‘Intellectual and Religious Life’ reveals the seventeenth century as an age of secularization. Anglican and Puritan alike were disillusioned by their failure to build a better world in response to divine challenge. After the interregnum, religious energies were much diluted. Secularization also affected the visual arts, as traditional messages of hierarchy and Christian values were eschewed in favour of extravagance and pure design. The discovery of natural laws and the development of the scientific method hit hard at the older mysteries and changed attitudes. In political thought, the work of Thomas Hobbes and John Locke stripped sovereignty of its moral basis and made possible an age of pragmatism and individualism.