The early modern period in British history is marked by religious, political and social upheaval. The reformations in England and Scotland in the second half of the sixteenth century form a watershed in British religious history and had a wide-reaching impact on many social, cultural and political issues in the following centuries. This dissertation considers the impact of the reformations in England and Scotland by considering change over time in relation to pilgrimage and tourism. Specifically, this study will show that while the religious changes initiated in the sixteenth century and enforced in the seventeenth century invalidated the practice of pilgrimage in northern Britain where pilgrimage shrines had been important features in the late medieval period, the reformations did not remove the impetus to travel. During the seventeenth century pilgrimage declined but was never completely eradicated, particularly in places where the saints, shrines or holy wells held strong social or cultural significance. On-going pilgrimages were witnessed by seventeenth-century leisure travellers who expressed their individual and national identity through contempt for such recusant beliefs, as well as through commentary on other social, cultural and economic factors that represented alterity. The regal and parliamentary unions that bookend the seventeenth century fostered distinct anxieties which furthered travellers' creation of a sense of Otherness. The intellectual developments of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries further defined tourists' engagement with northern Britain and allowed for the reassessment of pre-Reformation religious sites as representative of romantic and artistic sentiments that gave spiritual and intellectual meaning to the act of travel. By the end of the eighteenth century, former shrines were included on tourist itineraries along with other sites of historic, literary and artistic significance forming a veritable 'Romantic' pilgrimage that was both a continuation and re-imagination of the medieval practice.
|University of Strathclyde
|Electronic Thesis or Dissertation
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