Clare Jackson, “Latitudinarianism, secular theology and Sir Thomas Browne’s influence in George Mackenzie’s Religio Stoici (1663)” The Seventeenth Century 29:1 (2014), 73-94. DOI:10.1080/0268117X.2013.877848
This article revisits George Mackenzie of Rosehaugh’s Religio Stoici (1663) which is often acclaimed as the first in a venerable series of imitations of Sir Thomas Browne’s Religio Medici (1642) as well as a possible influence for John Dryden’s Religio Laici (1682). By contrast, this articles returns to the charged contemporary atmosphere that prevailed in Scotland in 1663, following the controversial re-establishment of Episcopalianism the previous year. Combining an instinctive epistemological scepticism with an audacious and polemical anticlericalism, Mackenzie’s tract attacked dogmatic intolerance and denominational exclusivity and instead advanced a courageous, solitary and very public plea for peaceful religious practice.