Loyalty, memory and public opinion in England, 1658–1727

By Edward Vallance

Loyalty, memory and public opinion in England, 1658–1727


  • Hardcover
  • Paperback

Book Information

  • Format: eBook
  • ISBN: 978-1-5261-1791-5
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Published Date: May 2019
  • BIC Category: HISTORY / Europe / Great Britain, Humanities / British & Irish history, Humanities / Early modern history: c 1450/1500 to c 1700, History, HISTORY / Europe / Great Britain / Stuart Era (1603-1714)
  • Series: Politics, Culture and Society in Early Modern Britain


This book makes an important contribution to the ongoing debate over the emergence of an early modern 'public sphere'. Focusing on the petition-like form of the loyal address, it argues that these texts helped to foster a politically aware public by mapping shifts in the national 'mood'. Covering addressing campaigns from the late-Cromwellian to the early Georgian period, the book explores the production, presentation, subscription and publication of these texts. It argues that beneath partisan attacks on the credibility of loyal addresses lay a broad consensus about the validity of this political practice. Ultimately, loyal addresses acknowledged the existence of a 'political public' but did so in a way which fundamentally conceded the legitimacy of the social and political hierarchy. They constituted a political form perfectly suited to a fundamentally unequal society in which political life continued to be centered on the monarchy.


'Loyalty, memory and opinion in England is a richly detailed study on the influence of loyal addresses in early modern political culture. [.] I would recommend this book to anyone interested in the history of early modern print, politics, and memory studies.'
Reviews in History

'A stimulating and methodologically diverse contribution to the debate on "public sphere" politics in the later seventeenth century.'
Journal of British Studies


1 Petitions, oaths and addresses: subscriptional activity during the civil wars
2 Cromwell's trunks: the origins of the loyal address, 1658-61
3 Addresses, abhorrences and associations: subscriptional culture and memory in the 1680s
4 Adversarial addressing, 1701-10
5 Who were the 'public'? Identifying the addressers
6 The performance of loyalty: ritual in loyal addressing
7 From subjects to objects: the language of loyalty


Edward Vallance is Professor of Early Modern British Political Culture at the University of Roehampton

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