In order to understand the English Revolution and Civil War, it is essential to get a grasp on the nature of Puritanism. In this classic work of social history, Christopher Hill reveals Puritanism as a living faith, one responding to social as well as religious needs. It was a set of beliefs that answered the hopes and fears of yeomen and gentlemen, as well as merchants and artisans, in a time of tribulation and extraordinary turbulence. Over this period, Puritanism was interwoven into daily life. Here Hill looks at how rituals and practices such as oath-taking, the Sabbath, bawdy courts, and poor relief offered a way to bring order to social upheaval. He even offers an explanation for the emergence of the seemingly paradoxical figure of the age—the Puritan revolutionary.
“Indispensable for understanding the century from the Reformation to the Civil War.”
“The masterly application of the author’s enormous reading give vitality to every page … a delight to read.”
“The dean and paragon of English historians.”