Scotch-Irish-L ArchivesArchiver > Scotch-Irish > 2001-01 > 0980292068
Subject: [Scotch-Irish] Re: Religion in the 1500's, 1600's
Date: Tue, 23 Jan 2001 15:21:08 -0800
The very interesting question about Catholic Scots has had me
thinking too. One of the ways in which the 1500's and 1600's
differed from now is that a lot of what later became very
differentiated was not in the 1500's and early 1600's. This
includes established religion in England and Scotland and of course
Ireland. Queen Elizabeth I was definitely a Protestant but her
beliefs were not so different from Catholicism (which irritated the
Calvinists). After her death religious practice wavered in England
throughout the 1600's. Eventually today's Episcopal church emerged.
In the mid and later 1500's in Ireland it was not always clear who
was Catholic, who was established church, and who was Presbyterian.
Many people didn't care. People who moved from Scotland to Ireland
who didn't care conformed. That mean in the 1630's they conformed
to Laude's church and in the 1650's to Cromwell's and in the 1670's
to the post Restoration church. It was much more of a mish mash,
which some jumping off or on the boat of conforming. I also recall
one lister telling us his family switched from Catholic to Protestant
four times that he has traced.
Through much of the north in the 1500's there was very little
religion of any type. The churches were in ruins due to the wars.
It was very much a frontier society in the early years of the
Plantation, with parishes that had primarily Scottish people
and maybe a nominally Presbyterian minister (in the period before
1630 there was no differentiation between Presbyterians and
Church of Ireland). Other places you had nothing but Catholics.
Most places the representation of the church of Ireland was quite
small due to chronic shortages of ministers.
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