The Devil's Book: Charles I, The Book of Sports and Puritanism in Tudor and Early Stuart England
The Book of Sports was the royal declaration which sanctioned popular participation in traditional pastimes after church attendance on Sunday. It was denounced by a vociferous opposition who viewed recreation on the Sabbath as the devil's work. Alistair Dougall takes a fresh look at the events surrounding the re-publication of the Book of Sports in 1633 and reassesses the role of Charles I himself in the controversy. He re-examines the cultural battle that emerged as a result of the tension between Sunday observance and traditional revelry and demonstrates how a new form of 'sabbatarianism' became the hallmark of the radical Protestants who sought to suppress all Sunday recreations. The book also makes an important contribution to the ongoing debate surrounding the causes of division in English society which led to the outbreak of civil war in 1642.
Alistair Dougall taught for four years at Southampton University before joining the Godolphin School in Salisbury, where he is Head of Sixth Form and teaches History, specialising in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century English and European History.
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