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BOOK REVIEWS335 a growing congregation.The faithful,though never a majority atTroyes,were extremely active and, in some instances, quite aggressive. Many came, predictably enough, from artisan ranks.The watershed for the Reformed Church ofTroyes occurred in 1562 when armed conflict between Huguenots and CathoUcs erupted in and around the city as it did in many French towns.The tide soon turned against the Protestants and, over the next decade, their position deteriorated badly.The culmination took place in the autumn of 1572 as CathoUcs massacred the Huguenots in imitation of the August bloodbath at Paris.Afterwards, the municipal debate atTroyes was no longer between Protestant and CathoUc. Discussion now shifted to the rival claims of moderate and extreme Catholics. The ultra-Catholic League even dominatedTroyes for a time.Altogether, the developments related by Roberts foUow the classic pattern of the Reformation in northern France: the gradual emergence of urban pockets of Protestantism, limited initial success, and ultimate failure in the face of resurgent CathoUcism. The sources that Roberts brings in discussing these themes are among the book's greatest strengths. Her close reading and imaginative appUcation offragmentary surviving archival materials as weU as two valuable pubUshed Mémoires , one by the Huguenot Nicolas Pithou, the other by the CathoUc priest Claude Haton, give the analysis a soUd foundation.The author's frequent comparison of the situation at Troyes with other French cities sets the context nicely and lends the study substantial texture.The book also counterbalances an enduring tendency to view the French Reformation largely from a Parisian perspective. On the other hand, the book's heavy emphasis upon the Huguenot experience tends to mask the dynamics of the CathoUc community.A more balanced approach would better aUow Roberts to explore the multifaceted nature of municipal discord at ReformationTroyes.This objection, however, goes to issues of focus rather than substance. In the end, Roberts has produced an excellent case study of a community caught amid the intensely fractious reUgious strife of the sixteenth century. Raymond A. Mentzer Montana State University Plague?Jesuit Accounts ofEpidemic Disease in the Sixteenth Century. ByA. Lynn Martin. (KirksviUe, Missouri: Sixteenth Century Journal PubUshers. 1996. Pp. xiv, 268. $35.00.) With this volume, Professor Martin continues and extends his explorations into the early history of the Society of Jesus. He examines the voluminous correspondence between local superiors in their far-flung apostolates and the higher superiors, letters predominantly addressed to the General ofthe order in Rome, for indications of their experience dealing with the epidemic outbreaks of disease in the sixteenth century.The result is a unique, tf highly focused contribution to the history of the Society. Martin remains close to his sources and 336book reviews thus provides a window on one aspect of the vicissitudes of the young Jesuit order in struggling to survive.This focus remains specificaUy aimed throughout and does not open up onto broader historical vistas, not even ofthe nascent Society itseU, let alone the impact of these dUficulties for the Church or for religious Ufe in Europe of the time. But the emphasis fiUs a vacuum in historical writing about the early Society—WiUiamV Bangert's (1986) otherwise comprehensive history pays Uttle or no attention to the plague issue. Martin is appropriately cautious and skeptical about the nature of the epidemic manifestations. Diagnosis was far from accurate in the sixteenth century, and what was recurrently referred to as "plague" (pesté) might have been influenza , typhus, pneumonia, or whatever, not necessarily bubonic.The descriptions , we must remember, were offered by educated laymen, not trained medical observers, although even the doctors were not much better. However, the accounts do offer a vivid impression of what Ufe was like in those plaguetorn times. One aspect of the material that seems relatively unattended in Martin's discussion is the pervasive influence of Ignatius, founder of the order. Ignatius had had his own brushes with "plague," especiaUy during his pilgrim years, foUowing his conversion, when he made a special point of working with the sick in hospitals.TypicaUy he would spend the best part of the day begging for food and alms in the streets, and then carry his gains to distribute them to the...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1534-0708
Print ISSN
0008-8080
Pages
pp. 335-337
Launched on MUSE
2016-10-05
Open Access
No
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