Worlds of Wonder, Days of Judgment: Popular Religious Belief in Early New England

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Harvard University Press, 1990 - History - 316 pages
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This book tells an extraordinary story of the people of early New England and their spiritual lives. It is about ordinary people--farmers, housewives, artisans, merchants, sailors, aspiring scholars--struggling to make sense of their time and place on earth. David Hall describes a world of religious consensus and resistance: a variety of conflicting beliefs and believers ranging from the committed core to outright dissenters. He reveals for the first time the many-layered complexity of colonial religious life, and the importance within it of traditions derived from those of the Old World. We see a religion of the laity that was to merge with the tide of democratic nationalism in the nineteenth century, and that remains with us today as the essence of Protestant America.

 

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User Review  - mdobe - LibraryThing

Introduction This is a study of popular religion, but in defining popular religion as a faith of the people Hall is not cordoning this off from the religion of the ministerial class. Unlike Europe ... Read full review

Worlds of wonder, days of judgment: popular religious belief in early New England

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Noted colonial historian Hall has written an excellent treatment of 17th-century New England religion as it was practiced by the vast majority of the population, not by the clergy. Accepting the ... Read full review

Contents

Introduction
3
THE USES OF LITERACY
21
A WORLD OF WONDERS
71
THE MEETINGHOUSE
117
THE USES OF RITUAL
166
THE MENTAL WORLD OF SAMUEL SEWALL
213
New England
247
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About the author (1990)

David D. Hall is John A. Bartlett Professor of New England Church History at Harvard Divinity School.

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