How did Thomas Paine influence war?

By Adam Case

Introductory Paragraph

Thomas Paine influenced the American Revolutionary War by his controversial writings. Common Sense sparked feelings of wanting independence from Britain, something that had really never been thought of before. He also influenced the French Revolution and had groundbreaking ideas on religion, saying it didn't have to be in a church. He was a person who could inspire many, change the world forever, and create ideas both groundbreaking and unheard of, yet still be hated. He worked for religious independence, although he disliked organized religion. He was a revolutionary who changed everything, but wasn't long remembered

Paine's Childhood and How it Was Influential

Paine's father was a Quaker corset-maker while his mother was an Anglican lawyer's daughter. This difference in money and religion led to a lot of civil conflicts in his household, as well as him not liking religion. He dropped out of school when he was 12, and was self-taught for the most part. He tried apprenticing with father to be a corset-maker, but he couldn't do that either. He had nothing to do and was generally a castaway, until he went to America.

Common Sense and the American Revolutionary War

When he was in his late 30s, Paine met Benjamin Franklin in London. Franklin wanted Paine to go to America, and helped him immigrate there. In America, he started to go into journalism. Then, in 1776, Paine published anonymously Common Sense, a pamphlet calling for American Independence from Great Britain. This was so influential that the Declaration of Independence was written the same year, only months later. Until this point, not many thought of independence. Now it was on everyone's minds.

Paine's Works

Paine wrote Common Sense, a anonymous pamphlet encouraging American independence. It was very popular and started thoughts of the revolution. Then, during the revolution that he helped start, he published The Rights of Man, saying, "these are times that try men's souls," which encouraged American troops in a hard time in the war. He could inspire tons of men with few words, which is what made him famous. But, in the end, he died alone, only remembered as a troublemaker who stirred everyone up.


Thomas Paine was a revolutionary who, because of his radical ideas, got a very bad reputation, even though he did a lot of good. He basically started the American Revolutionary War, and heavily influenced the French Revolution. He created new ideas about hotly debated topics such as religion. He is a underappreciated hero who's ideas changed the world forever


Works Cited

Farley, Karin Clafford. Thomas Paine: Revolutionary Author. Austin, TX: Raintree Steck-Vaughn, 1994. Print.

Schlereth, Eric R., Ph.D. "World Book Online Reference Center | Online Reference Book| Online Encyclopedia." World Book. World Book, 2015, n.d. Web. 16 Apr. 2015.

Schmalzbach, Jonathan, Erik Klemetti, Douglas Heller, and Mark Biddle. "Thomas Paine." Independence Hall Association, 4 July 1995. Web. 24 Apr. 2015.