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Evangelical Foundations

Religion in England, 1378-1683


Marvin Walter Anderson

Evangelical Foundations surveys renewal in the English Church from Wyclif to Roger Williams. This account explores the biblical roots which Wyclif, the Evangelical Doctor, planted in English soil and the Puritans transplanted in Colonial North America. The purpose is to show how, by use of an English Bible, a national church was renewed through the centrality of preaching. Recent studies by Collinson/Morgan and Hudson/Dent trace the concern of the English religious majority for godly living and learning through the influence of Cambridge and Oxford. Puritan sermons and commentaries, taken from continental models, influenced every level of national life. This vibrant contribution, which extends into the episcopal and parish level, still affects the perceptions of American religion well into the twentieth century. It calls out for recognition in studies such as this which incorporate the dissenting tradition into the moderate stream of English Puritan life and lore.
Contents: Evangelical Foundations commences with the reform vision of Wyclif, traces the struggle over a printed Bible in Tudor times, explores the Puritan agenda for parish renewal through preaching, and follows the transatlantic migration of biblical commentaries and concerns for religious liberty to the writings of a Roger Williams.