varied pattern as Smith
of Merrymount, John Winthrop
, “Sir” Christopher Gardiner
and Anne Hutchinson
, and Roger Williams
They seem as miscellaneous as “Kitchener's army.”
It is true that we can make certain distinctions.
, as has often been said, was more like a continuation of English society, while New England
represented a digression from English society.
There were then, as now, “stand-patters” and “progressives.”
It was the second class who, while retaining very conservative notions about property, developed a fearless intellectual radicalism which has written itself into the history of the United States
But to the student of early American literature all such generalizations are of limited value.
He is dealing with individual men, not with “Cavalier” or “Roundhead” as such.
He has learned from recent historians to distrust any such facile classification of the first colonists.
He knows by this time that there were aristocrats in Massachusetts
and commoners in Virginia
; that the Pilgrims of Plymouth
were more tolerant than the Puritans of Boston
, and that Rhode Island
was more tolerant than either.
Yet useful as these general statements may be, the interpreter