The Freethinker is a British secular humanist magazine, founded by G.W. Foote in 1881. It is the world's oldest surviving freethought publication.

It has always taken an unapologetically atheist, anti-religious stance. In Issue 1 (May, 1881), Foote set out The Freethinker's purpose:

The Freethinker is an anti‑Christian organ, and must therefore be chiefly aggressive. It will wage relentless war against superstition in general, and against Christian superstition in particular. It will do its best to employ the resources of Science, Scholarship, Philosophy and Ethics against the claims of the Bible as a Divine Revelation; and it will not scruple to employ for the same purpose any weapons of ridicule or sarcasm that may be borrowed from the armoury of Common Sense.

Although closely linked with the National Secular Society for most of its history (NSS Presidents and General Secretaries have at various times also served as Freethinker editor), The Freethinker is strictly autonomous and is not, and never has been, published by the NSS.

In 2006, the magazine's front-page masthead was changed from "Secular humanist monthly" to "The Voice of Atheism since 1881".

Barry Duke is the current editor.


Following the publication of anti-religious cartoons in the Christmas 1882 edition of The Freethinker, Foote was prosecuted for blasphemy, and sentenced to 12 months imprisonment with hard labour.

List of Freethinker editors

Here is a list of editors of The Freethinker from 1881:


External links

Ad blocker interference detected!

Wikia is a free-to-use site that makes money from advertising. We have a modified experience for viewers using ad blockers

Wikia is not accessible if you’ve made further modifications. Remove the custom ad blocker rule(s) and the page will load as expected.