Preaching and conventicles
in Lollards in the English Reformation
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This chapter evaluates lollard views on preaching and conventicling preserved in Foxe’s Acts and Monuments. It begins by surveying the variety of lollard views regarding preaching, which was, for the majority of Foxe’s lollards, inextricably linked to the role of the priest. It also investigates the role of conventicles in lollard ecclesiology, as presented in Foxe’s text. The chapter pays close attention to the martyrologist’s editorial choices, moving from radical material he allowed to remain intact or even strengthened by a marginal comment, to beliefs he attempted to mitigate, moving finally to an opinion he cut out altogether. From there, it discusses the late-sixteenth- and seventeenth-century readings of these lollard practices, and closes by arguing that lollard views on preaching and conventicling provide a good litmus test for evaluating the way Foxe selectively edited Acts and Monuments.

Lollards in the English Reformation

History, radicalism, and John Foxe


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