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date: 27 September 2021

p. 51. Ritual and the Reformationlocked

p. 51. Ritual and the Reformationlocked

  • Brian Cummings

Abstract

‘Ritual and the Reformation’ describes how liturgy—with mass at its centre—lay at the heart of medieval religion. Mass was a social rite and a public occasion. The Office of the Dead is also outlined along with the different ritual books that contained rites, prayers, hymns, and scripture, including the Books of Hours. The challenge to tradition came in the form of Martin Luther’s Reformation and his theological creativity. The English Reformation began as a political revolution with Henry VIII’s marriage to Anne Boleyn in 1533, and resulted in wholesale changes in religious and social organization. The Reformation tore up a millennium of sacred worship and brought new forms of life into being.

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