Friday, October 10, 2008

The McGuffey Readers - God and the Ten Commandments

Starting in 1836, a common text in our public schools was the McGuffey Reader. It sold 120 million copies between then and 1961. Keeping mind that this was initially accepted into our schools by people who were alive when the First Amendment was ratified, consider this quote from the Reader's foreward:

"The Christian religion is the religion of our country. From it are derived our prevalent notions of the character of God, the great moral governor of the universe. On its doctrines are founded the peculiarities of our free institutions.
"The Ten Commandments and the teachings of Jesus Christ are not only basic, but plenary..."

(Google Books example...)

According to, "plenary" means:
full; complete; entire; absolute; unqualified

No comments: