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Cultures in Conflict

Religion, History and Gender in Northern Europe c. 1800–2000

Edited By Alexander Maurits, Johannes Ljungberg and Erik Sidenvall

This book includes studies of main conflict areas in modern Western societies where religion has been a central element, ranging from popular movements and narratives of opposition to challenges of religious satire and anti-clerical critique. Special attention is given to matters of politics and gender. With this theme, it provides a useful guide to conflict areas in modern European religious history.

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Dennis Meyhoff Brink

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Dennis Meyhoff Brink

Religion’s safe, with Priestcraft is the War’: Satirical Subversion of Clerical Authority in Western Europe 1650−1850

Abstract Given the extraordinary dissemination of anticlerical satire in Europe, this chapter asks whether it may have had a formative influence on modern Europeans views of authorities, selves, values and rights. Has the long tradition of mockery of the church helped shape modern Europe? By examining some of the new ways in which the anticlerical satire of the enlightenment contested clerical authority, it is suggested that it paved the way for enlightenment in the Kantian sense, that is, as man’s emergence from his selfincurred tutelage.

Introduction

Europe has, by all accounts, had the most comprehensive tradition of anticlerical satire in the world. Already in the twelfth century, hundreds of anonymous anticlerical satires circulated in Spain, Italy, France, Germany, England, and many other European countries.1 By satirizing various kinds of clerical authorities, including the pope and the cardinals, the anonymous satirists of the twelfth century initiated a tradition that would last for centuries and become more widespread and common in Europe than anywhere else.

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In the sixteenth century, anticlerical satire had its first great boom in Europe when the spread of the printing press and the outbreak of the Reformation turned a hitherto relatively insignificant tradition into a veritable mass phenomenon.2 While print culture evolved much later in other parts of the world, European printers published literary works and illustrated pamphlets and broadsheets of anticlerical satire by the thousands already in the sixteenth century.3 This tradition of mass-produced and extensively disseminated anticlerical satire increased over the following centuries and culminated in the nineteenth century, when the invention of the rotary press, the decline in prices of printed material, and the spread of reading abilities, newspapers, and satire magazines made it almost impossible for Europeans who lived in major cities to avoid being exposed to the abundance of anticlerical images and narratives that circulated in society.

Given the extraordinary production and dissemination of anticlerical satire in Europe, it seems reasonable to ask whether this may have had a formative influence on modern European individuals and societies. Has the fact that European satirists have ridiculed priests and popes for centuries affected the way modern Europeans view and relate to clerical (and non-clerical) authorities? Has the continuous circulation of anticlerical satire in Europe had an impact on our conceptions of ourselves? Has the increasingly ubiquitous mockery and scorn of the church influenced our modern European values or our notion of political rights?

In an attempt to answer these questions, I will argue that the lasting impact of anticlerical satire on modern Europe began in the early Enlightenment with the emergence of a new kind of anticlerical satire that left its target undefined, which meant that it could be understood as an attack on the entire clergy (section I). After the spread of this method of indefiniteness, clerical leaders began to fear anticlerical satire to such a degree that even traditional satirical attacks on well-defined religious rivals were increasingly perceived as threats to the Christian church and religion as such (section II). Nonetheless, anticlerical satire became more and more widespread throughout the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, increasingly contesting the fundamental Christian role allocation between the clergy and the laity viewed as shepherds and sheep (section III). By continuously questioning this role allocation and encouraging the members of the laity to step out of their acquired roles as subservient sheep, anticlerical satire contributed, I will argue, to the process of enlightenment in the Kantian sense, that is, as man’s emergence from his self-incurred tutelage (section IV).

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I.The Method of Indefiniteness

When anticlerical satire became a mass phenomenon in the sixteenth century, the satirical attacks were almost always directed against specific and identifiable authorities or groups such as, for instance, the Roman curia, the abbots and monks, the Lutherans, or the Calvinists. To the audience of the satires of the Reformation and Counter-Reformation there was hardly ever any doubt about which side of the conflict a given satire was meant to support.4

Almost all the satirical broadsheets and pamphlets that flooded Europe in the sixteenth and early seventeenth century were either clearly anti-Catholic or clearly anti-Protestant. Thus, when a satirical broadsheet from the middle of the sixteenth century purported to depict ‘The Origin of the Monks’ (Figure 1), it was clear to everyone that it was anti-Catholic.5 It depicted Pluto, the ruler of the underworld in classical mythology, sitting on a scaffold relieving himself by excreting a vast pile of monks onto the ground. According to the accompanying verses, the ruler of the underworld once suffered severe abdominal pains ‘as if he were pregnant,’ and when he was finally able to relieve himself and observe the result, he noticed that the monks were even worse than him; should they gather in his kingdom, he would be expelled himself, and he therefore saw to it that they were scattered throughout the world. By depicting the monks, a distinctively Catholic kind of clergy, as the excrement of a devil that had been spread throughout the world like a kind of hellish slurry, it was obvious that the satire was profoundly anti-Catholic.

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On the other hand, when a satirical broadsheet from the 1620s showed Martin Luther with a massive drinking cup in his hand and a belly of such gigantic proportions he had to carry it in a barrow (Figure 2), there could be no doubt that the satire was profoundly anti-Protestant.6 Not only was Luther portrayed as a drunkard susceptible to the deadly sin of gluttony; the presence of his wife, the runaway nun Katharina von Bora, carrying one of their six children, may also suggest that he was susceptible to the deadly sin of lust. Perhaps the satire might even suggest that the entire Reformation was really instigated to satisfy this kind of vulgar and sinful inclinations. In any case, it was unmistakable that the satire was anti-Protestant. Thus, it was virtually always clear who the many illustrated broadsheets and pamphlets of the Reformation and Counter-Reformation were meant to satirize.

Fig. 1: Anonymous anti-Catholic satire depicting ‘The Origin of the Monks’ (ca. 1545).

Even the more complex literary satires of contemporary humanist authors such as Erasmus of Rotterdam and François Rabelais generally ridiculed beliefs associated with Catholicism; and although some passages in their works, especially in Rabelais’ Gargantua and Pantagruel, can be interpreted as ridiculing Protestant beliefs, the main trend of the age was surely to ridicule the beliefs of one confession while committing to the other. Neither among the audience of the popular illustrated broadsheet and pamphlets of the period nor among the audience of literary satires by, for instance, Thomas Murner or Johann Fischart was there any real doubt about whose side the satirists were on.

