Hey, my dears! How were your holidays? Did you have fun? 😀
So I was talking to a friend who isn’t well-versed in history. She believed that people in the 18th and 19th century were very religious and very strict about it. It took A LOT to convince her otherwise.
Which then caused me to find out that many people think like that. They believe that all people before our time were old-fashioned nuns and dedicated churchgoers.
But we know better and we know how…weird people were back then!
It all started in the 18th century…
People went to church, of course. That was never abolished. But the 18th century was the age of reason, and the church didn’t have as much power as they weren’t government-supported. So according to multiple sources, the sole reason people attended church was because of tradition and their social image.
It might be controversial, but it’s true.
This does NOT mean there were no pious people. There were so many believers who were smart, strong, and determined. It’s just that it wasn’t “in fashion” anymore. And you know how much that mattered back then!
And now back to the 19th century…
The Anglican Church was the dominant one, but others existed too. It was government-sponsored, unlike other ones, which was one big reason to be part of it.
Our beloved Jane Austen made mentions of her father, who was a pastor who encouraged her to chase her dream of writing and dreaming, but also encouraged her to attend the evening prayer with him. Members of her family were devout.
Now for the interesting stuff…
Jane Austen was very critical of Prince Regent. He was head of the Church but didn’t show a hint of faith as he kept involving himself in disgraceful behavior such as lacking any care for the working class.
So, as you can see, religion played a significant role in people’s lives. It wasn’t always faith-based, but sometimes pressure from society to fit in. And as always, hypocrisy existed.
What do you think? Do you have any personal opinions to share? I’d love to hear them! 🙂
Written by Olivia Bennet