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Parish Texts

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  • Reviews
  • Periodicals
  • Books, Theses, Essays & Source editions
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Snape, Michael, The Church of England in Industrialising Society. The Lancashire Parish of Whalley in the Eighteenth Century (Boydell and Brewer, 2003).

[Review by Mark Smith in Reviews in History 1/4/05, with author's response]


‘Pre-Reformation Churchwardens’ Accounts and Parish Government’: Debate in The English Historical Review

[Essay by Clive Burgess, in English Historical Review cxvii (2002), 306-32]

[Response by Beat Kümin, ibid. cxix (2004), 87-99]

[Rejoinder by Clive Burgess, ibid., 100-116]

[Contribution (specifically on seasonal festivity) by Ronald Hutton, ibid. cxx (2005), 66-79]



Valerie Hitchman and Andrew Foster (eds), Views from the Parish: Churchwardens’ Accounts c. 1500-1800 (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2015)

Reviewed by Ruth Barbour, University of Warwick (February 2017)


Ecclesiology Today
(published by the Ecclesiological Society; online access to most issues)

Historical Churches (annual publication by ‘’)


Books, theses and essays


Andrew, Susan, ‘Late Medieval Roof Bosses in the Churches of Devon’ (PhD Plymouth University, 2011)

Barnwell, Paul, ‘The Use of the Church: Blisworth, Northamptonshire, on the Eve of the Reformation’, Ecclesiology Today35 (2005), 43-62

” , ‘Low side windows: ventilating a 170-year old controversy’, Ecclesiology Today 36 (2006), 49-76

Bauwens, Michal, 'Conflict, Community and Catholic Restoration: The Parish of St James in Ghent between 1560 and 1600' (PhD University of Ghent, 2020)

Beyer, Jürgen, 'Ein Blick in die Küche des Pastors Jacob Stolterfoth (1650)', in: Zeitschrift für Lübeckische Geschichte 97 (2017), 133-60 [edition and commentary of a list of gifts to a Lutheran pastor]

Boscani Leoni, Simona, ‘Les images abîmées entre iconoclasme, pratiques religieuses et rituels magiques’, in: Images Re-vues 2 (2006)

Canobbio, Elisabetta, ‘Chiese, clero e fedeli nella Valtellina del Quattrocento’, in: idem et al. (eds), Per nos hodie consecrata: Incontri per i Cinquecento anni della consacrazione della chiesa della Beata Vergine Assunta di Morbegno (1506–2006) [Ad Fontes e-book, 2006]

Capp, Bernard, ‘Life, love and litigation: Sileby in the 1630s’, Past & Present 182 (2004), 55-83 [uses church court disputes as windows into the social dynamics of a Midlands parish]

Colombo, Emanuele Camillo, “Il Cristo degli altri”: Economie della rivendicazione nella Calabria greca di età moderna (New Digital Press, 2018) [on the construction of minority religious identities in early modern southern Italy]

Curzel, Emanuele, ‘L’organizzazione ecclesiastica nelle campagne‘, in: Rete Medievali (2010) [on ecclesiastical organization in the countryside; with information on sources, archives, resources]

Davidson Cragoe, Carol, ‘The Early Church: Towards Gothic Splendour’ (BBC History Trail, 2005) [on church architecture on the eve of the Reformation]

” , ‘Towards the Floodgates of Religious Reform’ (BBC History Trail, 2005) [on the impact of the English Reformation]

Davies, Michael, A Short History of the Roman Mass [chronological survey from the earliest times to after Trent]

Della Misericordia, Massimo, Figure di comunità: Documento notarile, forme della convivenza, riflessione locale sulla vita associata nella montagna lombarda e nella pianura comasca (secoli XIV–XVI) [Ad Fontes e-book, 2008]

” , ‘Le origini - La chiesa della comunità fra devozione e identità locale’ [essay on the communal foundation of a 'contrada' chapel, i.e. the Chiesa Santissima Trinità at Teregua, Valtellina/Italy, erected by the inhabitants of a hamlet subject to the parish of S. Nicolò/Valfurva and the Comune of Bormio in the 1520s and administered by local officials] (e-text, c. 2008)

" , ‘Pratiche e immagini di carità: Una lettura degli affreschi die Pendolasco (secoli XIV-XV)’, in BOLLETTINO DELLA SOCIETÀ STORICA VALTELLINESE 67 (2014), 29-58

" , ‘S. Fedele di Pendolasco tra storia locale e storia generale’, BOLLETTINO DELLA SOCIETÀ STORICA VALTELLINESE 67 (2014), 365-373

“ , ‘Le croci astili rinascimentali della Valfurva. Uno sguardo storico’. in: BOLLETTINO STORICO ALTA VALTELLINA 21 (2018), 25-60

