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Type: Journal article
Title: Reconsidering religious vitality in Catholic England: household aspirations and educating the laity in Richard Whitford’s A werke for housholders
Author: Bailey, M.
Citation: Viator, 2016; 47(2):331-350
Publisher: Brepols Publishers
Issue Date: 2016
ISSN: 0083-5897
Statement of
Merridee L. Bailey
Abstract: The intellectual and spiritual ambition of the Catholic Church can be seen in the popular work of late medieval Catholic lay piety, A werke for housholders, written by the Bridgettine Richard Whitford. Through the medium of print, lay English audiences were exposed to intellectual and spiritual innovations in how to cultivate interior acts of devotion. For the householders addressed, aspirations towards developing interior and personal acts of devotion sat beside messages about household governance, emotional management and gender roles. By refocusing attention on the household aspirations of late medieval and early modern lay households this article adds to what is known about late medieval Catholic vitality. Whitford’s text also provides a puzzling piece of evidence about the evolving nature of late medieval Catholic devotion and the reformed spirituality of the early Reformation. This article concludes by posing questions about the complexity of the pre-and post-Reformation religious vision and about loyalty to individual religious figures in the early modern period.
Keywords: Syon; Catholic Church; late medieval; lay households; family; Richard Whitford; mixed life; monastic practice; Reformation; reading practices
Rights: Copyright status unknown
RMID: 0030054665
DOI: 10.1484/J.VIATOR.5.111236
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Appears in Collections:History publications

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