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Word Count: 753
A puritan is a person who pours righteous indignation into the wrong things1 Facing religious persecution in England the Puritans fled Europe They constructed an intolerant government because to Puritans Toleration meant permitting error2 Puritanism ultimately led to its own decline in New England because it refused to accept rival religious groups critics and merchants The Great Awakening although welcomed at first ultimately badly damaged what remained of the fabric of Puritanism3 Escaping persecution in England the Puritans found themselves persecuting others in New England One group which Puritan ministers such as John Cotton Increase Mather and Cotton Mather tried to banish from New England was the Quakers In the Massachusetts Bay Colony the General Court passed laws that would fine one hundred pounds to any shipmaster who brought a Quaker into the colony Any colonist found having a Quaker book would be fined five pounds If a Quaker was found in Massachusetts he would be arrested whipped and then exiled Puritan leaders made it difficult for a Quaker or even a Puritan who was tolerant of Quakers to live in peace A non-Puritan resident of New England was made to feel like a Puritan resident of Britain However Puritan persecution was not limited to only one group of people Their persecution was directed towards the Quakers but Puritans as well4 Two Puritans who experienced the harshness of the Puritanical government of New England were Anne Hutchinson and Roger Williams Anne Hutchinson challenged Puritan orthodoxy She believed that leading a holy life was not a sure sign that one would be salvaged and that those who were predestined need not follow the laws of man or God Hutchinson believed that piety had grown chill in the hearts of the ministry and thereby in the people5 The Puritan magistrates banished her from the Massachusetts Bay Colony fearing that she would cause unrest and poison the minds of other members of the congregation Roger Williams was
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