English political philosopher William Godwin is born at Wisbech in Cambridgeshire, England.
Raised a Calvinist, William Godwin will become a leading proponent of minimalist government based in part on the un-Calvinist belief that there is no such thing as original sin to taint human nature; instead humans will do what is good and just so long as the path to do so is open to them.
The two are linked for William Godwin because he believes the larger a government becomes the more corrupt it becomes and, moreover, the more of a hinderance it becomes for people to choose to do what is good and just.
According to Godwin, "government by its very nature counteracts the improvement of original mind." Because of such views William Godwin becomes an important political philosopher for anarchism, though it's not clear that he ever advocated for the abolition of all government entirely.
In 1797 William Godwin will wed Mary Wollstonecraft. Together they will have one daughter, Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin. Better known as Mary Shelley, she will become famous as the author of the novel Frankenstein.