Thomas Paine was born on January 29, 1737 in Thetford, England. He was the son of a farmer and corsetmaker. He went to a local school until the age of thirteen. We was forced to leave school so he could help his father at work. He went through many jobs, and felt unhappy at everyone he tried.
He went to sea at the age of nineteen. He traveled from place to place meeting many different people. He got married, but unfortunately she died a year later in 1760. He remarried in 1771. But again he was separated from her three years later. His appointment as excise collector in 1762 was lost in 1765 because of an improper entry report. ( Encyclopedia of World Biography, 66)
Paine moved to America because of a London meeting with Benjamin Franklin. He got a job writing for a magazine called the Pennsylvania Magazine, and eventually became the editor. He wrote the Common Sense in 1776, about independence. It was a instantaneous success. It was even translated into German and printed in England, Scotland, Holland, and France. It sold 120,000 in just three months, and over six million today. It was said to get the people ready for the Declaration of Independence soon after.
For the remainder of the Revolution he was with Washington's soldiers. He wrote The Crisis which appeared between December 1776 and April 1783. Again he was Paine was know for his phrasemaking. In his later papers Paine attacked Tories, profiteers, inflationists, and counterfeiters. (Encyclopedia of World Biography, 66) On April 19, 1783, he concluded his Crisis series on a note of expectations.
He lived quietly after the Revolution. He worked on several inventions, like a pierless iron bridge to cross the Schuylkill River. He wrote the Age of Reason, in 1794, which was... [continues]
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