Archive for July, 2010

Jean Meslier

July 3, 2010

Testament:  Memoir of the Thoughts and Sentiments of Jean Meslier (First English Translation by Michael Shreve with an Introduction by Michel Onfray)

This war cry, never before heard in the history of western thought, offers one of the first true Atheist moments, if not the first.  It’s between 1719 and 1729, the date of the parish priest’s death.

Alone in his vicarage of Etrépigny in the Ardennes, Jean Meslier, atheist priest, invented a radical atheism, proposed a hedonist ethic, formulated an immanent ontology, constructed his libertarian politics and gave them a communalist and internationalist concept, thought of a feminism of action, anticipated the battle against speciesism, erected modern materialism, unmasked the Cartesian deceit, sketched the revolutionary concept of 1789, called for the necessity of intellectual critics… Excuse me…  How to pay homage to him today?  Read his work, for sure.  Read it, but also and above all practice it… –Michel Onfray

Testament: Memoir of the Thoughts and Sentiments of Jean Meslier

Testament: Memoir of the Thoughts and Sentiments of Jean Meslier

The Memoir is that rare work that is clearly of its time but transcends it to our own… Shreve and Prometheus Books are to be congratulated for finally bringing this powerful work to readers of English.
— Phillip J. (Max) Maloney, Religious Studies Review, Vol 37 Issue 2

We are now fortunate that the complete Testament expounding Meslier’s wisdom, common sense and reasoning, is now available to the English-speaking world.
— Donald Hatch, Enlightenment, Humanist Association of London and Area, Vol 7 Number 5 October 2011.

Angry, precise, logical, and eminently quotable, the Testament of Jean Meslier is a revelation that came centuries before the world was ready for it. It is the ultimate New Atheist book of 1729.
— Luke Muehlhauser, Common Sense Atheism

This book should be read by every thinking person in America (or, honestly, the world). I don’t have the words to thank Michael Shreve enough for translating Meslier’s masterpiece.
— Joseph Cross on Amazon


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