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[391] to England, it was hardly possible to find any grounds
Chap IX.}
of difference between the flexible Cotton and his equally orthodox opponents. The general peace of the colony being thus assured, the triumph of the clergy was complete; and the civil magistrates proceeded to pass sentence on the more resolute offenders. Wheelwright, Anne Hutchinson, and Aspinwall, were exiled from the territory of Massachusetts, as ‘unfit for the society’ of its citizens; and their adherents, who, it was feared, ‘might, upon some revelation, make a sudden insurrection,’ and who were ready to seek protection by an appeal from the authority of the colonial government, were, like the tories during the war for independence, required to deliver up their arms.

So ended the Antinomian strife in Massachusetts.1 The principles of Anne Hutchinson were a natural consequence of the progress of the reformation. She had imbibed them in Europe; and it is a singular fact, though easy of explanation, that, in the very year

in which she was arraigned at Boston, Descartes, like herself a refugee from his country, like herself a prophetic harbinger of the spirit of the coming age, established philosophic liberty on the method of free reflection. Both asserted that the conscious judgment of the mind is the highest authority to itself. Descartes did but promulgate, under the philosophic form of free reflection, the same truth which Anne Hutchinson, with the fanaticism of impassioned conviction, avowed under the form of inward revelations.

1 On this strife I have read the Col Records; the decisions of the synod; the copious Winthrop; the Documents in Hutchinson's Coll.; Werde's Rise, Reign, and Ruin; T. Shepherd's Lamentation; a fragment of Wheelwright's Sermon; and the statement of John Cotton himself, in his reply to Williams; also, Saml. Gorton, Hubbard, C. Mather, Neal, Hutchinson, Callender, Backus, Savage, and Knowles.

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