Catholic England: Faith, Religion and Observance Before the Reformation

Overview

The Reformation, which began under Henry VIII, transformed English religion. For many the spirituality of the preceding period remains largely unknown, or overburdened with Protestant mythology of decadence. These sources seek to explore the nature of religious belief and practice in pre-Reformation England, using original source material to make the debates accessible.

This consideration of the sources begins with an analytical chapter discussing the varieties of spirituality ...

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Overview

The Reformation, which began under Henry VIII, transformed English religion. For many the spirituality of the preceding period remains largely unknown, or overburdened with Protestant mythology of decadence. These sources seek to explore the nature of religious belief and practice in pre-Reformation England, using original source material to make the debates accessible.

This consideration of the sources begins with an analytical chapter discussing the varieties of spirituality in later medieval England and the ways in which they received expression, through participation in church services, actions like pilgrimages, charitable foundations, devotional readings and instruction. Opposition to prevailing spirituality, expressed through 'Lollardy', is also considered. The sources demonstrate with immediacy and potency these diverse expressions of faith and observance. Many of the documents are translated for the first time from unpublished manuscript material.

This study demonstrates the vitality of the pre-Reformation religious practices, but also addresses the key methodological questions which arise from the sources about the nature of the material, its reliability as historical evidence, and the validity of external actions as testimony to intellectual and emotional experience.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780719090776
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Publication date: 8/13/2013
  • Series: Manchester Medieval Sources Series
  • Edition description: Reissue
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

R.N. Swanson is Professor of Medieval History at the University of Birmingham.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: In Search of Pre-Reformation English Spirituality
PART I: THEORY
I: The Bible
1. The Vulgate (Latin) Version
2. The Lollard Bible
3. A Modern Translation
II: Disseminating the faith
A. Instruction in the Faith
4. Lenten Instructions by John Drury of Beccles
B. Sermons
5. From John Mirk's Festival
6. From the Main Wycliffite Cycle
7. From an Anonymous Compilation
III: The Mass
8. Instructions in Preparation for the Mass
9. Lay Action during Mass: The Lay Folks' Mass Book
IV: Designs for Living and Dying
10. The Abbey of the Holy Ghost
11. Walter Hilton, Epistle on the Mixed Life
12. The Book of the Craft of Dying
PART II: PRACTICE
V. Parish Celebrations
13. Scarborough: Parish Accounts, 1435–36
14. Great Yarmouth: Selected Accounts, 1386–1505
15. King's Lynn: Selected Accounts, 1398–1536
VI: Private Religion
16. Licenses for Private Chapels and Oratories
17. Vows of Chastity
VII. Saints, Shrines, Miracles and Pilgrimage
A. Shrines and Offerings by Pilgrims
18. Ornaments of Shrines in York Minster
19. Receipts from Offerings at Hereford Cathedral
20. Receipts of St Etheldreda's Shrine, Ely
21. Small Shrines and Vicarious Pilgrimages
B. Miracles
22. Miracles of St Osmund, c.1453
23. Miracles of Henry VI
VIII: Security for the Living
A. Indulgences
24. Appointment of Proctors
25. Appointment of Proctors for a Nridge, c.1490
26. Appointment of Proctor for St Anthony's Hospital, London, 1479
27. Appointment of Proctor for St Anthony's Hospital, London, 1536
28. Indulgence Granted for a Chapel
29. Profits of Indulgence: St Anthony's Hospital, London, 1513
B. Guilds and Fraternities
30. Franciscan Letters of Confraternity
31. Mendicant Letters of Confraternity
32. Regulations of Trade Fraternity: the Carpenters of York, 1482
33. Guild Membership: the Palmers of Ludlow, 1505–6
34. Cumulative Totals of Guild Subscriptions: the Palmers of Ludlow, 1447–48
35. National Membership Receipts: the Palmers of Ludlow, 1538–39
36. Benefits of Membership of the Fraternity of St Chad, Lichfield
IX: Security for the Dead
A. Obits and Anniversaries
37. Provision of Trentals, 1487
38. Obit Arrangements: William Paston
39. Establishment of an Orbit or Anniversary, 1458
B. Chantries and Almshouses
40. Establishment of a Chantry: St James' Priory, Bristol, 1400
41. Establishment of a Chantry in a Friary: Bristol, 1469
42. Establishment of a Chantry through Feoffment to Uses: Bridgwater, 1482
43. Regulations for a Chantry and Almshouses: Ludlow, 1486
X: Distributions at Death: Wills
44. The Will of Thomas Kebell, 1500
45. The Will of Lady Jane Strangways, 1500
46. The Wills of Sir John Port, 1528–40
XI: Complaint and Opposition
A. Anticlericalism?
47. The Burgesses of Saltash Complain about their Vicar, c.1406
48. Complaints at Visitation: Kent, 1511–12
B. Heresy and Lollardy
49. The Hunt for Heretics: Bury St Edmunds, 1428
50. The Definition of 'Lollardy'
51. Lollard Confessions, 1430
Bibliography
Index

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