The emergence of schism : a study in the history of the Scottish Kirk from the national covenant to the first secession
Leighton, Cadoc D.
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This thesis will account for the prevalence of schism in the Scottish Church during the 18th and 19th centuries. The analysis will focus on theological developments in the 17th century during the War of the Three Kingdoms. Specifically it will concern itself with how the Covenant legitimized civil critique, and how Covenanter ideology and identity developed during the Engagement, as well as within the persecutions of the Restoration period. The thesis will look at specific issues within the Kirk, such as those surrounding the institution of patronage, as well as at the ideological battle over presbyterian identity, which took place after the Williamite Revolution. Ultimately, the argument within this thesis is that orthodox, Covenanting, presbyterianism in its very nature promoted schism because of its lack of a firm hierarchy, and its inability to gain civil support.