Fires of Faith: Catholic England under Mary Tudor

Hardcover (Print)
Buy Used
Buy Used from BN.com
$16.76
(Save 41%)
Item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging.
Condition: Used – Good details
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $1.99
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 93%)
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (25) from $1.99   
  • New (5) from $29.09   
  • Used (20) from $1.99   
Close
Sort by
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Note: Marketplace items are not eligible for any BN.com coupons and promotions
$29.09
Seller since 2008

Feedback rating:

(17721)

Condition:

New — never opened or used in original packaging.

Like New — packaging may have been opened. A "Like New" item is suitable to give as a gift.

Very Good — may have minor signs of wear on packaging but item works perfectly and has no damage.

Good — item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Acceptable — item is in working order but may show signs of wear such as scratches or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Used — An item that has been opened and may show signs of wear. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Refurbished — A used item that has been renewed or updated and verified to be in proper working condition. Not necessarily completed by the original manufacturer.

New
Brand New, Perfect Condition, Please allow 4-14 business days for delivery. 100% Money Back Guarantee, Over 1,000,000 customers served.

Ships from: Westminster, MD

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
$29.10
Seller since 2008

Feedback rating:

(4506)

Condition: New
New Book. Shipped from UK within 4 to 14 business days. Established seller since 2000.

Ships from: Horcott Rd, Fairford, United Kingdom

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
$49.38
Seller since 2011

Feedback rating:

(7)

Condition: New
2009 Hardcover New Book New and in stock. 5/8/2009. *****PLEASE NOTE: This item is shipping from an authorized seller in Europe. In the event that a return is necessary, you ... will be able to return your item within the US. To learn more about our European sellers and policies see the BookQuest FAQ section***** Read more Show Less

Ships from: Morden, United Kingdom

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
$80.00
Seller since 2014

Feedback rating:

(188)

Condition: New
Brand new.

Ships from: acton, MA

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
$80.00
Seller since 2014

Feedback rating:

(188)

Condition: New
Brand new.

Ships from: acton, MA

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Close
Sort by

Overview

The reign of Mary Tudor has been remembered as an era of sterile repression, when a reactionary monarch launched a doomed attempt to reimpose Catholicism on an unwilling nation. Above all, the burning alive of more than 280 men and women for their religious beliefs seared the rule of “Bloody Mary” into the protestant imagination as an alien aberration in the onward and upward march of the English-speaking peoples.

In this controversial reassessment, the renowned reformation historian Eamon Duffy argues that Mary's regime was neither inept nor backward looking. Led by the queen's cousin, Cardinal Reginald Pole, Mary’s church dramatically reversed the religious revolution imposed under the child king Edward VI. Inspired by the values of the European Counter-Reformation, the cardinal and the queen reinstated the papacy and launched an effective propaganda campaign through pulpit and press.

Even the most notorious aspect of the regime, the burnings, proved devastatingly effective. Only the death of the childless queen and her cardinal on the same day in November 1558 brought the protestant Elizabeth to the throne, thereby changing the course of English history.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Choice
Chosen as an Outstanding Academic Title for 2009 by Choice Magazine
Times Literary Supplement - Peter Marshall
"Fires of Faith is a dazzling exercise in historical reappraisal, after which the reign of Mary Tudor will never look quite the same again."—Peter Marshall, Times Literary Supplement
Choice
Chosen as an Outstanding Academic Title for 2009 by Choice Magazine
Anglican and Episcopal History - Fredrica Harris Thompsett
"This is an erudite, revisionist perspective on a topic many apparently thought was burned into historical truth. . . . Eamon Duffy brings insight, passion, and scholarly persistence. . . . Scholars and otherwise curious readers will find Fires of Faith's reassessment of the Catholic spirit of Marian England well worth ongoing consideration."—Fredrica Harris Thompsett, Anglican and Episcopal History
Journal of British Studies - David Loades
"This study is learned and eloquent, and does much to establish the credentials of a church that has suffered from centuries of adverse publicity. Even more, however, it demonstrates the perils of ideological conflict. The Protestants won by historical accident, but it is pure gain to see the other side of the story so ably presented."—David Loades, Journal of British Studies
The Catholic Historical Review - Carlos M. N. Eire
"Fires of Faith is a daring and masterful reinterpretation of a key moment in English history and also in the history of Catholicism. Although many will surely challenge its assertions, this book’s significance is beyond dispute, precisely because it encourages disputation. Duffy questions the dominant narrative created by Protestants long ago and, in the process,opens doors that only the timid and the foolhardy will dare to ignore."—Carlos M. N. Eire, The Catholic Historical Review
Journal of Religion - Scott McGinnis
"Duffy has once again written a book that opens new questions and will be indispensable for future considerations of Mary's reign."—Scott McGinnis, Journal of Religion
The Sunday Times Culture

