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Against Formality: One Aspect of the English Revolution

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  12 February 2009

J. C. Davis
The University of Birmingham


We live in an age (perhaps particularly apparent to those of us who work in universities) when informality is de rigueur, its own conventions and forms to be mastered if one is to live easily and effectively with colleagues, students, acquaintances or even the members of one's family. That it was not always so is a truism which attests to the reality of social change. One of the markers of such change, or of changes in social expectation, will be the realignment of relationships between the formal and the informal and of perceptions which govern interpretation of such relationships. In an age of revolution, or revolutionary aspiration, we might expect such realignments to be particularly dynamic or, more radically, for the categories of informal and formal themselves to be called in question.

Research Article
Copyright © Royal Historical Society 1993

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1 By which is meant here the late 1640s and the 1650s. For one example amongst many which illustrate a revolutionary aspiration towards formalities (and its lack of fulfilment), one might take the proposals before the Nominated Assembly in August 1653 to cancel all titles and denominations in religion (‘for God's people should be under one name viz. Christians’) and in civil life to substitute ‘Freemen of England’ for all titles of honour and rank. See Cliffe, J. T., Puritans in Conflict: The Puritan Gentry During and After the Civil Wars (1988), 182Google Scholar.

2 There is a manifest danger, in developing the theme of ‘antiformalism’, of substituting another piece of ‘manic abstraction’ for those from which we are seeking to escape. But since abstraction, generalisation of some kind is the historian's inescapable obligation we must journey on in the hope of arriving at a city of less manic abstraction and more substance. Attention was drawn to manic abstraction in George, C. H., ‘Puritanism as history and historiography’, Past and Present, XLI (1968), 77104CrossRefGoogle Scholar. Salutary remarks on the issue are to be found in Lamont's, William seminal essay, ‘Pamphleteering, the Protestant consensus and the English Revolution’, in Freedom in the English Revolution: Essays in history and literature, ed. Richardson, R. C. and Ridden, G. M. Manchester, 1986, 7292Google Scholar.

3 A full and proper justification of these claims will require more space than is available here, where I attempt to give some illustration of the theme and some grounds for faith in its significance. But for some anticipation of the connections, see Davis, J. C., ‘Religion and the Struggle for Freedom in the English Revolution’, The Historical Journal, XXXV, 3 (1992), 507–30CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

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5 Ibid.,232.

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7 Stalham, John, Vindiciae Redemptionis (1647)Google Scholar, To My Beloved Brethren and Neighbours in Terling; quoted in Wrightson, K. and Levine, D., Poverty and Piety in an English Village: Terling, 1525–1700 (1979), 162Google Scholar. Cf. The League, Solemn and Covenant, , Clause, II in Constitutional Documents, ed. Gardiner, , 268–9Google Scholar.

8 For the Blasphemy Ordinance see Acts and Ordinances of the Interregnum 1642–1660, ed. Firth, C.H. and Rait, R. S. (1911), II, 409–10Google Scholar. Abiezer Coppe: Selected Writings ed. Hopton, Andrew (1987), 20CrossRefGoogle Scholar; A Collection of Ranter Writings, ed. Smith, Nigel (1983), 85Google Scholar. For Coppe's antiformalism see Davis, J. C., ‘Fear, Myth and Furore: Reappraising the Ranters’, Past and Present, CXXIX (1990), 98103Google Scholar.

9 Cf. Hill, Christopher, A Turbulent, Seditious and Factious People: John Bunyan and his Church 1628–1688 (Oxford, 1988), 72, citing BunyanGoogle Scholar.

10 Kendall, R. T., Calvin and English Calvinism to 1649 (Oxford, 1979), 130Google Scholar. Compare John Everard's identification of formality with those who ‘champ the Letter between their Teeth’ but show no virtue in their lives by the pursuit of the ‘Spiritual, Practical and Experimental Life’. Everard, John, The Gospel Treasury Opened (1657), I, 416Google Scholar; cited in Smith, Nigel, Perfection Proclaimed: Language and Literature in English Radical Religion 1640–1660 (Oxford, 1989), 132Google Scholar.

