Historiography contemporary to the English Reformation, 1525–70
in The Debate on the English Reformation
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This chapter examines the most important Protestant interpretations of the English Reformation and its history penned in the sixteenth century, culminating in the works of John Foxe. The importance of history and historiography to the Marian and Elizabethan Protestants can be demonstrated by the manner in which they marketed the Book of Martyrs. The alternative historiography of the Reformation was as potent for future generations, in its way, as was that of the 'religious' reformers. Between 1525 and 1535 a number of English reformers were living in exile in Europe, unwelcome in Henrician England. Grindal and other exiles urged Foxe to continue his work and to include the reign of Henry VIII, while they also located materials about the reigns of Edward Foxe and Mary Boleyn. Henry forced the reluctant clergy to admit that their allegiance to the Crown superseded their loyalty to the papacy.


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