''A fascinating piece of revisionist history.'' — Andrew Holgate, The Sunday Times Culture

— Andrew Holgate

Religious Studies Review

"Duffy brings keen insight and thorough knowledge of his sources to this unabashedly revisionist assessment of Mary''s reign. . . . A powerful revisionist statement and a valuable resource for understanding the reign of Mary Tudor."—Daniel Eppley, Religious Studies Review

— Daniel Eppley

The Independent

"In this confident and persuasive work…. Duffy's use of vivid detail and the actual words of protagonists bring the reader within sniffing distance of the blazing stakes."—The Independent
English Historical Review
“… vividly-written and forcefully-argued”—G.W. Bernard, English Historical Review

— G.W. Bernard

Contemporary Review

‘We are once again indebted to Prof. Duffy – as we were in 1992 – for giving us a study that should help us to get a more balanced view of this decisive era in our country’s history’ — JM, Contemporary Review

— J.M.

The Pastoral Review

‘This is an outstanding and confident work, as one would expect…Duffy’s book is very timely.’ — Ashley Beck, The Pastoral Review

— Ashley Beck

First Things

"Duffy largely succeeds in his revisionist history of Catholic England under Mary Tudor. Dispelling some of the Foxean clouds that have obscured judgment, Fires of Faith reveals Marian reconstruction as a purposeful, ordered, and various movement."—Robert Miola, First Things

— Robert Miola

Sunday Herald

“A brilliant reassessment of England’s ‘Bloody Mary’.” — John Guy, Sunday Herald

— John Guy

Sunday Times

“A fascinating piece of revisionist history.”— Sunday Times

Spectator

“Completes the story of the English Reformation which began with the author’s masterpiece, The Stripping of the Altars.” — John Sumption, Spectator

— John Sumption

History Review

‘Professor Eamon Duffy’s Fires of Faith is an authoritative, challenging Catholic polemic. He knocks on the head old-fashioned, Protestant myths … His book is convincing.’ Richard Wilkinson, History Review

— Richard Wilkinson

Theology

‘It is the individual stories of religious persecution and suffering, which pepper the book, that leave the deepest impression on the reader.’ — Anna French, Theology

— Anna French

Catholic Library World

"For his imaginative questioning of received opinion, and for his careful work in dispelling untruths, this reasonably priced book is recommended to all academic libraries." —Daniel Boice, Catholic Library World

— Daniel Boice

Commonweal

"Fires of Faith is a revisionist floodlight that not only makes use of new sources but reads old ones in original ways." —Brad S. Gregory, Commonweal

— Brad S. Gregory

sacramentobookreview.com

"[Fires of Faith] is a fascinating bit of history from a perspective that isn''t often represented: pro- rather than anti-Catholic." —Ashley McCall, sacramentobookreview.com

— Ashley McCall

Renaissance Quarterly

"[Fires of Faith] will become a standard work vying with its author''s previous writing in generating debate and forcing the close reassessments of established opinions. As such, it will be welcomed even by those who find themselves disagreeing with parts of it." —John Flood, Renaissance Quarterly

