By Andrew Brown
This publication bargains a clean interpretation of the connection among the church, society and faith throughout 5 centuries of swap. Andrew Brown examines how the lessons of an more and more common Church have been utilized at an area point and the way social switch formed the spiritual practices of the laity. His strategy encompasses the constructions of company faith, the devotional practices surrounding cults and saints, the consequences of literacy (not least at the improvement of heresy), and the way gender, category and political strength affected and fragmented the expression of faith.
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Extra info for Church and Society in England, 1000-1500 (Social History in Perspective)
Conversion and pastoral reform had been pursued largely through the establishment of monasteries or minsters, and the monopoly of these institutions was still being enforced (financially through control of tithes) in the eleventh century. The surviving wills of lay people and the statutes of guilds also suggest a strong spiritual monopoly: ‘minsters’ were the places in which secure burial and intercession were to be found. They were also the places where a wider group of laity might be brought in contact with the relics of saintly patrons.
43 The manner of conversion had even encouraged the perpetuation of these beliefs. 44 Pagan practices like the sacrificing of animals might be tolerated if slaughtered for food and to the praise of God. ‘Celtic’ missionaries, outside the Roman tradition (and just as important in the conversion process), appear to have been more accommodating still of pagan practices. The process of conversion had been syncretic: the miracles produced by St Ivo’s gushing spring may have ‘Christianized’ a pagan belief in water as an abode for deities.
The issue, which was to rumble on well into the twelfth century, resulted in symbolic victory for the papacy. Secular rulers (in England by 1107) recognized the exclusive right of the papacy to bestow the symbols of episcopal office (ring and staff) on local bishops. The drive to a more uniform Church, independent of lay authority, was expressed in the systematizing of canon law and doctrine. The theoretical power of the clergy was clarified by the elaboration of universal doctrines in the schools of Northern France concerning the sacraments.
Church and Society in England, 1000-1500 (Social History in Perspective) by Andrew Brown