The Ranters - like the Levellers and the Diggers - were a group of religious libertarians who flourished during the English Civil War (1642-1651), a period of social and religious turmoil which saw, in the words of the historian Christopher Hill, 'the world turned upside down'.
A Collection of Ranter Writings is the most notable attempt to anthologise the key Ranter writings, bringing together some of the most remarkable, visionary and unforgettable texts. The subjects range from the limits to pleasure and divine right, to social justice and collective action.
The Ranters have intrigued and captivated generations of scholars and philosophers. This carefully curated collection will be of great interest to historians, philosophers and all those trying to understand past radical traditions.
Nigel Smith is William and Annie S. Paton Foundation Professor of Ancient and Modern Literature at Princeton University. His books include A Collection of Ranter Writings (Pluto, 2014), Andrew Marvell: The Chameleon (2010), and Is Milton better than Shakespeare? (2008).
Foreword - John Carey & Greil Marcus Preface Introduction 1. Abiezer Coppe Preface to 'John the Divine's Divinity' (1648) 'Some Sweet Sips, of some Spirituall Wine' (1649) 'An Additional and Preambular Hint' to Richard Coppin's 'Divine teachings' (1649) 'A Fiery Flying Roll' and 'A Second Fiery Flying Roule' (1649) Letter from Coppe to Salmon and Wyke 'A Remonstrance of The Sincere and Zealous Protestation' (1651) 'Copp's Return to the wayes of Truth' (1651) 2. Laurence Clarkson 'A Single Eye All Light, no Darkness' (1650) From 'The Lost Sheep Found' (1660) 3. Joseph Salmon 'A Rout, A Rout' (1649) Letter from Salmon to Thomas Webbe (3 April 1650) 'Heights in Depths' (1651) 4. Jacob Bauthumley 'The Light and Dark Sides of God' (1650) Notes Index Index of Biblical References