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England's Culture WarsPuritan Reformation and its Enemies in the Interregnum, 1649-1660$
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Bernard Capp

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199641789

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199641789.001.0001

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Local Contexts

Local Contexts

(p.221) 11 Local Contexts
England's Culture Wars

Bernard Capp

Oxford University Press

This chapter adopts a different focus, examining the success or failure of reformation in specific communities, mainly urban. Progress depended on the presence and co-operation of reform-minded magistrates and ministers, and their readiness to pursue civic reformation despite any reservations about the regime at Whitehall. The chapter examines Richard Baxter's Kidderminster as an admired model, and Baxter's own analysis of its success. It then surveys a range of urban communities, some of which displayed almost no interest in reformation while others achieved moderate and in some cases very substantial progress. Those considered include Chester, Southampton, York, Scarborough, King's Lynn and Gloucester, as well as several smaller towns. Finally, the chapter examines how far reformation might progress in rural parishes.

Keywords:   reformation, urban communities, rural parishes, Richard Baxter

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