— John Flood

Weekly Standard - J.J. Scarisbrick

"And now the learned, astonishingly productive Eamon Duffy has joined the fray, revising the revisionists upwards—dramatically. In this powerful, punchy book he argues that the Marian restoration of English Catholicism was much more than the rather low-profile and sometimes timid attempt to return to the past which even the recent revisionists have portrayed. No, says Duffy (and I must now agree), it was a full-blooded attempt to introduce into England the "new" Catholicism of the fledgling Counter-Reformation. . . . Once again, Eamon Duffy has changed the landscape of English Reformation history."—J.J. Scarisbridge, The Weekly Standard

Contemporary Review - J.M.

‘We are once again indebted to Prof. Duffy – as we were in 1992 – for giving us a study that should help us to get a more balanced view of this decisive era in our country’s history’ — JM, Contemporary Review
The Pastoral Review - Ashley Beck

‘This is an outstanding and confident work, as one would expect…Duffy’s book is very timely.’ — Ashley Beck, The Pastoral Review
First Things - Robert Miola

"Duffy largely succeeds in his revisionist history of Catholic England under Mary Tudor. Dispelling some of the Foxean clouds that have obscured judgment, Fires of Faith reveals Marian reconstruction as a purposeful, ordered, and various movement."—Robert Miola, First Things

Sunday Herald - John Guy

“A brilliant reassessment of England’s ‘Bloody Mary’.” — John Guy, Sunday Herald

Spectator - John Sumption

“Completes the story of the English Reformation which began with the author’s masterpiece, The Stripping of the Altars.” — John Sumption, Spectator

History Review - Richard Wilkinson

‘Professor Eamon Duffy’s Fires of Faith is an authoritative, challenging Catholic polemic. He knocks on the head old-fashioned, Protestant myths … His book is convincing.’ Richard Wilkinson, History Review

Theology - Anna French

‘It is the individual stories of religious persecution and suffering, which pepper the book, that leave the deepest impression on the reader.’ — Anna French, Theology

Catholic Library World - Daniel Boice

"For his imaginative questioning of received opinion, and for his careful work in dispelling untruths, this reasonably priced book is recommended to all academic libraries." —Daniel Boice, Catholic Library World
Commonweal - Brad S. Gregory

"Fires of Faith is a revisionist floodlight that not only makes use of new sources but reads old ones in original ways." —Brad S. Gregory, Commonweal
sacramentobookreview.com - Ashley McCall

"[Fires of Faith] is a fascinating bit of history from a perspective that isn't often represented: pro- rather than anti-Catholic." —Ashley McCall, sacramentobookreview.com
Renaissance Quarterly - John Flood

"[Fires of Faith] will become a standard work vying with its author's previous writing in generating debate and forcing the close reassessments of established opinions. As such, it will be welcomed even by those who find themselves disagreeing with parts of it." —John Flood, Renaissance Quarterly
The Sunday Times Culture - Andrew Holgate

'A fascinating piece of revisionist history.' — Andrew Holgate, The Sunday Times Culture
Religious Studies Review - Daniel Eppley

"Duffy brings keen insight and thorough knowledge of his sources to this unabashedly revisionist assessment of Mary's reign. . . . A powerful revisionist statement and a valuable resource for understanding the reign of Mary Tudor."—Daniel Eppley, Religious Studies Review
English Historical Review - G.W. Bernard
“… vividly-written and forcefully-argued”—G.W. Bernard, English Historical Review
Times Literary Supplement

"Fires of Faith is a dazzling exercise in historical reappraisal, after which the reign of Mary Tudor will never look quite the same again."—Peter Marshall, Times Literary Supplement