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This situation changed dramatically about halfway into the seventeenth century. After the peace of Westphalia put an end to the Thirty Years’ War in 1648, the confessional conflicts between Protestants and Catholics gradually receded into the background. As intellectual historian Jonathan Israel has put it:

Fig. 2: Anonymous anti-Protestant satire depicting Martin Luther carrying his gigantic belly in a barrow. No title (c. 1620−1630).

Whereas before 1650 practically everyone disputed and wrote about confessional differences, subsequently, by the 1680s, it began to be noted by French, German, Dutch, and English writers that confessional conflict, previously at the centre, was increasingly receding to secondary status and that the main issue now was the escalating contest between faith and incredulity.7

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As a consequence of this general shift, it became increasingly rare to publish satirical works that attacked an unequivocally defined Protestant or Catholic camp. Instead, a more ambiguous kind of anticlerical satire began to circulate in numerous European countries. In this new kind of anticlerical satire, it was often not clear whether the target under attack was this or that particular clerical group or the clergy as such. The actual target of the anticlerical satires of the early Enlightenment was frustratingly often open to interpretation, and, as a consequence, the satirists were increasingly accused of attacking the entire Christian church or even the Christian religion in general.

The French playwright Molière was among the first to adopt what I will call the method of indefiniteness. In his satirical comedy, Tartuffe, which was performed for the first time in 1664 in front of a small audience at Versailles, Molière ridiculed a religious hypocrite by the name of Tartuffe without making it clear whether he was a Catholic, a Protestant, a Jesuit, a Jansenist or something else. In Molière’s play, Tartuffe was simply described as a man who tried to pass himself off as a true devout in order to fool a credulous man named Orgon, steal his property, and seduce his wife. Still, Tartuffe was not entirely indefinite. Because Orgon regards him as his spiritual director and religious guide, thereby bestowing the traditional pastoral role of the shepherd of a flock on him, it was practically impossible not to associate him with some kind of clergy. However, it remained fundamentally uncertain whether he was to be associated with this or that clerical group. As the literary historian Andrew Calder has put it, Molière’s method was ‘to portray a set of follies and vices and leave his audiences to decide who might be guilty of them. If the cap fits, wear it.’8

By omitting to specify who the cap was made for, all clerics could potentially regard it as made for them. And as this method of indefiniteness became increasingly widespread among the satirists of the early Enlightenment, anticlerical satire –which had been a popular weapon among both Protestant and Catholics clerics during the Reformation and Counter-Reformation –suddenly became exceedingly unpopular among clerics of all kinds. In the second half of the seventeenth century, Protestant and Catholic clergymen suddenly agreed that anticlerical satire was not only a threat to the church but also to the faith, to morality, and to the social order.9

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This radical change in the prevailing ecclesiastical attitude toward satire was intertwined with a general rise of skeptical attitudes toward church and religion in the early Enlightenment. While it had been safe, in the age of the Reformation and Counter-Reformation, to assume that an anti-Catholic satire was pro-Protestant and vice versa, this was no longer certain in the early Enlightenment. Now, the satirist might also belong to, or at least be inspired by, the growing host of libertines, freethinkers, deists, and other half or closet atheists, who began to make their voices heard in public. In this new cultural context, ecclesiastical suspicion toward satire grew immensely. Even satirists who, according to themselves, only exposed the hypocrisy or superstition that everyone agreed existed in clerical circles now regularly had to defend themselves against accusations of undermining the church or the religion as such.

Molière also had to defend himself against this kind of accusations. Less than a week after the first performance of Tartuffe in May 1664, King Louis XIV imposed a ban on his comedy after pressure from clerical circles, not least from the archbishop of Paris, Hardouin de Péréfixe.10 In August 1664, the Parisian priest Pierre Roullé even issued a pamphlet in which he described Molière as ‘the most pronounced disbeliever and libertine that ever existed’ and accused him of having written ‘a play that derides the whole Church’ and ‘seeks to bring down the Catholic religion by condemning and mocking its most religious and holy practice which is the guidance and directions of souls,’ the traditional role of the pastor as shepherd of a flock. According to Roullé, Molière deserved to be ‘executed publicly’ for his play about Tartuffe, more specifically, to be ‘burned’ at the stake ‘before burning in the fires of hell.’11 Although this proposal was surely fanatical, it was not a completely idle threat as the satirical author Claude Le Petit had been burned for blasphemy in Paris as recently as September 1662.12

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In his defense, Molière argued that he had only exposed a hypocritical impostor who abused religion for personal gain. According to Molière, the play was therefore in accordance with the moral purpose of all comedy, which was to ‘correct men while entertaining them.’13 Nevertheless, Molière’s petition to the king was in vain. Louis XIV maintained the ban, and Molière had to rewrite his comedy. On 5 August 1667, a revised version called l’Imposteur was then performed in Palais-Royal in Paris, but already on the following day this version was banned as well. Six days later, on 11 August 1667, the archbishop of Paris, Hardouin de Péréfixe, issued an Ordonnance to be posted on the walls of Paris and read from its pulpits. It was the first official ecclesiastical condemnation of Molière’s play, and it declared that whoever performed, read, or heard Molière’s play would be excommunicated.14 According to the archbishop, such draconian measures were necessary because Molière had written

a very dangerous play that is all the more likely to cause harm to religion owing to the fact that, while claiming to condemn hypocrisy, or false devotion, the play provides grounds to accuse indiscriminately all those who profess the most steadfast piety and thereby exposes them to the continual mockery and slander of the libertines.15

Not unlike Roullé, Péréfixe argued that Molière’s play did not only expose the hypocrites to ‘mockery and slander’ but also ‘all those’ good people ‘who profess the most steadfast piety.’ Even if Molière only intended to attack hypocrisy, which Péréfixe seems to doubt, his attack was likely to ramify into an attack upon the clergy as such. Whatever the intention, the satirical attack could neither be controlled nor contained. As the literary critic Northrop Frye would argue many years later, ‘any really devout person would surely welcome a satirist who cauterized hypocrisy and superstition as an ally of true religion. Yet once a hypocrite who sounds exactly like a good man is sufficiently blackened, the good man also may begin to seem a little dingier than he was.’16 Péréfixe seems to have had a similar thought, namely that a well-executed satirical attack on a faux devot was likely to affect all devout persons, which was why Molière’s play was ‘very dangerous.’

