Profile: Jose Murgatroyd Cree

Jose Murgatroyd Cree’s reformation expertise can be summed up as “vocabulary and addiction in English.” The 500 Reformations team asked Jose some questions about how this knowledge connects with their research.

Tell us about your Reformation research:

I research the use of the word ‘addict’ in the writing of early protestant reformers, from 1529-1549. ‘Addict’ was a neologism (new word), probably coined by the reformist writer John Frith, and subsequently used almost exclusively in reformist texts. This has interesting implications, perhaps suggesting the existence of a discrete evangelical vocabulary. This means that the appearances of ‘addict’ in the 1530s and 40s can give an indication of who was reading reformist works at the time. This is particularly interesting when we look at the few non-reformist writers who used the word−most notably, a 1532 work attributed to Henry VIII.

What question, or questions, are you aiming to answer in your 500 Reformations talk?

“What did the reformation have to do with the origins of addiction?”
“What impact did the reformation have on English vocabulary?”
“How can we tell who was reading banned reformist literature?”

Is this your main research area?

Partly—I research early modern addiction.

Find out more:

Read Jose’s article in Renaissance Studies:

Protestant evangelicals and addiction in early modern English

Want to hear Jose speak?

Those in Sheffield and the surrounding area are encouraged to invite Jose as part of the 500 Reformations scheme. Information about hosting.