— Peter Marshall

Weekly Standard

"And now the learned, astonishingly productive Eamon Duffy has joined the fray, revising the revisionists upwards—dramatically. In this powerful, punchy book he argues that the Marian restoration of English Catholicism was much more than the rather low-profile and sometimes timid attempt to return to the past which even the recent revisionists have portrayed. No, says Duffy (and I must now agree), it was a full-blooded attempt to introduce into England the "new" Catholicism of the fledgling Counter-Reformation. . . . Once again, Eamon Duffy has changed the landscape of English Reformation history."—J.J. Scarisbridge, The Weekly Standard

— J.J. Scarisbrick

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780300152166
  • Publisher: Yale University Press
  • Publication date: 9/15/2009
  • Pages: 280
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Eamon Duffy is professor of the history of Christianity at the University of Cambridge. He is the author of many prize-winning books, including The Stripping of the Altars, Saints and Sinners, The Voices of Morebath, and Marking the Hours, all published by Yale University Press.

Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt

Fires of Faith

Catholic England under Mary Tudor


By Eamon Duffy

Yale UNIVERSITY PRESS

Copyright © 2009 Eamon Duffy
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-300-16045-1


Excerpt

CHAPTER 1

Rolling Back the Revolution


The reign of Mary Tudor has had few friends among historians, and the regime's religious dimension has provided most of the copy for the bad press. Until relatively recently, almost everyone agreed that Mary's church was backward-looking, unimaginative, reactionary, sharing both the Queen's bitter preoccupation with the past and her tragic sterility. Marian catholicism, it was agreed, was strong on repression, weak on persuasion. Its atrocious campaign of burnings was not merely an outrage against human decency but a devastating political blunder, which alienated moderate opinion and helped to inoculate the English nation forever against roman catholicism. Its apologists and polemicists, with the possible single exception of the London artisan Miles Hogarde, were dismissed as unimpressive second-raters, their works tedious and unimaginative, the regime in general fatally unaware of the crucial importance of argument and debate in the battle for hearts and minds, and neglectful of the power of both the pulpit and the printing press in that struggle.

Mary's church was led by Reginald Pole, a man, it was claimed, positively averse to preaching, whose capacity for action had been sapped by disillusionment at the rejection of his theological vision and his understanding of reform at the Council of Trent, an Inglese Italianato who had been an exile in Italy for so long that he utterly failed to grasp how deeply the reformation had penetrated the religious life of England. This damning appraisal was most clearly set out in the late Geoffrey Dickens's textbook The English Reformation, which appeared first in 1965 and which was to dominate the historiography quite remarkably for the next thirty years. Dickens distilled this overwhelmingly negative picture into the claim that the Marian regime, bedevilled by a 'sterile legalism', had 'failed to discover the Counter-Reformation'.

This verdict – famous, fatuous, but fatally quotable – stuck, and has had an influence apparently directly proportionate to its basic implausibility, and over historians who might have been expected to have known better. It underlies I think, John Bossy's claim that Queen Mary and Cardinal Pole are best regarded not as figures in the sixteenth- and seventeenth-century reconstruction and re-imagining of European catholicism that we call the counter-reformation, but 'as part of the posthumous history of medieval Christendom'. It coloured Rex Pogson's influential Cambridge doctoral study of Pole's legatine mission, and it informed the treatment of religion in David Loades's standard history of the reign, which conceded that the leaders of Mary's church 'were not slack or inept', but nevertheless insisted that they pursued a long-term policy which 'ignored ... important features of the immediate situation', above all 'the desperate need for spiritual leadership of a high calibre'. Deluded in believing that protestant ideas had established only a superficial hold in England, Loades argued, Cardinal Pole in particular drew back from the strenuous evangelisation that was so urgently needed, and characteristically refused help from the Jesuit order because he 'simply did not want men with the fire of the counter-reformation in their bellies'. He belonged to a nostalgic 'older generation' (Pole was in fact nine years younger than the Jesuit founder, St Ignatius), which, like the Queen herself, 'saw the future in terms of the past', at best clinging to the humanist ideals of the 1520s, and an agenda now hopelessly overtaken by the radicalisation of both the catholic and protestant reformations. Professor Loades has since modified some of these positions, and has encouraged efforts to rethink the religious aspects of the reign. His overall assessment of Marian religion remains muted, however, the sound at most of one hand clapping: Mary and her bishops, he believes, did too little, too late.

