Politics, Religion and Popularity in Early Stuart Britain: Essays in Honour of Conrad Russell

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THOMAS COGSWELL, RICHARD CUST AND PETER LAKE, EDS. Politics, Religion and Popularity in Early Stuart Britain: Essays in Honour of Conrad Russell. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press, 2002. Pp. x + 304, index. $74.00.

This rewarding volume is a tribute to Conrad Russell, produced for his sixty-fifth birthday. It comprises an introduction and a bibliography of Russell's chief publications and twelve essays arranged under three headings-politics, religion and popularity, attempts to win the people's love. Most of the essays are by Russell's former students. As the array of footnotes highlights, each essay is based on a painstaking, detailed research in archives and libraries. Readers of this periodical will find the three essays concentrating specifically on religion particularly interesting, J.F. Merritt describes the pastoral work in London of the Puritan Robert Hill, emphasizing his considerable efforts "to communicate directly and flexibly with his parishioners...without sacrificing...[his] doctrinal principles...or alienating his...audience"(61). Anthony Milton examines the creation of Laudianism, and, in a fascinating essay, Jacqueline Eales investigates preaching and politics during the First English Civil War. And although politics is the volume's predominant concern, since politics and religion were so inextricably entwined in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, the theme of religion recurs in the other essays. Nicholas Tyacke examines "Puritan politicians" under James VI and I, while Peter Lake studies petitions concerning episcopacy raised in Cheshire in 1641. …