Puritansim - Fort Bend ISD

Mayflower landed Dec. 1620 with 100
passengers (Pilgrims)
A. Seeking religious freedom
B. Critical of Church of England
C. Over ½ died during winter
D. Withdrew from church to purify
Massachusetts Bay Colony meshed
with the first settlers (Puritans)
A. Did not withdraw from church
B. They thought they had to purify the
church from within
C. Government was a theocracy--a government guided by the church
and its regulations
III. Puritan Beliefs
A. Humans existed solely for the glory
of God
B. Bible was sole expression of God’s
C. Philosophies:
1. Predestination- belief that one’s
destiny has already been chosen
2. Original Sin- belief that because
of Adam & Eve, all have sinned
IV. Puritan Values
A. Industry
B. Moderation
C. Simplicity
Puritan Activities that were forbidden
A. Dancing the maypole
B. Gambling
C. Bowling
D. Attending plays
E. Unprofitable hunting
VI. Puritan Writings
A. Poems
B. Hymns
C. Journals
D. Diaries
E. Biographies
F. Autobiographies
G. Histories
VII. Purpose of Puritan Writings
A. To transform a mysterious God - mysterious
because he is separate from the world.
B. To make him more relevant to the universe.
C. To glorify God.
VIII. Puritan writings that were forbidden
A. Drama
B. Fiction
IX. Style of writing
A. Rather simplistic
B. reflected the character and scope of the reading
public, which was literate and well-grounded in
Keep Holy The Sabbath
A Puritan Overview
Everyone in the Massachusetts
Bay Colony was required to
attend Sunday services.
Sunday Services:
• Men and women sat on opposite sides of
the church.
• Boys sat together and were expected to
be completely silent.
• A good prayer lasted an hour or more.
• The minister preached from two to four
hours and kept time with an hourglass
sitting on the pulpit.
Sunday Services
• Churches were unheated; sometimes the
communion bread froze and water in the
christening bowl became ice.
• To keep people awake, the “tithing man”
carried a long pole with a feather tied on
one end and tickled the listeners.
• There were two services on Sunday: one
in the morning and one in the afternoon,
each of equal length, each to be attended.
Basic Puritan Beliefs
Total DepravityConcept of original sin
Unconditional ElectionConcept of Predestination
Limited AtonementJesus died for the chosen only, not for everyone
Irresistible GraceGod’s grace is freely given; it cannot be earned or denied. Grace is
defined as the saving power of God.
Perseverance of the “saints”Those elected by God have full power to interpret the will of God and
to live uprightly. If anyone rejects grace after feeling its power in his
life, he will be going against the will of God - something impossible in
The information contained in this presentation is
derived from the following sources:
• Reuben, Paul P. "Chapter 1: Early American
Literature to1700 - A Brief Introduction." PAL:
Perspectives in American Literature- A Research
and Reference Guide. WWW URL:
• http://www.getasite.com/STG/ENG11/handouts1