By Larissa J Taylor

In an age while the published ebook was once nonetheless in its infancy, the pulpit was once the mass medium. an essential component of medieval spiritual existence, sermons have been the executive events on which the church tried to bridge the distance among excessive theology and well known non secular tradition. a brand new examine past due medieval non secular values and practices throughout the sermons of the day, this booklet deals exciting insights into the ideals and behaviors of standard Christians within the the most important period that observed the onset of the Protestant Reformation. learning over 1,600 sermons given through the top preachers in France among 1460 and 1560, Taylor examines the social context of preaching and the literary constitution of the sermon to supply the history for an intensive research of the preferred theology of the sermons, the preachers' attitudes towards women and men, and the preaching of and reaction to heresy within the many years after 1520.

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Extra resources for Soldiers of Christ: Preaching in Late Medieval and Reformation France

Sample text

During Lent, sermons were given daily; therefore, the number still in existence is correspondingly greater. The change in themes during Menot's Lenten series at Tours in 1508 conveys the penitential mood of these sermons. Until Easter Sunday, he had daily repeated the theme: "Be not so very angry, Lord, keep not our guilt forever in mind; look upon us, who are all your people" (Isaiah 64:8). The dominant themes of sin, repentance, and hope were used with varying emphasis according to his purpose and the nearness to Good Friday and Easter Sunday.

The indulgence preacher was a much-vilified character, despised by serious preachers as a self-important, greedy individual who preyed on the credulity and meagre resources of the poor and helpless. As early as 1410, synodal statutes and bishops in Normandy had denounced the indulgence sermon, but it continued to be a familiar aspect of urban life in the late fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries. Indulgences often were used to support the papal curia or to raise funds for a projected crusade against the Turks, who posed a very real threat to Europe in the 1520s.

41 Sometimes the desire to appoint a regular preacher led a community to offer a contract. Because of its permanent nature, this position often went to a secular. Although we are poorly informed on this subject for France, it is well known that many cities in the Holy Roman Empire established permanent municipal preacherships funded by the town or private patrons. In 1478, Johan Geiler von Kaysersberg was hired under a contract between him and the city of Strasbourg that stipulated the following: each year he was to have four weeks' vacation, but otherwise he was not to leave the town for even a single night without the permission of the dean, and never during the important seasons of the liturgical year.

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