In the Beginning Was the Word: The Bible in American Public Life, 1492-1783

Hardcover | October 14, 2015

byMark A. Noll

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In the beginning of American history, the Word was in Spanish, Latin, and native languages like Nahuatal. But while Spanish and Catholic Christianity reached the New World in 1492, it was only with the coming of the Mayflower that English-language Bibles and Protestant Christendom arrived. ThePuritans brought with them intense devotion to Scripture, as well as their ideal of Christendom - a civilization characterized by a thorough intermingling of the Bible with everything else. That ideal began this country's journey from the Puritan's City on a Hill to the Bible-quoting country theU.S. remains to this day. In the Beginning shows how important the Bible remained, even as that Puritan ideal changed considerably through the early stages of American history.It is no exaggeration to claim that the Bible has been - and by far - the single most widely-read text, distributed object, and cited or referenced book in all of American history. Author Mark Noll shows how seventeenth-century Americans received conflicting models of scriptural authority fromEurope: the Bible under Christendom (high Anglicanism), the Bible over Christendom (moderate Puritanism), and the Bible against Christendom (Anabaptists, enthusiasts, Quakers). In the eighteenth century, the colonists turned increasingly to the Bible against Christendom, a stance that fueled theRevolution against Anglican Britain and prepared the way for a new country founded on the separation of church and state.One of the foremost scholars of American Christianity, Mark Noll brings a wealth of research and wisdom to In the Beginning. This book is the first of a projected two-volume study of the Bible in American history, and provides a sweeping, engaging, and insightful survey of the relationship betweenthe Bible and public issues from the beginning of European settlement. A seminal new work from a world-class scholar, In the Beginning offers a fresh account of the contested, sometimes ambiguous, but definite biblical roots of American history.

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In the beginning of American history, the Word was in Spanish, Latin, and native languages like Nahuatal. But while Spanish and Catholic Christianity reached the New World in 1492, it was only with the coming of the Mayflower that English-language Bibles and Protestant Christendom arrived. ThePuritans brought with them intense devotion...

Mark A. Noll is the Francis A. McAnaney Professor of History at the University of Notre Dame and author of numerous books, including America's God: From Jonathan Edwards to Abraham Lincoln (OUP 2002), and Protestantism: A Very Short Introduction (OUP 2011).

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:448 pages, 9.25 × 6.12 × 0.98 inPublished:October 14, 2015Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0190263989

ISBN - 13:9780190263980

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Table of Contents

IntroductionPrelude: Catholic Bibles in the New World1. Protestant Beginnings2. From William Tyndale to King James3. England in the Era of Colonization4. Colonial Christendom5. Beyond Christendom6. Empire7. Revival8. Deepened9. Thinned, Absorbed10. RevolutionConclusion/AfterwordNotesBibliographyIndex