A Puritan of 16th and 17th century England was an associate of any number of religious groups advocating for more "purity" of worship and doctrine, as well as personal and group piety. Puritans felt that the English Reformation had not gone far enough, and that the Church of England was tolerant of practices which they associated with the Church of Rome. The word "Puritan" was originally an alternate term for "Cathar" and was a pejorative used to characterize them as extremists similar to the Cathari of France. The Puritans sometimes cooperated with presbyterians, who put forth a number of proposals for "further reformation" in order to keep the Church of England more closely in line with the Reformed Churches on the Continent.


The Puritan movement can be traced back to Edward VI, although the term "Puritan" was not coined until the 1560s, when it appears as a term of abuse for those who proposed further reforms than those adopted by the Elizabethan Religious Settlement of 1559. Throughout the reign of Elizabeth I, the Puritan movement involved both a political and a social component. Politically, the movement attempted, mostly unsuccessfully, to have Parliament pass legislation to replace episcopacy with presbyterianism, and to alter the 1559 Book of Common Prayer to remove elements considered odious by the Puritans. Socially, the Puritan movement called for a greater commitment to Jesus Christ for greater levels of personal holiness. By the end of Elizabeth's reign, the Puritans constituted a distinct social group within the Church of England who regarded themselves as the godly, and who held out little hope for their neighbours who remained attached to "popish superstitions" and worldliness. However, most Puritans were non-Separating Puritans who remained within the Church of England, and only a small number of Puritans became Separating Puritans or Separatists who left the Church of England altogether. Although the Puritan movement was occasionally subjected to suppression by the bishops of the Church of England, in many places, individual ministers were able to omit disliked portions of the Book of Common Prayer and to be especially attentive to the needs of the godly.


The Church of England as a whole was Calvinist, as seen in the 39 Articles, the Anglican Homilies, and in John Calvin's correspondence with Edward VI and Thomas Cranmer. The Puritan movement was distinctive from the rest of the church in theology more prescriptive than Calvinism, in legalism, theonomy, and especially – congregationalism. Charles I became king and was determined to eliminate the "excesses" of Puritanism from the Church of England. His close advisor, William Laud, who became Archbishop of Canterbury in 1633, moved the Church of England in a direction away from Puritanism and rigorously enforced the law against ministers who deviated from the Book of Common Prayer or who violated the ban on preaching about predestination. As a result, many Puritans participated in the Great Migration, founding the Massachusetts Bay Colony as a Puritan haven far from the prying eyes of Laud and the other bishops. The Puritan movement in England allied itself with the cause of "England's ancient liberties" - the unpopularity of Laud and the suppression of Puritanism was a major factor leading to the English Civil War, during which the Puritans formed the backbone of the parliamentarian forces.


Began to fracture with the calling of the Westminster Assembly in 1643. Whereas previously, the Puritan movement was associated with Presbyterians and others that sought further reforms in the Church of England, at the Westminster Assembly, it became necessary to work out the details. Doctrinally, the Assembly was able to agree to the Westminster Confession of Faith (which thus provides a good overview of the Puritan theological position, although some Puritans would reject portions of it, e.g. the Baptists rejected its teaching on infant baptism). However, the Westminster Divines were bitterly divided over questions of church polity, and divided into factions supporting moderate episcopacy, presbyterianism, congregationalism, and Erastianism. Although the Assembly eventually decided on presbyterianism, the fact that Oliver Cromwell was an Independent who favoured religious toleration meant that presbyterianism was never imposed on the Church of England, resulting in the English Interregnum being a period of religious diversity and experimentation. At the time of the English Restoration (1660), the Church of England was also restored to its pre-Civil War constitution and the Puritans were again forced out of the Church of England by the Great Ejection of 1662. By this point, the term "Puritan" was replaced by the term Dissenter to describe those who "dissented" from the 1662 Book of Common Prayer. Forced from the Church of England, Dissenters established their own denominations in the 1660s and 1670s. The government initially attempted to suppress these organizations by the Clarendon Code. The Whigs argued that the Dissenters should be allowed to worship outside of the Church of England. This position ultimately prevailed when the Toleration Act was passed in the wake of the Glorious Revolution (1689). As a result, a number of denominations were legally organized in the 1690s. The term Nonconformist generally replaced the term "Dissenter" from the middle of the eighteenth century.


