Winner of the American Historical Society's J. Russell Major prize for the best book on French History, From Penitence to Charity analyzes female penitents and the revival of Catholic institutions and spirituality that produced a stunning burst of religious construction during the French wars of religion. Diefendorf argues that the spiritual imperatives of self-mortification and renunciation of will that lay at the heart of this penitential piety profoundly influenced not just those with religious careers but also the behaviour of devout lay women.

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