Cold War Theology: A controversial religious image of King James VI & I in England and on the Continent in 1603

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Ian Hazlett


A former student of James Cameron’s, Ian Hazlett contributes a paper very much in the spirit of his teacher. It considers the afterlife of the King’s (or Negative) Confession, commissioned by James VI of Scotland in 1581 as a clear statement of his Calvinist credentials. By the time he gained the crown of England in 1603 however, his evolving religious views meant it had become a document he sought to distance himself from. Both Protestant and Catholic propagandists and publishers, keen to give a particular picture of the theological sympathies of the new English king, subsequently produced a surprisingly varied selection of versions of the Confession. These sources and what they can tell us about the theology and politics of the day are considered here for the first time in a scholarly study.

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