Church of England Record Society


Conferences and Combination Lectures in the Elizabethan Church: Dedham and Bury St. Edmunds 1582-1590, eds.  Patrick Collinson, John Craig and Brett Usher, 2003.

At the heart of the reign of Elizabeth I, a secret conference of clergymen met in and around Dedham, Essex, on a monthly basis in order to discuss matters of local and national interest. Their collected papers, a unique survival from the clandestine world of early English nonconformity, are here printed in full for the first time, together with a hitherto unpublished narrative by the Suffolk minister, Thomas Rogers. The latter throws light on similar, if more public, clerical activity in and around Bury St. Edmunds, Suffolk, during the same period. Taken together, the two texts provide an unrivalled insight into the minds and methods of that network of 'godly' ministers whose professed aim was to modify the strict provisions of the Elizabethan settlement of religion, both by ceaseless lobbying and by practical example. The editors' introduction emphasises the complex nature of the English Protestant tradition between the mid-16th century and the accession of James I, as well as plotting the politico-ecclesiastical developments of the 1580's. The volume includes a comprehensive biographical register of the members of the Dedham conference, of the Bury St. Edmunds lecturers, and of many other significant people mentioned in the texts.

Patrick Collinson is Regius Professor Emeritus of Modern History, University of Cambridge; John Craig is Associate Professor at Simon Fraser University, USA, and Brett Usher is an expert on Elizabethan clergy.

ISBN: 0 85115 939 9.  Price:  60  (Members: 30).

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