Saints and subverters : the later Covenanters in Scotland c.1648-1682

  • Neil McIntyre

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


In 1649 a radical faction of Covenanters seized power in Scotland. Upheld by supporters as the zenith of the 'Covenanted Reformation' - the constitutional revolution and godly reformation underwritten by the National Covenant of 1638 and Solemn League and Covenant of 1643 - the 'rule of the saints' left an ideological legacy which endured its termination in 1651, the Cromwellian occupation from 1652 and the restoration of Charles II in 1660. By investigating how this period was remembered and reimagined, and by scrutinising the relationship between policies and practices, this thesis explores how Covenanting developed in the politically hostile environment of Restoration Scotland.Taking inspiration from innovations in the fields of intellectual history and memory studies, the thesis draws upon a range of cultural artefacts in order to reconsider the intellectual and social dynamics of Covenanting opposition to the Restoration regime. In particular, journals, diaries, memoirs, histories, correspondence and printed polemic are examined to explain how the cause came to endorse a mix of religious dissent, popular protest and armed resistance the likes of which had been hitherto unseen in early modern Scotland - if not the wider early modern world. As a result, the thesis challenges traditionally static views of seventeenth century Scottish society while charting the remarkably subversive nature of later Covenanting ideology.
Date of Award3 Nov 2016
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University Of Strathclyde

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