Page:A short history of social life in England.djvu/169

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Circa 1509—1558


"For, indeed, a change was coming upon the world … the paths trodden by the footsteps of ages were broken up; old things were passing away and the faith and life of ten centuries was dissolving like a dream."—Froude.

WHEN the frail little nine-year-old son of Henry VIII. succeeded to the throne of England in 1547, the great change in the worship of our forefathers had already begun. How momentous and far-reaching a change this was, all students of the Reformation well know. The severance, already accomplished, of the Church of England from allegiance to the Church of Rome, with all it entailed, swept away those habits of life and thought to which Englishmen had grown accustomed for the last ten centuries. No more would they ride off on those sociable and