© 2013

John Bale’s 'The Image of Both Churches'

  • Gretchen E. Minton
  • A modern, critical edition of The Image of Both Churches

  • Includes the full series of woodcuts used in the 16th-century printings

  • Currently the only thorough bibliographic and textual study ever conducted on The Image of Both Churches


Part of the Studies in Early Modern Religious Tradition, Culture and Society book series (SERR, volume 6)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xvi
  2. Gretchen E. Minton
    Pages 1-34
  3. Gretchen E. Minton
    Pages 35-47
  4. Part I

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 49-49
    2. Gretchen E. Minton
      Pages 51-59
    3. Gretchen E. Minton
      Pages 61-73
    4. Gretchen E. Minton
      Pages 75-84
    5. Gretchen E. Minton
      Pages 85-91
    6. Gretchen E. Minton
      Pages 93-99
    7. Gretchen E. Minton
      Pages 101-122
    8. Gretchen E. Minton
      Pages 123-132
    9. Gretchen E. Minton
      Pages 133-142
    10. Gretchen E. Minton
      Pages 143-160
    11. Gretchen E. Minton
      Pages 161-170
  5. Part II

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 171-171
    2. Gretchen E. Minton
      Pages 173-176
    3. Gretchen E. Minton
      Pages 177-192
    4. Gretchen E. Minton
      Pages 193-211
    5. Gretchen E. Minton
      Pages 213-240
    6. Gretchen E. Minton
      Pages 241-257

About this book


This book is a critical edition of John Bale's The Image of Both Churches (c. 1545). The Introduction provides a thorough overview of this sixteenth century work, explaining its relationship to the apocalyptic tradition and to Bale's important inspirations, from Augustine to Erasmus and Luther. Topics such as Bale's language, the place of the Image in his oeuvre, his use of medieval chronicles, and the influence of his exegesis are also discussed.  

The Image has often been called Bale's most important work; it articulated and developed the English Protestant view of the Apocalypse, influencing other Reformers both in England and on the continent. This book offers the first critical edition of the Image, including fully modernized spelling and punctuation as well as extensive explanatory notes.  

The five sixteenth-century printed editions of the Image are collated here, with textual notes that illustrate the relationship between variant readings and provide information on the choices made in this particular edition. This book also reproduces the striking woodcut illustrations from the Image in their original placements; examples from two different woodcut series are offered, as well as an overview of the history and importance of these images in the early printed texts.  

Five appendices, including a glossary of unfamiliar terms and a chart outlining Bale's periodization of history, also provide a wealth of information that enables readers to understand and use this edition. The largest appendix, on historical names and terminology, gives biographical information for 450 individuals and explains their importance, both to Bale and to the sixteenth-century Reformers in a broader context. 

 This critical edition of the Image offers the most thorough study of the work to date, opening up the opportunity for a deeper understanding of this monumental text and for many further avenues of research.


16th-Century Exilic Literature Apocalyptic Exegesis in the 16th Century English Reformation and Apocalypse John Bale and Apocalypse John Bale and Historiography John Bale and continental literature Medieval chronicles and the Reformation Protestant interpretations of the antichrist Reformation Apocalyptic Literature

Editors and affiliations

  • Gretchen E. Minton
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of EnglishMontana State UniversityBozemanUSA

About the editors

 Gretchen E. Minton received her PhD from the University of British Columbia and worked at the University of Minnesota before moving to Bozeman, Montana in 2006. She is Associate Professor of English at Montana State University, where she teaches classes in Shakespeare, early modern British literature, drama, the Bible, and other topics. Dr. Minton is the co-editor of William Shakespeare and Thomas Middleton’s Timon of Athens for Arden Shakespeare (2008). Her other work as an editor includes Troilus and Cressida for the forthcoming Norton Complete Works of Shakespeare and Much Ado about Nothing for the Internet Shakespeare Editions. In addition to her work as an editor, she has published numerous articles, book reviews, and encyclopedia entries on topics including Shakespeare, Erasmus, Augustine, modern drama, and the English Reformation. She is the author of multiple articles and conference papers focusing on John Bale and John Foxe.

Bibliographic information