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Editor: Gareth Atkins

This collection of essays examines the place of ‘saints’ and sanctity in nineteenth-century Britain. It argues that holy men and women were pivotal in religious discourse, as subjects of veneration and inter-confessional contention. Protestants were as fascinated by such figures as Catholics were. Long after the mechanisms of canonization had disappeared, they continued not only to engage with the saints of the past but continued to make their own saints in all but name. Just as strikingly, it claims that devotional practices and language were not the property of orthodox Christians alone. Even in an age of confessional strife, doubt and secularisation, devotional practices and language remained central to how both Christians and their opponents reflected on that changing world. Making and remaking saints is significant, then, because until now no-one has explored how sainthood remained significant in this period both as an enduring institution and as a fruitful metaphor that could be transposed into unexpected contexts. Each of the chapters in this volume focuses on the reception of a particular individual or group. Together they will attract not just historians of religion, but those concerned with material culture, the cult of history, and with the reshaping of British identities in an age of faith and doubt

The Irish and the English in the seventeenth century
Author: Ian Campbell

Inspired both by debates about the origins of the modern ideology of race and also by controversy over the place of Ireland and the Irish in theories of empire in the early modern Atlantic world, Renaissance Humanism and Ethnicity before Race argues that ethnic discourse among the elite in early modern Ireland was grounded firmly in the Renaissance Humanism and Aristotelianism which dominated all the European universities before the Enlightenment. Irish and English, Catholic and Protestant, all employed theories of human society based on Aristotle’s Politics and the natural law of the medieval universities to construct or dismantle the categories of civility and barbarism. The elites operating in Ireland also shared common resources, taught in the universities, for arguing about the human body and its ability to transmit hereditary characteristics. Both in Ireland and elsewhere in Europe, these theories of human society and the human body underwent violent changes in the late seventeenth century under the impact of the early Enlightenment. These changes were vital to the development of race as we know it.

Societies, cultures and ideologies

Migrations of people, ideas, beliefs and cultures have closely shaped relations between the nations of the British and Irish Isles. In part this was the result of Anglo-imperialism, which expanded from a heartland around London and the South of England, first, then through the ‘Celtic fringe’, creating hybrid peoples who were both Irish and British, before spreading across the globe. At times, Catholics of both islands were exiled from this narrative of nation-building. Political pressures, economic opportunities, a spirit of adventure and sometimes force, spurred the creation of multiple diasporas from the British and Irish Isles. This book brings together a range of leading scholars who explore the origins, varieties and extent of these diasporas.

Wherever Britons and the Irish went, they created new identities as neo-Britons, neo-Angles, neo-Irish, neo-Scots: persons who were colonials, new nationals, and yet still linked to their old country and home nations. British and Irish emigrants also perpetuated elements of their distinctive national cultures in music, literature, saints’ days and broader, diffuse interactions with fellow nationals.

These especially commissioned essays explore processes of diaspora-formation from the English Catholic exiles of the sixteenth century, through the ‘Wild Geese’, Jacobites, traders and servants of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, to the modern colonising diasporas associated with the modern age of mass migration.

The machinery of the Elizabethan war effort in the counties
Neil Younger

This chapter considers the ways in which the Elizabethan regime adapted its governing methods to the demands of war, in particular looking at the lord lieutenancies. The earlier history of this institution are sketched, and the revival of the lieutenancies in 1585-88 are discussed. This is considered in the context of continuing religious division in England, in which the Protestant Elizabethan regime remained fearful of English Catholics and conscious of its potential weakness in the event of a disputed succession. The problem of religious division is also applied to the wider picture of local government, suggesting that the council pursued a consistent policy of concentrating county government in the hands of small groups of highly trusted Protestant allies, a policy typified by the lieutenancy but also affecting the justices of the peace.

in War and politics in the Elizabethan counties
Living spirituality

Between 1598 and 1800, an estimated 3, 271 Catholic women left England to enter convents on the Continent. This study focuses more particularly upon those who became Benedictines in the seventeenth century, choosing exile in order to pursue their vocation for an enclosed life. Through the study of a wide variety of original manuscripts, including chronicles, death notices, clerical instructions, texts of spiritual guidance, but also the nuns’ own collections of notes, this book highlights the tensions between the contemplative ideal and the nuns’ personal experiences. Its first four chapters adopt a traditional historical approach to illustrate the tensions between theory and practice in the ideal of being dead to the world. They offer a prosopographical study of Benedictine convents in exile, and show how those houses were both cut-off and enclosed yet very much in touch with the religious and political developments at home. The next fur chapters propose a different point of entry into the history of nuns, with a study of emotions and the senses in the cloister, delving into the textual analysis of the nuns’ personal and communal documents to explore aspect of a lived spirituality, when the body, which so often hindered the spirit, at times enabled spiritual experience.

Abstract only
Brian Sudlow

’s Catholic writers, their lives and works, have been explored from a variety of perspectives by Bernard Bonnejean, Richard Griffiths, Frédéric Gugelot, Henry Philips, Malcolm Scott and Hervé Serry. 1 There are likewise myriad works of literary and cultural criticism devoted to individuals such as Paul Claudel, Charles Péguy, Paul Verlaine, Joris Karl Huysmans and Léon Bloy. Criticism of the English Catholic writers of the same period is patchier, though still abundant. George Shuster, Ian Ker and Thomas Woodman are all deserving of mention in this respect, while many

in Catholic literature and secularisation in France and England, 1880–1914
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Hymns ancient and modern
Alana Harris

-consciousness’ amongst those who remained in the pews, leading to a ‘praying Church and understanding Church’ in dialogue with the outside world and comfortable with plurality.11 This book has explored just such transitions and transformations, describing the English Catholic Church ‘in motion’ and its own reappraisal of itself (in the terms of the Council) as a ‘pilgrim people’ on the move. Not all components of the English Catholic Church were prepared for, or accepting of, these cultural adaptations and modulations of the old message through newer means. Resistance to the

in Faith in the family
Abstract only
Geoff Baker

seminal study of English Catholicism, a work that radically challenged widely accepted axioms. Crucially he argued that, far from being a decreasing minority in its death throes, English Catholicism was a thriving nonconformist sect. Losing its state sponsorship gave Catholicism a vitality that it had hitherto not enjoyed, and through the efforts of entrepreneurial missionary clergy Catholicism developed a distinctive 2 Introduction identity. However, though not for confessional reasons, Bossy’s work agreed that by the seventeenth century English Catholics formed a

in Reading and politics in early modern England
Charles I and Catholics in the Wars of the Three Kingdoms
Scott Sowerby

result was that they ended up with nothing at all, while blotting Charles’s good name in the process. After the King’s defeat in 1646, some English Catholics entered into negotiations with the victorious parliamentarians, signalling a willingness to adopt an oath disclaiming the Pope’s temporal supremacy in exchange for toleration. But such a deal was anathema to other English Catholics. Unable to present a united front at any point in the 1640s, Catholics in the British Isles threw away much of their leverage. Divisions among Catholics meant that neither Charles nor

in Revolutionising politics
Fergal Casey

engagement with the Land League and home rule movements, leading to a nascent anti-imperialism later developed, along with his economic positions, by G. K. Chesterton and Hilaire Belloc. Manning recorded in his 1847 diary that serious illness ‘made me realise much more than I otherwise should the state of the famishing in Ireland’.2 In the 1850s he encountered refugees from that famine in Bayswater. In 1865 he became head of an English Catholic Church of nearly 750,000 souls, swollen by Irish immigration from a tenth of that figure in 1770.3 Manning prioritised

in Irish Catholic identities