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Social, political, scientific and literal activity of Thomas Paine is the object of various authors’ papers. It is interesting to notice that all these authors have different political point of view. You can find about 20 published biographies of Thomas Paine in the Internet. Special interest grows to such outstanding person of excellent writer and revolutionary of 18-th century. He is in big demand in the USA, with its democratic community and freedom of speech, and in European advanced nations and mature economies. All people still say about his ambition to link philosophical and sociological problems. His consistent republicanism makes American educator as one of the most radical foes of “old order”. Thomas Paine was that person, who wised English colonies to stir an action again British monarchy.  Significance of the greatest treatise of this pundit as also his life and activity highlight the main topic of Thomas Paine Common Sense essay.

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Life And Activity of Thomas Paine

Thomas Paine (1737-1809), originally Englishman, was born in poor Quaker family. His education was limited to local school, where he did not even learn Latin. Early in life, Sir Paine served in excise bureau. Authority of bureau asked him to write petition about increase of the salary knowing that he was talented in eloquence. He wrote the letter to the government but it was not read due to some reasons and successfully sent. In his letter Thomas Paine asked to increase the salary because of high number of bribes in his bureau. It is worth to notice that this letter was written with childish immediacy. Thomas also described in his letter about the names of bribe takers and their taken sum of money. Excise bureau was indicted soon after. However, Paine himself successfully escaped, went aboard a ship and arrived to America with letter of recommendation from Franklin. He was acquainted with him in England earlier. That happened right on time on the eve of disruption of US with England.  Sir Paine described in dark colors the then government of England on the huge meeting dedicated to the event of disruption. He assured and advised Americans to state about the independence.

In 1775, Thomas Paine took away the petition of colonists to the King under the instruction of Congress and senators. This petition did not get any answer and pundit returned to America, where he published the brochure “Common Sense”. He proved in this brochure that every nation has full power to create such government, which they like. According to the words of Washington, Paine’s brochure had made a revolution in minds. Soon after the Declaration of Independence was written and the war between the USA and England began, Thomas repaired to the encampment of Washington and published the newspaper “American Crisis”, thus supporting courage of the little American army. According to the order of Washington, one of the articles was read to the soldiers instead of daily order and it greatly inspired soldiers so they repeated the opening words of Paine’s article –“Now it is time to test the power of human soul” rushing to the attack against Englishmen.

Thomas Paine had become the most popular person in America after George Washington thanks to published essays.  By the way, essay about George Washington contains all interesting information about this political figure. In 1780, when Washington found himself in a desperate state, Paine offered to organize national subscription for absorbing of military charges. In addition, Washington was the first who subscribed on 500 dollars. In 1781 American government sent scientist to Paris for negotiations about receiving of loan and Thomas got there.

After the end of war pundit returned to England. Paine, together with Burns and Wordsworth, greeted arisen in 1789 French revolution as “dawn” of freedom for humanity. Freedom is superficial definition. Essay on freedom reveals deeper sense of this definition. Thomas published brochure “Rights of Man”, where he asserted natural, inborn rights of man. Political figure strongly defends new constitution of France, which gives voting rights to all people paying even the most insignificant tribute and gives evil characteristics to English constitution, which is directed on that in order to give the King means for nobbling of his own patrials. Government was blew away and decided to chase the author of the brochure.

On May 1792, Thomas Paine was put on trial on a charge of king’s and constitution’s insult. Author could not attend the court: he was the member of French national convent. He entrusted to famous advocate Thomas Erskine the defense of his book and personality. Despite brilliant speech of Erskine, fact triers admitted the guilty of Thomas Paine. Unable to put into the prison the author of brochure, the government victimized those people, which could have it. As a member of convent, Sir Paine was the supporter of Girondists and always voted with them. He voted for the banishment of the king during the process under monarch and warned meeting that execution of the king would be the huge political mistake and produce negative impression in America where Louis XVI was popular. Instead of execution scientist advised to send the king into exile to America.

Montagnards could not forgive Paine his intercession for the king. Thomas was put under arrest after the fall of Girondists and sentenced to the death. However, he managed to save his life by a lucky chance. During his confinement, Thomas Paine wrote his famous essay – “The Age of Reason”, where he tried to use the methods of rationalistic criticism in relation to explanation of Bible.

In 1804, Thomas Paine repaired to America. Remembering the merits of Paine in relation to American freedom, President Jefferson put at disposal whole ship to him. Pundit severely made a mistake thinking that Americans will interpret him greatly. His paper “The Age of Reason” set against him all religious American society: his former friends, instigated by clergy, abandoned him. He could not rub through with this and found consolation in the wine.

One of The Fathers-Founders of the USA died in New York. Almost all abandoned him. However, he thought that his life was unfruitful.

Talking about the creation of author, one may highlight three main treatises:

  • Common Sense;
  • Rights of Human;
  • The Age of Reason.

Common Sense is historically significant treatise. It became the push for the fight of English colonies against England. One should examine the features of this paper in one of Common Sense essays.

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Also in this section:

Significance Of Common Sense

His two the most popular essays – treatises “Common Sense” (1776) and “Rights of Human” (1791-1792) reflect the most significant revelations in the sphere of political and social relations. These papers were published in the size of 1 500 000 copies in America and Europe within the lifetime of author. Clarity of style is true evidence of idea’s clarity and accessibility of statement guaranteed them wide propagation.

Ideal form of ruling based on the Law is eternal dream of humanity. Many philosophers before Paine offered their solutions of this difficult problem. However, all these projects turned out irrealizable and utopian.

Inscription on the gravestone to Thomas Paine in New Rochelle is knocked in strict accordance with his last will: Thomas Paine (1737-1809), the author of “Common Sense”. Why then did Thomas Paine not highlight other papers, for instance “Rights of Human”, which were published in bigger size of copies in comparison with “Common Sense”? Paine explained his preference in his addressing “To the citizens of the USA” in 1805. He explained worldwide historical significance rightly and precisely:

Independence of the USA would add only shred of happiness and not become good for humanity if its ruling was formed according to corrupt state structures of old world. Just possibility to begin the creation of new world and advance of new system of ruling, where the rights of all people must be guaranteed, determined the significance and sense of independence.

What new principles of state structure did scientist extend and prove for the good of humanity? Here are the most essential:

1. Thomas Paine was the first in the educational era (18-th century) who made a stand against the principle of monarch ruling. Enlighteners before Paine were not consistent republicans. The faith in enlightened monarch and criticism of monarch-tyrant are the keynotes of educational philosophy.

2. In contrast to general persuasions of that time, Sir Paine announced every monarchy as evil. According to his thoughts, any monarchy is neither more nor less than “harm and dignity” for residents.

3. Thomas Paine offered representational parliamentary republic based on general selective right instead of monarchy. Paine offered republic, directed by the parliament, where “the number of citizens”, ideally, all citizens of the country would choose members of parliament. If idea of republic gained quick and wide currency in America thanks to “Common Sense”, then idea of selective rights’ extension turned up apprehensive for vast majority of public and political figures in England. Just written Constitution, as “Law”, must become the “King of state”.

Pamphlet “Common Sense” is dedicated to humanity. According to the words of Paine, the main aim was to create such state structure, which provides happiness for his citizens and becomes the example for all world.

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It is safe to say that life of Thomas Paine was full of adventures and achievements describing his activity in essay on Common Sense. This political figure played an essential role in formation of the USA. His great essay-treatise foreshadowed not only call for actions against English monarchy but also offered new ways of state ruling.

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