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[457] colony; but, soon returning, she also was hanged on
Chap X.} 1659
Boston common, a willing martyr to liberty of conscience. ‘We desired their lives absent, rather than their deaths present,’ was the miserable apology for these proceedings.

These cruelties excited great discontent. Yet William Leddra was put upon trial for the same causes. While the trial was proceeding, Wenlock Christison, already banished on pain of death, entered the court, and struck dismay into the judges, who found their severities ineffectual. Leddra was desired to accept his life, on condition of promising to come no more within the jurisdiction. He refused, and was hanged.

Christison met his persecutors with undaunted courage. By what law, he demanded, will ye put me to death?—We have a law, it was answered, and by it you are to die.—So said the Jews to Christ. But who empowered you to make that law?—We have a patent, and may make our own laws.—Can you make laws repugnant to those of England?-No.—Then you are gone beyond your bounds. Your heart is as rotten towards the king as towards God. I demand to be tried by the laws of England, and there is no law there to hang Quakers.—The English banish Jesuits on pain of death;1 and with equal justice we may banish Quakers.—The jury returned a verdict of guilty. Wenlock replied, ‘I deny all guilt; my conscience is clear before God.’ The magistrates were divided in pronouncing sentence; the vote was put a second time, and there appeared a majority for the doom of death. ‘What do you gain,’ cried Christison, ‘by taking ’

1 Banishment on pain of death used to be very common in English legislation. By the act of Elizabeth, 35, c. i., every dissenter was conditionally so banished. In January, 1652, John Lilburne was banished on pain of death by the parliament.

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