Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



Major Professor

Robert J Bast

Committee Members

Thomas Burman, Palmira Brummett, Heather Hirschfeld


This project examines the important implications of printed vernacular appeals to a nascent public by exiled reformers such as William Tyndale, by religious conservatives such as Thomas More, and by Henry VIII and his regime in the volatile years of the 1520s and 1530s. This dissertation explores the nature of this public, both materially and as a discursive concept, and the various ways in which Tyndale provoked and justified public discussion of the central religious issues of the period through the production of vernacular Bibles and his polemical works. Tyndale’s writings raised important issues of authority and legitimacy and challenged many of the traditional notions of hierarchy at the heart of early modern English society. This study analyzes how this challenge manifested itself in Tyndale’s ecclesiology and in his political reflections and in the complex relationship between these two elements of his thought.

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