Four Birds of Noah's Ark

A Prayer Book from the Time of Shakespeare

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Thomas Dekker
Robert Hudson
  • Grand Rapids, MI: 
    Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.
    , October
     176 pages.
     For other formats: Link to Publisher's Website.
Review coming soon!

Review by Kristin Bezio forthcoming.


A timeless, little-known literary classic.

As the Black Death ravaged London in 1608, the theaters closed, many people moved out of town for safety, and playwrights scrambled to find other outlets for their talent. While Shakespeare retreated to his hometown of Stratford, Thomas Dekker wrote Four Birds of Noah's Ark, a book containing fifty-six prayers for the people of London and all of England.

Dekker's prayers bear witness to his deep faith and profound understanding of human psychology with a power and poignancy that few written prayers in English literature achieve. Bringing this devotional classic back into print for the first time since 1924, editor Robert Hudson has included a fine introduction, annotated the prayers, and modernized the language without sacrificing any of its beauty and simplicity.

This lovely book at once surprises and enchants with its literary voice, devotional heart, and accessible writing.

About the Author(s)/Editor(s)/Translator(s): 

Thomas Dekker (1572–1632) was a prolific writer whose works include The Shoemaker's Holiday and The Gull's Hornbook.

Robert Hudson is a recognized Bob Dylan scholar, a member of the International Thomas Merton Society, and a veteran editor who has worked with a number of best-selling authors, including Philip Yancey, Walter Wangerin Jr., Leonard Sweet, and Lee Strobel. He and his wife, Shelley, play in the old-time string band Gooder'n Grits.

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