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Daniel Defoe: Master of FictionsHis Life and Works$
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Maximillian E. Novak

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780199261543

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199261543.001.0001

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How to Sell Out While Keeping One’s Integrity (Somewhat) Intact in That ‘Lunatick Age’ 1

How to Sell Out While Keeping One’s Integrity (Somewhat) Intact in That ‘Lunatick Age’ 1

(p.360) 16 How to Sell Out While Keeping One’s Integrity (Somewhat) Intact in That ‘Lunatick Age’1
Daniel Defoe: Master of Fictions

Maximillian E. Novak

Oxford University Press

In a series of essays in the Review beginning June 17, 1710, Daniel Defoe expressed his despair over what he saw to be the coming downfall of the Whigs and the triumph of the Tories and High Church. Queen Anne had just dismissed Charles Spencer Sunderland as Secretary of State, and Defoe could read the writing on the wall as well as his biblical prophetic namesake. He took the opportunity to mend fences with his enemy, John Dyer. Of course, he was incapable of staying away from politics entirely. On July 17, 1710, Defoe decided that he would try to work with the new Tory administration. He wrote a letter to Robert Harley suggesting that the future Chancellor of the Exchequer and Lord Treasurer would be the ideal person to steer between the extremes of party. From the first letter to Harley to the end of the year, Defoe engaged in producing a whirlwind of pamphlets intended to boost Harley’s position and to destroy the forces behind Henry Sacheverell.

Keywords:   Daniel Defoe, Whigs, Tories, High Church, Queen Anne, Charles Spencer Sunderland, John Dyer, politics, Robert Harley, Henry Sacheverell

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