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The ‘Recusancy Revolt’ of 1603 Revisited, Popular Politics, and Civic Catholicism in Early Modern Ireland

Walter, John (2022) 'The ‘Recusancy Revolt’ of 1603 Revisited, Popular Politics, and Civic Catholicism in Early Modern Ireland.' The Historical Journal, 65 (2). pp. 249-274. ISSN 0018-246X

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This article contributes to a body of work exploring the possibilities of a popular politics in Ireland before the rising of 1641. It does so by revisiting the ‘recusancy revolt’ of 1603 in which, in the interregnum created by Elizabeth I's death, churches and civic space in towns in the south and west of Ireland were reoccupied for Catholic worship. Reading for meaning in the shaping and timing of the crowd rituals at the heart of the protest, the article argues that Old English elites and people physically acted out the recovery of these spaces for the public performance of a civic Catholicism, in which corporate worship was integral both to the maintenance of the civic order and to the defence of ancient liberties and freedoms against the encroachments of an anglicizing and Protestant regime. Analysing the dynamics of these confessional protests, the article assesses the potential for an active citizenry represented by popular political mobilization in 1603 and contrasts this with later popular mobilization in the 1641 rising. It explores the paradox at the heart of a protest in which it was believed that the restoration of <jats:italic>public</jats:italic> Catholic worship could co-exist with continuing civic loyalty to an English and Protestant monarchy.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities
Faculty of Humanities > History, Department of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 07 Jun 2021 08:05
Last Modified: 14 Mar 2022 14:39

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