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In spite of ecclesiastical fear of, and hostility toward, his comedy, Molière did not give up, and in 1669, after another rewriting of the play, he finally obtained the king’s permission to perform and publish Tartuffe ou l’imposteur as the play was now called. When Louis XIV finally lifted his five-year-old ban, the play became an immediate success. Theaters in Paris were filled to the brim, and within a year Tartuffe was translated into English and performed in theaters in London.17 In fact, the story about the impostor called Tartuffe soon became so well-known and so talked-about that Tartuffe’s name turned into a concept. Thus, the Dictionnaire de l’Académie française from 1694 describes ‘Tartufe’ as ‘a newly introduced word referring to a person who pretends to be devout, a hypocrite.’18 Similarly, the Oxford English Dictionary informs us that English writers referred to clergymen as ‘Tartuffs’ and used the concept of ‘Tartuffism’ as early as in 1688.19 In the course of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, Europeans often spoke of tartuffism, and on the brink of the twentieth century German Molière-readers such as Friedrich Nietzsche and Victor Klemperer would still use the concept of ‘Tartüfferie.’20

The fact that the name of Molière’s main character turned into a concept in several European languages not only indicates how widespread the story of Tartuffe became, it also shows how deep an impression it made on the European imagination. As soon as one had read or seen Tartuffe ou l’imposteur it was almost impossible not to associate allegedly pious men, and not least the men of the church, with tartuffism. As the story about Tartuffe became known all over Europe, it is therefore likely to have spread a more skeptical or even suspicious view of clerical authorities. Whatever Molière’s intention may have been, the effect of his play about the imposter Tartuffe may very well have been a general weakening of the trustworthiness and authority of the clergy and therefore also a weakening of the power of the church. In other words, the archbishop of Paris may not have been entirely mistaken when he claimed that Molière’s play was likely to cause harm –not only to the faux devots but also to the Christian church and religion as such.

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II.The Functional Transformation of Anticlerical Satire in the Early Enlightenment

To many clergymen of the second half of the seventeenth century, it seemed as if anticlerical satire had acquired a kind of rub-off effect which meant that whenever a member of a clerical group was blackened by satire it would rub off on all members of all clerical groups. Within a few decades, the fear of this kind of uncontainable blackening through satire grew so strong that members of one clerical group could no longer freely satirize members of another –a practice that had been common and appreciated for centuries. By 1700, however, even satirists employing the traditional praxis of mocking rival churches could reasonably expect being accused of blackening the clerisy as such.

This was indeed what happened to the anonymous author who published a satire called A Tale of a Tub in 1704. Unlike Molière, this anonymous author, who later turned out to be Jonathan Swift, ridiculed definite and identifiable clerical groups, first and foremost the Roman Catholics and the English Dissenters. As Swift was also an ordained priest in the Anglican Church of Ireland, his satire was in fact an attack by a member of one clerical group on members of other clerical groups. Nevertheless, Swift was immediately accused of blackening the entire clergy and even of weakening the power of the Christian faith. According to the prominent critic and theologian William Wotton, who responded when it was still unknown who had written A Tale of a Tub, the satire was ‘one of the Prophanest [sic] Banters upon the Religion of Jesus Christ, as such, that ever yet appeared.’21 Wotton was convinced that the satire would not only affect the Roman Catholics and the Protestant Dissenters but also the Anglican Church and the Christian faith, possibly even the faith of the author himself:

I abhor making Sport with any way of worshipping God, and he that diverts himself too much at the Expense of the Roman Catholics and the Protestant Dissenters, may lose his own Religion e’re he is aware of it, at least the Power of it in his Heart […]. I would not so shoot at an Enemy, as to hurt my self [sic] at the same time.22

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When the author of A Tale of a Tub was ‘making Sport’ with the Catholics and the Dissenters it might seem harmless, but according to Wotton it was likely to make the author and presumably also his readers lose their religion. In other words, it was not only the boundary between satire on rival churches and satire on the Anglican Church that was porous, so was the boundary between anti-clericalism and atheism. Once a satirist had entered the slippery slope of anticlerical satire, he and probably also many of his readers were already on their way into the arms of atheism. In a similar vein, the prominent philosopher and Anglican clergyman Samuel Clarke argued that irreverent ‘Deists’ such as the author of the ‘impious and profane’ Tale of a Tub were virtually en route to atheism: ‘As their Opinions can terminate consistently in nothing but downright Atheism; so their Practice and Behaviour is exactly agreeable to that of the most openly professed Atheists.’23

Although Wotton surely agreed with Clarke on this point, he also pointed out that anticlerical satire had not always been like a slippery slope ending in atheism. In the age of the Reformation and Counter-Reformation, when there was no real risk that people would lose their religion, clergymen had rightfully perceived satirical attacks on rival churches as beneficial to their own cause. In the present age, however, when there was a real risk that people might lose their religion, which was evident from the emergence of freethinkers, deists and the like, a satire such as A Tale of a Tub was likely to contribute to the already ongoing subversion of the Christian faith, even if it was only attacking Catholics and Dissenters. As Wotton put it:

[T] ho’ the Rage and Spight [sic] with which Men treated one another was as keen and as picquant [sic] then [i.e. at the beginning of the Reformation] as it is now, yet the Inclination of Mankind was not then irreligious, and so their Writings had little other effect but to encrease [sic] Men’s hatred against any one particular Sect, whilst Christianity, as such, was not hereby at all undermined.24

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Despite his universal condemnation of A Tale of a Tub, Wotton did not regard the satire as any worse than the anticlerical satires that flooded Europe in the wake of the Reformation. According to him, the ‘Rage and Spight’ of anticlerical satire had not changed substantially since then. What had changed and worsened, according to Wotton, was the cultural context in which they appeared. For in the age of the Reformation and Counter-Reformation ‘the Inclination of Mankind’ had not been ‘irreligious,’ but in the present age it was, and as a consequence, the function of anticlerical satire had changed fundamentally even if its substance remained the same. In an age where libertinism, freethinking, deism, and other kinds of closet atheism were on the rise, a satire like A Tale of a Tub would no longer just increase ‘Men’s hatred against any one particular Sect’ but help undermine ‘Christianity, as such.’ Now, even so-called conservative satires ridiculing only those clerics who deviate from the established norms obtained a deeply ‘subversive’ function because they inevitably contributed to the ongoing subversion of the Christian church and faith.25

Within a decade after the publication of A Tale a Tub, a whole host of critics –not only William Wotton and Samuel Clarke but also William King, Charles Gildon, John Dennis, Richard Blackmore and many more –argued that the author of A Tale of a Tub made all kinds of religious practices and beliefs fall under the suspicion that they were merely part of a ruse perpetrated through the centuries by greedy, self-important, power-hungry priests. The author thus seemed to employ the same strategy as contemporary freethinkers and deists such as John Toland, Matthew Tindal, John Asgill, and Anthony Collins. They too claimed to spare religion while attacking the clergy for having fooled credulous believers for centuries. As Toland put only four years before the publication of A Tale of a Tub: ‘Religion’s safe, with Priestcraft is the War.’26

