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The Oxford English Literary HistoryVolume V: 1645-1714: The Later Seventeenth Century$
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Margaret J. M. Ezell

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198183112

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198183112.001.0001

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Laws Regulating Publication, Speech, and Performance, 1674–1684

Laws Regulating Publication, Speech, and Performance, 1674–1684

II. Laws Regulating Publication, Speech, and Performance, 1674–1684
The Oxford English Literary History

Margaret J. M. Ezell

Oxford University Press

A series of treason trials highlighted the increasing concerns over the succession to the throne by a practicing Catholic, James Duke of York. After rescinding the Declaration of Indulgence in 1673, the Test Act required all office holders to receive Anglican communion and acknowledge the King as the head of the Church of England. The lapse of the Licensing Act in 1679 increased the number of unlicensed printers and the amount of political propaganda for both sides. Plays and popular entertainments were carefully screened for political content as well as blasphemy.

Keywords:   Exclusion Crisis, Popish Plot, Whigs, Tories, Test Act, propaganda, blasphemy

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