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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 48

"The World is my Country, and to Do Good my Religion."

"The World is my Country, and to Do Good my Religion."

In 1792 Paine was elected by the department of Calais as their representative in the National Assembly. So great was his popularity in France that he was selected about the same time by the people of no less than four departments.

Upon taking his place in the Assembly he was appointed as one of a committee to draft a constitution for France. Had the French people taken the advice of Thomas Paine there would have been no "Reign of Terror." The streets of Paris would not have been filled with blood in that Reign of Terror. There were killed in the city of Paris not less, I think, than 17,000 people; and one night, in the massacre of St. Bartholomew, there were killed by assassination over 70,000 souls—men, women, and children. The revolution would have been the grandest success of the world. The truth is that Paine was too conservative to suit the leaders of the French revolution. They, to a great extent, were carried away by hatred and a desire to destroy. They had suffered so long, they had borne so much, that it was impossible for them to be moderate in the hour of victory.

Besides all this, the French people had been so robbed by the Government, so degraded by the Church, that they were not fit material with which to construct a republic. Many of the leaders longed to establish a beneficent and just government, but the people asked for revenge.

Paine was