Taking it to the street?
The Archpriest controversy and the issue of the succession
in Doubtful and dangerous
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This chapter investigates the significance for the succession of the Archpriest controversy, an intra-Catholic dispute between a group of secular priests and their Jesuit foes. It is shown that that the controversy was a genuinely significant aspect of the Elizabethan fin de siècle, with much to tell us about the political dynamics of the post-Reformation and the politics of incipient regime change. Robert Persons’s Conference and Memorial, and the Appellant pamphlets printed with the connivance of the English government are examined with a view to unpicking the pitch the various factions made to James VI. Catholics of all stripes are shown to have been proffering their support to the prospective Stuart king in return for a promise of toleration. Their disappointed hopes would eventuate in the Gunpowder Plot of 1605.

Doubtful and dangerous

The question of succession in late Elizabethan England

Editors: Susan Doran and Paulina Kewes


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