Religion in Romantic England
An Anthology of Primary Sources
Documents of Anglophone Christianity
Imprint: Baylor University Press
Sales Date: 2018-02-21
507 Pages, 7.00 x 10.00 in, 3 b&w illus.
- Published: February 2018
Religion in Romantic England explores the ways that the literature of English Christianity shaped the social, cultural, political, and religious life of the nation in texts published between 1760 and 1832. From the accession of George III and the expansion of Methodism in the late eighteenth century to the Reform Bill and the beginning of the Oxford Movement of the early nineteenth, this anthology reveals how theological ideas and ecclesial movements influenced one of the most widely studied periods in English literature and history. These tumultuous decades brought religious revival in evangelical preaching and spirituality, controversial responses to the French Revolution, the abolition of the slave trade, the struggle over Roman Catholic emancipation, the proliferation of missionary societies, and intellectual battles over the nature of God, the Bible, faith, church authority, and religious pluralism. Religious writers in the Romantic period range from poets and preachers to pamphleteers and theologians. In ten thematic chapters tracing pivotal developments in belief and practice, Religion in Romantic England guides readers in understanding the major historical and theological issues that contributed to the literary, educational, and political movements of the era. These judicious selections, drawn from a diverse body of luminaries—including William Carey, Edmund Burke, Mary Wollstonecraft, Joseph Priestley, Hannah More, Percy Shelley, and William Wilberforce, among many others—introduce newcomers and established readers alike to the ideas, controversies, and hopes that continue to affect our common life to this day.
IntroductionHistorical TimelineAbbreviations for Works Commonly CitedPart I. DivinityWilliam Jones: Trinity in Unity"A letter to the common people in answer to some popular argumentsagainst the Trinity" (1767)Joseph Priestley: One GodAn appeal to the serious and candid professors of Christianity (1770)William Hazlitt: Mission of Jesus Human authority, in matters of faith, repugnant to Christianity (1774)Thomas Scott: Faith in ChristThe force of truth (1779)Samuel Horsley: AntiquityA charge, delivered to the clergy of the archdeaconry of St Albans (1783)Percy Bysshe Shelley: AtheismThe necessity of atheism (1811)Renn Dickson Hampden: Mystery"Knowledge of God through Christ" (1828)Part II. FaithGeorge Whitefield: Repentance"The Good Shepherd: a farewell sermon" (1769)Augustus Toplady: PredestinationMore work for Mr. Wesley (1771)John Fletcher: Free GraceThe first part of an equal check to pharisaism and antinomianism (1774)Joseph Milner: Salvation in Christ"An affectionate address to seamen" (1797)Southwood Smith: Divine GovernmentIllustrations of the divine government (1816)Edward Copleston: FatalismAn enquiry into the doctrines of necessity and predestination (1821)Julius Charles Hare: Light and Darkness"The children of light" (1828)Part III. CanonSarah Trimmer: Two BooksAn easy introduction to the knowledge of nature, and reading the Holy Scriptures (1780)Herbert Marsh: Prayer BooksAn inquiry into the consequences of neglecting to give the Prayer Book with the Bible (1812)Isaac Milner: Bible SocietiesStrictures on some of the publications of the Rev. Herbert Marsh (1813)Peter Gandolphy: Rule of FaithA defence of the ancient faith (1813)Edward Hawkins: Scripture and TraditionA dissertation upon the use and importance of unauthoritative tradition (1819)Mary Anne Schimmelpenninck: Spiritual InterpretationBiblical fragments (1821)Edward Irving: Living WordFor the oracles of God... For judgment to come (1823)Connop Thirlwall: Biblical Inspiration"Introduction by the translator" (1825)Part IV. DoubtGeorge Horne: MiraclesLetters on infidelity (1784)William Wilberforce: UnbeliefA practical view of the prevailing religious system of professed Christians (1797)Robert Hall: InfidelityModern infidelity (1800)William Paley: EvilNatural theology (1802)Richard Whately: Miracles and TestimonyHistoric doubts relative to Napoleon Buonaparte (1819)Jeremy Bentham: Pain and the AfterlifeAnalysis of the influence of natural religion on the temporal happiness of mankind (1822)Hugh James Rose: Faith and ReasonThe state of the Protestant religion in Germany (1825)V. EnthusiasmWilliam Law: Spiritual LifeAn humble, earnest, and affectionate address to the clergy (1761)William Warburton: Divine GraceThe doctrine of grace (1762)William Romaine: Spirit and ConscienceThe walk of faith (1771)John Foster: Evangelical Intellect"On the aversion of men of taste to evangelical religion" (1805)Leigh Hunt: Dangers of Methodism"An attempt to show the folly and danger of Methodism" (1808)Hannah More: Heart ReligionPractical piety (1811)Joanna Southcott: PropheciesProphecies announcing the birth of the Prince of Peace (1814)Joseph John Gurney: Pure ChristianitySermons and prayers (1832)VI. PsalmsCharles Wesley: Family HymnsHymns for the use of families (1767)John Newton and William Cowper: Light RevealedOlney hymns (1779)William Wordsworth: English ChurchEcclesiastical sketches (1822)James Montgomery: Christian HymnodyThe Christian psalmist (1825)John Keble: Nature’s PraiseThe Christian