11 Robinson, Henry, Liberty of Conscience (1643), 18Google Scholar.

12 Winstanley, Gerrard, The Law of Freedom (1652)Google Scholar in The Works of Gerrard Winstanley ed. Sabine, George H. (New York, 1965), 509Google Scholar. Lest it be thought that such remarks are confined to radicals, we should note similar statements by William Strong and Stephen Marshall at about the same time. See Liu, Tai, Discord in Zion: The Puritan Divines and the Puritan Revolution (The Hague, 1973), 122, 146–7CrossRefGoogle Scholar. The divisiveness of the pursuit of externals instead of ‘the economy of God’ is also a theme of Taylor's, Jeremy The Liberty of Prophesying (1647)Google Scholar. See Huntley, Frank Livingstone, Jeremy Taylor and the Great Rebellion: A Study of His Mind and Temper in Controversy (Ann Arbor, 1970), 40, 55Google Scholar.

13 For Laurence Chaderton's linking of hypocrisy and the purely formal profession of many English protestants in the 1560s see Lake, Peter, Moderate Puritans and the Elizabethan Church (Cambridge, 1982), 25, 32–3CrossRefGoogle Scholar. One of the functions of preaching was to overcome formality by awakening zeal and a lively faith. For John Bunyan's linking of formality and hypocrisy a century later see Hill, , Turbulent, Seditious and Factious People, 304307Google Scholar; Kaufmann, U. Milo, ‘Spiritual Discerning: Bunyan and the Mysteries of the Divine Will’, in John Bunyan: Conventicle and Parnassus: Tercentenary Essays, ed. Keeble, N. H. (Oxford, 1988), 172–3Google Scholar.

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17 For two examples of this concern: ‘Instructions given by the King's Highness to … the archbishop of York and such other as shall be named hereafter, whom his Majesty has appointed to be of his Council resident in the North parts …’ (1544) in The Tudor Constitution: Documents and Commentary, ed. Elton, G. R. Cambridge, 1965, 206Google Scholar; Cf. A Remonstrance: or the Declaration of the Lords and Commons now assembled in Parliament: 26 May 1642 where the King's wicked counsellors are identified as those ‘more earnest in the Protestant Profession, than in the Protestant Religion’. Rushworth, John, Historical Collections (1691), III.i, 586Google Scholar; Russell, Conrad, Causes of the English Civil War (Oxford, 1990), 77Google Scholar.

18 Taylor, Jeremy, The Liberty of Prophesying (1647), 163Google Scholar. Cf. Worden, Blair, ‘Toleration and the Cromwellian Protectorate’, in Persecution and Toleration: Studies in Church History 21, ed. Shiels, W.J. Oxford, 1984, 207Google Scholar.

19 Worden, ibid., 233 and quoting Matthew Hale, Of the Nature of True Religion (1684), 16, 37, 39.

20 Winstanley, , The New Law of Righteousnes (1649)Google Scholar in Works of Winstanley, ed. Sabine, , 226Google Scholar.

21 For examples from the 1650s see Goodwin, John, A Fresh Discovery of the High Presbyterian Spirit (1654)Google Scholar; Hall, John, The True Cavalier Examined (1656)Google Scholar.

22 For Bunyan's, depiction of this see The Pilgrim's Progress (Ware, 1987), 38–40, 201Google Scholar and Cunningham, Valentine, ‘Glossing and Glozing: Bunyan and Allegory’ in Bunyan: Conventicle and Parnassus, ed. Keeble, , 223–4Google Scholar; Kaufmann, ‘Spiritual Discerning’ in ibid., 172–4.

23 Nuttall, Geoffrey F., The Puritan Spirit: Essays and Addresses (London, 1967), 97Google Scholar.

24 Evans, Arise, The Voice of Michael the Archangel, To his Highness the Lord Protector (1654), 16Google Scholar.

25 The depiction of an excessively formal youth was almost a convention of spiritual autobiography. For examples see Rogers, Edward, Some Account of the Life and Opinions of a Fifth-Monarchy-Man (1867), 717Google Scholar; Trapnel, Anna, A Legacy for Saints (1654), 17Google Scholar; Clarkson, Laurence, The Lost Sheep Found (1660), 17Google Scholar.