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The deist war on ‘priestcraft’ –a term they used to refer to priestly craftiness and cunning –was, however, universally denounced as a covert attack on religion itself. In 1683 a whole collection of deist tracts was burned at Oxford in the last great auto-da-fé in England, and in 1696 Toland’s deist treatise Christianity not Mysterious was burned by both the English and Irish Parliaments, while orders were issued for his prosecution as a ‘public and inveterate enemy to all reveal’d religion.’27 With such events in recent memory, Swift was put in something of a bind when Clarke classified him as a ‘Deist’ and Wotton claimed he ‘copie[d] from Mr. Toland.28 And it only worsened his situation that ‘Divinities & University-Men’ soon began to group ‘the Author of ye Tale of a Tub’ with ‘Toland, Tindal, Asgil’ as the correspondence of the Third Earl of Shaftesbury reveals.29 What was Swift to do in this precarious situation? Should he come out as the author of A Tale of a Tub and try to defend himself? He was certainly eager to win renown as a satirist, but he risked losing all respectability (and all possibilities for employment) as a clergyman.

In the end Swift, like Molière, tried to defend himself. In 1710 he published an Apology in which he argued that he had only ridiculed what his critics already ‘preach[ed] against,’ namely ‘the Follies of Fanaticism and Superstition’ which he, in particular, associated with Catholic and Dissenting clerics.30 Furthermore, he argued that ‘the Clergy’s Resentments’ would have been better employed on the ‘heavy, illiterate Scriblers [sic]’ spreading ‘false, impious Assertions, mixed with unmannerly Reflections upon the Priesthood, and openly intended against all Religion,’ that is, on the increasingly inescapable freethinkers and deists.31 In this way, Swift tried to convince his fellow Anglicans that they actually fought the same enemies, namely the Catholics and Dissenters on the one hand, and the freethinkers and deists on the other. Nevertheless, Swift’s Apology did not produce a lot of converts. Although Clarke removed his reference to A Tale of a Tub in all future editions of his Discourse Concerning the Unchangeable Obligations of Natural Religion, it was undoubtedly an expression of a widely held opinion when John Dennis in 1712 continued to argue that A Tale of a Tub ‘was writ with a Design to banter all Religion,’ or when the Whiggish newspaper The Britain in a response to Anthony Collins’ Discourse of Free-Thinking from 1713 declared that the only difference ‘between the Free Thinker and the Tale of a Tub is, that the one would Reason us, and the other laugh us out of our Religion.’32

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Numerous sources confirm that A Tale of a Tub soon became a succès de scandale, or as Roger D. Lund has put it: ‘As the eighteenth century moved forward, Swift’s presumed violation of the proscriptions against religious ridicule became the stuff of legend.’33 By 1710, it had been republished in five editions in only six years and unleashed a major public debate involving prominent critics, clergymen, philosophers, and poets. In the subsequent decades it would give occasion to recurring debates as well as to several ‘keys’ to its understanding and ‘additions’ by other authors.34 In 1721 it was translated into French and denounced by numerous French critics but not by Voltaire who admired its ‘impious raillery.’35 In 1734, the French translation of A Tale of a Tub was placed on the Papal Index of Forbidden Books, which, however, did not hinder it from reaching its thirteenth reprint by 1764.36 In Germany, a first translation was published in 1729 and reprinted four times before a second translation came out in 1758 and a third in 1787.37 Although there were also some German critics who deplored its anticlerical satire, it was generally better received than in England and France, and by 1744 the encyclopedist Johann Heinrich Zedler could note that Swift had become ‘so well-known and popular […] that he is generally regarded as one of the greatest satirists.’38

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As A Tale of a Tub became known all over Europe, it is likely to have inspired thousands of Europeans to be more suspicious toward clerical authorities. Once the readers of Swift’s tale had learned to suspect Catholic and Dissenting clergymen of priestcraft, it was not clear why they should not suspect Anglican or other clergymen of the same. Did they not resemble one another in numerous ways, and did they not build on many of the same traditions? Once the mechanisms of suspicion were up and running, there did not seem to be any inherent or logical halt to them. In a sense, Swift himself had taught his readers to expand their field of suspicion. For while satirical predecessors like Molière had only suggested that there were certain imposters among the holy men of the present age, Swift had suggested that the Christian churches had been ruled by im-posters for centuries. Following his example, it was but a small step to suspect priesthood as such of priestcraft. In other words, Swift’s enemies may not have been entirely mistaken when they argued that the satirical attack of A Tale of a Tub would ramify into an attack on Christianity itself.

III.Undermining the Christian Role Allocation between Shepherds and Sheep

The erosion of clerical authority that began in the early Enlightenment continued and deepened throughout the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. With the rise of the novel, the newspaper, and the satirical magazine, clerical authorities were repeatedly exposed as hypocritical, imposturous, superstitious, fanatical, avaricious, lecherous and so on. More and more satirists even ventured to contest the very idea of clerical authority, including the basic role allocation on which it is founded. This is, for example, what is at stake in the satirical print Pull Devil, Pull Baker! or, Pastors versus Flocks in the Matter of Loaves & Fishes!! (1819) by the English satirist George Cruikshank (Figure 3).

The immediate occasion for this satire was the London Clergy Bill, which augmented the stipends of clerical incumbents.39 Yet, the imagery of the satire reaches far beyond the immediate situation. It draws upon the old Christian tradition of regarding ordinary believers as ‘sheep’ in a flock in need of a ‘shepherd’ or ‘pastor’ to lead them to salvation (‘pastor’ is simply the Latin word for ‘shepherd’).

