" The fresh way of thinking about liturgical books which Salisbury announces in his introduction (English liturgical books, but much of what he writes is applicable to books of other areas as well) and which he practises successfully in the main text, is to be welcomed. Salisbury adopts a sensible, no-nonsense style which is refreshing. The booklet is provocative without being polemical." - Prof. David Hiley, Universität Regensburg "This book provides a fascinating overview of the liturgy of the medieval church, specifically in England. Salisbury’s expertise is evident on every page."- Jane Beal, Mediaevistik 32, 2019
The study of medieval liturgy can contribute richly to the discourses of textuality and culture in the Middle Ages. It can tell us a great deal not only about the worship of the church, but also about the people who practised it. However, existing scholarship can be problematic and difficult to use.
This short book aims to unsettle the notion that liturgiology is a mysterious, abstruse, and monolithic discipline. It challenges some scholarly orthodoxies, hints at the complexity of the liturgy as a subject for study and shows that it needs to be examined in ways quite different from the summary treatment it often receives. It also seeks to encourage the reader in his or her own (future) investigations of the topic by introducing some of the key ideas, resources, and methods, and proposes ways in which they might be explored.
Matthew Cheung Salisbury lectures at University and Worcester Colleges, Oxford. His publications include The Secular Liturgical Office in Late Medieval England (2015).