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Ah, for the Gracious Courtliness of the Past:

E.P. Thompson's chapter on "Rough Music" in Customs in Common (1991), reports on this incident:

The Reverend Charles Jeffrys Cottrell, JP, the Rector of Hadley in Middlesex, was driven in 1800 to take legal action when he received in the post a portrait of a gibbeted parson with his genitals exposed, inscribed "O what a miserable Shitting Stinking Dogmatick Prig of an April fool I do appear."

This stemmed from a tax dispute, of course.

Bill Poser (mail) (www):

This stemmed from a tax dispute, of course.


Just as well. If it had stemmed from a religious dispute, we would have to be offended at the defamation of religion.
7.8.2008 4:11pm
Francisco Nahoe (mail):
Did the controversy center upon a parish benefice? If the Rector of Hadley were a stipendiary minister, for example, the disputation might well have been both a tax matter and a religious one.
7.8.2008 4:29pm
Smokey:
A Shitting, Stinking, Dogmatic...
Doesn't hold a candle to this kid.
7.8.2008 8:55pm
yankev (mail):

If it had stemmed from a religious dispute, we would have to be offended at the defamation of religion.


Or that one party was abusing the legal system to impose his religious views on another.
7.9.2008 2:45pm