The act of toleration 1689
The Act of Toleration 1689 is an act that was granted by the British Parliament on the 24th of May, 1689 giving freedom of religion to Protestants including Presbyterians, Congregationalists and Baptists who had dissented from the Church of England. The Act of Toleration did not however grant this freedom to the Catholics as they were deliberately excluded.
The enactment of the 1689 Toleration Act implied that Protestants were then at liberty to congregate in places of worship that could be used specifically for men of their religion. Apart from this, the Protestants were also granted the freedom to have their own teachers and preachers that would conduct their prayer sessions and carry out any religious teachings that their churches required. Further still the act also enabled the cessation of the persecution of Quakers. This was however made possible on condition that the Quakers had to make certain promises of which they did not oppose.
However, the freedom granted to Protestants under this act called for the acceptance of various oaths of allegiance and the preachers and teachers were also expected to follow certain regulations as provided for by the Act of Toleration. On a different note though, some of the test and corporations like denying Protestants public office did not change.
What is more, even though the toleration act allowed Protestants to congregate in their own places of worship, these prayer meetings were to be done only in unlocked houses. These meeting houses also had to have been licensed and this was subject to the minister’s subscription to the thirty nine articles excluding baptism and church government.
Cannon John A. A dictionary of British history. Oxford University Press. 2001.
Emerson Kent. 2008. “Toleration Act.” Emerson Kent. Available from
http://www.emersonkent.com/historic_documents/toleration_act_1689.htm accessed on February 6, 2009
McFerran Noel. Toleration Act 1689. October 26, 2003. The Jacobite Heritage. Available from http://www.jacobite.ca/documents/1689toleration.htm accessed on February 6, 2009
 Emerson Kent. “Toleration Act 1689.” (2008) Available from
 Noel McFerran. “Toleration Act 1698.” The Jacobite Heritage. (October, 2003). Available from http://www.jacobite.ca/documents/1689toleration.htm
 John Ashton Cannon. A Dictionary of British History. (Oxford University Press).