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Church and People: England 1450-1660, 2nd Edition

ISBN: 978-0-631-21462-5
264 pages
June 1999, Wiley-Blackwell
Church and People: England 1450-1660, 2nd Edition (0631214623) cover image


This book provides readers with an account of the rivalry between the two kingdoms of Church and State between the years 1450 and 1660.

England inherited, from medieval times, two systems of authority: the Church, governed by Pope and Bishops; and the State, ruled by Monarch and Lords. However, from the late fourteenth century onwards, this division was increasingly challenged by the laity's insistence on their right to choose not only between different systems of Church government but also between different forms of religious belief. The author charts the rivalry between clergy and laity's and shows how political and social developments between 1450 and 1660 were decisively influenced by this conflict. This second edition includes updates throughout the text in the light of recent scholarship and a new bibliography.

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Table of Contents


1. Prologue: Lay Questioning of the Medieval Church.

2. Lollard Revival and Conservative Reform.

3. The Henrician Reformation: Protestantism, Anti-Clericalism and the Royal Supremacy.

4. Protestant Advance and Popular Reaction.

5. Catholic Restoration and Protestant Resistance.

6. The Elizabethan Church: Settlement and Separation.

7. Protestant Consolidation.

8. The Laudian Ascendancy.

9. Implementing Lay Supremacy, 1640-1660.

10. Epilogue: The Achievement of Lay Power in the Church.

Bibliographical Appendix: Change and Continuity.





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Author Information

Claire Cross is currently Professor of History at the University of York, where she has taught since 1965. A Cambridge graduate, she was county archivist of Cambridgeshire from 1958 to 1961, and Research Fellow at Reading University between 1962 and 1965. Her other books include The Puritan Earl: The Life of the Third Earl of Huntingdon (1967) and The Royal Supremacy in the Elizabethan Church (1969) and she has edited The Letters of Sir Francis Hastings (1969), York Clergy Wills 1520-1600 (1984 and 1989), with N. Vickers, Monks, Friars and Nuns in Sixteenth Century Yorkshire (1995) and a collection of essays, Patronage and Recruitment in the Tudor and Early Stuart Church (1996).
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The Wiley Advantage

* Revised and updated edition of this established text.
* Examines the relationship between the Church and the State, key to understanding the political developments of this period.
* Includes an updated bibliography.
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"Scholarly, lucid, illuminating, objective and extremely readable . . . an outstanding contribution." (Church Times)

"Good historical writing is a rare commodity, and it is a pleasure to meet it in Claire Cross's new book." (The Tablet)

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