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Title: Non-graduate entrants to the Anglican clerical profession, 1780-1839 : routes to ordination
Author: Slinn, Sara Louise
ISNI:       0000 0004 5362 5186
Awarding Body: University of Nottingham
Current Institution: University of Nottingham
Date of Award: 2014
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This work offers the largest historical study of recruitment to the Anglican ministry attempted to date, focussing on the educational backgrounds of men taking orders in the period 1780-1839. It uncovers a significant number of nongraduate ordinands and argues that these men, largely overlooked by historiography, need integrating into accounts of the late Georgian Church. Such a revised account will provide a better understanding of the knowledge, skills and experience of the parish clergy, allow a more comprehensive view of the networks through which power and ideologies were disseminated among them and permit a more nuanced appreciation of the issue of social distance and pastoral proximity. The first part analyses the educational backgrounds of all those taking deacon's orders, seeking explanations both for fluctuations in the absolute numbers of ordinands, as well as for the varying proportions of non-graduates. By exploring this data, together with articulated episcopal ordination policies, a distinctive clerical culture in South Wales and the northern province is demonstrated, which found non-graduate clergy acceptable. In detailing policy changes in the northern province from the mid-1820s it is suggested that the imposition of new standards was instigated by incoming bishop of Chester, C.J. Blomfield. Part two begins by evaluating the educational environments at Oxford and Cambridge universities; at neither was undergraduate experience closely aligned with ordinands' needs. It then explores the two alternative routes to orders travelled by most non-graduates: specialist grammar schools, a distinctive feature of South Wales and North-West England, and tutors for orders who, at their most specialist, conceived of themselves as running small parish clerical seminaries. The decline of these alternative routes is contextualised in the formation of the first theological colleges at St Bees, Cumberland, and St David's, Lampeter, now placed in a continuum of non-graduate ordinand training, rather than presented as innovation.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available