Originally used to describe a third-century sect of strictly legalistic heretics, the word "Puritan" is now applied unevenly to a number of Protestant churches (and religious groups within the Anglican Church) from the late 16th century to the present. Puritans did not originally use the term for themselves. It was a term of abuse that first surfaced in the 1560s. "Precisemen" and "Precisions" were other early antagonistic terms for Puritans who preferred to call themselves "the godly." The word "Puritan" thus always referred to a type of religious belief, rather than a particular religious sect. To reflect that the term encompasses a variety of ecclesiastical bodies and theological positions, scholars today increasingly prefer to use the term as a common noun or adjective: "puritan" rather than "Puritan." Fact|date=February 2007

The single theological momentum most consistently defined by the term "Puritan" was Reformed or Calvinist and led to the founding of the Presbyterian, Baptist, and Independent or Congregationalist churches;Fact|date=February 2007 In the United States, the church and religious culture of the Puritans of the Massachusetts Bay Colony formed the basis of post-colonial American Congregationalism, specifically the Congregational Church proper. The term Puritan was used by the group itself mainly in the 16th century, though it seems to have been used often and, in its earliest recorded instances, as a term of abuse. By the middle of the 17th century, the group had become so divided that "Puritan" was most often used by opponents and detractors of the group, rather than by the practitioners themselves. As Patrick Collinson has noted, well before the founding of the New England settlement, “Puritanism had no content beyond what was attributed to it by its opponents.” [Patrick Collinson (1989). "The Puritan Character", p. 8; quoted in John Spurr (1998), "English Puritanism, 1603-1689", p. 16; Macmillan. ISBN 031221426X.] The practitioners knew themselves as members of particular churches or movements, and not by the simple term.

Puritans who felt that the Reformation of the Church of England had not gone far enough but who remained within the Church of England advocating further reforms are known as non-separating Puritans. (The Non-Separating Puritans differed among themselves about how much further reformation was necessary.) Those who felt that the Church of England was so corrupt that true Christians should separate from it altogether are known as separating Puritans or simply as Separatists. Especially after the Restoration (1660), non-separating Puritans were called Nonconformists (for their failure to conform to the Book of Common Prayer) while separating Puritans were called Dissenters.

The term "puritan" is not normally used to describe any religious group after the 17th century, although several groups might be called "puritan" because their origins lay in the Puritan movement. For example, in the late seventeenth century, those Dissenters who had separated from the Church of England organized themselves into separate denominations (Presbyterians, Congregationalists, and Baptists), particularly after the Act of Toleration of 1689 made it legal to worship outside the Church of England. The non-separating Puritans who remained within the Church of England had by the early eighteenth century come to be known as the Low Church wing of the Church of England.

The term "puritan" might be used by analogy (usually unfavorably) to describe any group that shares a commitment to the Puritans' strong commitment to the purity of worship, of doctrine, or of personal or group morality.


The central tenet of Puritanism was God's supreme authority over human affairs, particularly in the church, and especially as expressed in the Bible. This view led them to seek both individual and corporate conformance to the teaching of the Bible, and it led them to pursue both moral purity down to the smallest detail as well as ecclesiastical purity to the highest level.

The words of the Bible were the origin of many Puritan cultural ideals, especially regarding the roles of men and women in the community. While both sexes carried the stain of original sin, for a girl, original sin suggested more than the roster of Puritan character flaws. Eve’s corruption, in Puritan eyes, extended to all women, and justified marginalizing them within churches' hierarchical structures. An example is the different ways that men and women were made to express their conversion experiences. For full membership, the Puritan church insisted not only that its congregants lead godly lives and exhibit a clear understanding of the main tenets of their Christian faith, but they also must demonstrate that they had experienced true evidence of the workings of God’s grace in their souls. Only those who gave a convincing account of such a conversion could be admitted to full church membership. Women were not permitted to speak in church after 1636 (although they were allowed to engage in religious discussions outside of it, in various women-only meetings), and thus could not narrate their conversions.

