Freethought Archives > Baron D'Holbach > Ecce Homo (1769)

About this e-text of Ecce Homo

Holbach published Histoire critique de Jésus-Christ about 1769. It was published anonymously (probably in Amsterdam) without any date or place of publication.

Andrew Hunwick notes in his 1995 critical edition that the text was "plagiarised" - adapted or elaborated would be more accurate - from a rare pseudonymous manuscript, "Histoire critique de Jésus fils de Marie," attributed to "a Jew, Salvador".

The work was translated into English under the title Ecce Homo by George Houston (d. 1840) who published three editions: the first in Edinburgh in 1799, the second in London in 1813. For the latter Houston was prosecuted for "blasphemy", sentenced to two years in Newgate Prison and fined two hundred pounds. Following his release Houston left for New York where he edited the Minerva, founded a freethought journal, The Correspondence, and reprinted (in 1827) his translation.

This online version is based on a facsimile reprint of the 1827 New York edition.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: J.M. Robertson, A History of Freethought in the Nineteenth Century, Vol I. (London: 1929).