Over the last twenty years, this negative consensus has been chipped away piecemeal. In 1986, the late Jennifer Loach published an essay offering a positive re-assessment of the Marian establishment's use of the printing press. Susan Brigden's magisterial study of the reformation in London, published in 1989, offered a nuanced study of the impact of the Marian restoration in the capital, which did justice to its effectiveness, despite the presence there of a strong and vociferous protestant minority. In 1992, in the Stripping of the Altars, I suggested that the Marian restoration of catholicism had, in fact, displayed high levels of determination and resourcefulness, and that far from being, in another of Dickens's memorable phrases, 'the prisoner of a sorrowful past', in many instances the key policies of the regime anticipated or directly inspired later counter-reformation developments. And in 1993, in his English Reformations, Christopher Haigh offered a similarly upbeat survey of the effectiveness of the Marian regime.

Since then, a number of fresh developments have contributed more indirectly to the continued reappraisal of the reign. First, the establishment (on the initiative of Professor Loades) of the British Academy's Foxe Project has made available annotated online texts of all the Elizabethan editions of our single most important source for the religious history of the period, stimulating a wave of valuable new research, led by the project's own resident guru, Dr Tom Freeman. Secondly, Professor Thomas Mayer, in a stream of essays on Cardinal Pole, a new biography and a monumental calendar of Pole's correspondence, has provided the materials for a radical reassessment of the most important figure in the Marian religious establishment, and thereby encouraged the placing of the Marian episode in its proper European context. The changing historiographical climate has been registered in a series of publications and doctoral theses, themselves signalled in two collections of essays on the religion of the reign, published by Ashgate in 2006.

Yet major barriers to a genuine reassessment ofMary's church remain. The remarkable achievement of the Marian parishes in reconstructing the physical setting for catholic worship is concealed from us by generations of subsequent iconoclasm, first religiously and then aesthetically driven, which destroyed most of the evidence. The material situation that Mary's church inherited was dire. In five years, Edward's regime had bulldozed away centuries of devotional elaboration, and had stripped bare the cathedrals and parish churches of England. The most devastating impact had probably been in music, since the heavy emphasis of reformed protestantism on the intelligibility of the written or spoken word in worship left no place for Latin word-setting and elaborate polyphony. The entire repertoire of sacred music from late antiquity to the recent past, therefore, had been swept aside as redundant in a matter of months. But, after music, it was architecture and its attendant arts – paintings, statuary, stained glass – that suffered most. Virtually all the altars had been pulled down, their consecrated table-slabs or mensae often deliberately broken up, or profaned by use as paving, bridge components, walling or hearthstones. With the removal of the altars, the spaces round them – chancels and cathedral choirs – were drastically reordered.

As we shall see, Ridley's radical rearrangements at St Paul's would become almost legendary, but the hammers had been out everywhere – at Worcester, a representative case, Dean Barlow razed the high altar to the ground in August 1552, at the same time removing the medieval choir screens. By the end of that month the organ had gone too. The great crucifixes that had dominated every church in the land had been ritually burned by the Edwardine visitors; every accessible niche had been emptied of its saint; wall and panel paintings were scraped or whitewashed over. Acres of stained glass had been smashed or sold off and, when left in place, as perhaps they mostly were, the faces of sacred persons and the more overtly catholic iconography might be daubed out with paint or whitewash. In the most zealously policed dioceses, such as London, even the brass memorials of the dead, 'superstitious' because of their requests for prayers for the repose of the souls of the departed, had been prised out of the floors and sold for scrap. The vestments, vessels, books and music needed for catholic worship were outlawed, dispersed and (mostly) destroyed. In 1552,Edward's government, desperate for war funds, had turned this religiously inspired repudiation of catholic externals into a fiscal resource, and had carried through the largest government confiscation of local property in English history. County-based royal commissioners had stripped the parish churches of all their remaining valuables, leaving most with little more than a quantity of linen or silk cloth to cover the communion table, a single chalice for communion, a surplice for the priest, and the English books needed for the new services.