26 Cf. Peter Sterry: ‘to be subject to … the Church in the outward forme for the outward forme's sake is a bondage.’ Cited in Liu, Tai, Discord in Zion, 49Google Scholar.

27 Rogers, John, Dod, or Chatham (1653), 341, 346Google Scholar.

28 Trapnel, , Legacy for Saints, 4Google Scholar.

29 Coppe, Abiezer, A Remonstrance (1651)Google Scholar in Ranter Writings, ed. Smith, , 121, 119 marginGoogle Scholar.

30 For a setting out of these contraries enmeshed with issues of social and political authority see Winstanley, Gerrard, Truth Lifting Up Its Head Above Scandals (1649)CrossRefGoogle Scholar in Works of Gerrard Winstanley, ed. Sabine, , 99–101, 101, 105Google Scholar.

31 Marshall, John, ‘The Ecclesiology of the Latitude-men 1660–1689: Stillingfleet, Tillotson and Hobbism’, Journal of Ecclesiastical History, 36 (1985), 408, 410CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

32 For a general treatment of the theme and some exemplification see Nuttall, Geoffrey F., The Holy Spirit in Puritan Faith and Experience (Oxford, 1946), Ch. IV and 91, 97, 108, 114Google Scholar.

33 The works of Lamont, William are essential here in particular ‘Pamphleteering, the Protestant Consensus and the English Revolution’, and Godly Rule: Politics and Religion 1603–1660 (1969)CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

34 For Morrill's, John view of the origins of the civil war in this light see his, ‘The religious context of the English Civil War’, these Transactions, 5th ser., XXXIV (1984), 155–78Google Scholar; ‘The attack on the Church of England in the Long Parliament, 1640–2’, in History, Society and the Churches, ed. Beales, D. and Best, G. (1985), 105–24Google Scholar; Sir William Brereton and England's Wars of Religion’, Journal of British Studies, XXIV (1985), 311–32Google Scholar; The Nature of the English Revolution (1993) See also Conrad Russell, Causes of the English Civil War, idem., ‘Issues in the House of Commons 1621–9: Predictors of Civil War Allegiance’, Albion, XXIII (1991), 23–39.

35 We lack an adequate modern history of these debates. For divergence on the central issue of the Prayer Book amongst a discrete group of wealthy, puritan gentry see Cliffe, J. T., Puritans in Conflict: The Puritan Gentry During and After the Civil Wars (1988), 27–8Google Scholar. For the Harleys' attitude to the Prayer Book see Eales, Jacqueline, Puritans and Roundheads: The Harleys of Brampton Bryan and the Outbreak of the English Civil War (Cambridge, 1990)Google Scholar. On the significance of the Prayer Book in the 1640s see Morrill, John, ‘The Church of England 1642–9’ in Morrill, (ed.) Reactions to the English Civil War (1982), 89114CrossRefGoogle Scholar. For some parallel issues of forms see Greaves, R. L., ‘The Ordination Controversy and the Spirit of Reform in Puritan England’, Journal of Ecclesiastical History XXI (1970), 225–41CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Katz, David S., Sabbath and Sectarianism in Seventeenth Century England (Leiden, 1988)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Parker, Kenneth L., The English Sabbath: A Study of Doctrine and Discipline from the Reformation to the Civil War Cambridge, 1988CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

36 For Winstanley, as epitomising this disillusion see Fire in the Bush in Works of Winstanley, ed. Sabine, , 445–6Google Scholar; Truth Lifting Up its Head, in ibid., 140–5; The New Law of Righteousnes, in ibid., 174. There is an obvious comparison with Coppe's attack on the formalism of the gathered churches in A Fiery Flying Roll. See also A Christian Caveat to the Old and Mew Sabbatarians (1650).