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The history of this division of the Christians into a group of shepherds, that is, the clergy, and a group of sheep, that is, the laity, goes back to the Bible. In the Gospel of John, Jesus describes himself as ‘the good shepherd’ and before leaving earth he tells Peter to ‘take care of my sheep’, that is, to take over the pastorate by assuming the role of the shepherd of the flock.40 The church fathers combined these two narratives from the Gospel of John with a third narrative from the Gospel of Matthew in which Jesus says ‘you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church.’41 Combining these three narratives, church fathers like Augustine argued that Jesus had in fact handed over the role as the shepherd of the flock to the church.42 In the following centuries, the church therefore taught the Christianized Europeans to regard themselves as sheep in a flock in need of a shepherd, that is, of a pastor, to guide and lead them to salvation. As Michel Foucault has put it: ‘Over millennia Western man has learned to see himself as a sheep among sheep […] Over millennia he has learned to ask for his salvation from a shepherd.’43

Fig. 3: George Cruikshank: Pull Devil, Pull Baker! or, Pastors versus Flocks, in the matter of loaves and fishes!! (1819)

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By means of church insignia such as the crosier or shepherd’s staff, which was already in use in the early middle ages, clerical leaders reminded the churchgoers that Jesus himself had instated a certain difference among men, a kind of sacred hierarchy, which distinguished a small group of elect shepherds from the large group of ordinary sheep, or a small crowd of clerical leaders from a large flock of lay followers. In accordance with these divinely assigned roles, each party had to play their part. Being a good shepherd involved keeping the flock together, leading it to salvation, and, if needed, sacrificing oneself for each individual sheep.44 Being a good sheep, on the other hand, involved staying in the flock, following the directions of the shepherd, and being humble, submissive and obedient toward one’s shepherd. The more one was able to internalize the markedly Christian virtues of ‘humility,’ ‘submission,’ and ‘obedience’ and make them one’s own second nature, the better a sheep, that is, the better a Christian, would one be.45

Cruikshank’s satirical print obviously draws on the old Christian narrative of shepherds and sheep. It both employs and contests the ordinary believers’ image of themselves as sheep in a flock in need of a shepherd. On the one hand, they have internalized the Christian notion of them as sheep among sheep to such a degree that they have literally taken on the shape and form of sheep. On the other hand, they still have enough human nature in them to be capable of getting up on their two hind-legs (their two feet) to oppose the pastors on the right. By contrast, the pastors are exposed as treacherous hypocrites who do not behave as the good shepherds they claim to be. They are selfish rather than self-sacrificing, driven by greed and gluttony rather than care for their flock. Their bloated bodies and bulging pockets make plain that they have more than enough. They even stand in a river of ‘Milk and Honey’ while the sheep stand on dry land. Everything indicates that they already live in affluence, and yet they still try to pull a bag of loaves and fishes out of the hands of the sheep. However, to their great surprise, the sheep have stood up in protest, proving that they are still capable of breaking out of their acquired roles as humble, submissive, and obedient sheep.

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In his own way, Cruikshank thus staged what Foucault would later call ‘counter-conduct’ and define as a ‘struggle against the processes implemented for conducting others.’46 In Cruikshank’s satire, the sheep similarly struggle against certain processes implemented for conducting, directing, leading, and manipulating them. On the one hand, they struggle against their internalized sheep-ness, their incorporated docility, their second nature. On the other hand, they struggle against the privileged pastors and their seemingly insatiable avarice. By staging this double struggle in which the sheep are doing quite well, Cruikshank does not just blacken the clergy in a traditional anticlerical manner; he also shows that the members of the laity have an enemy within, an internalized sheep-ness, a kind of naturalized meekness and manageability, which they have to overcome in order to get up and oppose the imposturous pastors. Most importantly, however, the satire suggests that it is indeed possible to overcome the inner adversary and oppose the outer. In this way, Cruikshank put a memorable and inspirational image of the possibility of resistance into circulation. In a sense, he impregnated the European imagination with a promising picture of the possibility of becoming a self-directed human being rather than a submissive sheep, a citizen rather than a subject.

Cruikshank’s satire may not have opposed the role allocation between shepherds and sheep as such, but it certainly destabilized it. First of all, the sheep are no longer as humble, submissive, and obedient in Cruikshank’s satire as the church has taught them to be. On the contrary, they are full of indignation and contempt for their pastors, and they even have the nerve to show it, and to censure their shepherds with Bible quotes such as: ‘Woe unto you, Scribes & Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour Widows’ houses, & for a pretence make long prayers therefor ye shall receive the greater damnation’ (Matt. 23:14). The pastors, on the other hand, are evidently startled by the new attitude of the sheep, and one of them tellingly exclaims: ‘Dash my wig! Who would have thought the sheep had so much pluck as to oppose us!!’ Thus, the humility, submission, and obedience, which is supposed to be the kernel and heart of their sheep-nature, have given way to moral indignation and courage to oppose. In other words, the sheep-ness of the sheep is already eroding from within. And the traditional Christian virtues of humility, submission, and obedience are challenged, if not replaced, by more modern values such as liberty, independence, and self-determination.

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Cruikshank was far from the only satirist to put images of popular resistance against the clergy into circulation in his time. In the course of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, struggles against clerical authorities became an increasingly prevalent theme in anticlerical satire. On the one hand, anticlerical satirists ridiculed the ordinary believers’ tendency to behave like compliant sheep obeying every direction from their dubious shepherd. On the other hand, they invented a number of new inspirational heroes who, in spite of severe clerical resistance, managed to break out of their subjectivation as humble, submissive, and obedient sheep in need of a shepherd. This was a main theme in satirical novels such as Denis Diderot’s La religieuse [The Nun], published posthumously in 1796, and Karl Gutzkow’s Wally, die Zweiflerin [Wally, the Doubter], published as well as banned in 1835. It was also a main theme in an 1827 print by an unknown English satirist entitled The Champion of Religious Liberty Contending With the Imps of Bigotry!!! (Figure 4).

In this satirical print a young man in Roman armor fights Christian as well as Jewish and Muslim leaders. His obsolete uniform makes plain that he is only a soldier in a figurative sense, and the many mottos inscribed on his weapons and dress indicate that he fights with the means of the Enlightenment. Thus, his sword is ‘Truth & Sound argument,’ his shield is ‘Common Sense and the Rights of Man,’ his helmet is ‘Reason,’ his plume is ‘Independence,’ and so on. He has seemingly just hit a hideous woman, who looks like she came straight out of hell, and who is now lying on all fours. She has lost a mask of comely features and laments ‘Oh! Hell & Furies! I Shall never Recover this Blow.’ Behind her a fat parson reveals her identity by shouting ‘Fire away! and give Superstition time to recover. For she seems badly wounded, I hope it’s not mortal Or we are all done for.’ The Protestant parson is referring to the other religious leaders in the image, including a Catholic friar exclaiming ‘Our trade’s at stake!!! Down with him Shackle him,’ a Jewish high priest shouting ‘Oh the Monster! Dispute the mission of Moses! away with him Crucify him,’ and a turbaned figure, probably an Imam, who is riding through the air on a donkey, holding a sword in one hand and a book inscribed ‘Coran’ in the other while shouting ‘Wretch I’ll cut thee from the face of the Earth!’ That these intimidating religious leaders are ‘all done for’ if ‘Superstition’ does not ‘recover’ seems to suggest that all organized religion really rest on superstition.

