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Rethinking church and state during the English Interregnum

Prior, Charles W. A.



This essay offers a re-examination of the concept of Erastianism as an explanatory tool in discussions of church and state. It focuses in particular on three texts – by Pierre du Moulin, Thomas Cobbet and John Milton - that took up the question of the nature of civil power in the sphere of religion. Based on this, the essay argues that the term ‘Erastianism’ obscures the complexity and nuance of arguments about religious politics in the civil war period. It concludes by suggesting that we should instead consider these debates as contributions to discourse on civil religion.


Prior, C. W. A. (2014). Rethinking church and state during the English Interregnum. Historical research : the bulletin of the Institute of Historical Research, 87(237), 444-465.

Journal Article Type Article
Online Publication Date Oct 21, 2013
Publication Date 2014-08
Deposit Date Nov 13, 2014
Publicly Available Date Nov 23, 2017
Journal Historical research
Print ISSN 0950-3471
Electronic ISSN 1468-2281
Publisher Wiley
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 87
Issue 237
Pages 444-465
Keywords Erastianism; Church and state; Interregnum; Commonwealth and Protectorate, 1649-1660
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Prior, C. W. A. (2014), Rethinking church and state during the English Interregnum. Historical Research, 87: 444–465. doi: 10.1111/1468-2281.12042, which has been published in final form at This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance With Wiley Terms and Conditions for self-archiving.
Contract Date Nov 23, 2017


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