McCabe writes about Robertson the following:
"Mr. Robertson has been the most considerable force in English Rationalism since the death of Bradlaugh, to whom he was greatly attached. His works on comparative mythology, as bearing on the problem of Christ (whose historicity he denies —see his Christianity and Mythology, 1900, and Pagan Christs, 1903), are works of impressive learning; and his Short History of Christianity (1902) and Shorl History of Freethought (2 vols., 1915) are equally
valuable on the historical side. He drastically rejects religion in every shape, and has been for decades a powerful Rationalist and Ethical lecturer. He is at the same time a very able and critical economist, a weighty writer on certain fields of English literature, a good linguist, and an outstanding figure in the political world. No man has rendered higher service to British
Rationalism in the last four decades, and few, especially among self-educated men, have attained such reputable command of so many branches of culture." Quoted from McCabe's "Biographical Dictionary of Modern Rationalists."
Quoted from the author's "Preface to the Second Edition."
"IN the dozen years that have passed since this book was written there has probably been some change in the outlook of the more critical of the readers to whom it might be said to be addressed. It challenges criticism on two main issues: that of Christian origins, and that of the sociological interpretation of Christian history. Twelve years ago, the thesis of the non-historicity of the gospel story in respect of its "natural" no less than of its supernatural matter found few serious listeners, even among Rationalists; while the strictly naturalistic study of Christian history incurred a good deal of resentment. To-day, perhaps, the thesis as to origins may receive more attention; while the historic narrative may arouse less impatience. On both issues, critical thought appears to be at work."
"The primary problem may be left to the fortunes of discussion: the question as to how Christian history is fitly to be presented in summary is perhaps worth some introductory