- Loades, David, ed. John Foxe and the English Reformation. Brookfield, VT: Ashgate, 1997.
Shaping the Reader in the Acts and Monuments, by Susan Felch (52-65)
- "Two narrative woodcuts relating to Edward VI's reign, one found first in the 1563 edition of Acts and Monuments and the other added in 1570, both prominently feature women reading the Bible for themselves, but, significantly, they sit surrounded by the believing, and preaching, community." (53) -- why women??
- "Yet, despite this confidence in the self-authenticating nature of true texts -- both scriptural and extra-scriptural -0- anxiety remained regarding the issue of interpretive coherence, an anxiety which is both registered and relieved in the prefaces, marginal notes, conclusions, indices, and other editorial material which constrict Reformation books. These encircling discourses had two important interlocking effects. First, they effectively encouraged a transactional hermeneutic in which meaning was understood to result from the encounter of a properly trained and responsive reader with a plain and simple text. Second, the editorial material helped to redefine the group fo elect believers as those who shared a strategy of reading and interpretation, rather than as those who shared a geograpic location, such as a parish church." (55)
preaces addressed to learned readers, the queen, and papist opponents -- "groups not usually identified with the simple ploughboy or ordinary layperson" (57), but those readers most likely to discount his work
A&M perhaps written at the urging of printer John Day; "despite Day's attempt to have Foxe write for the ordinary Englishman, however, all the preliminary material to the 1563 edition situates the first English edition as a responsible work of scholarship, intended to be read and evaluated by Foxe's own intellectual peers." (58)
next two editions oriented towards the layperson
- "the wooden printing furniture contains the physical text -- those pieces of lead that imprint their form on to the damp paper -- so the editorial furniture contains the immaterial text as it makes its own imprint on to the receptive reader. Thus, although readers encounter the text in solitude [?], they are embraced in a communal hermeneutic circle which restrains private, eccentric interpretations." (64)
- "In sum, the prefaces and other editorial material of Acts and Monuments provide a case study in the negotiation between a belief in self-authenticating texts and the need to establish interpretive coherence that led to the development of a transational hermeneutic in the sixteenth-century Protestant Church." (64)
The Iconography of the Acts and Monuments, by Margaret Aston and Elizabeth Ingram (66-142)
title page remained constant through all editions (74) -- evangelical vs. papal preaching; devout book-reading woman, "entered the iconographic vocabulary" before A&M (see 1531 Nuremberg woodcut by Georg Pencz on pg 77) (76)
depictions of martyrs and persecuotros grew in 1570, nearly 3x as many woodcuts as 1563 (79); "increased the pictorial emphasis on the persecuting Church" (101)
- "Perhaps more readily than the dense descriptive scenes of martyrdom woodcuts, these images could become mental references for users of the book (not necessarily readers), implanting generic martyr icons in the memory, as earlier generations had implanted icons of saints." (80)
martyr images, persecuting papcy images, 'marker' woodcuts (80)
large tripartite fold-out woodcut, larger than 3 folio pages: "A Table of the X. first persecutions of the primitive Church under the HEathen Tyrannes of Rome..."; disconnected illustrations of different forms of martyrdom, doesn't survive in many copies (101); "intended to guide readers to relevant passages in Foxe's text, and the subtitles, in cartouches, give the page references" -- visual index (104)
- "Despite the essential Englishness of so much of the imagery in Foxe's book, the Acts and Monuments was emphatically not cut off from Continental iconography." (137)