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Casual Offenders

J.S. Morrill, 7 May 1981

The Justice and the Mare’s Ale 
by Alan Macfarlane.
Blackwell, 238 pp., £8.50, March 1981, 0 631 12681 3
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... had experienced for at least a generation, and who waited passively for the halting machinery of justice to enmesh the culprits. Macfarlane rounds off the book by drawing on historical-anthropological studies of really violent societies – 17th-century China, 18th and 19th-century France and modern Sicily. The Smorthwait-Bainbridge ‘gang’ in Cumbria in ...

Critical Bibliography

Blair Worden, 22 January 1981

Seventeenth-Century Britain 1603-1714 
by J.S. Morrill.
Dawson, 189 pp., £11, May 1980, 0 7129 0839 0
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... what has been coming out, and about whether some beloved work has stood the test of time’. John Morrill has identified a hungry constituency to whom his book will be a godsend. The width and depth of Morrill’s reading are awesome. How else can one appropriately respond to the book than by resolving guiltily to get up ...

Rescuing the bishops

Blair Worden, 21 April 1983

The Religion of Protestants: The Church in English Society 1559-1625 
by Patrick Collinson.
Oxford, 297 pp., £17.50, January 1983, 0 19 822685 3
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Reactions to the English Civil War 1642-1649 
by John Morrill.
Macmillan, 257 pp., £14, November 1982, 0 333 27565 9
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The World of the Muggletonians 
by Christopher Hill, Barry Reay and William Lamont.
Temple Smith, 195 pp., £12.50, February 1983, 0 85117 226 1
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The Life of John Milton 
by A.N. Wilson.
Oxford, 278 pp., £9.95, January 1983, 0 19 211776 9
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Complete Prose Works of John Milton. Vol. 8: 1666-1682 
edited by Maurice Kelley.
Yale, 625 pp., £55, January 1983, 0 300 02561 0
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The Poet’s Time: Politics and Religion in the Works of Andrew Marvell 
by Warren Chernaik.
Cambridge, 249 pp., £19.50, February 1983, 9780521247733
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... self-interest for supporting the Protestant establishment. Hooker gave the Church an intellectual justification, and the learned Jacobean divines gave it an international intellectual reputation. By the 1620s, as Laud signally failed to grasp, the Church had acquired the authority, the resilience and the flexibility of an effective national institution: the ...

Out of the East

Blair Worden, 11 October 1990

The King’s Cardinal: The Rise and Fall of Thomas Wolsey 
by Peter Gwyn.
Barrie and Jenkins, 666 pp., £20, May 1990, 0 7126 2190 3
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Oliver Cromwell and the English Revolution 
by John Morrill.
Longman, 300 pp., £17.95, May 1990, 0 582 06064 8
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The Writings of William Walwyn 
edited by Jack McMichael and Barbara Taft.
Georgia, 584 pp., $45, July 1989, 0 8203 1017 4
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... work of his predecessors: his relief of the poor in Chancery; the Eltham Ordinances of 1526; the adjustments to clerical taxation; the challenge to episcopal prerogatives; the bargaining with the parliament of 1523; the administrative initiatives in the North and Wales. In all these instances Gwyn may be right. Yet when politicians repeat the policies of their ...

Maurice Thomson’s War

Perry Anderson, 4 November 1993

Merchants and Revolution: Commercial Change, Political Conflict and London’s Overseas Traders 1550-1653 
by Robert Brenner.
Cambridge, 734 pp., £40, March 1993, 0 521 37319 0
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TheNature of the English Revolution 
by John Morrill.
Longman, 466 pp., £32, June 1993, 0 582 08941 7
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... Rosa Luxemburg adorned West German mail. Such treatment, it might be argued, is not without all justice. For in a comparative perspective, did not the English Civil War – however traumatic at the time – prove in the end to be the least significant of the political upheavals that ushered in the leading nation-states of the capitalist world? Set beside ...

War without an Enemy

Blair Worden, 21 January 1982

The Outbreak of the English Civil War 
by Anthony Fletcher.
Arnold, 446 pp., £24, October 1981, 0 7131 6320 8
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The Royalist War Effort 
by Ronald Hutton.
Longman, £12, October 1981, 0 582 50301 9
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... present day – has devoted some of its best research and most lively debate to the Civil War. The justification of that heavy investment cannot be a tangibly utilitarian one, for if the Puritan Revolution had lasting consequences they were either, like the growth of national political consciousness in the shires which were drawn into the ...

Mingling Freely at the Mermaid

Blair Worden: 17th-century poets and politics, 6 November 2003

The Crisis of 1614 and the Addled Parliament: Literary and Historical Perspectives 
edited by Stephen Clucas and Rosalind Davies.
Ashgate, 213 pp., £45, November 2003, 0 7546 0681 3
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The Politics of Court Scandal in Early Modern England: News Culture and the Overbury Affair 1603-60 
by Alastair Bellany.
Cambridge, 312 pp., £45, January 2002, 0 521 78289 9
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... and history were commonly taught together. The Shakespearean critic A.C. Bradley and the historian J.S. Brewer had chairs in literature and history. In the 1870s the subjects might have grown up as a single faculty at Oxford had not Bishop Stubbs, the Regius Professor of History, vetoed the proposal. When Oxford gave social respectability to Eng. Lit. by ...

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