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Plympton Priory And The Laity: Challenges To The Authority Of The Priory

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Chapter Summary

This chapter throws into high relief the competing conceptions of the purpose of spiritualia: for the laity, churches and chapels were primarily meant to be sites of divine worship, and the main duty of their incumbents was to attend to the spiritual needs of the parishioners. It investigates the expression of lay discontent at Plympton Priory's governance of its churches and chapels from the fourteenth up to the early sixteenth centuries. The chapter then explores how the aspirations of the parishioners manifested themselves in regard to the gaining of greater independence for chapels dependent on the priory, but on occasion-as at St. Kew and Plymouth-lay dissatisfaction with the overlordship of the priory expressed itself in both the spiritual and the temporal spheres.

Keywords:church; Plymouth; plympton priory; St. Kew



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