“ , ‘A proposito de La chiesa di San Martino di Cosio Valtellino: istituzioni ecclesiastiche, vita religiosa e committenza artistica nella complessità storica di un ambito territoriale’, in: BOLLETTINO DELLA SOCIETÀ STORICA VALTELLINESE 71 (2018), 265-273

“ , ‘Sotiantes crucem. Processioni e croci processionali nelle Alpi lombarde alla fine del Medioevo’, in: B. Figliuolo, R. Di Meglio & A. Ambrosio (eds), Ingenita curiositas. Studi sull’Italia medievale per Giovanni Vitolo (Battipaglia : Laveglia Carlone, 2018), 675-696

Hiljanen, Mikko, ‚Limits of power: Clerical appointment as part of domestic policy in Sweden after the Reformation 1560-1611‘, in: Perichoresis 13 (2/2015), 35-55

Hobbs, Stephen, Travel alms payments in the Hartland Church and Harton Borough Accounts 1612-1706 (research paper)

Julius, H., Landkirchen und Landklerus im Bistum Konstanz während des frühen und hohen Mittelalters. Eine begriffsgeschichtliche Untersuchung [Rural Churches and Rural Clergy in the Bishopric of Constance during the early and high Middle Ages. A terminological study] (Diss.phil. University of Constance, 2003)

Kuha, Miia, 'Popular religion in the periphery: Church attendance in 17th century Eastern Finland', in: Perichoresis 13 (2/2015), 17-33

" , Pyhäpäivien vietto varhaismodernin ajan Savossa (noin vuoteen 1710) [The observance of holy days in early modern Savo (Eastern Finland)] (Jyväskylä, 2016) [English summary]

Kümin, Beat, ‘The English parish in a European perspective‘, in: K. French, G. Gibbs and B. Kümin (eds), The Parish in English Life 1400-1600 (Manchester: UP, 1997), 15-32 [aspects of a comparative history of the European parish 1400-1600]

Kümin, Beat, ‘The secular legacy of the late medieval English parish’, in: C. Burgess and E. Duffy (eds), The Parish in Late Medieval England, Harlaxton Medieval Studies XIV (Donington: Shaun Tyas, 2006), 95-111 and pl. 1-4 [stresses the long-term social, political and cultural repercussions of late medieval parish life; link provides access to pre-print version]

Kümin, Beat (ed.), Politische Freiheit und republikanische Kultur im Alten Europa. Historische Essays zum Gedenkjahr “Gersau 2014″ [Political Freedom and Republican Culture in Old Europe. Historical Essays for the Bicentary of the Restoration of the Parish Republic of Gersau 1814-2014] (Vitznau: Bucher Druckmedien, 2015) [full text open access]

Markkola, Pirjo, ‘The long history of Lutheranism in Scandinavia: From state religion to the people’s church’, in: Perichoresis 13 (2/2015), 3-15

Marshall, Peter, ‘Discord and Stability in an Elizabethan Parish: John Otes and Carnaby 1563-1600’, Yorkshire Archaeological Journal 71 (1999), 185-99 [on the problematic relationship between a clergyman and his parishioners; by kind permission of Yorkshire Archaeological Society]

Mercieca, Simon, 'Starting a Family in another Land: Spaniards in Malta 1580s to 1640s', in: Joan Abela et al (eds), Proceedings of History Week 2013 (Malta History Society, 2014), 41-62 [online version]

" , 'Anatomies of Spanish settlers in Malta between 1580 and 1648 : their family stories', in: Symposia Melitensia 11 (2015), 145-170 [online version]

Minnen, Bart, ‘“Den heyligen Sant al in Brabant”. The Church of St Martin in Wezemaal and the devotion to St Job 1000-2000 – Retrospective. The fluctuations of a devotion’ [= English summary of contribution to:] Den Heyligen Sant Al in Brabant: De Sint-Martinuskerk van Wezemaal en de cultus van Sint Job 1000-2000 (Averbode, 2011)

Mouthon, Fabrice, Circonscriptions religieuses, territoire et communautés dans les Alpes médiévales (XIIe-XVe siècles): une spécificité montagnarde?, in: Reti medievali Rivista VII (2006)/2

Obermair, Hannes, ‘Kirche und Stadtentstehung. Die Pfarrkirche Bozen im Hochmittelalter (11.–13. Jahrhundert)‘ [Church and Town Origin: The Parish Church of Bolzano in the High Middle Ages], Der Schlern 69 (1995), 449-74

” , ‘Die soziale Bühne der Stadt. Vigil Raber und der Spielbetrieb in Bozen um 1500 – eine sozialhistorische Skizze‘, in: Gebhardt M.; Siller, M. (eds), Vigil Raber (+ 1552). Zur 450. Wiederkehr seines Todesjahres. Akten des 4. Symposiums der Sterzinger Osterspiele, Schlern-Schriften, 326 (Innsbruck, 2004), 147-159.