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The viewer is unmistakably encouraged to sympathize with the courageous champion of the values of the Enlightenment. He is apparently not intimidated by the host of threats coming from the religious leaders, and the fact that he is about to be stabbed in the back by an alderman does not lessen his admirable bravery. On the contrary, it unveils that the despicable ‘imps of bigotry,’ mentioned in the title, do not even shy away from using foul play. Thus, they have apparently teamed up with a political leader who is also an enemy of religious liberty, the rights of man, common sense, independence, and all the other Enlightenment values represented by the young rebel in Roman armor. The fact that the political leader has ‘A Special Good Dagger’ may suggest that he is the only one who has the authority to ban things and jail people. According to Dorothy George, the satire is namely ‘a defense of Robert Taylor,’ a defrocked priest who was imprisoned for blasphemy in 1827, the chief prosecutor being the lord mayor of London, Anthony Browne, who, according to George, is probably the alderman stabbing the rebel in the back.47

Fig. 4: Anonymous: The champion of religious liberty contending with the imps of bigotry!!!

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Like Jonathan Swift, Robert Taylor was suspected of being an atheist priest. He had been ordained in 1813, but after reading books such as Thomas Paine’s Common Sense and The Rights of Man, quoted on the soldier’s shield, his sermons began to reveal deistic principles, and he was forced to give up his position in the Anglican church.48 In 1824, he became secretary and chaplain of a deist organization called Christian Evidence Society, where he gave sermons that were ‘antichristian in substance and mockingly irreverent in tone’ according to Joel Wiener.49 In 1827, he described Jesus as a ‘Jewish Vampire,’ which made Anthony Browne and a group of aldermen commence an action against him for blasphemy.50 This is probably the reason why the preacher in the pulpit in the background of the satire declares that ‘tis all Blasphemy’ while his congregation repeats ‘Yes its Blasphemy.’

Beyond this immediate context, however, the print also takes part in a larger cultural context. For it is also part of a growing tendency in the anticlerical satire of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century, namely a tendency to stage admirable acts of counter-conduct and invent courageous heroes of opposition. Such enactments and inventions were almost always intended to inspire and encourage its audience. When anticlerical satirists depicted opponents of the clergy as fearless heroes fighting for their rights, it was also an attempt to make the audience take these heroes as models for their own conduct. In other words, the anticlerical satirists tried to make the European sheep dare to think independently and go their own ways.

IV.How Anticlerical Satire Contributed to the Process of Enlightenment

In the course of the nineteenth century, anticlerical satires of this kind began to circulate by the thousands in the European public sphere. Hundreds of satirical magazines emerged in France, England, Germany, and many other countries, and the most popular ones would sell 40,000−50,000 copies a week and up to 250,000 on special occasions.51 In addition, satirical drawings were printed in newspapers, satirical plays were put up in theaters, satirical songs were sung in taverns, and satirical novels were read by an increasing number of literate Europeans. For a typical European living in a city, it was therefore almost impossible to avoid being confronted with anticlerical satire in some form or another. Everywhere, satirical images and narratives encouraged the Europeans to reject the old Christian virtues of humility, submission and obedience, and embrace the new values of the Enlightenment, not least the values of liberty, independence, and self-governance. In other words, an abundance of anticlerical satires urged the Europeans to step out of their internalized sheep-ness or their ‘self-incurred tutelage’ as Immanuel Kant had called it in his famous definition of the enlightenment from 1784:

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Enlightenment is man’s emergence from his self-incurred tutelage. Tutelage is the inability to use one’s own understanding without being led by another. This tutelage is self-incurred if its cause is not lack of understanding, but lack of resolution and courage to use it without being led by another. The motto of the Enlightenment is therefore: Sapere aude! Have courage to use your own understanding.52

With the double reference to ‘courage’ in his definition of enlightenment, Kant stressed that the process of enlightenment was not primarily inhibited by people’s lack of understanding (in the sense of rationality or intellect) but by their lack of courage to use their understanding without being led by another –for example, by one of the pastors who, over millennia, had taught them that the only way to salvation was to be led by them and that rejecting their leadership was tantamount to damnation. By means of this doctrine, the church had, over millennia, discouraged the Europeans from using their own understanding. As a consequence, Kant could note at the end of the eighteenth century that most of his contemporaries did not dare to use their understanding without being led by another –and especially not in matters of religion.53 Due to this lack of courage to think for oneself and govern oneself that Kant did not regard his own age as ‘an enlightened age’ but only ‘an age of enlightenment.54 According to him, enlightenment was indeed an ongoing process but it was also an uncompleted process since the majority of the population did not yet have the courage to think and act independently and thus to emerge from their self-incurred tutelage.

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However, as we have seen, the anticlerical satire of Kant’s time and especially of the century following his essay on enlightenment from 1784, aimed at mobilizing exactly the kind of courage, which, according to Kant, was necessary for the process of enlightenment to proceed and succeed. Taking the extraordinary circulation of anticlerical satire in modern Europe into account, it is therefore not unlikely that it contributed quite significantly to the process of enlightenment in Europe in the Kantian sense. When works of anticlerical satire became virtually omnipresent during the nineteenth century, and when an increasing number of them purported that it was possible to break out of the role as a compliant Christian sheep, it could hardly avoid inspiring some of them to emerge from their internalized sheep-ness, or, as Kant would say, from their self-incurred tutelage.

If the pastoral power of the Christian church has shaped the Europeans over millennia, as Foucault has claimed, then one might argue that the anticlerical satire of modern Europe has reshaped the very same Europeans. On the one hand, it has contributed to a gradual devaluation of traditional Christian virtues such as humility, submission, and obedience toward authorities. On the other hand, it has helped embolden Europeans to make use of their own understanding and to demand a higher degree of independence and self-determination. Admittedly, the impact of a single satire, even of a highly influential satire like Molière’s Tartuffe, may have been as weak as a drop of water on a stone, but when one drop after another has fallen on the same stone for centuries there will eventually be a hole in it. In a similar manner, the extraordinary amount of works of anticlerical satire that flooded Europe, especially in the nineteenth century, was probably a decisive factor in its cultural impact.

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Contrary to the prevailing notion of the Enlightenment as The Age of Reason, as Thomas Paine called it, the way in which anticlerical satire contributed to the process of enlightenment seems to have been less through rational argumentation than through emotional appeal and affective mobilization. When anticlerical satires depicted clerical leaders as hypocritical or imposturous, they evidently tried to evoke feelings of indignation or contempt toward them. And when they depicted acts of counter-conduct and opposition to ecclesiastical authorities as the admirable deeds of valiant heroes, they tried to mobilize the pluck or courage needed to follow their example. In both instances, anticlerical satire appealed to particular emotions or passions as they were typically called in Kant’s time. Courage was also regarded as a passion, which means that the main hindrance of the progress of enlightenment, according to Kant, was neither a lack of reason (Vernunft) nor a lack of understanding (Verstand) but a lack of a particular passion, namely courage.55 What was really needed, according to Kant, was a kind of affective reconfiguration of the Europeans –a reconfiguration that would make them less prone to be timid and submissive (like little sheep) and more prone to be courageous and resolute (like mature citizens). And this was exactly the kind of affective reconfiguration the anticlerical satire of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century endeavored to bring about.

