Puritan Background

Puritan Background
First colonists
Jamestown (John Smith)
Plymouth (Pilgrims)
Massachusetts Bay Colony
Religious Freedom
Religious Freedom
Puritan Society
Theocracy- government organized according to religion with immediate guidance
from God.
•Puritans valued Industry, simplicity, self-reliance, self-improvement
•Hardships of daily life caused them to be practical
•Passed strict laws against pleasurable activities the failed to glorify God.
•no bowling, dancing, gamble, attend plays
•Highly educated, even women, so they could read the Bible
•Instituted free public education -1647 •founded Harvard, 1st college in U.S. -1638
•Established 1st printing press in America – 1638
(Massachusetts Bay Psalm Book – 1640, first book printed in English in America)
Puritan Doctrine
•Bible as the sole source of God’s law
•Original Sin, the inherent evil in all humans
•felt they could accomplish good only through continual hard work and selfdiscipline
•Believed in predestination – God determined who gets salvation
Puritan Literature
•Literature was practical and/or devotional
•Literature provided spiritual insight and instruction
•They wrote diaries, histories, poetry, hymns, biographies, and other religious writings
•They regarded fiction and drama as sinful
•Their style was plain – ornate or clever style would be a sign of vanity