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Paperback The Reformation Book

ISBN: 0140137572

ISBN13: 9780140137576

The Reformation

(Book #3 in the The Penguin History of the Church Series)

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Book Overview

The beginning the sixteenth century brought growing pressure within the Western Church for Reformation. The popes could not hold Western Christendom together and there was confusion about Church reform. What some believed to be abuses, others found acceptable. Nevertheless over the years three aims emerged: to reform the exactions of churchmen, to correct errors of doctrines and to improve the moral awareness of society. As a result, Western Europe...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Good conventional history for this 3-part series

Chadwick's history is a solid conclusion to this 3-part history of the Church. Though avoiding the theological debates few of the Protestant, Catholic, or Anabaptist partisans will be pleased. Instead, this is a middle-of-the-road easy read that assumes some knowledge of the topic already. It is a fair introduction in a way but the assumptions of additional learning will leave some puzzled with unexplained references. This would be a fine companion, for instance, to one working through a more detailed lecture series such as, The Teaching Company: History of Christianity in the Reformation Era 18 Audio Cds with Course Outline Booklet (The Great Courses). We would have enjoyed also a more thorough coverage of the proto-reformation movements such as the Lollards and Hussites of the preceding centuries. True, there is a limit in the amount that can be covered in under 500 pages but those movements in particular seem especially relevant to this study. For a more in-depth study that takes those earlier reformation movements into account, see The Reformation (The Story of Civilization VI). For a study of this period, there are many works that cover the material with far greater detail. Others may provide a reasonable introduction to the reformation. This one falls somewhere in between. A solid, conventional history that attempts not to offend any of the Christian traditions involved. Despite the rather drab approach to history, it still manages to entertain and incite a desire to learn more. For that we can highly recommend this well-respected work.

A good book but not the best

I am a Catholic and I wanted to know more about the protestant church. I was most interested in Martin Luther, a brave man whose ideas really make sense to me. I wonder where was the word of Jesus those days: that's show how manageable is the human mind and how important is to read. When I see the catholic church today I just realized that it has not evolved much since those days in the sense of its dogma, for example, the theory of not to have sexual relations before marriage .. in Africa lots of people are dying because of that. I'm sure there are some better books about the subject around.

Servicable Introduction

A serviceable summary of one of the Church's most tumultuous periods. A pretty quick read as the text is written at a reasonable level for most introductory readers. Provides good coverage of the whole church during this period, including Catholic and Orthodox reformations. It is generally my contention that church history texts are not written for spatial or visual learners due to the common lack of maps and timelines, but this text sets a new standard as it only contains two total maps/figures/pictures. Not referenced, light recommended readings, good index. On the whole an enjoyable and helpful book for the front end of a study of the reformation, but not my favorite.

Pretty good

I would give it 5 stars, but I was somewhat displeased with Owen's take on John Calvin's Geneva. There is room for criticism in Calvin's life (ie, his semi-involvement in a burning), but I felt like Owen was trying to show Calvin as being too much like a tyrant. His take on Luther is excellent however! I'm a big fan of Luther, and his works - and Owens dealings with Luther were wonderful and right on target! Owens take on the Counter-Reformation was also great, and his describtion of the spread of Christianity soon after, the rise of the Jesuits, etc. were wonderful. Overall it was a great book!

A MUST HAVE for any history loving Christian!

Being a proud Protestant as I am, I wanted to research the Reformation, so I read this book. This book is excellent. I will bring the Reformation and all of her issues to life for you! Few hisorical books can do that, but this book is an exception. It's filled with passion and devout study. If you're a Prostestant and proud of it, this is the book for you. Learn about your heritage and what great men like Luther, Wesley, and Tyndale went through to purify the faith. This book will definitely teach you everything you've ever wanted to know about the Reformation. I've read books about the Reformation before, but this is the only one that satisfied me.
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