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Female religious, especially holders of benefices, made significant contributions to aristocratic family
strategy and fortune in early modern France. This study of members of the wider Montmorency
family in the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries demonstrates the financial and political
benefits derived from female benefice holding. Abbey stewards and surintendants of aristocratic
households collaborated in the administration of religious revenues. Montmorency control of Sainte
Trinité, the Abbaye aux Dames, Caen, for over a century was associated with attempts to assert
political influence in Normandy. Conflict ostensibly over religious reform could have a political
dimension. Yet reform could be pursued vigorously by those originally cloistered for mercenary or
The distinction between a Puritan ‘plain’ and a Laudian ‘metaphysical’ preaching style rests on secular rhetorical theories of persuasion that are relatively unimportant to early Stuart homiletics but are central to later Latitudinarian polemics on preaching. Instead, the ‘English Reformed’ theory and method of sermon composition rests on the didactic function of preaching and the need for the Holy Spirit and hearers to co-operate with the preacher. Although Andrewes and some avant-garde conformists questioned this theory, they developed no alternative method of composition. Arguments made in the 1650s for direct inspiration by the Spirit contributed to the decline of both theory and method.
This article discusses the relationship between Church and society in Aberdeen and Glasgow, c.
1800–c. 2000, with specific reference to levels of church attendance and membership,
alongside the social and gender composition of church membership. Despite contrasts in economic
development, both cities experienced a sharp decline in levels of church attendance. However,
this decline was partly offset by an expanding membership in suburban areas such as Bearsden
and Cults. The article confirms previous analyses of religion and social class, but further
reinforces more recent research which highlights the important role of women in the Church.
Contrary to conventional wisdom, liberal Protestants, not fundamentalists, attempted to preserve
Princeton University's traditional religious mission during the rapid intellectual and social change
reshaping American higher education in the early twentieth century. In fact, when fundamentalists
in the university community demanded the secularisation of the undergraduate programme, liberal
Protestants spurned their efforts. Although American liberal Protestantism gradually dissolved into
the surrounding secular culture over the course of the twentieth century, the conflict between the rival
pieties of liberal and conservative Protestants reveals how and why liberal Protestantism was able
to maintain hegemony over one key institution of American culture – the university – well into the