On the individual level, the Puritans emphasized that each person should be continually reformed by the grace of God to fight against indwelling sin and do what is right before God. A humble and obedient life would arise for every Christian. Puritan culture emphasized the need for self-examination and the strict accounting for one’s feelings as well as one’s deeds. This was the center of evangelical experience, which women in turn placed at the heart of their work to sustain family life.

The Puritans tended to admire the early church fathers and quoted them liberally in their works. In addition to arming the Puritans to fight against later developments of the Roman Catholic tradition, these studies also led to the rediscovery of some ancient scruples. Chrysostom, a favorite of the Puritans, spoke eloquently against drama and other worldly endeavors, and the Puritans adopted his view when decrying what they saw as the decadent culture of England, famous at that time for its plays and bawdy London entertainments. The Pilgrims (the separatist, congregationalist Puritans who went to North America) are likewise famous for banning from their New England colonies many secular entertainments, such as games of chance, maypoles, and drama, all of which were perceived as kinds of immorality.

At the level of the church body, the Puritans believed that the worship in the church ought to be strictly regulated by what is commanded in the Bible (known as the regulative principle of worship). The Puritans condemned as idolatry many worship practices regardless of the practices' antiquity or widespread adoption among Christians, which their opponents defended with tradition. Like some of Reformed churches on the European continent, Puritan reforms were typified by a minimum of ritual and decoration and by an unambiguous emphasis on preaching. Like the early church fathers, they eliminated the use of musical instruments in their worship services, for various theological and practical reasons. Outside of church, however, Puritans were quite fond of music and encouraged it in certain ways.

Another important distinction was the Puritan approach to church-state relations. They opposed the Anglican idea of the supremacy of the monarch in the church (Erastianism), and, following Calvin, they argued that the only head of the Church in heaven or earth is Christ (not the Pope or the monarch). However, they believed that secular governors are accountable to God (not through the church, but alongside it) to protect and reward virtue, including "true religion", and to punish wrongdoers — a policy that is best described as non-interference rather than separation of church and state. The separating Congregationalists, a segment of the Puritan movement more radical than the Anglican Puritans, believed the Divine Right of Kings was heresy, a belief that became more pronounced during the reign of Charles I of England.

Other notable beliefs include:
*An emphasis on private study of the Bible
*A desire to see education and enlightenment for the masses (especially so they could read the Bible for themselves)
*The priesthood of all believers
*Simplicity in worship, the exclusion of vestments, images, candles, etc.
*Did not celebrate traditional holidays that they believed to be in violation of the regulative principle of worship.
*Believed the Sabbath was still obligatory for Christians, although they believed the Sabbath had been changed to Sunday
*Some approved of the church hierarchy, but others sought to reform the episcopal churches on the presbyterian model. Some separatist Puritans were presbyterian, but most were congregationalists.

In addition to promoting lay education, it was important to the Puritans to have knowledgeable, educated pastors, who could read the Bible in its original Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic, as well as ancient and modern church tradition and scholarly works, which were most commonly written in Latin, and so most of their divines undertook rigorous studies at the University of Oxford or the University of Cambridge before seeking ordination. Diversions for the educated included discussing the Bible and its practical applications as well as reading the classics such as Cicero, Virgil, and Ovid. They also encouraged the composition of poetry that was of a religious nature, though they eschewed religious-erotic poetry except for the Song of Solomon, which they considered magnificent poetry, without error, regulative for their sexual pleasure, and, especially, as an allegory of Christ and the Church.

