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John Trenchard

(1669—1723) landowner and publicist


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Thomas Gordon (1684—1750) pamphleteer and classical scholar

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John Trenchard was born in England. He was educated at Trinity College, Dublin, which he entered in 1685, at the age of sixteen. According to Thomas Gordon (in the memoir of Trenchard in Cato's Letters, vol. 1, 5th edn, 1748), Trenchard's tutor, Edward Smith, later Bishop of Down, ‘used to say, that “Mr. Trenchard's talent of reasoning was owing to his having been so good a Logician”, a character for which he was eminent at the University [of Dublin]’. Trenchard was well known for a series of pamphlets in 1697–8 against standing armies. Also as a young man, he was appointed a commissioner for forfeited estates in Ireland. In 1719 Gordon became his friend and literary collaborator.

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From The Continuum Encyclopedia of British Philosophy in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Philosophy.


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