Ways of Lying: Dissimulation, Persecution, and Conformity in Early Modern Europe

Ways of Lying: Dissimulation, Persecution, and Conformity in Early Modern Europe

by Perez Zagorin
     
 

The religious persecution and intellectual intolerance of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries compelled many heterodox groups and thinkers to resort to misdirection, hidden meaning, secrecy, and deceit. In this highly unusual interpretation, Perez Zagorin traces the theory and practice of religious leaders, philosophers, intellectuals, and men of letters who

See more details below

Overview

The religious persecution and intellectual intolerance of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries compelled many heterodox groups and thinkers to resort to misdirection, hidden meaning, secrecy, and deceit. In this highly unusual interpretation, Perez Zagorin traces the theory and practice of religious leaders, philosophers, intellectuals, and men of letters who used deception to cloak dissident beliefs.

Zagorin surveys some of the chief sources of early modern doctrines of dissimulation in the Bible and the works of theologians from Jerome and Augustine to Erasmus, Luther, and Calvin. Subjects covered include Nicodemism, the name given by Calvin to secret Protestants who concealed their faith behind a facade of conformity to Catholic worship; crypto-Judaism in Spain; and the hidden beliefs of English Catholics. Other topics include the Catholic doctrine of mental reservation; the place of dissimulation in English Protestant casuistry; occultism; and dissimulation of religious unbelief among philosophers and men of letters. In charting the widespread phenomenon of lying and deceit and by exploring its evolutions, Perez Zagorin has made an important contribution to the historiography of an intellectually roiling and perilous time. He adds a vital dimension to our understanding of the religious, intellectual, and cultural history of the epoch before the modern. Lacey Baldwin Smith finds this hook “an impressive and scholarly work of cultural synthesis that coins a fresh label for the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries: the age of dissimulation. Zagorin’s efforts to compare and contrast Catholic and Protestant styles of dissimulation and Nicodemism are important, casting a new perspective and focus on the religious and intellectual dissent of the era.”

Read More

Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Brito is in the English department at the U. of Wyoming, Laramie. Not a scholarly work, this is a narrative account of the author's experience with the Peyote religion and the ceremony in which he used the cactus. Produced from typescript. No index. The religious persecution and intellectual intolerance of the 16th and 17th centuries compelled many heterodox groups and thinkers to resort to misdirection, hidden meanings, secrecy, and deceit. In this highly original cultural synthesis, Zagorin (European history, U. of Rochester) traces the theory and practice of religious leaders, philosophers, intellectuals, and men of letters who used deception to cloak dissident beliefs. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780674948341
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Publication date:
12/28/1990
Pages:
337
Product dimensions:
6.36(w) x 9.56(h) x 1.24(d)

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >