18thc Advice re Obedience to Parents

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I would by no Means be thought to encourage Disobedience to Parents; but the honouring our Father and Mother does not include a Duty of blindly submitting to all their commands, whether good or bad, rational or irrational, to the entire excluding of all Manner of free Agency from the Children, which would in effect be to make the Children of Freemen absolute Slaves, and give the Parent a Power even beyond that of a Sovereign, to whom both Parents and Children are subject.  Tho’ the Authority therefore of Parents be great, it cannot extend to the Suppression of our Obedience to Reason, Law and Religion, and when a Child obeys these, tho’ contrary to his Parents’ Command, he is not to be esteem’d disobedient or culpable.

Charles Gildon, An Epistle to  Daniel Defoe, 1719.

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