Puritanism in north-west England

A regional study of the diocese of Chester to 1642

By R Richardson

Puritanism in north-west England
eBook -
  • Price: £21.00
  • ISBN: 9781526169686
  • Publish Date: Dec 2022
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
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    Book Information

    • Format: eBook
    • ISBN: 978-1-5261-6968-6
    • Published Date: December 2022


    Originally published in 1972, this book was the very first regional study of Puritanism to appear in print, and it has remained a widely influential text.

    Puritanism in north-west England brings out the many internal contrasts within the huge, sprawling diocese of Chester and the large parishes within it, and is alert to comparisons with other parts of England. One of its most distinctive features was the way in which for much of the period under review - for expedient reasons - Puritanism in this region was backed, rather than persecuted, by the ecclesiastical and civil authorities as a bulwark against entrenched Roman Catholicism. The ongoing struggles between Puritanism and Roman Catholicism are systematically documented, partly by means of parish case studies. The respective, interlocking roles of puritan clergy, laity and patrons are carefully considered. Lay activism and gender dynamics receive extended treatment; there is much here on Puritanism's inner momentum and on women's history. The educational background of the clergy, especially their shared university experience, is analysed, as are the reading habits of clergy and laity alike.

    Though much further research on Puritanism has taken place since 1972, the approach adopted in this study and its findings retain their validity and relevance.


    1 The context and distribution of Puritanism
    2 The role of the clergy
    3 The role of the laity
    4 The role of patrons
    5 Catholic and Puritan


    R. C. Richardson is Emeritus Professor of History at the University of Winchester

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