Shelley, Percy Bysshe (1792-1822) - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Philosophy

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Attack on Christianity

In The Necessity of Atheism, for which he was expelled from Oxford in 1811, Shelley argued, on Humean lines, that no argument for the existence of God is convincing. He developed this position in A Refutation of Deism (1814), a dialogue that purports to defend Christianity against deism, but which actually presents a strong case against both and in favor of atheism. In both these works, and in some of his essays (many of which were not published in his lifetime), Shelley was concerned with what he later called "that superstition which has disguised itself under the name of the system of Jesus." In the longer Essay on Christianity, published posthumously, he explained what he thought that system really was: an allegorical expression of the virtues of sympathy and tolerance, and of an anarchistic belief in the equality of men and in the wickedness of...

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This section contains 1,691 words
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Buy the Shelley, Percy Bysshe (1792-1822) Encyclopedia Article
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Encyclopedia of Philosophy
Shelley, Percy Bysshe (1792-1822) from Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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