Philip Syng, Jr. (1703—89)

by Philip Syng, Jr. (1703—89)

Silver, wood handle; 11 7/8 x 8 3/4 x 5 1/4 inches (30.2 x 22.2 x 13.3 cm). Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, PA.

Paine’s pamphlet Common Sense (1775), urging the colonies to declare their independence, found 150,000 purchasers in a population of less than 3 million — the equivalent today of a sale of 14 million.

Richard Brookhiser
Gentleman Revolutionary: Gouverneur Morris, the Rake Who Wrote the Constitution (2003)