The English Reformation in the mid-Elizabethan period

Patrick Collinson

in The Oxford Handbook of John Donne

Published in print February 2011 | ISBN: 9780199218608
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks of Literature

 The English Reformation in the mid-Elizabethan period

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The English reformation in the mid-Elizabethan period is the constituent of this article. In the traditional perspective of the Church of England and its historians, the English Reformation had come to its conclusion and consummation in the first regnal year of Queen Elizabeth I. The Elizabethan Settlement of Religion had been defined by Elizabeth's first Parliament in 1559, a historic watershed. The alleged aberration of the return to Catholicism in the reign of Mary Tudor, ‘the Marian reaction’, had been reversed, the essence of that reversal contained in two Acts of the 1559 Parliament. Politics was a major issue: whether to be some kind of Catholic was compatible with obedience to the Protestant monarch, Elizabeth I. This article proceeds further to explain the tussle between Protestantism and Catholicism in the English soil. This historiographical climate entails a more drastic deconstruction of the elements, and defining labels, of Elizabethan religious history than anything we have hitherto seen.

Keywords: reformation; English reformation; mid-Elizabethan Period; Church of England; Queen Elizabeth; Mary Tudor; Protestant monarch

Article.  5315 words. 

Subjects: Literature ; Literary Studies (1500 to 1800) ; Literary Studies (Poetry and Poets)

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