Religion Past and Present

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[German Version]

I. Concept and Theology

The term “Puritan” first surfaced in early Elizabethan England in the 1560s as a denunciation of Protestants perceived to be excessively zealous in trying to purge the Church of England of “papist superstition.” Those targeted, who called themselves “the godly,” complained that the name imputed to them abhorrent notions of human perfectibility, but the epithet stuck. A few histor…

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Cohen, Charles L., Coffey, John R.D. and Coffey , John R.D., “Puritans/Puritanism”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 22 May 2022 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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