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The Voices of Morebath: Reformation and Rebellion in an English Village Paperback – 4 Mar 2003

4.7 out of 5 stars 39 customer reviews

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  • The Voices of Morebath: Reformation and Rebellion in an English Village
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  • The Stripping of the Altars: Traditional Religion in England,1400-1580
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  • Fires of Faith: Catholic England under Mary Tudor
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Product details

  • Paperback: 232 pages
  • Publisher: Yale University Press (4 Mar. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0300098251
  • ISBN-13: 978-0300098259
  • Product Dimensions: 15.9 x 1.9 x 22.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars 39 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 43,988 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Amazon Review

Eamon Duffy's monumental The Stripping of the Altars provided a new slant on the English Reformation. Duffy has now dug deeper into the same fascinating period. The Voices of Morebath is the story of a hamlet buried deep in the heart of Devon. The parish priest, Sir Christopher Trychay remained in office through the troubled times of the mid-16th century. During his long tenure he carefully recorded the impact of national events in his ordinary rural community.

Trychay's account is unique because it is not a personal diary but a record of the parish accounts. Sir Christopher, however, was talkative and opinionated so the accounts are laden with the minutiae of parish life. Duffy weaves these otherwise cryptic details into the wider tapestry of events of the time, and by analysing the result shows the devastating revolution that took place in ordinary people's lives. As the drama unfolds we see the folk of Morebath forced from their secure Catholicism into the new religion of King Henry. After Edward's brief reign the villagers breathe a sigh of relief and haul out all their Catholic paraphernalia, grateful that Mary Tudor has restored the Catholic faith. Then it all goes for good once Elizabeth takes the throne.

Duffy has given us history that is absorbing, readable and complete. His own enthusiasm for his topic gives the book a zest that takes it beyond the usual academic tome. Anyone the least bit interested in English history must not neglect this important book. --Dwight Longenecker --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"Stories like the one Duffy skillfully tells here, for historian and general reader alike ... bear remembering."

"Stories like the one Duffy skillfully tells here, for historian and general reader alike . . . bear remembering."--Paul Lewis, New York Times Book Review
"Stories like the one Duffy skillfully tells here, for historian and general reader alike . . . bear remembering. And it is a story that can still be seen. . . . Duffy's map of the parish in Tudor times remains accurate today."--Paul Lewis, New York Times Book Review
"Social history at its most compelling."--Sunday Telegraph
"This is an absorbing portrait of one small Devon village in the sixteenth century as it faced up to daily life and the upheavals of the English Reformation. . . . A series of vivid snapshots of ordinary life during a time of extraordinary change."--The Sunday Times (London)
"Duffy's scholarship is meticulous and exact. . . . This is a book to be read by enthusiasts and general readers alike. . . . It is vital to understand, for example, that the piety of the people clustered around the saints of the region as if they were an emanation of the soil itself. As more historians begin to discover this territorial imperative, then new forms of history will be written. The Voices of Morebath is a significant and striking example."--Peter Ackroyd, The Times (London)
"Dr. Duffy's presentation of the journals is quite brilliant. . . . The book is never dull: on the contrary, it reads like a very good novel. . . . This book should be assured of a place in the library of every Catholic school, primary as well as secondary. . . . Not to have read it will reduce one's claim to be a well-informed English Catholic."--Mentor Magazine
"[R]ichly detailed."--America
"A unique and valuable record. . . . Eamon Duffy has written a classic account of how one small parish adapted to the bewildering changes of the Reformation."--Roger B. Manning, American Historical Review

"This is an immensely appealing book, both for its physical appearance and its contents. . . . [Duffy] offers a plausible reading, that makes good use of these wonderful records."--Catholic Historical Review

"Well-written, provocative, and insightful . . . social history at its best. Recommended for upper-division undergraduates . . . general readers and professionals/practitioners."--Choice
"A rich and detailed story of how the Reformation was understood and received during the mid-16th century. . . . Well-written, provocative, and insightful, this is social history at its best. Recommended for upper-division undergraduates through faculty and researchers; general readers and professionals/practitioners."--Choice
"Duffy's book provides a poignant account of a priest and his parish struggling to adapt to a world that is changing too quickly. . . . The Voices of Morebath should appeal to specialists and non-specialists alike. It is an absorbing story, told largely through the words of the 'most vivid country clergyman of the English sixteenth century, ' as well as an accomplished piece of regional Reformation history."--Holly Crawford Pickett, Comitatus: A Journal of Medieval & Renaissance Studies
"Admirers of Duffy's justly acclaimed The Stripping of the Altars willwelcome this extended footnote to his argument that the Protestant Reformation was, for the most part, an elitist and violent imposition upon a solidly Catholic England. . . . It is a poignant story of people trying to hold on to their faith and community, but finally coming to terms with changes to which royal power gave the appearance of inevitability."--First Things
"The Voices of Morebath is a triumph of historical writing, microhistory on the highway and not the byways of the discipline, and when future generations of students are directed to the best examples of historical scholarship from this generation the tiny isolated parish of Morebath will figure largely on the signposts."--W.J. Sheils, Journal of American Studies
"Buy this book, read it, and allow yourself to become acquainted with a small corner of the vanished world of Catholic England."--William J. Tighe, New Oxford Review

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