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Book: Medieval Towns

Chapter: Religion in towns: churches, religious houses and cemeteries

DOI: 10.1558/equinox.24830


The social order of the medieval town is often very clearly mirrored in the buildings constructed for religious purposes at the time. Churches were not just built for the specific purpose of worship; they also acted as centres of their community. Because of comparatively little disturbance over the centuries compared to secular sites, religious buildings -- churches, cemeteries and related buildings and artefacts greatly contribute to our understanding of what medieval people believed. Topics covered include:

- archaeological assessment and recording of churches

- the growth of a church and its various uses

- fittings, patronage and architectures; church interiors

- burials and cemeteries

- parish churches

- pilgrimages and fraternities

- religious houses and cathedrals

- friaries

- hospitals

Chapter Contributors

  • John Schofield ( - book-auth-43) 'Museum of London (retired)'
  • Alan Vince † ( - book-auth-157)