Robert Barclay and Francis Howgill, two Quaker Apologists; also George Fox, founder of the Quaker movement

    Robert Barclay (1648-1690) was perhaps the most cogent of the early Quaker divines, and his Apology is not only "the standard exposition of the principles of his sect", but also "in many respects one of the most impressive theological writings of the [seventeenth] century" (DNB). I am truly delighted to be able to show here a copy of the first edition in very good condition.
     Francis Howgill (1618-1669) was also an important expositor of Quaker ideology. His works, though rather neglected these days, were highly influential among Quakers of his own and the following century. Again, I am very pleased to be able to present a very good copy of Ellis Hookes' scarce edition of Howgill's works (1676; some copies - including mine, which has been altered by hand - dated 1670). There are short testimonies to Howgill by several contributors (Thomas Carlton, George Fox, Thomas Langhorn and Richard Pindar) in Hookes' edition of Howgill's works, the most noteworthy being that of George Fox (1624-1691), who was himself imprisoned eight times.
     Both Barclay and Howgill suffered persecution for their beliefs. According to George Fox's testimony, Howgill was first imprisoned in 1661, set free and then committed to Appleby gaol in 1664 (1663, according to the DNB) for not taking the Oath of Allegiance to Charles II. His lands and possessions were forfeited, and he remained in prison until his death. It appears that his wife also suffered periods of imprisonment.
     Barclay fared better than either of the above. He converted to Quakerism in 1666, and  in 1672 he took it upon himself to walk in sackcloth through the streets of Aberdeen. He was imprisoned several times for relatively short periods but, rather surprisingly, from 1676 onwards he developed a friendship with the Duke of York (later King James II), notwithstanding the fact that the latter was a Catholic. When James II detained the "Seven Bishops" for seeking to excuse themselves from reading the royal proclamation during church services (1688), Barclay visited them "to justify a statement of which they had complained, that they had been the cause of the death of quakers, but to assure them that the statement should not be used to raise prejudice against them" (DNB). (One of the seven bishops was Francis Turner, q.v.)


The Dawnings of the Gospel-Day, and its Light and Glory Discovered: By a Faithful and Valiant Follower of the Lamb, and Labourer in the Work and Service of God, and a Sufferer for the Testimony of Jesus, Francis Howgil, Who Dyed a Prisoner for the Truth in Appleby Goal in the County of Westmerland, the Twentieth Day of the Eleaventh Moneth, One Thousand Six Hundred Sixty Eight. ([London], 1670 [i.e., 1676, fol., pp. 30+736+5.) The binding is very old, but the endpapers have been replaced and there is a repair to the title page. Otherwise, this copy is in excellent condition.



An Apology for the True Christian Divinity, as the same is held forth ... by the people, called ... Quakers; being a full explanation of their principles and doctrines, by many arguments, deduced from Scriptur and right reason ... Written and published in Latine for the information of Strangers, by Robert Barclay, and now put into our own Language, for the benefit of his Country-men. ([London], 1678, 4to, pp. 22+392+21.) A very well-preserved copy, with almost no foxing.