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Thomas Gordon

1692 - 1750


Historical Period:
The 18th Century


Thomas Gordon (1692-1750) was a radical Whig and Commonwealthman who, along with his collaborator John Trenchard (1662-1723), were important voices defending constitutionalism and individual liberty in the 1720s in England. Little is known of Gordon’s early life but he came to prominence by co-writing The Independent Whig (1720-21) and Cato’s Letters (1720-23) with Trenchard. He was a defender of the idea of liberty against political corruption, imperialism and militarism in the early 18th century. Their writings, especially Cato’s Letters, were also much read in the American colonies. After the death of Trenchard, Gordon translated the works of Tacitus (1728) and Sallust (1744) which included very lengthy political and historical commentaries.



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