Leach struggled to rid his countrymen of the persistent myth that the monks had been the schoolmasters of the pre-Reformation period in England. To accomplish his goal he embarked on a program of research and publication, based on a mass of hitherto unexplored documents, to establish the great antiquity of many of the nation's Latin schools and to show that they derived from clerical, but secular, colleges of Anglo-Saxon times. Showing this would, he hoped, eliminate the persistant belief that monks had been the school-masters of pre-Reformation England. Miner argues that previous readings of Leach, which suggest that his main concern is to take issue with the Reformation and argue that this great watershed in history was - at least with regard to education - a retrograde step rather than a great movement forward, have not taken into account the full range of his publications. The aim of the present study is thus to place both Leach's achievements and his more controversial theses in historical context. A separate chapter devoted to unpublished material from the Charity Commission reveals Leach's method of work and provides an analytic survey of opinions on his work by reviewers and historians. The author supplements Leach's lack of material on the school curriculum through descriptive analysis of grammatical manuscripts from the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, showing the presence of an educational Christendom of which Leach was clearly unaware.
Publisher: McGill-Queen's University Press ISBN: 9780773506343 Number of pages: 384 Weight: 749 g Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 25 mm
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