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The Christian Evidence Society is a UK Christian apologetics organisation founded in 1870. At its financial peak (in 1883) it had slightly over 400 paying members, but this declined to below 300 by 1897. After 1900 its focus shifted from defending against external attacks to addressing doubts from within Christianity.[1]


The society was founded to counter atheism in Victorian society.[2] Its original purpose was described by a contemporaneous source as "meeting, in fair argument, the current scepticism". Its original methods were, in the words of this source:[3]

  1. Lectures for the educated
  2. Classes aimed at the "lower grades of society, to save them from infidelity"
  3. Circulation of tracts, and offering prizes for engaging in private study followed by competitive examination.

Its membership consisted of evangelical and moderate churchmen, including Richard Whately, Archbishop of Dublin and Charles Dickison, Bishop of Meath, as well as prominent scientists, including John Hall Gladstone and William Henry Dallinger.[2]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Dale A. Johnson, "Popular Apologetics in Late Victorian England: The Work of the Christian Evidence Society, Journal of Religious History, Volume 11 Issue 4, Pages 558 - 577
  2. ^ a b Bernard Shaw's Book Reviews, Bernard Shaw, Brian Tyson, ISBN 0-271-01548-9, pp 139-140
  3. ^ Notices of New BooksModern Scepticism, New Englander and Yale review p373, Cornell University, April 1, 1872

External linksEdit