The lay Church of England
in The later Stuart Church, 1660–1714
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The lay Church of England was at its most obvious as the local community at worship in the parish church. The religious behaviour of lay conformists has been uncovered by the meticulous work of Judith Maltby and Christopher Haigh on the pre-1650 period, Donald Spaeth on the late Stuart diocese of Salisbury, and William Jacob on the eighteenth century. This chapter looks at the reigns of Charles II and James II. The sacralised image of Charles the Martyr was created and maintained by the potent volume, but it was inflated to a cult by a stream of hagiographies, the annual commemoration of the martyrdom in services and sermons each 30 January. The sermons of Lancelot Andrewes nestled alongside the poems of Abraham Cowley; geographies, herbals, and histories were shelved with Augustine, à Kempis, and Taylor's 'life' of Christ, The Great Exemplar.

Editor: Grant Tapsell

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