The Rise and Fall of the Incomparable Liturgy : The Book Of Common Prayer, 1559-1906
An illuminating and highly readable account of the rise and demise of a world classic, which still informs our common language as well as much of the great literature of the last four centuries. Most histories of Church of England liturgy, for good reason, begin in the 1530s, and centre on the 1549 and 1552 Books of Common Prayer. That is important for initial doctrinal changes, and the establishment of the liturgical text, However, both liturgies were extremely short-lived, and the real history of the Book of Common Prayer as the Liturgy of the Church of England begins with the Elizabethan Settlement, 1559, and a long tenure of the enacted Elizabethan liturgy. The only revision of any note was that of 1662, and this revision lasted without serious challenge until the 19th century, and without legal alternative until the twentieth century. This study therefore concentrates on 1559 until the Report of the Royal Commission in 1906 which paved the way for liturgical revision.