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Erika Sigurdson

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Erika Sigurdson

Religious Education in Thirteenth-Century England

The Creed and Articles of Faith

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Andrew Reeves

In Religious Education in Thirteenth-Century England, Andrew Reeves examines how laypeople in a largely illiterate and oral culture learned the basic doctrines of the Christian religion. Although lay religious life is often assumed to have been a tissue of ignorance and superstition, this study shows basic religious training to have been broadly available to laity and clergy alike.
Reeves examines the nature, availability and circulation of sermon manuscripts as well as guidebooks to Christian teachings written for both clergy and literate laypeople. He shows that under the direction of a vigorous and reforming episcopate and aided by the preaching of the friars, clergy had a readily available toolkit to instruct their lay flocks.