lawmakers alike. It was one of the main reasons that caused the colonies’ decision to engage in a battle for complete independence. Thomas Paine died at the age of 72 in Greenwich Village, New York City on June 8, 1809.
He was buried in New Rochelle, New York because he had lived there since 1802 when he returned to America. Even though we know where he was initially buried, we do not know his resting place today because his remains were removed from the ground by an admirer looking to return them to England. In the book Common Sense, Paine began by distinguishing between government and society. He says that society is everything constructive and good that people join together to accomplish and the government is an institution whose sole purpose is to protect us from our own vices.
It says that government’s sole purpose is to protect life, liberty and property, and that a government should be judged only on the basis of the extent to which it accomplished this goal. Thomas Paine also has a scenario in the book where a small group of people have been placed on an island. They are cut off from society and it shows that people will develop ties with one another, and lawmaking becomes inevitable. It’s a way to show that we would be so much happier if we were responsible for the creation of the laws that rule them.
This is very interesting because I think it is true that if people are put together on an island away from everyone else, they will develop a way to live with rules and laws. There would have to be some kind of order, even if it isn’t written laws, they can just be laws and rules that are mutually agreed on. In the book he also argues that man was born into a state of equality, and the distinction that has arisen between king and subject is an unnatural one. He claims that there were never any kings until the Jews decided they wanted a king.
He concludes that monarchy originates from sin, and is an institution that the Bible and God condemn. He doesn’t like that they had hereditary succession, and claims it brought with it innumerable evils, such as incompetent kings, corruption, and civil war. He felt that if a person deserves certain honors, his children may not deserve them, and that person has no right to pass those honors on. Paine also proposed the form of government that the independent colonies should adopt.
He thought that a representative democracy that gives roughly equal weight to each of the colonies. Paine said that by declaring independence, America will be able to ask for the help of other countries in its struggle for freedom. He says it was very important and urgent that the colonies declared independence. And now a long time after we declared independence you can see what Thomas Paine was talking about and how things would and are better now that we are independent and have been so for many years. Common Sense sold half a million copies to a population of only 2. 5 million people. The book was very interesting and gives you a better understand on what really happened with everything and the American Revolution. A lot of people liked his ideas and followed his ideas when it came time for them to make decisions. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone that enjoys information on the American Revolution and U. S. history.