Execution of Mary Dyer
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Time Period
6/1/1660
Description
Mary Dyer (1611-1660) emigrated with her husband to the Massachusetts Bay Colony from England in 1635. She was a Puritan and a friend of Anne Hutchinson, but after Hutchison was banished from the colony, Mary Dyer sojourned for a decade in Rhode Island.

In 1651, the Dyers returned to England, where Mary converted to the Quaker persuasion. She later decided to return to Massachusetts, but the governor, John Endecott, had enacted a law forbidding Quakers from settling in the colony, punishable by death. Even after the colonial authorities had tortured and hung several other Quakers, Dyer defied Endecott, telling him to his face that the law was "unrighteous." Dyer was hung beneath an elm tree on the Boston Common on June 1, 1660.

Dyer's execution sparked widespread dissatisfaction in both Massachusetts and England. In 1661, the king overruled the colonial authorities by banning the execution of Quakers.
Interactive Timeline(s)
Women and Religion
Browse Related Timeline Entries
Women and Religion in American History
Religious Groups
Timeline Entries for the same religious group European Free-Church Family (Brethren, Mennonites, Quaker, Amish)
European Free-Church Family (Brethren, Mennonites, Quaker, Amish): Other ARDA Links

Timeline Entries for the same religious group Congregationalists (UCC)
Congregationalists (UCC): Other ARDA Links

Biographies
Winthrop, John
Hutchinson, Anne
Photographs

Mary Dyer
Web Source(s)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Dyer
Wikipedia has an exceptionally fine overview of Dyer's life and execution.
Web Page Contributor
Paul Matzko
Affliated with: Pennsylvania State University, Ph.D. in History

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