Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 17 June 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Early modern sermons were exercises in literary interpretation ‘applied’ to the circumstances of their hearers. While preachers and handbooks prescribe approaches to this task, few offer much insight into their pitfalls, or the relative prestige of different interpretative approaches. Rich evidence, however, survives in the annual ‘rehearsal’ sermons preached at Paul’s Cross and in Oxford. Rehearsal sermons emphasize the need for repetition, but also the ability to ‘ornament’ scripture and expand the interpretative possibilities of the text. This chapter examines surviving rehearsal sermons to discover how preachers thought about the biblical texts that they re-presented to their hearers, and how they achieved the difficult combination of sound doctrine and effective communication. Treading an uneasy line between literal sense and figurative interpretation, preachers searched out ways to reveal new meanings to their hearers, prompting anxieties about the relationship between the charisma of preaching and the learning of the clergy.

Keywords: preaching, sermons, rehearsal sermons, Paul’s Cross, literal sense, allegory, biblical interpretation, Daniel Featley

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.