37 An example of such ‘radical’ formalists might be found in the Chidley family with their campaigns on church bells, cathedrals, Christmas and adult baptism. Gentles, Ian, ‘London Levellers and the English Revolution: The Chidleys and their Circle’, The Journal of Ecclesiastical History, XXIX (1978), 281309CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

38 For an early warning to this effect see [Burton, Henry], The Protestation Protested (1641)Google Scholar.

39 For the difficulties inherent in this exercise see Goddard, Guibon, ‘Journal of the Parliament of 1654–5’ in Rutt, J. T. (ed.), Diary of Thomas Burton, Esq., 1656–9, 4 vols. (1828), I, xvii–cxxxGoogle Scholar. See also Davis, J. C., ‘Cromwell's Religion’, in Morrill, John (ed.), Oliver Cromwell and the English Revolution (1990), 194–5Google Scholar. Thomas Hobbes' ecclesiology may perhaps be more illuminatingly seen in these terms rather than under the heading of Erastianism. Glenn Burgess, ‘Liberty in the English Revolution: Hobbes and Some Contemporaries’ (unpublished typescript). I am grateful to Dr Burgess for the opportunity to read this ahead of publication. See also Sommerville, Johann P., Thomas Hobbes: Political Ideas in Historical Context (1992)CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

40 For Peter's, Hugh vision of himself as campaigning against ‘Formalists’ in 1643Google Scholar see Stearns, Raymond Phineas, The Strenuous Puritan: Hugh Peter 1598–1660 (Urbana, Illinois, 1954), 213Google Scholar. For the tension about forms at the heart of protestantism see Hill, , Turbulent, Seditious and Factious People, 188Google Scholar; for its presence at the heart of ‘puritanism’ see Worden, , ‘Toleration and the Cromwellian Protectorate’, 207–8Google Scholar.

41 Katz, Sabbath and Sectarianism; idem., Philo-Semitism and the Readmission of the Jews to England 1603–1655 (Oxford, 1982). For examples of contemporary anxiety about judaizing tendencies, see Crofton, Zachary, Bethshemesh Clouded or some Animadversions on the Rabbinical Talmud of Rabbi John Rogers (1653)Google Scholar; Ludlow: A Voyce, ed. Worden, , 7Google Scholar.

42 For example, John Gifford's congregation at Bedford. See White, , ‘Fellowship of Believers’ in Bunyan: Conventicle and Parnassus, ed. Keeble, , 8, 11–12, 17Google Scholar; Hill, , Turbulent, Seditious and Factious People, 90Google Scholar.

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44 Kellet, Joseph, Pomroy, John and Glisson, Paul, A Faithful Discovery of a treacherous Design (1655), title page, 27, 39–40, 50, 52Google Scholar. The tract was recommended by Christopher Feake, John Simpson and George Cokayn.

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46 Sterry, , The Clouds in Which Christ Comes (1648), 30, 40–1, 46, 47–8Google Scholar.

47 Sterry, , The Teachings of Christ in the Soule (1648), 2–3, 2336Google Scholar.

48 Sterry, , The Comings forth of Christ in the Power of his Death (1650), 33–4, 43–4, 48–9Google Scholar.

49 Sterry, , England's Deliverance from the Northern Presbytery (1652), 6–7, 15, 18Google Scholar.

50 Dell, William, The Crucified and Quickened Christian (1650?) 45Google Scholar; see also 33. Dell had been secretary to William Laud, attended Fairfax in 1645–6, officiated at the marriage of Henry Ireton and Bridget Cromwell in 1646 and became a reforming Master of Caius College in May 1649.

