Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.

Articlesof Religion

Articles of Religion. The term implies that the separate propositions form one connected system (Latin articulus, joint). The Thirty-nine Articles of the Anglican prayer book represent the forty-two articles drafted by Archbishop Cranmer, considered by Convocation and approved by the Crown in 1553. (Ten articles had already been similarly adopted in 1536.) These forty-two, suppressed during Mary's reign, were revised by Convocation and re-enacted in 1553. They contain statements of the religious doctrine and practice of the Church of England, and bear frequent traces of the religious controversies of the period. Every clergyman "is required by law to sign them at his ordination, and at his admission to any benefice, as also to read them publicly on the latter occasion in the church ("reading himself in"). The question whether subscription implies belief in the articles, or merely an engagement not to controvert them, has been often disputed. Dr. Johnson and many High Church clergy have held the latter.