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  1. Judging faith, punishing sin : inquisitions and consistories in the early modern world

    Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 2017.

    "[This book offers a] comparative treatment of Catholic inquisitions and Calvinist consistories, [giving] scholars a new framework for analysing religious reform and social discipline in the great Christian age of reformation. Global in scope, both institutions played critical roles in prosecuting deviance, implementing religious uniformity, and promoting moral discipline in the social upheaval of the Reformation. Rooted in local archives and addressing specific themes, the essays survey the state of scholarship and chart directions for future inquiry and, taken as a whole, demonstrate the unique convergence of penitential practice, legal innovation, church authority, and state power, and how these forces transformed Christianity."--Judging Faith, Punishing Sin breaks new ground by offering the first comparative treatment of Catholic inquisitions and Calvinist consistories, offering scholars a new framework for analysing religious reform and social discipline in the great Christian age of reformation. Global in scope, both institutions played critical roles in prosecuting deviance, implementing religious uniformity, and promoting moral discipline in the social upheaval of the Reformation. Rooted in local archives and addressing specific themes, the essays survey the state of scholarship and chart directions for future inquiry and, taken as a whole, demonstrate the unique convergence of penitential practice, legal innovation, church authority, and state power, and how these forces transformed Christianity. Bringing together leading scholars across four continents, this volume is an invaluable contribution to our understanding of religion in the early modern world. University students and scholars alike will appreciate its clear introduction to scholarly debates and cutting edge scholarship.

  2. Church courts and the people in seventeenth-century England : ecclesiastical justice in peril at Winchester, Worcester and Wells

    Thomson, Andrew, 1938-
    London : UCL Press, 2022

    Religion meant far more in early modern England than church on Sundays, a baptism, a funeral or a wedding ceremony. The Church was fully enmeshed in the everyday lives of the people; in particular, their morals and religious observance. The Church imposed comprehensive regulations on its flock, and it employed an army of informers and bureaucrats, headed by a diocesan chancellor, to enable its courts to enforce the rules. Church courts lay, thus, at the very intersection of Church and people. The courts of the seventeenth century - when 'a cyclonic shattering' produced a 'great overturning of everything in England' - have, surprisingly, had to wait until now for scrutiny. Church Courts and the People in Seventeenth-Century England offers a detailed survey of three dioceses across the whole of the century, examining key aspects such as attendance at court, completion of business and, crucially, the scale of guilt to test the performance of the courts. While the study will capture the interest of lawyers to clergymen, or from local historians to sociologists, its primary appeal will be to researchers in the field of Church history. For students and researchers of the seventeenth century, it provides a full account of court operations, measuring the extent of control, challenging orthodoxies about excommunication, penance and juries, contextualising ecclesiastical justice within major societal issues of the times and, ultimately, presents powerful evidence for a 'church in danger' by the end of the century --

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