The Trial of Thomas Paine, For a Libel, Contained in the Rights...
by Trial; Paine, Thomas, Defendant
1792. One of the Earliest Accounts of Thomas Paine's Trial [Trial]. Paine, Thomas [1737-1809], Defendant. The Trial of Thomas Paine, For a Libel, Contained in the Second Part of Rights of Man, Before Lord Kenyon, And a Special Jury, At Guildhall, December 18. With the Speeches of the Attorney General and Mr. Erskine, At Large. London: Printed for C. and G. Kearsley, Fleet Street, 1792. [ii], 45,  pp. Octavo (8-1/4" x 5-1/4"). Stab-stitched pamphlet in later plain wrappers. Light soiling and some edgewear, a few minor inkstains. Light toning to text, light soiling to title page and verso of final leaf. A nice copy. * The first part of Paine's Rights of Man did not generate much controversy when it was published in March 1791. Unnerved by the course of the French Revolution, the British government reacted differently was when the second part appeared in February 1792. At this point Pitt's administration did what it could to suppress the influence of radical thought in Great Britain. Following this policy, the government indicted Paine on charged with seditious libel. Though he fled to France, he was tried in absentia. Though represented by Thomas Erskine, who offered a skillful and impassioned defense, he was found guilty. Paine's conviction was the first of many show trials that aimed to suppress the publications and other acts of political radicals. The present account of Paine's trial is one of the earliest, one of three (possibly five) issued in 1792, two of them by Kearsley. English Short-Title Catalogue N13831. (Inventory #: 65871)
Law & Legal History, International Law, Trials, Americana, Criminology, Early Printed Law Books, Legal Ephemera, Manuscripts: Law, Political Science
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