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date: 16 July 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This article examines Richard Hooker's Of the Lawes of Ecclesiasticall Politie. It argues that the Politie is a call to understand, to obey, to surrender, to embrace, to celebrate the church ‘being both a societie and a societie supernaturall’, which includes all English citizens. But the polyvalent invitation assumes a hierarchy of abilities and temperaments. Some should merely obey; some might understand and yet be stubborn; some may see the truth after Hooker's exposition and embrace it; others might be too lazy even to try. With multiple purposes and readers, Hooker also constructs his different voices — as partisan polemicist, as brotherly teacher, even pastor, as authoritarian school master, as judge.

Keywords: English prose, prose writing, prose style, Richard Hooker

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