The Quakers had always been active controversialists, and a great body of tracts and papers was issued by them; but hitherto these had been of small account from a literary point of view.
These preachers of the Restoration were controversialists, keen, moderate and unenthusiastic. These qualities were accentuated in the 18th century, when for a while religious oratory ceased to have any literary value.
The fault of the controversialists on both sides has been that each party has only seen "one side of the shield."
Its early controversialists - like Driedo or Cardinal Bellarmine - meet assertions such as Gerhard's with a flat denial.
He had early resolved never to be drawn into controversy; and he adhered to his resolution with a steadfastness which is the more extraordinary because he was, both intellectually and morally, of the stuff of which controversialists are made.