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A History of the Churches in the United States and Canada$
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Robert T. Handy

Print publication date: 1976

Print ISBN-13: 9780198269106

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198269106.001.0001

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The Era of the Great Awakenings in Colonial America (1720–75)

The Era of the Great Awakenings in Colonial America (1720–75)

Chapter:
(p.76) III The Era of the Great Awakenings in Colonial America (1720–75)
Source:
A History of the Churches in the United States and Canada
Author(s):

Robert T. Handy

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198269106.003.0004

The Great Awakenings were dramatic and formative events in the history of Christianity in the thirteen English colonies which were to become the United States. These happenings, which began in the 1720s and continued in certain areas into the era of the Revolution, had an unequal effect on the many strands of American religion; some groups were profoundly affected while others were lightly or even negatively influenced. An important part of the story of the colonial revivals concerns their opponents, and the controversies which arose between them and the defenders of the Awakenings. The distinctive development of Christianity in the American colonies is the theme of this chapter. It specifically discusses the Awakening in the middle colonies, Awakening in New England, Awakening in the southern colonies, religious life outside the main currents of Awakening, and theological tensions. In general, the era of the Great Awakenings was marked by decisive changes in both church and national life.

Keywords:   Great Awakenings, colonial America, Christianity, Revolution, American religion, American colonies, New England

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