Physical recreation and muscular Christianity in Glaswegian churches, 1865-1929

Stewart, Steven Jamieson (2021) Physical recreation and muscular Christianity in Glaswegian churches, 1865-1929. MRes thesis, University of Glasgow.

Full text available as:
[thumbnail of 2021StewartMRes.pdf] PDF
Download (955kB)


This study fills a gap in the understanding of Muscular Christianity and church use of physical recreation in Scotland. From the research conducted it can be claimed that Glasgow, during the mid-to-late Victorian era and the early twentieth century, embraced and contributed to the Muscular Christian movement in multiple ways. This was notably the case with the Boy’s Brigade which was a fusion between the Christian Militarism and Rational Recreation of the local Volunteer force. However, there were numerous other manifestations of Muscular Christianity in Glasgow such as Young Men’s Clubs, Church Football Leagues and Christian footballers. Amongst these groups it was hoped that sport could develop the moral character of the participants but in an environment separated from cultural vices, and also as means to attract young men to other religious activities. Muscular Christianity in Glasgow may have been part of a wider mission to the city’s working class as indicated by the statements of supporting clergymen and the growth of church football teams. Interestingly, local clergymen were divided on attitudes towards sport in the 1890s. However, the Muscular Christian position overcame opposition and remained active from the pre-war era onwards.

Item Type: Thesis (MRes)
Qualification Level: Masters
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BR Christianity
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BV Practical Theology
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Colleges/Schools: College of Arts & Humanities > School of Humanities > History
Supervisor's Name: Brown, Professor Callum and Spurlock, Professor Scott
Date of Award: 2021
Depositing User: Theses Team
Unique ID: glathesis:2021-82529
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 22 Oct 2021 13:15
Last Modified: 26 Oct 2021 14:32
Thesis DOI: 10.5525/gla.thesis.82529

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year