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Piety and Modernity

Piety and Modernity: The Dynamics of Religious Reform in Northern Europe, 1780-1920

Copyright Date: 2012
Published by: Leuven University Press
Pages: 336
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  • Book Info
    Piety and Modernity
    Book Description:

    Piety and Modernity examines the dynamics of religious reform from the point of view of piety and devotional life between 1780 and 1920 in Britain, Ireland, Scandinavia, Germany, and the Low Countries. The ‘long' nineteenth century saw the introduction of devotional organizations as a means of channeling popular religion. This era also witnessed the translation and publication of devotional books, journals, and pamphlets on a massive scale. This edited volume explores the nature of pious reforms in such areas as liturgy, saint cults, pilgrimage, confraternities, hymns, and Bible translation, with an emphasis on the changing patterns in religious expression at the collective and individual level, the growing influence of home missions, and the relations between piety and print culture. The interaction of piety and modernity is an important theme. While individual piety was often connected with the authority of church leaders and confessional teaching, the long nineteenth century gave rise to new forms of individualism, involving grassroots initiatives. This volume offers a rich overview of a range of interrelated national practices concerning piety in the nineteenth century.

    eISBN: 978-94-6166-093-0
    Subjects: Religion

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. 1-4)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. 5-6)
  3. Introduction
    (pp. 7-23)
    Anders Jarlert

    Pietyis a somewhat diffuse word - it covers a wide range of religious phenomena, partly with other accents than the GermanFrömmigkeitor the Frenchspiritualité. In this volume,pietyis used in a broad sense, covering different manifestations of Christian spiritual life during the long nineteenth century.

    Pietyshould not be confused withPietism, though its Pietistic expression was widely influential in Protestantism in this period. Further, the reform of piety is much wider than the reform of private devotion only, since it includes reforms of liturgy, hymns, Bible translation, etc, but also changing patterns and methods for...

  4. Bibliography
    (pp. 24-24)
  5. The United Kingdom of Great Britain & Ireland

    • Christian Piety in Britain during the ‘Long’ Nineteenth Century, c 1780-1920
      (pp. 27-54)
      Mary Heimann

      Along with industrialisation, modernisation and the growth of Empire, Britain’s ‘long’ nineteenth century has come to be associated with accelerated secularisation. This was not how it looked at the time. Far from imagining that their society would one day be remembered for a supposed decline in faith, Victorian and Edwardian Christians of all denominations energetically spread the Gospel around the globe and earnestly sought to reinvigorate and deepen Christian piety at home. The stated aims of Anglican, Presbyterian, Catholic and Nonconformist clergy to launch a ‘Second Reformation’, ‘convert’ England, or bring ‘heavenly hopes and earthly gladness to the hearts of...

    • Sport and the Reform of Piety in England. A Case Study
      (pp. 55-64)
      Hugh McLeod

      In 1798 the building of St Bartholomew’s chapel in Birmingham was celebrated by a bull-baiting. When, however, in 1829 there was a proposal to mark the consecration of Christ Church, West Bromwich, in the same way, the incumbent refused to have anything to do with it, and it is believed that no baiting took place.¹ These two events reflected both the historic links between the church and various traditional recreations and the fact that by the early nineteenth century many clergy and devout laypeople were opposed to such associations and indeed were often active in trying to suppress these sports....

    • The Reform of Piety in Ireland, 1780-1920
      (pp. 65-92)
      Janice Holmes

      Despite the amount of research which has been carried out into religion in Ireland, very little of it has focused on the concept of ‘piety’ and how people’s religious beliefs and practices have changed over time. Irish historians have been preoccupied with the political dimensions of religion, in particular Protestant-Catholic relations and the connection between faith and nationalism. While historians of early modern Ireland have explored the evolution of Irish piety in a number of creative ways, little has been done for the modern period. In the 1970s, Emmet Larkin and David Miller published a number of seminal articles which,...

    • Bibliography
      (pp. 93-98)
  6. The Low Countries

    • Reform of Piety in the Southern Netherlands/Belgium
      (pp. 101-124)
      Tine Van Osselaer

      The history of Catholic piety in Belgium from the late eighteenth until the start of the twentieth century is inextricably bound up with major transformations in the position of the national as well as the international Catholic Church. First of all, Catholicism became an important component of the self-image of the young Belgian nation. Although no longer a state church, the Catholic Church’s close association with the 1830 revolution against Willem I underpinned the impression that Catholicism was part of the national identity. This relationship was materialised in and strengthened by devotional practices (national saints, shrines and pilgrimages) that started...

