The Christian Meaning of Gulliver’s Travels
In Gulliver’s Travels, the narrator goes from being a barely nominal Christian to an atheist, yet Jonathan Swift’s masterpiece is a deeply religious meditation on the “mystery of iniquity” (Matt. 24:12) as it is worked out in the Church in Britain past, present, and future. In Gulliver’s Travels, Swift defends the Church with consummate irony by using the voice of an irreligious narrator.
Swift was a high-church clergyman who took religion very seriously. A friend who knew him well reported that he used to say grace before and after meals with “an . . .
THIS ARTICLE ONLY AVAILABLE TO SUBSCRIBERS.
FOR QUICK ACCESS:
Anne Barbeau Gardiner is Professor Emerita of English at John Jay College of the City University of New York. She has published on Dryden, Milton, and Swift, as well as on Catholics of the 17th century.
calling all readers
"There are magazines worth reading but few worth saving . . . Touchstone is just such a magazine."
—Alice von Hildebrand
"Here we do not concede one square millimeter of territory to falsehood, folly, contemporary sentimentality, or fashion. We speak the truth, and let God be our judge. . . . Touchstone is the one committedly Christian conservative journal."
—Anthony Esolen, Touchstone senior editor
• Not a subscriber or wish to renew your subscription? Subscribe to Touchstone today for full online access. Over 30 years of publishing!
Transactions will be processed on a secure server.
Order Touchstone subscriptions in bulk and save $10 per sub! Each subscription includes 6 issues of Touchstone plus full online access to touchstonemag.com—including archives, videos, and pdf downloads of recent issues for only $29.95 each! Great for churches or study groups.
OR get a subscription to Touchstone to read on your Kindle for only $1.99 per month! (This option is KINDLE ONLY and does not include either print or online.)
Your subscription goes a long way to ensure that Touchstone is able to continue its mission of publishing quality Christian articles and commentary.
more from the online archives