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date: 23 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter focuses upon the generation of British and visiting European humanists in Henry VIII’s England who committed themselves to the culture of worship within the Catholic Church while often remaining alert to its ethical and social shortcomings. Figures such as More, Erasmus, Vives, and Colet form the centre of this discussion and emphasis is given to the ways in which these humanist scholars sought to take their programme of spiritual and intellectual renewal (recovering works of Scripture and Greco-Latin literature) to a new generation of European readers. Discussion in this chapter also pays attention to the ways in which these scholars sought to forge or distance themselves from affairs of state in the early decades of the sixteenth century. Most particularly, Catholic humanist responses to the warring of faith communities during the Reformation are analysed, taking into account the volatile political environment of the Tudor realm and its inhabitants.

Keywords: humanist, Reformation, intellectual, Protestant revolution, polemic, scholarship, Thomas More, Erasmus, Vives, Colet

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