Reginald Pole: Prince and Prophet

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This is the first biography in ninety years of Reginald Pole (1500SH1558), one of the most important international figures of the sixteenth century. Pole's career is followed as protégé and then harshest critic of Henry VIII, as cardinal and papal diplomat, legate of Viterbo, a nearly successful candidate for pope, and finally as legate to England, archbishop of Canterbury, architect of the English Counter-Reformation, and victim of both Pope Paul IV and of himself.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This study is a major contribution to early modern religious studies." Religious Studies Review

"Whatever ill luck the cardinal experienced, he has been truly fortunate in his biographer." Journal of Modern History

"Thomas Mayer has spent the better part of twenty-five years studying Reginald Pole, and it shows...Mayer's work will be considered the standard on this English cardinal for many years to come...Mayer's work on Pole has forever changed the way this English prelate can be viewed by students of early-modern Europe. Mayer has accomplished what Simoncelli feared might never be done, and he has done it well." William V. Hudon, The Catholicc Historical Review

"This biography is concerned with drawing the links that lie below the suface...setting Pole's life in the nest of his relationships with people like Contarini, Morone, Bembo, Carafa and Vittoria Colonna. An astonishing amount of work has gone into tracing those networks, and the density of the narrative can be dizzying at times. However, it provides a remarkable richness of context, and allows Mayer to draw a character of formidable complexity." H-Net Review

"Mayer's research is wide-ranging, the results of which present much new data for Reformation research, and his analysis is balanced and insightful. His forthcoming edition of Pole's correspondence...should be eagerly awaited." Albion

"Reginald Pole: Prince and Prophet is an important book and will remain essential reading for students of sixteenth- century ecclesiastical and political history for generations to come. Well illustrated and lucidly written, the work brings together the Italian and English portions of the cardinal's life on the basis of extensive archival research and in doing so sets a new standard of completeness in critical biography." Renaissance and Reformation

"It is a stunning scholarly achievement....It is hard to imagine that this century will see its equal for scholarship or that undiscovered documents exist that might substantially alter Mayer's interpretations. He deserves our admiration and gratitude for this prodigious accomplishment." The Historian

"[An] ambitious and superbly researched study of one of early modern Europe's most intriguing failures..." Sixteenth Century Journal

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521371889
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 12/1/2000
  • Pages: 488
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 1.26 (d)

Table of Contents

List of tables; List of illustrations; Acknowledgements; List of abbreviations; Introduction; 1. A book and a life; 2. The campaign against Henry VIII; 3. The church of Viterbo? 4. The council of Trent; 5. The war of the saints; 6. Temporal and spiritual peace; 7. Reconstructing the English church; 8. Temporal and spiritual war; 9. The making of a saint; Catalogue of images; Conclusion: 'Ein Kämpfer gegen seine Zeit'?; Index.

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