In modern usage, the word "puritan" is often used to describe someone who has strict views on sexual morality, disapproves of recreation, and wishes to impose these beliefs on others. None of these qualities were unique to Puritanism or universally characteristic of the Puritans themselves, whose moral views and ascetic tendencies were no more unusual than those of many other Protestant reformers of their time, and who were relatively tolerant of other denominations, at least in England. The popular image is slightly more accurate as a description of Puritans in colonial America, who were among the most radical Puritans and whose social experiment took the form of a Calvinist theocracy. Puritans believed satan was of the netherworld.

Family life

According to Puritan belief, the order of creation was simple: the world was created for man, and man was created for God. If God had created the world with some beings subordinate to others, he would apply the same principles to his construction of human society. Thus the Puritans honored hierarchy among men as divine order; this order presupposed God’s “appointment of mankind to live in Societies, first, of Family, Secondly Church, Thirdly, Common-wealth.” Order in the family, then, fundamentally structured Puritan belief. Puritans usually migrated to New England as a family unit, a pattern different from other colonies where young, single men often came on their own. Puritan men of the generation of the Great Migration (1630–1640) believed that a good Puritan wife did not linger in Britain but encouraged her husband in his great service to God.

The essence of social order lay in the authority of husband over wife, parents over children, and masters over servants in the family. Puritan marriage choices were influenced by young people’s inclination, by parents, and by the social rank of the persons involved. Upon finding a suitable match, husband and wife in America followed the steps needed to legitimize their marriage, including: 1) a contract, comparable to today’s practice of engagement; 2) the announcement of this contract; 3) execution of the contract at a church; 4) a celebration of the event at the home of the groom and 5) sexual intercourse. Problems with consummation could terminate a marriage: if a groom proved impotent, the contract between him and his bride dissolved, an act enforced by the courts. The courts could also enforce the duty of a husband to support his wife, as English Common Law provided that when a woman married, she gave all her property to her husband and became a feme covert, losing her separate civil identity in his. In so doing, she legally accepted her role as managing her husband’s household, fulfilling her duty of “keep [ing] at home, educating her children, keeping and improving what is got by the industry of man.”

Although without property in New England, a wife in some ways had real authority in the family, although hers derived from different sources from her husband’s, and she exercised it in different ways. Because the laws of God explicitly informed the earliest laws of the Massachusetts civil code, a husband could not legally command his wife anything contrary to God’s word. Indeed, God’s word often prescribed important roles of authority for women; the "Complete Body of Divinity" stated that “…as to Servants, the Metaphorical and Synecdochial usage of the words Father and Mother, heretofore observed, implys it; for tho’ the Husband be the Head of the Wife, yet she is an Head of the Family.” Adhering to this ideology, Samuel Sewall, a magistrate, advised his son’s servant that “he could not obey his Master without obedience to his Mistress; and vice versa.” For the Puritans, ideas of proper order both sharply defined and confined a woman’s authority.

In Puritan New England, the family was the fundamental unit of society, the place where Puritans rehearsed and perfected religious, ethical, and social values and expectations of the community at large. The English Puritan William Gouge wrote: “…a familie is a little Church, and a little common-wealth, at least a lively representation thereof, whereby triall may be made of such as are fit for any place of authoritie, or of subjection in Church or commonwealth. Or rather it is as a schoole wherein the first principles and grounds of government and subjection are learned: whereby men are fitted to greater matters in Church or common-wealth.”

The relationships within the nuclear family, along with interactions between the family and the larger community, distinguished Puritans from other early settlers. Authority and obedience characterized the relationship between Puritan parents and their children. Proper love meant proper discipline; in a society essentially without police, the family was the basic unit of supervision. Disciplining disobedient children mostly derived from a spiritual concern: a breakdown in family rule indicated a disregard of God’s order. “Fathers and mothers have ‘disordered and disobedient children,’” said the Puritan Richard Greenham, “because they have been disobedient children to the Lord and disordered to their parents when they were young.” Thus disobedient parents meant disobedient children. Because the duty of early childcare fell almost exclusively on women, a woman’s salvation necessarily depended upon the observable goodness of her child.

