This book considers how biblical women were read, appropriated and debated in a wide range of early modern texts. It traverses a range of genres and examines literature written by a variety of confessionally diverse writers. By considering literature intended for assorted audiences, the book showcases the diverse contexts in which the Bible's women were deployed, and illuminates the transferability of biblical appreciation across apparent religious divisions. The book has been split into two sections. Part One considers women and feminine archetypes of the Old Testament, and the chapters gathered in Part Two address the New Testament. This structure reflects the division of Scripture in early modern Bibles and speaks to the contemporary method of reading the Bible from the Old Testament to the New Testament. In spite of this division, the chapters regularly make cross references between the two Testaments highlighting how, in line with the conventions of early modern exegesis, they were understood to exist in a reciprocal relationship. Within each section, the chapters are broadly organised according to the sequential appearance of the women/feminine archetypes in the Bible. The biblical women studied extend from Eve in Genesis to the Whore of Babylon in Revelation. The chapters vary between those that examine dominant trends in appropriation to those that consider appropriations of a particular interest group or individual.
Eve and her unsuspecting garden in seventeenth-century literature
In the early seventeenth century
in England a flurry of texts emerged formally debating the moral and
ethical value of womankind. In these debates both misogynist and
anti-misogynist arguments claim that the Bible’s first woman,
Eve, exemplifies the status and value of all women after her. 1 Eve, the first
human to fall, was regularly used to define and malign woman, and
likewise reveal Satan’s continued pursuit of space and territory as he operates a rival kingdom in hell and laments the fact that Adam and Eve will claim and settle his forfeited habitations in heaven – their own ‘rice mid rihte’ (kingdom through right, l. 424a) – with rihte denoting a clear legal and tenurial privilege. The poet also patterns Eve’s fall after Satan’s when her tempter invites her to see beyond the limits of ‘monnes geþeaht’ (human intellect) into the territory of heaven, making Genesis B a powerful comment upon the boundaries of proper Anglo
incense, Di Ya Pek invites the foetus ghosts and Underworld soldiers to partake in the feast and offerings which will begin at 11 p.m. on the following day, Seventh Month Eve, when the Gates of the Underworld are opened. On the final day of the festival, Tua Di Ya Pek inspected every part of the ritual area, burning green talismans to further protect the ritual space and paying respects to deities as appropriate. In stark contrast both cosmologically and visually to Dizangwang’s golden altar at the far end of their ritual space, the luk thep dolls housing the foetus
Church polity and politics in the British Atlantic
‘One of the least things in religion’:
the Welsh experience of church polity,
Stephen K. Roberts
he condition of the protestant ministry in Wales was considered as
deplorable at the restoration of the monarchy as it had been on the
eve of the civil war nearly twenty years previously, and the condition of
Wales, both in social and religious terms, remained generally marginal to
the concerns of successive regimes at Westminster. Yet controversy over
the governance of the church in Wales was
The centrality of graveyards in the Underworld tradition
spirits to serve in their own temple’s private ghost armies. This unsavoury twist to an essentially merit-making tradition provided the catalyst prompting a societal response and, in 2012, instructed by the NEA, the police clamped down on unregistered graveyard rituals. As a result, most temples now apply for an NEA permit prior to performing cemetery rituals and burn their offerings on fixed platforms in pre-allocated locations within the huge expanse of Singapore’s graveyards. Rituals begin on the eve of Seventh Month and are most common on the fifteenth of the lunar
Lombards and warfare between representation and reality
guise of warriors.
The saga continues with a long list of victorious battles that allowed the Lombards to prevail in the midst of hostile peoples; among their ranks there were even warriors known as ‘cynocephali’ (i.e. ‘men with a dog's head’), whose description resembles that of the Scandinavian berserkers.
On the eve of the invasion of Italy, as the mythological tale makes way for historical events, the deeds of the young Alboin are described like those of a
S. Gasparri, ‘The fall of the Lombard kingdom. Facts, memory and propaganda’, in S. Gasparri (ed.), 774 – ipotesi su una transizione , Atti del seminario di Poggibonsi, 16–18 febbraio 2006 (Turnhout: Brepols, 2008), pp. 41–65.
The edict was surely issued in order to enforce the allegiance of the Lombards to their king, and to strengthen Lombard identity on the eve of a war against the Romans. However
The polity of the British episcopal churches, 1603–62
Benjamin M. Guyer
Press, 1998), pp. 238–47.
56 See, e.g., Lionel Gatford, A petition for the vindication of the publique use of the Book
of Common-Prayer (1654).
57 Thomas Aston, Two petitions (1641), sig. A2v.
58 Aston, A collection of sundry petitions, p. 6.
59 Ibid., p. 2.
60 Aston, Two petitions, sig. B3r.
61 Ibid., sig. B3v.
62 Ford, James Ussher, ch. 10.
63 James Ussher, The reduction of episcopacie (1656), p. 2.
64 Ibid., p. 6.
65 Ibid., p. 6.
66 Richard Cust, ‘The defence of episcopacy on the eve of the civil war: Jeremy
Taylor and the Rutland petition of
The failure of congregational ideas in the Mersey Basin region,
himself was another migrant, via university,
from Warwickshire to Cheshire.65
Church polity and politics in the British Atlantic
This group of godly clergy were within the circle of the Stanleys, and
particularly Lord Strange. We should be wary of discounting the influence of
Lord Strange at this time on the basis of looking back from his famous royalism during the civil wars. Strange had declared for the King only on the eve
of the conflict, and had even been named as the lord lieutenant of Cheshire in
Parliament’s militia ordinance of March 1642.66 The previous