” , ‘The Social Stages of the City. Vigil Raber and Performance Direction in Bozen/Bolzano (Northern Italy) – a Socio-historical Outline’, Concilium medii aevi 7 (Göttingen 2004), 193-208 [on the sociology and cultural context of Tyrolean Easter plays]

Orlik, Susan, 'The Bridgwater Corporation Pew c. 1620', a guest blog for Middling Culture (3 September 2019)

‘The parish church: From their Saxon roots to today’ [survey of the parish's significance from the 'Icons of England' website commissioned by the Department of Culture]

Pierre-Louis, Jessica, 'Les Libres de couleur face au préjugé : franchir la barrière à la Martinique aux XVIIe-XVIIIe siècles' (PhD, Antilles-Guyane, 2015) [thesis on free people of colour in early modern Martinique, based in part on parish registers; with English abstract]

Postles, Dave, 'Some ambiguities of late medieval religion in England' (Institute of Historical Research: e-seminar in History, 1998)

Räihä, Antti, ‘Lutheran clergy in an Orthodox empire: The appointment of pastors in the Russo-Swedish borderland in the 18th century’, in: Perichoresis 13 (2/2015), 57-75

Rantanen, Arja, Pennförare i periferin: Österbottniska sockenskrivare 1721–1868 [Transcribers in the periphery: Parish scribes in Ostrobothnia 1721–1868] (Turku, 2014) [English summary]

Roberts, Penny, ‘The Languages of Peace during the French Religious Wars’, in: Cultural and Social History 4 (2007), 297-315 [explores the language and context of peace in a period of intense military conflict, illuminating the social and cultural dimensions for the contested nature of sixteenth-century politics especially in the urban parishes of France]

Roffey, Simon, 'Recording the parish church fabric: Objective and subjective approaches to structural analysis’ (Conference paper taken from the “Institute of Field Archaeologists”, 2005) [MS Word-version]

Saunders, Elaine, '"Men of good Character, strong, decent and active": Hertfordshire's Petty Constables' (PhD, Open University, 2017)

Scott, Jacob, ‘The Future of 3D in Churches and Heritage‘, National Churches Trust Blog (30 September 2016).[with video samples of photogrammetry, a process whereby a computer uses multiple two-dimensional photographs of an object taken from different angles to create a three-dimensional model]

Untermann, Matthias, ‘Chorschranken und Lettner in südwestdeutschen Stadtkirchen – Beobachtungen zu einer Typologie mittelalterlicher Pfarrkirchen‘, in: Architektur Geschichten: Festschrift für Günther Binding (Cologne, 1996), 73-90

Upton, Anthony Arthur, 'The Parochial Clergy of the Archdeaconry of Coventry c.1500-1600' (PhD Leicester, 2003)

Varanini, Gian Maria, 'Spunti per una discussione del rapporto fra ricerca medievistica recente e storia delle comunità di villagio‘ (conference paper, 2002) [a historiographical survey of the terms village-commune-parish for northern Italy]

Willis, Jonathan, ‘Understanding Sources: Churchwardens’ Accounts‘ (blog post for the many-headed monster, 6 August 2016)

Wise, Ken, ‘The health of a village‘ (2007) [essay on the pattern of illness in Drayton St Leonard, Oxon.]


Parish Histories


Benham, Stephen; Callaghan, Nigel, ‘Llangynfelyn: A Parish History‘ [parish in Mid-Wales with documents from the 17thC]

Davidson Cragoe, Carol, Kirtling Parish Church (BBC History Trail, 2002) [on discovering and interpreting local churches]

Geyer, Nobert et al., ‘St Johannes der Täufer, Schlüsselfeld: Pfarreigeschichte’ [History of the Parish of St John the Baptist (Bamberg Diocese)]

Grosjean, Alexia; Murdoch, Steve, Belhelvie – A Millenium of History (2001) [online history of a parish in North-East Scotland]

Guernsey Museums, ‘Guernsey Parish History’ [includes a timeline from the 11thC]

Whitwell Local History Group, ‘Whitwell – A Parish History’ [online history of a Derbyshire parish]

Gries CWA 1422

Churchwardens’ accounts of St Mary’s, Gries, a rural parish in South Tyrol (Northern Italy): Start of income items for 1422, kindly provided by Hannes Obermair of the Stadtarchiv Bozen / Archivio Storico Cittá di Bolzano.