Puritans connected the discipline of a child to later readiness for conversion. Accordingly, parents attempted to check their affectionate feelings toward a disobedient child, at least after the child was about two years old, in order to break his or her will. This suspicious regard of “fondness” and heavy emphasis on obedience placed complex pressures on the Puritan mother. While Puritans expected mothers to care for their young children tenderly, a mother who doted could be accused of failing to keep God present. Furthermore, Puritan belief prescribed that a father’s more distant governance check the mother’s tenderness once a male child reached the age of 6 or 7 so that he could bring the child to God’s authority.

The home gave women the freedom to exercise religious and moral authority, performing duties not open to them in public (after the banishment of Anne Hutchinson, most congregations did not permit women to speak in church). The Puritan family structure at once encouraged some measure of female authority while supporting family patriarchy.


As John Winthrop sailed toward New England in 1630, he exhorted his fellow passengers that the society they would form in New England would be "as a city upon a hill”, [An excerpt from Winthrop's sermon is included (pp. 63-65) in "Speeches That Changed the World", compiled by Owen Collins. Westminster John Knox Press (1999). ISBN 0664221491.] and that they must become a pure community of Christians who would set an example to the rest of the world. To achieve this goal, the colony leaders would educate all Puritans. These men of letters, who viewed themselves as a part of an international world, had attended Oxford or Cambridge and could communicate with intellectuals all over Europe. Just six years after the first large migration, colony leaders founded Harvard College.

By the 1670s, all New England colonies (excepting Rhode Island) had passed legislation that mandated literacy for children. In 1647, Massachusetts passed a law that required towns to hire a schoolmaster to teach writing. Different forms of schooling emerged, ranging from the “dame” or “reading” school, a form of instruction conducted by women in their private homes for small children, to “Latin” schools for boys already literate in English and ready to master grammar through Latin, Hebrew, and Greek. Reading schools would often be the single source of education for girls, whereas boys would leave their reading mistresses to go to the town grammar schools. Indeed, gender largely determined educational practices. Women introduced all children to reading, and men taught boys in higher pursuits. Since girls could play no role in the ministry, and since grammar schools were designed to “instruct youth so far as they may be fited for the university,” Latin grammar schools did not accept girls (nor did Harvard). Evidence mostly suggests that girls could not attend even the less ambitious town schools, the lower-tier writing-reading schools mandated for townships of over fifty families.

The motive to educate was largely religious. In order for Puritans to become holy, they needed to read the Scriptures. As the articles of faith of 1549 had proclaimed, “Holy Scripture containeth all things necessary to salvation”. Although reading the Bible did not guarantee conversion, it laid its groundwork, and a good Puritan’s duty was to search out scriptural truth for oneself.

Social motives for mandating reading instruction grew out of a concern that children not taught to read would grow “barbarous”; the 1648 amendment to the Massachusetts law and the 1650 Connecticut code, both used the word “barbarisme”. Further, children needed to read in order to “understand…the capital laws of this country,” as the Massachusetts law declared. Order was of the utmost importance for the Puritan community, a group trying to make a home in a new wilderness and create a perfected society from scratch.

The emphasis on education in Puritan New England differed significantly from other regions of colonial America. The founding fathers established New England in pursuit of a model of Christian living, fueling strong motivations for literary instruction. But New England also differed from its mother country, as nothing in English statute required schoolmasters or the literacy of children. Indeed, with the possible exception of Scotland, the Puritan model of education did not exist anywhere else in the world.

The Puritan spirit in the United States

Benjamin Franklin, a student of Cotton Mather as a young man, invented the lightning rod which was a revelation to many Puritans who were accustomed to submitting to the perceived will of God, so much so that it was the custom for New England fire brigades to let a lightning struck house burn and focus on protecting the houses around it. Fact|date=October 2008

There is little doubt that the American Great Awakening provided religious fervor to the American Revolution. Starting in the Massachusetts colony, the Puritan teachings that America was to be God's noble errand into the wilderness, a beacon of morality, provided a strong national mythology nearly until the end of the 20th Century.Fact|date=October 2008