year (1827)Felicia Hemans: Divine MysteriesRecords of woman (1828)Part VII. MoralsHenry Venn: MarriageThe complete duty of man (1763)Soame Jenyns: Christian VirtueA view of the internal evidence of the Christian religion (1776)Thomas Clarkson: SlaveryAn essay on the slavery and commerce of the human species (1786)John Wesley: Holy Living"The more excellent way" (1787)Mary Wollstonecraft: CreationOriginal stories from real life (1788)Adam Clarke: TobaccoA dissertation on the use and abuse of tobacco (1797)Robert Malthus: ChastityAn essay on the principle of population (1803)Part VIII. NationSamuel Palmer: English DissentThe Protestant dissenter’s catechism (1772)William Stevens: Spiritual AuthorityA treatise on the nature and constitution of the Christian church (1773)George Dyer: Religious SubscriptionAn inquiry into the nature of subscription to the Thirty-Nine Articles (1789)Edmund Burke: Established ChurchReflections on the revolution in France (1790)Thomas Paine: TolerationRights of man (1791)Anna Letitia Barbauld: National RepentanceSins of government, sins of the nation (1793)Samuel Taylor Coleridge: The Christian ChurchOn the constitution of the church and state (1830)Part IX. PapacyCharles Butler: Catholic ReliefAn address to the Protestants of Great Britain and Ireland (1813)John Milner: Papal AuthorityThe end of religious controversy (1818)Joseph Blanco White: Catholic TyrannyThe poor man’s preservative against popery (1825)William Poynter: Christian ObedienceDeclaration of the Catholic bishops (1826)Thomas Hartwell Horne: RomeRomanism contradictory to the Bible (1827)Thomas Arnold: Irish CatholicismThe Christian duty of granting the claims of the Roman Catholics (1829)Part X. OutsidersJoseph White: Christianity and IslamA comparison of Mahometism and Christianity (1784)William Knox: Native Americans"Of the Indians in the colonies" (1789)William Carey: Missionary Call An enquiry into the obligations of Christians (1792)Thomas Coke: Methodism in AfricaAn interesting narrative of a mission (1812)William Carus Wilson: Heathen CrueltyThe children’s friend (1826)Reginald Heber: Missions in IndiaNarrative of a journey through the upper provinces of India (1828)Francis Henry Goldsmid: Jewish EmancipationRemarks on civil disabilities of the British Jews (1830)
Past efforts to relate literature to contemporary religious discourse have been frustrated because the relevant texts have been inaccessible. Jeffrey Barbeau’s anthology not only furnishes the ready access readers have needed, it also provides a chronology and a historical overview of the religious strife, dissenting factions, and theological quarrels. Surveying the developments from the advent of Methodism to the Oxford Movement, Barbeau’s anthology enriches our understanding of the history and the literature of the period.~Frederick Burwick, Professor Emeritus of English, University of California, Los Angeles
An outstanding anthology. We should be grateful to Barbeau for his judicious and illuminating selection of texts. The book constitutes a most discriminating guide to the religion of this momentous period of thought in the English-speaking world.~Douglas Hedley, Professor of the Philosophy of Religion, University of Cambridge
Religion in Romantic England provides source materials essential to any student or scholar interested not only in religion but also in literary, political, and cultural developments. Selections from Wilberforce, Paley, Bentham, Law, Wesley, Wollstonecraft, Burke, Paine, Barbauld, Coleridge, Hemans, Keble, and a score more create a rich, full picture. Barbeau’s introduction provides excellent, highly informative context. No student or scholar of the Romantic Age should be without this volume, and every college and research library should have it on its shelves and in its digital resources.~James Engell, Gurney Professor of English and Professor of Comparative Literature, Harvard University
The first of its kind, Religion in Romantic England is an excellent resource for students and scholars alike who are interested in the contours of the religious experience in this time and place.~Eric Bontempo, Reading Religion
…Jeffrey Barbeau’s wonderful anthology Religion in Romantic England gives scholars and students alike tools for pursuing that more fine-grained, complex vision of Romantic religion beyond the purview of Methodism alone, from 1760 to 1832…in addition to providing important primary texts on major religious issues that scholars and students of Romanticism will find useful, taken as a whole the selections together with Barbeau’s focused and accessible introductions make for an inviting, reader friendly course in the religion of the period. The volume is genuinely the first of its kind and a resource no library or specialist in the period will want to be without.~Lori Branch, European Romantic Review
Barbeau's work is to be commended for covering many different denominational perspectives...Taken together, they give a vivid picture of the many ways English Christian 'taught, preached, collaborated, defended, participated, argued, practiced, hoped, and imagined their own faith' (xxix). The seventy short introductions preceding each text may well be the greatest strength of this volume, as they amount to a concise history of religion in Romantic England.~Philipp Reisner, Sixteenth Century Journal