Thomas Morton


Thomas Morton (l. c. 1579-1647 CE) was an English lawyer, poet, writer, and an early colonist of North America who established the utopian community of Merrymount, sparking conflict with his separatist neighbors at Plymouth Colony and the Puritans of Massachusetts Bay Colony between c. 1626-1645 CE. He is best known for his three-volume work New English Canaan, published in 1637 CE, which criticized Puritan colonization of North America, praised Native American culture, and satirized some of the best-known figures of Plymouth Colony, notably Captain Myles Standish (l. c. 1584-1656 CE) whom he refers to as “Captain Shrimp” throughout. Morton's work, controversial in its time, is considered the first book banned in what would become the United States of America.

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