Some have suggested that it is a "Puritan spirit" in the United States' political culture that creates a tendency to oppose things such as alcohol and open sexuality. [ [http://dwardmac.pitzer.edu/Anarchist_Archives/goldman/aando/puritanism.html Anarchist Archives] ] However, the Puritans were not opposed to drinking alcohol in moderation [Jim West, "Drinking with Calvin and Luther!", Oakdown Books, 2003 (ISBN 0-9700326-0-9), pp. 68ff] or to enjoying their sexuality within the bounds of marriage as a gift from God. [cite_book |author=C. S. Lewis |title=Selected Literary Essays |place=New York |publisher=Cambridge University Press |date=1969 |pages=pp. 116–117 |quote=On many questions and specially in view of the marriage bed, the Puritans were the indulgent party, ... they were much more Chestertonian than their adversaries [the Roman Catholics] . The idea that a Puritan was a repressed and repressive person would have astonished Sir Thomas More and Luther about equally.] In fact, spouses (albeit, in practice, mainly females) were disciplined if they did not perform their sexual marital duties, in accordance with 1 Corinthians 7 and other biblical passages. Because of these beliefs, the Puritans publicly punished drunkenness and sexual relations outside of marriage.

Puritan Laws in fact regarded alcohol as a gift of god and demonstrated the subtle difference between a government's punishment responsibility to punish sin vs. removing temptation. Early on the New England laws banning the sale of Alcohol to Indians were appealed because it was “not fit to deprive Indians of any lawfull comfort aloweth to all men by the use of wine.” One reason Laws banning the practice of individuals toasting each other was that it led to wasting Gods gift of beer and wine.

Alexis de Tocqueville suggested in "Democracy in America" that the Pilgrims' Puritanism was the very thing that provided a firm foundation for American democracy, and in his view, these Puritans were hard-working, egalitarian, and studious. The theme of a religious basis of economic discipline is echoed in sociologist Max Weber's work, but both de Tocqueville and Weber argued that this discipline was not a force of economic determinism, but one factor among many that should be considered when evaluating the relative economic success of the Puritans. In "Hellfire Nation", James A. Morone suggests that some opposing tendencies within Puritanism—its desire to create a just society and its moral fervor in bringing about that just society, which sometimes created paranoia and intolerance for other views—are at the root of America's current political landscape. [James A. Morone (2003). "Hellfire Nation: The Politics of Sin in American History". Yale University Press. ISBN 0300105177.]


In the United States, "Puritan" has not always been the only acceptable spelling. Through the 20th century, "Puritain" was an acceptable alternative spelling in British English. During the 17th and 18th centuries in England, the word was spelled both with and without the second "i". "Puritain" was more common in the 16th century. The word derives from "purity" in English, and the suffix meaning "dweller" or "practitioner" can be spelled -ain or -an, depending upon the language.

ee also

* Baptists and bootleggers - attempted regulation made by resistance to moral fervor accompanying the attempt
* Independents
* List of Puritans
* Salem witch trials


Further reading

* Addison, Albert Christopher "The Romantic Story of the Puritan Fathers and their founding of new Boston 1912 published by L C Page Boston Mass USA"

*cite book
last = Anderson
first = Virginia Dejohn
title = New England's Generation: The Great Migration and the Formation of Society and Culture in the 17th Century
publisher = Cambridge University Press
date = 1993
isbn = 0-521-44764-X

*cite book
last = Beeke
first = Joel R.
title = Puritan Reformed Spirituality
publisher = Evangelical Press
isbn = 9780852346297

