About the book
This is a book which breaks new ground, and which offers fresh material for ecclesiastical, cultural, demographic and economic historians of the early modern period. There has been dispute amongst social historians about whether only the more prosperous in village society were involved in religious practice. Dr Spufford’s team has produced a factual solution to this dispute by examining the taxation records of large groups of dissenters and churchwardens, and has established that both late Lollard and post-Restoration dissenting belief crossed the whole taxable spectrum. The apparent correlation of ‘dissenting areas’ and areas of early by-employment is also questioned. In her own substantial chapter Dr Spufford draws together the pieces of the huge mosaic constructed by her team of contributors and adds radical ideas of her own. Professor Patrick Collinson has contributed a critical conclusion to the volume.
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