Where does it leave us today? On the one hand, we certainly cannot catalogue the Kantian enlightenment as a completed and accomplished project today. On the other hand, it would also be absurd to dismiss it as a complete and utter failure. We cannot deny that, by all accounts, an increasing number of Europeans distanced themselves from the traditional Christian virtues of humility, submission, and obedience in the course of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. As time went by, more and more Europeans did apparently manage to mobilize the courage to stand up and demand a higher degree of liberty, independence, and self-determination. If anything, the many revolutions and new constitutions of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries testify to this.

The turbulent period from the outbreak of the French revolution in 1789 to the many European revolutions in 1848, resulting in a series of new constitutions, may also suggest that the extraordinary production and dissemination of anticlerical satire in Europe in this period did not only have a formative influence on the modern European individuals but also on the modern European societies. For when people change, the societies they form will eventually change as well. When the inhabitants of the old European monarchies gradually became less prone to behave like timid, subservient subjects and more prone to behave like courageous, demanding citizens, it could hardly avoid clashing with the authoritarianism of the old regimes and pave the way for new ways of organizing European societies. Hence, the satirical subversion of clerical authority may very well have had an impact on modern Europe that has hitherto been grossly underestimated.

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1Rodney M. Thomson, ‘The Origins of Latin Satire in Twelfth Century Europe’, in Mittellateinisches Jahrbuch 13 (1978), pp. 73−83; Laura Kendrick, ‘Medieval Satire’, in Ruben Quintero (ed.), A Companion to Satire: Ancient and Modern, Oxford 2007, pp. 52−69.

2Robert Scribner, Popular Culture and Popular Movements in Reformation Germany, London 1987, pp. 71−102, 277−299.

3Lucien Febvre & Henry-Jean Martin, L’apparition du livre, Paris 1999 [1958], pp. 349−350, 381−382, 402−406; J.L. van Zanden, The Long Road to the Industrial Revolution: The European Economy in a Global Perspective, 1000−1800, Leiden & Boston 2009, pp. 179−180, 187−190.

4Robert Scribner, For the sake of simple folk: Popular propaganda for the German Reformation, Oxford & New York 1994, pp. xxii−xxiii, 5−6.

5Wolfgang Harms & Cornelia Kemp (eds), Deutsche illustrierte Flugblätter des 16. und 17. Jahrhunderts. Vol. 4, Tübingen 1987, pp. 86−87.

6Wolfgang Harms, Michael Schelling & Andreas Wang (eds), Deutsche illustrierte Flugblätter des 16. und 17. Jahrhunderts. Vol. 2, Tübingen 1980, pp. 298−299.

7Jonathan Israel, Radical Enlightenment: Philosophy and the Making of Modernity 1650−1750, Oxford & New York 2001, p. 4.

8Andrew Calder, Molière: The Theory and Practice of Comedy, London 1993, p. 161.

9For examples see Ashley Marshall, The Practice of Satire in England 1658−1770, Baltimore 2013, pp. 44−48.

10Julia Prest, Controversy in French Drama: Molière’s Tartuffe and the Struggle for Influence, New York 2014, pp. 141−143.

11Pierre Roullé, Le roy glorieux au monde, Paul Lacroix (ed.), Geneva 1867 [1664], pp. 33−35. All quotes are from the following passage: ‘Un homme [...] le plus signalé impie et libertin qui fust jamais dans les siècles passes, avoit eu assez d’impiété et d’abomination pour fair [sic] sortir […] une pièce […] à la derision de toute l’Eglise [...]. Il méritoit, par cet attentat sacrilége [sic] et impie, un dernier supplice exemplaire et public, et le fust mesme avant-coureur de celuy de l’Enfer, pour expier un crime si grief de lèze-Majesté divine, qui va à ruiner la religion catholique, en blasmant et jouant sa plus religieuse et sainte pratique, qui est la conduite et direction des âmes’.

12Prest 2014, p. 152.

13Molière, OEuvres complètes. Vol 2. Georges Forestier & Claude Bourqui (eds), Paris 2010, p. 191.

14Molière 2010, p. 1169.

15Molière 2010, p. 1168: ‘une Comédie très dangereuse et qui est d’autant plus capable de nuire à la Religion, que sous prétexte de condamner l’hypocrisie, ou la fausse dévotion, elle donne lieu d’en accuser indifféremment tous ceux qui font profession de la plus solide piété, et les expose par ce moyen aux railleries et aux calomnies continuelles des Libertins.’

16Northrop Frye, Anatomy of Criticism: Four Essays, Princeton 2000 [1957], p. 232.

17Nöel Peacock, ‘Molière nationalized: Tartuffe on the British stage from the Restoration to the present day’, in David Bradby & Andrew Calder (eds), The Cambridge Companion to Molière, Cambridge 2006, pp. 177−179.

18Le dictionnaire de l’Académie française, dédié au Roy. Vve J.B. Coignard & J.B Coignard (eds), Vol. 2. Paris 1694, p. 531: ‘Tartufe: Mot nouvellement introduit, pour dire, Un faux devot, un hypocrite’.

19Oxford English Dictionary Online. Oxford University Press, viewed 5 November 2018, <http://www.oed.com>.

20Friedrich Nietzsche, Jenseits von Gut und Böse, in Giorgio Colli & Mazzino Montinari (eds), Sämtliche Werke. Kritische Studienausgabe. Vol. 5, Berlin & New York 1999 [1886], pp. 19, 41, 192; Victor Klemperer, Die Vorgänger Friedrich Spielhagens, Weimar 1913, p. 22.

21William Wotton, A Defense of the Reflections upon Ancient and Modern Learning, In Answer to the Objections of Sir. W. Temple, and Others, With Observations upon A Tale of a Tub, London 1705, p. 62.

22Wotton 1705, pp. 51, 57.

23Samuel Clarke, A Discourse Concerning the Unchangeable Obligations of Natural Religion, and the Truth and Certainty of the Christian Revelation, London 1706, p. 28.

24Wotton 1705, p. 62.