I have discussed elsewhere the massive sustained effort required throughout Mary's reign to reverse all this and re-equip the parishes for catholic worship, and I will not repeat myself here. It was a gargantuan task, and inevitably a slow one, hindered by lack of resources, by the scarcity of available craftsmen and specialist workshops, occasionally by the reluctance of communities or individuals to invest in the restoration of a religious system that they inwardly rejected. Perhaps the greatest hindrance was the massive blow that the Edwardine years had delivered to lay confidence in an age-old system of devotional provision and donation, which depended for its momentum on its immemorial and unchallenged character. Yet in churchwardens' accounts, visitation returns, will and probate records, and in the fabric rolls of the great churches, we find abundant evidence that the re-equipping went ahead, gathered momentum and that, by the end of the reign, it was well on the way to reshaping the physical appearance of English worship.

There was of course a great deal of make-do and mend. Impoverished parishes, even when we know them to have been devoutly catholic, might take years to gather the full complement of books, vessels and vestments needed, and even then might have to make do with pewter instead of silver vessels for the Sacrament. Churchwardens' accounts survive for fewer than 140 parishes from Mary's reign, a tiny proportion of the 10,000 or so in the country as a whole. Yet, even in parishes with surviving accounts, a great deal of the work of reconstruction is invisible because it was paid for by individual donations rather than by the parish at large, and so was not recorded in the wardens' accounts.

Cambridge University Library holds a splendid Sarum missal printed in Paris in 1555.20 Folio-sized, handsomely rubricated and illustrated throughout with high-quality woodcuts, this editon was the most sumptuous liturgical book produced for Marian England. Inscriptions on the title page and before the Canon of the Mass in the Cambridge copy ask for prayers for Richard Perkyn the elder, who presented the book to the Bedfordshire parish of St Peter, Tempsford, on 28 November 1557, just in time for the annual St Andrew's day celebration, commemorating England's return to papal obedience. By that point in the process of restoration, of course, the parish must already have used a mass-book daily for at least three years. Perkyn's gift is therefore an example of devotional elaboration, the provision of an expensive higher-quality item to dignify the parish's worship, designed to elicit the gratitude and prayers of the community for the donor (Plates 12 and 13). There must have been thousands of such gifts of books, vestments and fittings all over England, as local elites or the specially devout contributed to the re-establishment of catholic normalcy. Most such donations, however, like the Tempsford missal, will have been recorded, if at all, only on the object itself. And the overwhelming majority were to perish without trace in the early years of the Elizabethan Settlement. With them disappeared most of the material vestiges of a huge and concerted counter-revolution.

A few disjecta membra remain as clues to the likely appearance of English churches, great and small, at the height of the Marian reconstruction. Perhaps the most remarkable of all is to be found in the least expected of places. This is the handsome arcaded wooden canopy that crowns the shrine of St Edward in Westminster Abbey (Plate 10). Dismantled and removed under Edward VI, the shrine was reconstructed by Abbot Feckenham and his monks in 1557, and the royal saint's bones replaced 'with goodly syngyng and senssyng as has been sene, and masse song'. The elegant classical lines of the new covering for the relics themselves say a great deal about the spirit of the great Marian rebuilding as a whole: there is nothing the least backward looking or 'gothicising' about this confident renaissance woodwork. The same is true of the fragments of surviving screenwork from the Marian reconstruction of the choir of Worcester Cathedral, now in Holy Trinity Church, Sutton Coldfield (Plate 11). The east end of the cathedral had been devastated by Dean Barlow in August 1551, as we have seen. In 1556, the cathedral sanctuary was rebuilt and re-equipped for the restored Mass and Offices 'with closure of carved boards round about the choir, double stalls, and high stalls for the canons and petty canons, the lower for the children, and a goodly loft wherein the gospel is read': the Queen herself financed the work. Once again, there was nothing backward-looking about the style of the new sacred enclosure. Nikolaus Pevsner and his team, who knew nothing of its Marian provenance, but only that this woodwork had migrated from Worcester to Holy Trinity in the wake of the Victorian regothicising of the cathedral, were unable to date the panelling stylistically, and speculated that it might be of the mid-seventeenth century.

