On this date in 1839, Ouida, a woman novelist, animal rights activist and freethinker, was born. Nee Maria Louisa Rame, the British novelist rivaled Dickens, Browning and Elliot for salability on the Continent. Some actually speculated she might be George Eliot writing under yet another pseudonym. A passionate dog-lover, Ouida's enduring collection of stories, A Dog of Flanders, was recently turned into a movie. Her essay, "The Failure of Christianity," was published in 1895 in her book Views and Opinions.

“Christianity is a formula: it is nothing more.”

—Ouida, "The Failure of Christianity," Views and Opinions (1895)

Compiled by Annie Laurie Gaylor

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