25Scholars of satire often distinguish between ‘conservative’ and ‘subversive’ functions of satire. See, for example, Jonathan Greenberg, Modernism, Satire, and the Novel, Cambridge 2011, pp. 7−11.

26John Toland, Clito: A Poem on the Force of Eloquence, London 1700, p. 16.

27Quoted in John Toland, A Collection of Several Pieces of Mr. John Toland, Now first publis’d from his Original Manuscripts: With some Memoirs of his Life and Writings. Vol. 1, London 1726, p. xx. For the auto-da-fé in Oxford see Roger D. Lund, Ridicule, Religion and the Politics of Wit in Augustan England, New York 2016, p. 190. For the reactions to Toland see Israel 2001, p. 97.

28Clarke 1706, p. 28; Wotton 1705, p. 53.

29Quoted in Hugh Ormsby-Lennon, Hey Presto! Swift and the Quarks, Newark 2011, p. 230.

30Jonathan Swift, A Tale of a Tub and Other Works, in Marcus Walsh (ed.), The Cambridge Edition of the Works of Jonathan Swift. Vol. 1, Cambridge 2010, p. 6.

31Swift 2010, p. 6.

32John Dennis, ‘To the Examiner. Upon his wise Paper of the Tenth of January, 1712’, in Edward Niles Hooker (ed.), The Critical Works of John Dennis. Vol 2, Baltimore 1964, p. 397. The Britain is quoted in Robert Phiddian, ‘The Reaction to Anthony Collins’s A Discourse of Free-Thinking “Not Politicks”?’, Swift Studies 4 (1989), p. 72.

33Lund 2016, p. 173.

34Among the keys is Edmund Curll’s Complete Key to A Tale of a Tub published in four editions between 1710 and 1724. Among the unauthorized additions to Swift’s tale is The History of Martin published anonymously in 1720. See Swift 2010, pp. 231−252, 262−267.

35Voltaire, Lettres a Son Altesse Monseigneur le Prince de ****. Sur Rabelais et sur d’autres auteurs accusés d’avoir mal parlé de la Religion Chrétienne, Amsterdam [i.e. Généve], p. 55; For the critical reception in France see Wilhelm Graeber, ‘Swift’s First Voyage to Europe: His Impact on Eighteenth-Century France’, in Hermann J. Real (ed.), The Reception of Jonathan Swift in Europe, London 2005, pp. 5−16.

36Sybil Goulding, Swift en France, Paris 1924, p. 38; Herman Teerink & Arthur Scouten, A Bibliography of the Writings of Jonathan Swift, Philadelphia 2016, pp. 179−182, 185−187.

37Teerink & Scouten 2016, pp. 152, 182−184.

38Johann Heinrich Zedler, Grosses vollständiges Universal-Lexikon der Wissenschaften und Künste. Vol. 41, Graz 1962 [1744], col. 519: ‘Swift […] hat sich […] dermassen bekannt und beliebt gemacht, dass er insgemein für einen der stärksten Satyren-Schreiber gehalten wird.’ For criticism of Swift on religious grounds in Germany see Astrid Krake, Hermann J. Real & Marie-Luise Spieckermann, ‘The Dean’s Voyages into Germany’, in Hermann J. Real (ed.), The Reception of Jonathan Swift in Europe, London 2005, pp. 104−105.

39Dorothy George, Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires Preserved in the Department of Prints and Drawings in the British Museum, Vol. 9, London 1949, p. 896.

40John 10:11 and 21:16 NIV.

41Matt 16:18 NIV.

42Augustine. ‘Sermo 149’, in E. Giles (ed.), Documents Illustrating Papal Authority: London 1952, p. 175.

43Michel Foucault, Sécurité, territoire, population. Cours au Collège de France 1977−78, Paris 2004, p. 134: ‘L’homme occidental a appris pendant des millénaires […] à se considérer comme une brebis parmi les brebis. Il a, pendant des millénaires, appris à demander son salut à un pasteur’.

44Foucault 2004, pp. 129−134.

45Foucault 2004, pp. 177−181: ‘humilité’, ‘soumission’, ‘obéissance’.

46Foucault 2004, p. 205: ‘ce que je vous proposerai, c’est le mot […] de “contre-conduite” […] au sens de lutte contre les procédés mis en oeuvre pour conduire les autres’.

47Dorothy George, Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires Preserved in the Department of Prints and Drawings in the British Museum, Vol. 11, London 1954, pp. 210−211.

48Leonard W. Levy, Blasphemy: Verbal Offense against the Sacred, from Moses to Salman Rushdie. Chapel Hill 1993, p. 396; Joel H. Wiener, Radicalism and Freethought in Nineteenth Century Britain: The Life of Richard Carlile. Westport, CT 1983, p. 130.

49Wiener 1983, p. 146.

50Wiener 1983, p. 146.

51Robert Goldstein, Censorship of Political Caricature in Nineteenth-Century France, Kent, OH, pp. 8−9.

52Immanuel Kant, ‘Beantwortung der Frage: Was ist Aufklärung?’ in Horst Brandt (ed.), Was ist Aufklärung: Ausgewählte kleine Schriften, Hamburg 1999 [1784], p. 20: ‘Aufklärung ist der Ausgang des Menschen aus seiner selbstverschuldeten Unmündigkeit. Unmündigkeit ist das Unvermögen, sich seines Verstandes ohne Leitung eines anderen zu bedienen. Selbstverschuldet ist diese Unmündigkeit, wenn die Ursache derselben nicht am Mangel des Verstandes, sondern der Entschließung und des Mutes liegt, sich seiner ohne Leitung eines anderen zu bedienen. Sapere aude! Habe Mut, dich deines eigenen Verstandes zu bedienen! ist also der Wahlspruch der Aufklärung.’

53Kant 1999, p. 26: ‘Dass die Menschen, wie die Sachen jetzt stehen, im ganzen genommen, schon imstande wären oder darin auch nur gesetzt werden könnten, in Religionsdingen sich ihres eigenen Verstandes ohne Leitung eines anderes sicher und gut zu bedienen, daran fehlt noch sehr viel.’

54Kant 1999, p. 26: ‘Wenn denn nun gefragt wird: Leben wir jetzt in einem aufgeklärten Zeitalter? so ist die Antwort: Nein, aber wohl in einem Zeitalter der Aufklärung.’

55Building on Aristotle’s Rhetoric, Hobbes, Rousseau and many others described courage as a ‘passion’ that was opposed to another ‘passion,’ namely fear. Thomas Hobbes, Leviathan. London 1985, pp. 118−123; Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Discours sur l’origine et les fondements de l’inégalité parmi les hommes, Paris 1969, pp. 66−67.