A somewhat more emphatic renaissance elegance characterises the tomb of Thomas Howard, 3rd Duke of Norfolk, buried in Framlingham parish church in 1554. The magnificent stone tomb chest, with its carved figures of the Apostles standing under scallop-shell canopies, was probably begun at Thetford in the late 1530s, but, with other Howard tombs, was moved to Framlingham in Mary's reign and completed. The completion of this emphatically catholic monument in Mary's reign, in the town where the predominantly catholic gentry of East Anglia had rallied to Mary, is an appropriate symbol of the strength of the regime's appeal to contemporary religious feeling. A more severe renaissance austerity characterises the chantry chapel of Bishop Stephen Gardiner in Winchester Cathedral (Plates 7 and 8), totally devoid of religious iconography apart from the bishop's own cadaver image and the figures of Ecclesia and Synagoga flanking the reredos behind the altar.

The greatest barrier to a positive assessment of the Marian restoration, however, remains the fact of the burning of more than 280 protestant men and women in just under four years, from February 1555 to November 1558. This was the most intense religious persecution of its kind anywhere in sixteenth-century Europe, and it not only constitutes a horrifying moral blot on any regime purporting to be Christian, but has seemed to most historians conclusive evidence of that regime's negativity, short-sightedness and instinct for self-destruction. I do not, of course, contest the horror involved in roasting men and women alive for their religious convictions. But, with some diffidence and discomfort, I do want to argue that the received perception of the campaign of burnings, as manifestly unsuccessful and self-defeating, is quite mistaken.

In sixteenth-century terms, the burnings were inevitable, and, gruesome as it is to speak of the efficiency of mass execution, in practice they were efficiently carried out and tellingly defended. For very good reasons, the regime identified protestantism with sedition. In the interests of political stability, it was convinced that it had to break the back of protestant resistance, and it pressed the device of shameful and painful public execution into service as a powerful tool in that task. Elizabeth, mutatis mutandis, would do the same from the 1570s onwards, though her campaign against catholicism was justified in largely political terms. But Mary's regime was also well aware of the potential of such executions to alienate public opinion, and Cardinal Pole and his colleagues took considered and, on the whole, effective steps to justify the campaign to contemporaries. Though it is very unlikely that the protestant minority could ever have been eliminated by force alone, the signs are that the campaign of repression was having the desired effect. By the summer of 1558, the numbers being executed for heresy were tailing off, a trend that has usually been interpreted as a sign of the regime's growing sense of failure and futility. I shall argue that, on the contrary, it reflects the fact that there were fewer defiant activists to execute: the protestant hydra was being decapitated.

In this short book, I do not attempt a narrative survey of religion under Mary Tudor. There are important and still under-explored aspects of the restoration of catholicism that I have time to do little more than mention, such as the restoration of monasticism, or the highly successful reconstruction of the universities (especially of Oxford) as powerhouses of catholicism, a development that, as we shall see in the final chapter, was to have momentous consequences for Elizabethan recusancy and the wider counter-reformation. What I want to tackle here is the overarching issue of the general competence, drive and direction of the regime. What was it attempting to do, how well did it set about doing it, and who was in charge? In the process, I hope to dispose once and for all of some of the misapprehensions that have dogged and distorted the historiography of mid-Tudor catholicism – that it was ineffective, half-hearted, complacent, unimaginative, insular, lacking in leadership, trapped in the preoccupations of the 1520s or 1530s rather than addressing those of the 1550s; in short, that it had failed to discover the counter-reformation. I shall suggest that, on the contrary, as the first protestant nation to return to papal obedience, Marian England was the closest thing in Europe to a laboratory for counter-reformation experimentation.
(Continues...)