*Beeke, Joel, and Pederson, Randall, "Meet the Puritans: With a Guide to Modern Reprints" (2006) ISBN 9781601780003
*Bennett, Arthur G., ed., "The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers and Devotions" (While not directly about the puritans, this anthology gives a representative overview of the ways they viewed their relationship with God.)
*Bozeman, Theodore Dwight, "To Live Ancient Lives: The Primitivist Dimension in Puritanism"
*Bozeman, Theodore Dwight, "The Precisionist Strain: Disciplinary Religion and the Antinomian Backlash in Puritanism to 1638"
*Brachlow, Stephen, "The Communion of Saints: Radical Puritan and Separatist Ecclesiology, 1750–1625"
*Bremer, Francis J., "John Winthrop: America's Forgotten Founding Father"
*Cohen, Charles Lloyd, "God's Caress: The Psychology of Puritan Religious Experience" (1986) ISBN 0-19-503973-4
*Collinson, Patrick, "The Elizabethan Puritan Movement"
*Collinson, Patrick, "Godly People"
*Collinson, Patrick, "Religion of Protestants"
*Foster, Stephen, "The Long Argument"
*Gatiss, Lee, "The Tragedy of 1662: The Ejection and Persecution of the Puritans", ISBN 9780946307609
*Graham, Judith, "Puritan Family Life: The Diary of Samuel Sewall"
*Haigh, Christopher, "English Reformations: Religion, Politics, and Society under the Tudors"
*Haigh, Christopher, "The Continuity of Catholicism in the English Reformation," in "Past and Present", No. 93. (Nov., 1981), pp. 37–69.
*Hall, David D., "Puritans in the New World: A Critical Anthology"
*Hall, David D., "Worlds of Wonder, Days of Judgment: Popular Religious Belief in Early New England"
*Hawthorne, Nathaniel, "The Scarlet Letter" (1850)
*Hill, Christopher, "Puritanism and Revolution: Studies in Interpretation of the English Revolution of the 17th Century" (1958), ISBN 0-7126-6722-9 (2001 reprint)
*Hill, Christopher, "Society and Puritanism in Pre-Revolutionary England" (1964), ISBN 0-7126-6816-0 (2003 reprint)
*Hill, Christopher, "God's Englishman: Oliver Cromwell and the English Revolution" (1970), ISBN 0-297-00043-8
*Hill, Christopher, "Antichrist in Seventeenth-Century England" (1971, rev. ed. 1990), ISBN 0-86091-997-8
*Hill, Christopher, "The World Turned Upside Down: Radical Ideas During the English Revolution" (1972), ISBN 0-85117-025-0
*Hill, Christopher, "Milton and the English Revolution" (1977), ISBN 0-571-10198-4
*Hill, Christopher, "Religion and Politics in 17th Century England" (1986), ISBN 0-7108-0507-1
*Hill, Christopher, "A Turbulent, Seditious, and Factious People: John Bunyan and His Church, 1628-1688" (1988), ISBN 0-19-812818-5
*Hill, Christopher, "A Nation of Change and Novelty: Radical Politics, Religion and Literature in Seventeenth-Century England" (1990), ISBN 0-415-04833-8
*Hill, Christopher, "The English Bible and the Seventeenth-Century Revolution" (1993), ISBN 0-7139-9078-3
*Kapic, Kelly M. and Randal Gleason, eds. "The Devoted Life: An Invitation to the Puritan Classics"
*Kizer, Kay. " [http://www.nd.edu/~rbarger/www7/puritans.html "Puritans] "
*Lake, Peter, "Moderate Puritans and the Elizabethan Church"
*Lake, Peter, "Defining Puritanism—again?" in Bremer, Francis J., ed., "Puritanism: Transatlantic Perspectives"
*Leverenz, David, "The Language of Puritan Feeling: An Exploration in Literature, Psychology, and Social History"
*Lewis, Peter, "The Genius of Puritanism"
*Logan, Samuel T. Jr., "Reformation for the Glory of God"
*Miller, Perry, "The American Puritans: Their Prose and Poetry"
*Miller, Perry, "Errand Into the Wilderness"
*Monaghan, Jennifer, "Learning to Read and Write in Colonial America"
*Morgan, Edmund S., "The Puritan Family"
*Morgan, Edmund S., "The Puritan Dilemma: The Story of John Winthrop", ISBN 0-321-04369-3
*Packer, J. I., "A Quest for Godliness: The Puritan Vision of the Christian Life", Crossway Books: 1994 (reprint), ISBN 0-89107-819-3
*Porterfield, Ann, "Female Piety in Puritan New England: The Emergence of Religious Humanism"
*Ryken, Leland, "Worldly Saints: The Puritans As They Really Were", ISBN 0-310-32501-3
*Saxton, Martha, "Being Good: Women's Moral Values in Early America"
*Spurr, John, "English Puritanism, 1603-1689"
*Tyacke, Nicholas, "Anti-Calvinists: The Rise of English Arminianism"
*Underdown, David, "Fire From Heaven"
*Vaughn, Alden and Francis Bremer, "Puritan New England"
*cite book
last = Warren
first = John
title = Elizabeth I: Religion and Foreign Affairs
publisher = Hodder and Stoughton
date = 1993
pages = p. 104
isbn = 0-340-55518-1

