This thesis examines the subject of popular belief and how devotional life was expressed by parishioners and officials of the parish of St. Botolph’s Aldgate, a large extramural parish in London, during the reign of Elizabeth I. This work delves into an analysis of over 600 pages of primary source material; 495 pages from memoranda books, firsthand accounts and annotated notes taken by the curate and parish clerk, and 140 pages fromchurchwardens’ accounts, both sources providing the main focus of this analysis. Using these accounts, it is argued that this parish successfully blended official and unofficial practices of Protestantism. While officials, secular and ecclesiastical, worked fastidiously to meet the requirements of official religion, they and the parishioners were also willing to tolerate and even incorporate some examples of unofficial religion to serve the people’s needs, demonstrating how the Reformation in this parish was a mixture of concerns, ideological and practical.
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Thesis advisor: Craig, John
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