“I will print it.”
December 22, 1677 – John Bunyan was granted a license to publish Pilgrim’s Progress. The time of his birth on Nov. 30, 1628 until he entered the “Celestial City” on Aug. 31, 1688, was a time of religious controversy, political unrest, and social violence in England. Being a man of peace Bunyan still became caught up in the political controversies and became very weary over it all. Controversy also surrounded the writing of his Progress which for many years had lain in a drawer. He had had many consultations with various friends and associates as to the impropriety of using the allegory method to deal with such a somber subject. The result of these consultations was his determination with the words, “I will print it.” The book’s publication brought multitudes to serious consideration of their peril as they read such serious consideration of their eternal peril. The Progress met with such popularity that the 10th edition was published by 1865. In that some had endeavored to counterfeit his writings for personal profit, he wrote the following words in the prefix to the second part of one of the editions: “Some have, of late, to counterfeit My Pilgrim, to their own, my title set; Yea, others, half my name, and little too, Have stitched to their books, to make them do.” Also some attacked his integrity and accused him of copying the works of others. He defended himself by prefacing his Holy War with a verse which began, “Some say the Pilgrim’s Progress is not mine, Insinuating as if I would shine. In name and fame by the worth of another, Like some made rich by robbing their brother.” Though Bunyan’s library at one time only consisted of the Bible and Foxe’s Book of Martyrs, his writings and in particular Pilgrim’s Progress can be found in practical every library in the world.
Dr. Greg J. Dixon from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins Thompson /, pp. 534-35.