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 (gŏd′wĭn), William 1756-1836.
British writer and political theorist who believed in the perfectibility of human nature and maintained that people could live harmoniously without laws and institutions. His most important work is Enquiry Concerning Political Justice (1793).


1. (Biography) died 1053, Earl of Wessex. He was chief adviser to Canute and Edward the Confessor. His son succeeded Edward to the throne as Harold II
2. (Biography) Mary. See (Mary) Wollstonecraft
3. (Biography) William. 1756–1836, British political philosopher and novelist. In An Enquiry concerning Political Justice (1793), he rejected government and social institutions, including marriage. His views greatly influenced English romantic writers


(ˈgɒd wɪn)

1. Also, God•wi•ne (ˈgɒd wɪ nə) Earl of the West Saxons, died 1053, English statesman.
2. Mary Wollstonecraft, 1759–97, English women's rights activist and writer (mother of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley).
3. her husband, William, 1756–1836, English political philosopher and writer.
References in periodicals archive ?
Godwin, William 1824-28: History of the Commonwealth of England: From its Commencement, to the Restoration of Charles the Second.
Authors include Gail Godwin, William Stringfellow, Thomas Merton, and Kathleen Norris.
Ironically, those writers most obviously concerned with dismantling the sexual conformities of the time in their lives and/or writing--Wollstonecraft, Godwin, William Blake, Mary Hays, Helen Maria Williams, Anna Barbauld, Elizabeth Inchbald, Mary and Percy Shelley, etc.