Some Radical Liturgical Experiments

Nigel Yates

in Buildings, Faith, and Worship

Published in print July 1993 | ISBN: 9780198270133
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191683916 | DOI:

Series: Buildings, Faith, and Worship

Some Radical Liturgical Experiments

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During the first half of the 17th century the conflict over the altar position had dominated Anglican liturgical concerns. It had been generally accepted firstly that churches should in effect be two separate rooms with the chancel for the sacrament and the nave for preaching, and secondly that in the nave pulpit and reading-desk should be placed at the east end with the seats facing eastwards. These arrangements, however, were in very many churches inconvenient in practice, since the liturgical action was not clearly visible from all parts of the building, and after 1660 a number of experiments were introduced, mostly borrowing from the experience of other Reformed Churches, to create more practical liturgical arrangements. The radical experiments of the late 17th to the early 19th centuries can broadly be grouped into four main categories: the north-south rectangle, the east-west rectangle, the T-plan, and most radical of all, the circular, elliptical, or octagonal church.

Keywords: altar position; Reformed Churches; liturgical arrangements; radical experiments; north-south rectangle; east-west rectangle; T-plan; octagonal church

Chapter.  12835 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of Christianity ; Christianity

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