A priest's tale

The Morebath whose voices are chronicled in Eamon Duffy's narrative is a remote and tiny sheep farming community in England's West Country. An unexceptional village, its very ordinariness seems to be chief among the charms that drew the author's attention--that and the fact that a remarkable priest served the community for a long time, in interesting times, and took good notes. The priest, Sir Christopher Trychay, maintained the church account book from his arrival in 1520 until his death in 1574, providing for posterity detailed information on the parish's activities, along with his distinctive commentary, as the community lived through the tumult of reformation unleashed by Henry VIII and his heirs.

 

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