Philadelphia: Printed for the Author by David Dickinson, 1818; Portland [Me.] Reprinted, 1858. First edition thus, a semi-facsimile reissue of a number of Gates's works. 8vo, later black buckram, printed leather label (label largely perished), 160 pages. Some light damp-staining and foxing; a very good copy. Item #17666
Apocalyptic prophecy from the eccentric itinerant religious figure Theophilus Gates (1787-1846), known as the Battle-Axe; Gates would late in his career embrace Perfectionism (and in 1837 publish without permission the then-new views of John Humphrey Noyes on the "nullity of wives"), which in turn led to the foundation of Gates's small colony of fellow Battle-Axes near Pottstown, Pennsylvania, later that year, where the group became known for its ready embrace of free love and ceremonial nudity. Gates died in 1846 but his communal group hung on through the mid- to late-1850s; his surviving fellow prophet of free love, Hannah Williamson, is traditionally said to have "gone west" to spread the word in 1857--perhaps explaining the contemporary need for republication of some of his foundational works by one Elder Rufus York of Yarmouth. Per the copy catalogued at Hamilton College, this volume issued with: Observations on the signs of the times, or, Things as they are now in the world -- Sincere inquiry concerning the good, acceptable and perfect will of God. Philadelphia: Printed for the author by David Dickinson, 1818. -- View of the last dispensation of light, that will be in the world. Philadelphia: Printed for the author by David Dickinson, 1818. -- History of two Jews, in their pursuit after the truth -- Account of the people of the catacombs -- Remarks in application to the whole (Sincere inquiry, and, View of the last dispensation each have separate title pages, pagination continuous).