- Millenialism (or Millenarianism):
- the belief and practices, religious and/or political, which seek a comprehensive, salvationary solution for social, political, economic and personal issues. Although originally pre-Christian, the term became identified with the myth of Christ's return after a thousand years. Millenialism, which appealed to some Dissenting sects and other non-religious groups in Britain and the US, played a part in Owen's thinking after 1816. From time to time he announced the commencement of the millennium, and later Owenism itself acquired many of the characteristics of a religious sect.
- the system of government in the Church of Scotland (kirk) devolved substantial authority to local presbyteries (assemblies of ministers representing a number of parishes), ministers and elders. Historically the kirk had a substantial role in education, poor relief and social control at parish level, hence the animosity Owen generated about his reforms among some kirk ministers.
- a doctrine advocating the greatest happiness of the greatest number of people, regarding an action as ‘right’ if it is likely to produce greater happiness than any other. Jeremy Bentham thought actions should be compared solely on the amounts of pleasure they produced, whereas John Stuart Mill argued that one quantity of pleasure might be of higher quality than another.