. This earthquake, a fairly severe one in New England, occurred a little after 4 A.M.,
Tuesday, 18 Nov., and was one of an intermittent series of seismic shocks on both
sides of the Atlantic, the most memorable of which had virtually destroyed the city
of Lisbon on the morning of 1 Nov. Besides jolting
into beginning a diary, the earthquake of the 18th produced a public controversy
between Rev. Thomas Prince of Boston and Professor John Winthrop of Harvard that has
been engagingly recounted by Eleanor M. Tilton in “Lightning-Rods and the Earthquake
, 13:85–97 (March 1940).
sided with the scientist rather than with the divine, though he appears to have kept
his thoughts on the subject to himself; see his marginalia in Winthrop’s Lecture on Earthquakes
under Dec. 1758
, below. A very full description of the physical effects of the earthquake on the
town of Boston was printed in the Boston Gazette
, 24 Nov. 1755.