Maryland Toleration Act
Created in 1649
What was the Maryland Toleration Act?
How did this help contribute to the development of democracy?
- There were laws with punishments for speaking the Christian God's name in vain.
- Officers enforced the laws and would follow through with the punishments.
- This also influenced the "Freedom of Religion" portion in the American Bill of Rights.
The Maryland Toleration Act laid the foundation for what we know today as Freedom of Religion. This helps contribute to the development of democracy, because no matter your religion you have the right to vote and to participate in the government. You can not be persecuted or arrested based on your religion.
What were said punishments for insulting a Christian?
The first time you say something negative about the Christian God, you'd be punished by paying 5 pounds of sterling or you'd have to give up possessions which add up to equal value. If you don't do this, you'd be publicly whipped.
You'd have to pay 10 pounds of sterling, and if you don't have that you must give up possessions of equal or greater value. If you can't do this you would get jail time and be severely whipped.
The third time you offend someone and their religion, you must give up your land and property and be banished from the colony.