In the mid–1700s, America's religious leaders feared deism, but by the early 1800s, it had faded from view. The death of its leaders and the rise of pietistic Christianity have been charged with its downfall. At one of its purported hotbeds—Harvard College—another possibility emerges: deism disappeared because, at least in some crucial arenas, it had triumphed, and thus deists were appeased.

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