|Despite the promise of freedom of conscience held out by Charles
II in the Declaration of Breda, the Clarendon
placed severe restrictions upon religious minorities. The Quakers
suffered more than most, and legislation ensured that they could be
subjected to almost perpetual imprisonment by local magistrates for
refusing to take the mandatory oaths of allegiance and supremacy.
This letter to the local Justices of the Peace registers the defiance
of Quakers imprisoned in Reading Gaol and explains their opposition
to swearing oaths.
Catalogue reference: SP 29/100, no. 106 (22 July 1664)