51 Walwyn, William, The Vanitie of the Present Churches (1649), 22–3, 43Google Scholar. See also Walwyn's Just Defence (1649), 32. Cf. Lilburne, John on the ‘Carnal Professours’ satisfied with forms only: Lilburne, , An Answer to Nine Arguments (1644)Google Scholar, To the Reader. R. B. Seaberg has shown that the Levellers viewed the Norman conquest as a disruption of form but not of legal substance, in the sense of Anglo-Saxon liberties or Englishmen's birthrights. In this respect it might be argued that the Levellers were traditionalists of substance concerned in the 1640s to see that substance protected by appropriate constitutional forms. Seaberg, R. B., ‘The Norman Conquest and the Common Law: The Levellers and the Argument from Continuity’, The Historical Journal, XXIV (1981), 791806CrossRefGoogle Scholar. There was, of course, room for variation on what the substance of Christianity amounted to. At one end of the spectrum, William Prynne saw too exclusive an attitude to the sacraments, too great an emphasis on the purity of ordinances, as jeopardising the work of moral reformation, the establishment of godly community. At the other, Abiezer Coppe condemned the gathered churches' formalistic hair-splitting as a diversion from the rigours of practical Christianity. In either case, however, substance involved the active reshaping of community. For Prynne, see Lamont, , Godly Rule, 120Google Scholar. For Coppe see Davis, J. C., Fear, Myth and History: The Ranters and the Historians (Cambridge, 1986), 4858Google Scholar; Fear, Myth and Furore: Reassessing the Ranters’, Past and Present, CXXIX (1990), 95102Google Scholar.

52 Nuttall, Geoffrey F., The Welsh Saints 1640–1660: Walter Cradock, Vavasor Powell, Morgan Llwyd Cardiff, 1957, 28Google Scholar.

53 Walwyn, William, The Power of Love (1643), 27, 78Google Scholar. For the concession by his enemies that Walwyn consistently urged a shift of priorities from form to substance see [Price, James], Walwins Wiles (1649), 7Google Scholar.

54 Rogers, , Dod, 40–1, 65, 67, 212CrossRefGoogle Scholar. For an attempt by an individual congregation to achieve this shift of emphasis see Bedford, John Gifford's congregation set up in 1650 ‘without respect to this or that circumstance or opinion in outward or circumstantiall things’Google Scholar. New members, identifying the distinction between substance and form, were to solemnly agree that ‘union with Christ is the foundation of all Sainte's Communion, and not any ordinances of Christ, or any judgement about externalls’. White, B. R., ‘The Fellowship of Believers: Bunyan and Puritanism’, in John Bunyan, ed. Keeble, , 8, 11–12, 1718Google Scholar. However, for the paradox whereby the testing for substance could result in the emergence of forms see Richard L. Greaves, ‘Conscience, liberty and the Spirit: Bunyan and Nonconformity’, in ibid., 24.

55 Rogers, , Dod, 346Google Scholar; see also 454. Cf. Trapnel, , A Legacy, 4Google Scholar; on the Grindletonians, Smith, Perfection Proclaimed, f2. For Baptist concern at the idolisation of ordinances see White, B. R., ‘Henry Jessey in the Great Rebellion’, in Reformation, Conformity and Dissent: Essays in honour of Geoffrey Nuttall, ed. Knox, R. Buick (1977), 143, 151Google Scholar.

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57 Owen, John, Gods Work in Founding Zion (1656), 41–3, 3031Google Scholar.

58 Knox, R. Buick, James Ussher, Archbishop of Armagh (Cardiff, 1967), 12, 22–3, 50, 72, 114–18, 130–3Google Scholar. For the argument that Ussher was not prepared to let his own moderation be exploited by radicals once Charles I had committed himself to unreformed episcopacy see Abbott, William M., ‘James Ussher and “Ussherian” Episcopacy, 1640–56: The Primate and His Reduction Manuscript’, Albion, XXII (1990), 237–59CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

59 For Bunyan's exemplification of this see Kaufmann, , ‘Spiritual Discerning’, 174–5, 178–80Google Scholar; White, , ‘Fellowship of Believers’, 4Google Scholar; Hill, , Turbulent, Seditious and Factious People, 72Google Scholar.

