Book review

English Church and State: A Short Study in Erastianism
David Fuller
Lulu Press (
Paperback, 123 pages, £16.00

I came upon the term ‘Erastianism’ relatively late in life and still took a while to appreciate its nature and practicalities. Now, there is no need for anyone to falter as Dr Fuller’s eminently readable, yet sufficiently detailed, book takes us through the centuries. Much of the account of the eleventh to the sixteenth centuries will be new information for many, until we come to the better known times of Henry VIII and the split from Rome. At that stage (to my mind), things become quite confusing, as the English Church establishes itself as a monarchical institution embodying a mixture of religious observation and national patriotism, only to be resolved in more recent times with a constitutional monarchy quite separate from governmental action. The book takes us through this period with analytical accuracy. Finally, we arrive on more familiar territory with the 1928 Prayer Book et al. ‘Is this the end of Erastianism?’ Dr Fuller proceeds to show that it is not. Like all Dr Fuller’s little books, this one too benefits from a lengthy bibliography and fulsome notation for those who wish to take matters further.

Reviewer - Neil Inkley

(Published in The Prayer Book Today, Trinity 2019, Page 11)

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