This prize-winning account of the pre-Reformation church recreates lay people’s experience of religion in fifteenth-century England. Eamon Duffy shows that late medieval Catholicism was neither decadent nor decayed, but was a strong and vigorous tradition, and that the Reformation represented a violent rupture from a popular and theologically respectable religious system. For this edition, Duffy has written a new Preface reflecting on recent developments in our understanding of the period.
Eamon Duffy is professor of the history of Christianity, Cambridge University, and fellow and former president of Magdalene College. He is the author of many prizewinning books, among them Fires of Faith, Marking the Hours, and Saints and Sinners. In 2002 Duffy won the Hawthornden Prize for literature for his book The Voices of Morebath: Reformation and Rebellion in an English Village. From 22 October to 2 November 2007, he presented the BBC Radio 4 series 10 Popes Who Shook the World which has since been published as a book by Yale University Press. He lives in Cambridge, UK.
From reviews of the first edition:
A magnificent scholarly achievement [and] a compelling read.
- Patricia Morrison, Financial Times
Deeply imaginative, movingly written, and splendidly illustrated. . . . Duffy’s analysis . . . carries conviction.
- Maurice Keen, New York Review of Books
This book will afford enjoyment and enlightenment to layman and specialist alike.
- Peter Heath, Times Literary Supplement
[An] astonishing and magnificent piece of work.
- Edward T. Oakes, Commonweal