Édité par Marie Couton, Isabelle Fernandes, Christian Jérémie et Monique Vénuat
This 1592 Elizabethan Protestant sermon on Isaiah 24.1-3 offers an economic, social and moral portrait of late Tudor England stressing the need for equity. Trigge attacks enclosures as he was to do from a different perspective in his Humble Petition of Two Sisters (1604). He analyses and condemns usury, the hoarding of corn, "great rents and excessive fines", conspicuous spending and the sale of benefits. He also intends the sermon to be "a glasse [wherein] every degree may plainly see their spots and staines : and may bee thereby made indeede beautifull (if they doe not hate to be reformed) against the appearance of Jesus Christ." He discusses vocation in the Commonwealth, expounding the duties of servants and masters, ministers and people. The numerous shortcomings that he detects in his society are interpreted as tokens of the Second Coming, an event which forms the prophetic background of his preaching, its imminence being further stressed by signs in the physical world.
The Godly and Fruitfull sermon shows Trigge’s mastery of rhetorical techniques, combining the parenetic and protreptic genres, both warning and encouraging his readers to reform their ways in view of the impending judgment.
This 1595 printed version offers a learned sermon with a close reading of the Vulgate collated with new Latin translations of the Hebrew Bible and the Septuagint and supported by references to Josephus, the Sibylline Oracles and other humanist and more traditional sources. Many of the references and quotations are traced in the footnotes providing insights into the reading of an Elizabethan preacher.
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