116G Sir James Stuart 1635-1715.

James Steuarts answer to a letter writ by Mijn Heer Fagel pensioner to the states of Holland and UUest-Frisland, concerning the repeal of the penal laws and tests.


[Edinburgh] : London, printed and re-printed in Edinburgh by John Reid,1688    $2,900

Octavo 6 x 3 3/4 inches This book has a very interesting collation : A-E4./ Gathering C has pages pasted back-to-back. Maybe this is the printer’s correction of original mis-gathering?verso of E4 blank First edition This copy is disbound.

Both OCLC & ESTC show only three copies in the US : Huntington ,Univ of Ill and Emory.

In 1688, in preparation for the English Revolution during which William III landed in England, Fagel wrote to English advocate James Stewart calling on public figures there to not use the various anti-Catholic Test Oaths and associated legislation to restrict the liberties of Catholic citizens.

While his correspondence called for liberty and freedom of religion, Fagel also suggested that the Dutch would support the softening of some laws only if:

“…those Laws remain still in their full vigour by which the Roman Catholics are shut out of both Houses of Parliament, and out of all public employment; Ecclesiastical, Civil and Military: as likewise all those others, which confirm the Protestant Religion and which secures it against all the attempts of the Roman Catholic.”

The effect of this letter, and others, was to assure the Parliament that William III would not stand in the way of the Parliament’s legislative agenda which manifested itself in the form of the Bill of Rights of 1689

Wing (CD-ROM, 1996),; S5534; ESTC (RLIN),; R005825


This is leaf C1 which is paster one a completely different text ? Quite weird the whole of signature C is like this in this copy and one Listed in ESTC! I wonder what is in there?

“Fagel’s letter provoked numerous replies and defences, and clearly established the international framework for the debate on toleration. The radical exiles in Holland, who were divided among themselves on the issue of support for, or opposition to, James’ toleration policy, were placed directly in the midst of a propaganda and power struggle between James II and William, and ultimately between England and Holland. In very concrete and practical terms, the exiles’ position on the issue of toleration was tied to their willingness to accept a pardon from James and return to Britain, as an endorsement of Stewart’s claim that all was well there, or to remain in Holland and continue their fight against James, counting on the support and encouragement of William” (SOURCE: Richard Ashcraft, “Revolutionary Politics and Locke’s Two Treatises of Government” p. 486).