The Older the Better

Peter Hinchliff

in God and History

Published in print June 1992 | ISBN: 9780198263333
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191682483 | DOI:
The Older the Better

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Most accounts of 19th-century critical scholarship in Britain give the ‘Cambridge Triumvirate’ (Lightfoot, Westcott, and Hort) pride of place in this respect. It was always stressed that they possessed precisely the kind of good, sensible, faithful learning which took what was best from the critical approach but avoided the exaggerations of the more radical. However, Lightfoot and Westcott were also involved in the life of the Church in a way that Hort never was. This chapter argues that, instead of Hort, the more natural ‘third’ to associate with them is Edward White Benson, Archbishop of Canterbury from 1883 to 1896. It shows that the new kind of orthodox High Churchmen —such as Benson, Lightfoot, and Westcott —were reviving an older form of the appeal to the past history of the Church to determine truth. It was a much more sophisticated, critical, scientific, and scholarly approach to the study of history itself than the older version.

Keywords: Edward White Benson; Lightfoot; Westcott; Archbishop of Canterbury; High Churchmen; history

Chapter.  10851 words. 

Subjects: Christian Theology

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