60 Trapnel, , A Legacy, 19Google Scholar; Cf. Smith, , Perfection Proclaimed, 49Google Scholar.

61 Coppe, Abiezer, Copps Return to the Wayes of Truth (1651), 3Google Scholar.

62 Rogers, Edward, Some account of Life and Opinions of a Fifth-Monarchy-Man (1867), 1–14, 1920Google Scholar. See also Rogers, , Dod, 341–2, 419–20Google Scholar.

63 Huntley, Frank Livingstone, Jeremy Taylor and the Great Rebellion: A Study of His Mind and Temper in Controversy (Ann Arbor, 1970), 40Google Scholar.

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65 Evans, Arise, The Voice of King Charts the Father (1655), 34–5Google Scholar. Less immediately Evans argued that godly order and authority in the family could only be restored if there were such in the commonwealth at large.

66 Sprigge, Joshua, A Testimony of Approaching Glory (1649), 127Google Scholar; quoted in Nuttall, , Puritan Spirit (1967), 120–1Google Scholar. Cf. Rogers, , Dod, 453Google Scholar.

67 In an Augustinian frame of reference, coercion and persuasion were not seen as mutually exclusive. See Goldie, Mark, ‘The Theory of Religious Intolerance in Restoration England’ in From Persecution to Toleration: The Glorious Revolution and Religion in England, ed. Grell, Ole Peter, Israel, Jonathan and Tyacke, Nicholas Oxford, 1991, 331–68CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

68 Richard Baxter: Reliquiae Baxterianae, ed. Sylvester, Matthew, (1696), 97, 104, 126–7, 133Google Scholar. For the interregnum attempt to define fundamentals see Shaw, William A., A History of the English Church during the Civil Wars and under the Commonwealth 1640–1660, 2 vols. (1900), II, ch. 3Google Scholar.

69 For example: Goodwin, John, Theomachia or The Grand Imprudence of their running the hazard of Fighting against God in Suppressing any Way, Doctrine or Practice concerning which they know not certainly whether it be from God or no (1644), 16, 52Google Scholar; BAΣANIΣTA'L OR THE TRIERS [or Tormentors] TRIED AMD CAST (1657), 16, 18.

70 Hall, John, The True Cavalier Examined by his Principles (1656), 4, 5, 90Google Scholar. Hall was one of several in the 1650s urging a reconciliation between Cavaliers and Cromwellians. See also Huntley, , Jeremy Taylor, 55Google Scholar. Also, Walwyn, William, The Compassionate Samaritan (1644), 45: ‘the diversity of mens judgements is not the occasion of division’Google Scholar. Cf. The Vanitie of the Present Churches, 8.

71 This is the principal theme of Coppe's, A Fiery Flying Roll.

72 Bunyan, , I will Pray with the Spirit (1662?)CrossRefGoogle Scholar quoted in Hill, , Turbulent, Seditious and Factious People, 126Google Scholar.

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75 Rogers, , Some Account, 29–30, 33–4, 58, 68Google Scholar. Cf. John Lilburne's argument that three sorts of men gained from the twin social evils of ‘living on other men's lights’ and self-love—the clergy, lawyers and formalists. Iilburne, , An Answer to Nine Arguments (1644), To the ReaderGoogle Scholar.

76 Bond, John, Eschol (1648), 1Google Scholar, cited in Worden, , ‘Providence and Politics in Cromwellian England’, 95Google Scholar. Worden's essay remains the best introduction to providentialism in the period.

77 For one expression of these views see Evans, Arise, The Voice of King Charts (1655)Google Scholar, To the most glorious King CHARLS.

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82 [Sexby, Edward and Titus, Silius], Killing Noe Murder (1657)Google Scholar. Both this, and the reply to it, were based on the premise that it was inconceivable that God ‘had left the world to be governed by Fortune’. See Killing is Murder (1657), 7.

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84 Cf. ibid., II, 113–14 for one example amongst many of Cromwell as such an instrument. Sterry, , The Clouds in Which, 40–1, 46, 47–8Google Scholar; Owen, , God's work in Founding Zion, 41Google Scholar.

