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Durham University

Department of Theology and Religion


Publication details for Dr James Kelly

Kelly, James E. (2018). Counties without Borders? Religious Politics, Kinship Networks and the Formation of Catholic Communities. Historical Research 91(251): 22-38.

Author(s) from Durham


This article examines the formation of Catholic communities and the roles played by religious politics and kinship networks within that process. It contributes to historiographical debates about early modern English Catholics' self-identification in religio-political terms, suggesting that intra-Catholic feuds were not the sole preserve of the Catholic missionary clergy. It uses the Petre family, barons of Writtle in Essex, as a case study by which to argue that these seemingly inward-looking debates were actually about how the community understood itself in relation to the state and, as such, were fundamental in the process of English Catholic community construction.