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Gathering Good Corn from the Weeds: Theological and Pastoral Engagements with the Prickynge of Love in Post-Reformation England

Perry, Ryan, Westphall, Allan F. (2018) Gathering Good Corn from the Weeds: Theological and Pastoral Engagements with the Prickynge of Love in Post-Reformation England. Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies, 48 (2). pp. 301-340. ISSN 1082-9636. E-ISSN 1527-8263. (doi:10.1215/10829636-4402239) (KAR id:64887)


This essay represents a new approach to the highly conflicted responses of scholars from the period of the English Reformation to medieval religious literature. Recent studies of sixteenth-century antiquarian engagements with medieval literature have thrown much light on the attitudes of bibliophiles like John Leland, John Bale and the circle of antiquarians connected with Archbishop Matthew Parker. However, there has been little detailed documentation of post-Reformation engagements with actual books and of the productive rehabilitation of texts that had become doctrinally problematic in Elizabethan England. This essay analyses the engagements of Stephen Batman and an anonymous ecclesiastical annotator with the Pricking of Love, a deeply affective late fourteenth-century devotional treatise. The medieval text, infused with fervent Christological and Marian piety, is seemingly an unlikely source for reformed Elizabethan readers in which to recognise valuable religious lore. But in fact, these readers go far beyond repudiating ‘papistical’ errors to demonstrate both the past roots of their own reformed theologies and the continuing pastoral utilities of much of the medieval text.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1215/10829636-4402239
Projects: Geographies of Orthodoxy: Mapping English Pseudo-Bonaventuran Lives of Christ, 1350-1550
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BL Religion
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BT Doctrinal Theology
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BX Christian Denominations
P Language and Literature
P Language and Literature > PR English literature
Z Bibliography. Library Science. Information Resources
Z Bibliography. Library Science. Information Resources > Z4 Books. Writing. Paleography
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Arts and Humanities > School of English
Funders: [37325] UNSPECIFIED
Depositing User: Ryan Perry
Date Deposited: 29 Nov 2017 14:00 UTC
Last Modified: 04 Mar 2024 20:00 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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