Excerpted from Fires of Faith by Eamon Duffy. Copyright © 2009 by Eamon Duffy. Excerpted by permission of Yale UNIVERSITY PRESS.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Foreword ix

List of Illustrations xii

Abbreviations xiii

1 Rolling Back the Revolution 1

2 Cardinal Pole 29

3 Contesting the Reformation: Plain and Godly Treatises 57

4 From Persuasion to Force 79

5 The Theatre of Justice 102

6 The Hunters and the Hunted 128

7 The Battle for Hearts and Minds 155

8 The Defence of the Burnings and the Problem of Martyrdom 171

9 The Legacy: Inventing the Counter-Reformation 188

Notes 209

Select Bibliography 231

Index 239

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 20, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Five Roman Catholic Years in England: 1553 - 1558

    Professor Eamon Duffy's FIRES OF FAITH: CATHOLIC ENGLAND UNDER MARY TUDOR looks popular but is not. A colorful dust jacket contrasts a Catholic Corpus Christi procession with burning of Protestant books. Aids to the general reader include 30 plates, many in color and six maps (e.g. Map 6. "Executions in the Dioceses of Canterbury, Chichester and Rochester 1557-8"). The book also boasts extensive notes, a select bibliography and an index. ***

    So far, so good for the general reader. ***

    But the topic, the reign of Catholic Queen Mary Tudor, ruler of England, Wales and Ireland 1553 - 1558) has been treated as a backwater by historians for over 400 years. Mary brought Catholicism back to England for five years, till her death by cancer. Her half-sister Elizabeth then turned her back on the papacy and created the established Protestant Episcopal faith that dominated England into the late 19th Century. The victors write history and Mary's Catholicism lost. So, to be popular, the telling of the Catholic activities of her reign requires spritely writing, some imaginative speculation and above all an executive summary. And all are lacking. Moreover, contemporary documents are quoted in their original 16th Century spelling -- which makes FIRES OF FAITH slower to read (for me at least) than a Sir Walter Scott novel with lots of Broad Lowland Scots. ***

    Here next is a sample of Duffy's narrating. ***

    Persons suspected of heresy in heavily Protestant areas were required "to report anyone refusing to wear rosary beads or not participating in ceremonies. In such places every adult was required to go for confession to the parish priest twice during Lent, and then 'to receave the Sacramente wekelie as the howseholdes shalbe appointed.' One adult member of every household was also required to take part in the processions and litany on Wednesdays and Fridays. Men known to have good voices and to have sung in church in King Edward's reign were listed and required to join the parish choir at Mass, and other services" (Ch. 6, p 133)."

    Duffy claims to be one of a handful of historians seeking to do justice to Mary's reign. He believes that, despite hundreds of burning of heretics at the stake, England was going steadily Catholic by Mary's death. It would have continued so, he argues, had she lived another ten or twenty years. Her right hand man and royal cousin Cardinal Archbishop Reginald Pole was the right man for his job. Despite other historians's beliefs to the contrary, Pole both preached himself and vigorously promoted preaching and teaching. He demanded an educated clergy. Bishops and higher clergy were to be trained theologians of exemplary lives and devoted to the lay faithful. To that end he created new-model seminaries. Catholic publications abounded during the five Marian years: in Latin and English. They were polemical, devotional, liturgy handbooks and broadsides. ***

    This book is for you if you are well read in Tudor England from the dynasty's founder Henry VII to its last of five exemplars, Queen Elizabeth I. Its brilliantly reproduced portraits and paintings will hold you. But you will also have your nose rubbed into seemingly endlessly repearted burnings at the stake and dry arguments among historians whether and to what extent burnings helped Catholic restoration in England.
    -OOO-

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 17, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 11, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)