PhD defence Richard de Beer: Catholic liturgical vestments in repression

Detail van een kazuifel uit ca. 1510. Foto: Ruben de Heer, Museum Catharijneconvent
Detail of a chasuble from around 1510. Photo: Ruben de Heer, Museum Catharijneconvent

On 9 June, Richard de Beer will defend his PhD thesis ‘Liturgical Vestments in Repression: Paraments in the Dutch Republic as Bearers of Identity, 1580-1650’. The Reformation, which spread to the Northern Netherlands around 1580, and the subsequent innovations prescribed by Rome had major consequences for liturgical vestments, the treasures of the Catholic Church.

Identity and oppression

Catholics were driven to the margins of society and their churches fell into the hands of Protestants. Only during the seventeenth century did hidden churches emerge, buildings that Catholics secretly used as churches. Nevertheless, as early as the late sixteenth century, a start was made on reassembling a church inventory and a basic wardrobe with salvaged and newly made items.

In his thesis, De Beer asks how Catholics shaped their new collections: how were design and symbolism applied in liturgical vestments, to confirm the church’s past, but also to renew the church from within?

Using the unique collection of church vestments at Museum Catharijneconvent and collections from several Old Catholic churches in our country, combined with archival research, literature study, and research in contemporary sources, De Beer writes a new story about identity and oppression.

Start date and time
End date and time
Hybrid: online (click here) and at the Utrecht University Hall
PhD candidate
R.W.M. de Beer
Kerkgewaden in de verdrukking: Paramenten in de Republiek als dragers van identiteit, 1580-1650
PhD supervisor(s)
Prof. P.B.A. Smit
Dr D.J. Schoon
Dr M. van Roon