This paper explores three themes: (i) a short, empirical research account of the linguistic realization of seventeenth-century Quaker prophecy using digital corpus-based tools; (ii) a practical description of how those tools can be used in interdisciplinary research such as the prophecy study; and (iii) a reflective section that considers the advantages, potential richness but also challenges of embarking on an integrated piece of research that straddles established academic disciplines. The ‘prophecy’ analysis comments on the nature of prophecy from a linguistic perspective. It includes positive and negative connotations observed in the data contrasted with non-Quaker texts (including the Bible), and also how Quaker prophetic style changed during the second half of the seventeenth century. The secondary purpose of the paper is to demonstrate the value of departing from traditional, well-established approaches in a discipline such as religion. Quaker studies scholars are familiar with the exercise of grappling with unfamiliar approaches, concepts and specialist vocabulary in order to learn about new insights that they might not otherwise encounter. The present quantitative-based study of Quaker prophesying is a fresh attempt to bring new life to this aspect of historical Quaker writings.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited