Cover of: The wordy shipmates | Sarah Vowell

About the Book

From the New York Times–bestselling author of Assassination Vacation and The Partly Cloudy Patriot, an examination of the Puritans, their covenant communities, their deep-rooted idealism, their political and cultural relevance in today’s world, and their myriad oddities.In The Wordy Shipmates, Sarah Vowell travels once again through America’s past, this time to seventeenth-century New England. From the British Library to the Mohegan Sun casino, from the nation’s first synagogue to a Mayflower waterslide, Vowell studies the Puritan effect and finds their beliefs about church and state more interesting than their buckles-and-corn reputation would suggest.She asks:Was Massachusetts Bay Colony governor John Winthrop a communitarian, Christlike Christian, or conformity’s tyrannical enforcer? Yes! Was Rhode Island’s architect Roger Williams America’s founding freak or the father of the First Amendment? Same difference. How come Henry Vane the Younger, who argued against beheading the English king, was himself beheaded for helping behead said king? Good question. What does it take to get that jezebel Anne Hutchinson to shut up? A hatchet. What was the Puritans’ pet name for the Pope? The Great Whore of Babylon. What is the lesson of the Pequot War? Why, don’t fire one of your military’s embarrassingly few Arabic translators just because he’s gay, of course.As in all Vowell’s bestselling books, this exploration of America’s past is both poignant and entertaining. The Wordy Shipmates is rich with historical fact, humorous insight, and social commentary by one of America’s celebrated voices.

First Sentence

The only thing more dangerous than an idea is a belief.

Edition Notes



Dewey Decimal Class
Library of Congress
F7 .V69 2008

The Physical Object

22 cm.

ID Numbers

Open Library
Internet Archive
LC Control Number
Library Thing
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September 26, 2008 Created by ImportBot Initial record created, from Library of Congress MARC record.