Monday, April 24, 2006

On April 24 in 1649

On this day in 1649, the assembly of the province of Maryland passed the Maryland Toleration Act. From our vantage point in 2006, the "Toleration Act" seems pretty intolerant! While this law made it a crime to jeer or ridicule others "in a reproachfull manner relating to matter of Religion", the death penalty could be enforced on anyone who denied the Trinity. Nevertheless, in its day the "Toleration Act" offered more religious freedom to the citizens of Maryland than possessed by those in England.

*Note: Yale's Avalon Project gives the date as September 21st.

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