Religion, Law, and Power: The Making of Protestant Ireland, 1660-1760

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Clarendon Press, 1992 - History - 346 pages
This is a study of religion, politics, and society in a period of great significance in modern Irish history. The late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries saw the consolidation of the power of the Protestant landed class, the enactment of penal laws against Catholics, and constitutional conflicts that forced Irish Protestants to redefine their ideas of national identity. S. J. Connolly's scholarly and wide-ranging study examines these developments and sets them in their historical context. The Ireland that emerges from his lucid and penetrating analysis was essentially a part of ancien regime Europe: a pre-industrialized society, in which social order depended less on the ramshackle apparatus of coercion than on complex structures of deference and mutual accommodation, along with the absence of credible challengers to the dominance of a landed elite; in which the ties of patronage and clientship were often more important than horizontal bonds of shared economic or social position; and in which religion remained a central part of personal and political motivation.

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A New Ireland
An Élite and its World
The Structure of Politics

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