Reforming Galway

Civic society, religious change and St Nicholas's collegiate church, 1550-1750

Raymond Gillespie

Hardback €45.00
Catalogue Price: €50.00
ISBN: 978-1-80151-128-5
July 2024. 240 pages. Ills.

This book explores a new way of looking at the reformation in Ireland. Traditionally Irish historians have described early modern religious change on a national basis, from a confessional perspective and have been concerned with short term ‘success’ or ‘failure’. Using St Nicholas’s collegiate church in Galway as a paradigm this book approaches the problem from a local perspective, encompassing both the Protestant and Catholic reformations as they were played out in that church. In doing so it reveals religious change not as a something to be measured in the short term but as something that slowly evolved over two centuries, changing not only buildings but hearts and minds also. This is a recreation of the social history of both a building and the communities that used it from the medieval world to the recognisably modern one.

Raymond Gillespie taught in the History department of Maynooth University and has written extensively on social, cultural and religious change in early modern Ireland.