85 Certain Quaeres Humbly Presented in Way of PETITION by many Christian People dispersed abroad throughout the County of Norfolk and City of Norwich (1649), 3–4. Cf. Rogers, , Dod, 1314Google Scholar.

86 [Sedgewick, ], Animadversions, 52–4, 62, 65, 66, 78Google Scholar. For contemporary perceptions of Cromwell's apostasy see Worden, Blair, ‘Oliver Cromwell and the Sin of Achan’, in History, Society and the Churches, eds. Beales, Derek and Best, Geoffrey (Cambridge, 1985), 125–45Google Scholar. For its links with his abandonment of instrumentality for formality see Davis, , ‘Cromwell's Religion’, 201Google Scholar.

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88 Lamont, William, ‘Puritanism as History and Historiography: some Further Thoughts’, Past and Present, XLIV (1969), 145Google Scholar. Cf. Certain Quaeres, 7.

89 Camm, John and Howgill, Francis, This Was the Word of the Lord (1654)Google Scholar. Cf. Abiezer Coppe's insistence that the forms of levelling having been tried the ‘substantiality of levelling’ was to come from God's hands. The strange postures of formality were the obstacle which was to be swept away. Coppe, , Some Sweet Sips in Ranter Writings, ed. Smith, , 43, 44, 46, 53, 54, 63, 76–7Google Scholar; A Fiery Flying Roll in ibid., 86–7, 90, 103–4.

90 In this respect, interregnum antiformalism may have had some role as a generator of the detestation of popery, priestcraft and ideology which Mark Goldie has shown to be such an influential feature of post-Restoratian mentalité. Goldie, Mark, ‘Ideology’, in Political Innovation and Conceptual Change, eds. Ball, Terence, Farr, James and Hanson, Russell L. (Cambridge, 1989) 266291Google Scholar.

91 Davis, ‘Religion and the Struggle for Freedom in the English Revolution’. John Locke's formulation; ‘Freedom of men, under Government, is, to have a standing Rule to live by common to everyone of that Society, and made by the Legislative Power erected in it …’ expressed a seventeenth century commonplace. Locke's Two Treatises of Government, ed. Laslett, Peter, (Cambridge, 1970), 302Google Scholar.

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93 Cf. [Overtoil, ], Commoners Complaint (1647), 8, 12Google Scholar; [Lilburne, ], England's Birthright (1645), 8, 12Google Scholar.

94 Warr, John, The Corruption and Deficiency of the Lowes of England Soberly Discovered (1649)Google Scholar in Divine Right to Democracy ed. Wootton, David (Harmondsworth, 1986), 157, 159Google Scholar.

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96 The debates, arguably much more important than Putney in terms of the outcome of the revolution, have been strangely neglected. The most accessible edition of them remains Selections from the papers of William Clarke, Secretary to the Council of the Army, ed. Firth, C. H., 4 vols. (Camden Society, 18911901), IIGoogle Scholar. Also available in a new edition with an introduction by Austin Woolrych (Royal Historical Society, 1992).

97 Ibid., 84–7. Note also comments by Peter and Clarke.

98 Ibid., 119–20.

99 Ibid., 184–6. Cf. Walwins Wiles, To the Noble and Successful Englands Army, where the New Model is urged to leave matters to God not to Agreements.

100 For example, ‘A Word for God’ in State Papers of John Thurloe, ed. Birch, IV, 381Google Scholar.

101 Perhaps the Cromwellian Protectorate came closest to holding these responses in some sort of coexistence. See Fletcher, Anthony, ‘Oliver Cromwell and the godly nation’, in Oliver Cromwell and the English Revolution ed. Morrill, John (1990), 209–33Google Scholar; Davis, ‘Cromwell's Religion’ in ibid., 196–99.

102 Both Christopher Hill and John Pocock, in one of the few points of agreement between them, have seen the origins of the debate on authority in reaction to the rise of antinomianism. The rise of antinomianism is as spectral as the rise of the middle class.

103 Sancroft, William, Modern Policies taken from Machiavel, Borgia and other choice Authors (1652), B3Google Scholar. This work had gone through seven editions by 1657.