    • Dutch Devotionalisation Reforming Piety: Grassroots Initiative or Clerical Strategy?
      (pp. 125-156)
      Peter Jan Margry

      “They can’t forbid it to us any more!”, shouted a group of Marian devotees on their way to the shrine of Our Lady of Need near the small village of Heiloo in 1807. This defiant cry articulated their awareness of their having regained full legal rights as Catholics. Having suffered two centuries of religious suppression at the hands of the Calvinist government, Catholics were eager to start exercising the freedom of belief established after the Dutch or ‘Batavian’ revolution of 1795, formalised in theStaatsregelingof 1798. This new constitution of the newly created Batavian Republic - later the Kingdom...

    • Reforming Dutch Protestant Piety, 1780-1920
      (pp. 157-185)
      Fred van Lieburg

      This description of piety in the city of Leiden was penned by the physician Johannes le Francq van Berkhey, who in 1769-1811 published aNatural History of Holland.¹ One section, published in 1776, is a description of the manners and customs of the most important province of the Dutch Republic, in which religion receives ample attention. A citizen of Leiden himself, he was in a position to provide a firsthand account of the city, which had an exceptional status as the location of the famous Academy of Holland. However, Le Francq van Berkhey had also taken the trouble to acquire...

    • Bibliography
      (pp. 186-190)
  7. Germany

    • Reform of Piety in German Catholicism, 1780-1920
      (pp. 193-224)
      Bernhard Schneider

      The history of Catholic piety in German-speaking areas between 1780 and 1920 was characterised by two reform projects, which for some decades in a phase of transition were in direct confrontation: Catholic enlightenment and the ultramontanist movement. However, both were not entirely uniform and static factors. In addition, there were some differences in the development because of the territorial fragmentation of the German speaking countries.

      In the German-speaking areas, the research termKatholische Aufklärung(Catholic enlightenment) describes a heterogeneous reform movement,¹ which was effective between c 1750 and 1840, the longest in Southwest Germany.² Enlightened Catholics were not opposed to...

    • Evangelical Germany
      (pp. 225-254)
      Anders Jarlert

      German Protestants were more pluralised than German Catholics. They were diversified in confession, both in creed and in organisation, in Lutheran churches, Reformed churches, and in the Unions of Lutheran and Reformed churches. Within the latter ones, there was also a continuing conflict between Lutherans and Unionists.

      Protestant churches were pluralised in geography, organised inTerritorial- orLandeskirchen, limited to a certain territory, and often with a certain regional tradition, aGeist(spiritual tradition) of their own. However, the previously homogenous, territorial character changed almost totally in 1803/1806, when the number of small states was reduced, Prussia gained large Catholic...

    • Bibliography
      (pp. 255-262)
  8. The Nordic Countries

    • The Dynamics of Reform of Piety in Denmark, c 1780-1920
      (pp. 265-285)
      Johs. Enggaard Stidsen

      The autocratic monarchy was introduced by King Frederik III in 1660 and existed until 1849. The State administration had a good grip on the faith and opinions of people, including the piety. The religious practice of the citizens was closely watched. The Conventicle Rescript of 1741 put up clear rules for the practice of the only and true form of Christianity. Religious meetings could - according to this legislation - only be allowed, if they were closely watched by the priests of the State Church. Deviations from this rule were only possible with the king’s express permission.

      In 1771 the...

    • Reform in Sweden From Confessional Provincialism towards World Ecumenism
      (pp. 286-306)
      Anders Jarlert

      The development of reform in Swedish piety during the ‘long’ nineteenth century coincides with the working period of the ‘long’ Bible committee, 1773-1917. Such a long and slow story of religious reform by one continuing State committee is unique in Western Europe, and significant for the development of devotional life in Sweden.

      The Swedish Bible edition of 1703 was only a light revision of the Gustav Vasa Bible of 1541. The need for a new translation was obvious since language and style had changed extensively. To read Swedish texts from the fifteenth or sixteenth centuries is a far heavier task...

    • Reform of Piety in Norway, 1780-1920
      (pp. 307-325)
      Ingunn Folkestad Breistein

      The aim of this chapter is to describe reform of piety in Norway in 1780-1920 on the background of political, social and cultural development in the country during these years. From 1537 (Lutheran Reformation) until 1814 (Norwegian Constitution), Norway was a dependency to Denmark. From 1814-1905, Norway was in union with Sweden. The religious development in Norway was different from both Denmark and Sweden, in spite of the three countries all having Lutheran State Churches. In Norway, many of the awakening movements stayed within the State Church, and the members of the free churches never amounted to more than between...

    • Bibliography
      (pp. 326-328)
  9. Index
    (pp. 329-332)
  10. Map of Northern Europe c 1870
    (pp. 333-333)
  11. Authors
    (pp. 334-335)
  12. Colophon
    (pp. 336-336)