A foretaste of the great conservative revulsion against the French Revolution, directed against its sympathizers. Joseph Priestley, a unitarian scientist, had foolishly written of placing gunpowder beneath superstition and error, and was henceforth known as ‘Gunpowder Priestley’. On 14 July 1791, after a dinner to celebrate the storming of the Bastille, his house, library, and scientific apparatus were destroyed by the mob. Four rioters were executed.
Subjects: British History.