*"Larousse Dictionary of Beliefs and Religions"
*"Oxford Dictionary of World Religions"

External links

* [http://www.apuritansmind.com/MainPage.htm A Puritan's Mind] , some writings of the Puritans and their admirers
* [http://www.puritansermons.com/ Puritan sermons]
* [http://www.monergism.com/directory/link_category/Puritans/ Extensive Puritan resources on Monergism.com]
* [http://www.reformedsermonarchives.com/ Sermons by Puritans] at Reformed Sermon Archives

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • puritan — PURITÁN, Ă, puritani, e, s.m. şi f., adj. 1. s.m. şi f. Adept al puritanismului; p. ext. persoană care practică sau afişează o moralitate foarte severă. 2. adj. Care aparţine puritanismului, privitor la puritanism; p. ext. care profesează sau… …   Dicționar Român

  • puritan — ► NOUN 1) (Puritan) a member of a group of English Protestants in the 16th and 17th centuries who sought to simplify and regulate forms of worship. 2) a person with censorious moral beliefs, especially about self indulgence and sex. ► ADJECTIVE… …   English terms dictionary

  • Puritan — 1560s, opponent of Anglican hierarchy, later applied opprobriously to person in Church of England who seeks further reformation (1570s), probably from PURITY (Cf. purity). What [William] Perkins, and the whole Puritan movement after him, sought… …   Etymology dictionary

  • Puritan — Pu ri*tan, n. [From {Purity}.] 1. (Eccl. Hist.) One who, in the time of Queen Elizabeth and the first two Stuarts, opposed traditional and formal usages, and advocated simpler forms of faith and worship than those established by law; originally,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Puritan — Pu ri*tan, a. Of or pertaining to the Puritans; resembling, or characteristic of, the Puritans. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Puritan — [pyoor′i tən] n. [< LL puritas (see PURITY) + AN] 1. any member of a Protestant group in England and the American colonies that in the 16th and 17th cent., wanted to make the Church of England simpler in its services and stricter about morals… …   English World dictionary

  • puritan — [[t]pjʊ͟ərɪt(ə)n[/t]] puritans 1) N COUNT (disapproval) You describe someone as a puritan when they live according to strict moral or religious principles, especially when they disapprove of physical pleasures. Bykov had forgotten that Malinin… …   English dictionary

  • puritan — noun (C) 1 someone who has very strict moral standards and thinks that pleasure is unnecessary or wrong 2 Puritan a member of a Protestant religious group in the 16th and 17th centuries, who wanted to make religion simpler puritan also Puritan… …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • puritan — pu|ri|tan [ˈpjuərıtən US ˈpjur ] n [Date: 1500 1600; : Late Latin; Origin: puritas purity , from Latin purus; PURE] 1.) someone with strict moral views who thinks that pleasure is unnecessary and wrong 2.) Puritan a member of a Protestant… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • puritan — [ pjʊərɪt(ə)n] noun 1》 (Puritan) a member of a group of English Protestants who regarded the Reformation of the Church under Elizabeth I as incomplete and sought to simplify and regulate forms of worship. 2》 a person with censorious moral beliefs …   English new terms dictionary

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