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- Lancelot Andrewes. Selected Sermons and Lecturesby Peter McCullough.
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Close Figure Viewer. Browse All Figures Return to Figure. Returning user. This item has been added to your basket View basket Checkout. This is the first annotated critical edition of works of Lancelot Andrewes , a writer recognized by literary critics, historians, and theologians as one of the most important figures in Elizabethan and Jacobean England.
Peter McCullough, a leading expert on religious writing in the early modern period, presents fourteen complete sermons and lectures preached by Andrewes across the whole range of his adult career, from Cambridge in the s to the court of James I and VI in the s. Through a radical reassessment of Andrewes's life, influence, and surviving texts, the editor presents Andrewes as his contemporaries saw, heard, and read him, and as scholars are increasingly recognizing him: one of the most subtle, yet radical critics of mainstream Elizabethan Protestantism, and a literary artist of the highest order.
The centuries-old influence of William Laud's authorized edition of Andrewes is here complicated and contextualized by the full use for the first time of the whole range of Andrewes's works printed before and after his lifetime, as well as manuscript sources. The edition also showcases the aesthetic brilliance of Andrewes's remarkable prose, and suggests new ways for scholars to carry forward the modern literary appreciation of Andrewes famously begun by T.
Lancelot Andrewes: Selected sermons and lectures
A full introductory essay sets study of Andrewes on a new footing by placing his works in the context of his life and career, surveying the history of responses to his writings, and summarizing the history of the transmission of his texts. The texts here are edited to high modern critical standards. The exhaustive commentary sets each selection in its historical context, documents Andrewes's myriad sources, glosses important and unfamiliar words and allusions, and translates his frequent quotations from the ancient Biblical languages.
He wrote prose to be spoken.
In that phrase "just the worst time of the year to take a journey, and specially a long journey in", the preposition in is deferred to the end, as it might be in casual speech. Some people would condemn it as written prose, though on whose rule, goodness knows. But Andrewes delivered his sermons after learning them by heart.
Professor Peter McCullough
Nothing is accidental in their structure. Andrewes, who, having headed a Cambridge college ended up as Bishop of Winchester, with a palace in London, knew all about the theory of rhetoric, which in his day lacked the pejorative sense we assume for it.
Better, he knew that its purpose was to make the spoken word compelling. And whatever John Harington thought of the attention span of courtiers, some people in those days knew how to listen. Each of the 11 sermons in the present selection would have lasted an hour. At the beginning the preacher states his Bible text in Latin and English , and gives the structure he will then follow in commenting on it.
Like the music of Bach, the style of Andrewes went out of fashion.
EMLS Texts Series 2: Lancelot Andrewes's 'Orphan Lectures': The Exeter Manuscript
A generation later, John Aubrey thought that Andrewes "did play with his Text, as a Jack-an-apes does who takes up a thing and tosses and plays with it, and then he takes up another and plays a little with it: here's a pretty thing, and there's a pretty thing". It's as if someone listening to the Goldberg Variations heard the tinkle tinkle of the harpsichord and missed the theme behind one pretty thing and the next.
Within a century Joseph Addison, co-founder of the original Spectator, was condemning the puns of which "the sermons of Bishop Andrewes and the Tragedies of Shakespeare are full. The Sinner was Punned into Repentance by the former, as in the Latter nothing is more usual than to see a Hero weeping and quibbling for a dozen lines together. His sermons might have been the Sunday theatre of his day, but inside the rhetoric Andrewes had something to say. He was an enemy of the Puritans, striving instead to preserve the Church of England's inheritance from its Catholic past.
His Preces Privatae not included in this selection, but well edited last century by F E Brightman , prayers constructed from a network of biblical sources, show him as a man of devotion. His belief in the real presence of Christ in the Sacrament inclined him to accept transubstantiation, though not as an obligatory doctrine. Familiar though he was with the Fathers of the Church from the early centuries, he resisted union with the Church of Rome.
Hew their bones in sunder
Most paradoxically, he repeatedly preached against the error of relying too much on preaching. Sermons must change their auditors. Change must be manifested in what they did. Faith was not enough, he warned the puritan-minded; works mattered. Peter McCullough, an Oxford don, gives pages of notes to of text. Every word, in its original spelling, is checked, every comma and colon. I trust Dr McCullough will live to edit the rest. But how shall we afford them?
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