Saturday, April 27, 2013

Progress to Date

After the better part of a day spent writing and researching, I feel like things are proceeding in a good direction and at a good clip, with just over six pages of usable text generated so far. Since writing and researching are mutually compatible activities, I am often doing both at the same time. While examining Old Baily Proceedings for cases to juxtapose to Muggleton's, I hit the jackpot with the April 13, 1681 record.

What makes this particular case useful is that:
  1. It falls within the time frame of the Popish Plot trials;
  2. Three individuals were tried for religious crimes against the king;
  3. All three crimes ended in different sentences; and,
  4. Most importantly, one was tried for the same crime Muggleton had been in 1677, but received a much lighter sentence (essentially a slap on the wrist), and the trial generated none of the acrimonious language that Muggleton's case did.
This find has provided excellent authorial fodder for my paper.

Beyond that, progress has been good in general. Having four primary sources on the trial has been a huge boon, and has helped to generate a lot of interesting discussion and support for my thesis, which does not appear until the later part of the second paragraph. Also of use has been Liza Picard's Restoration London, and Tim Harris's London Crowds, for their statistics on life in Restoration London, particularly those that pertain to religious life. I am also making use of a biography of Charles II which I picked up on a whim at the used book store downtown last Wednesday - I felt like I deserved a reward after getting an A on my NSCI-300I exam. Published in 2009, it is full of relevant information in regards to how Charles, Parliament, and the aristocracy perceived dissent during the Restoration.

There is so much that could be discussed on this topic - as I am sure is the case with everyone's topics - but at this point I am feeling confident that I will have a solid paper with a well-argued thesis at the ten page limit.

More to come,


- Rod

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