Gathered together in this volume are eight contributions by leading scholars of medieval and early modern Europe on different aspects of the rise and development of the Protestant clergy during the era of Reformation, from the construction of the evangelical clerical estate and its divergence from the medieval priesthood to the patterns and particulars of development and their implications for interpreting, and understanding, the confessional age. Many of the essays address a broad theme within a distinct national or territorial framework; the issues are general, the questions universal, but the details which animate the analyses are particular and precise. Using this approach, the volume is able to speak to the general concerns of Reformation historiography, while drawing upon the crucial details made possible by research expertise. The end result is a comprehensive overview of a subject at the very heart of early modern history, viewed from a range of perspectives which provides an essential understanding of the age.

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