Corpus of English Religious Prose (COERP)

The Corpus of English Religious Prose is a diachronic, multi-genre corpus which, in its present outline, will cover English religious prose from 1150 to the end of the eighteenth century. It is designed to reflect both continuity and change of English writing in one of its most important domains, with emphasis on innovation, transformation, and loss in genres. It is suited to meet the needs of both long-term diachronic studies as well as synchronic studies, particularly from a pragmatic, text-linguistic perspective and with a special interest in the history of individual genres.

Project leader:Thomas Kohnen
Time of compilation: 2003– (ongoing)
Size: c1 million words
Language: English
Domain and genre: Religious, multi-genre
Annotation: pragmatic
Number of texts/samples: c250 files
Period: at the present 1500–1700
Released: release date of Early Modern English Sampler Dec 2014


Thomas Kohnen, Tanja Rütten, Ingvilt Marcoe, Kirsten Gather, Dorothee Groeger, Anne Döring, Stefanie Leu.


Web-based interface with view, selection, search, print and download options.

Associated projects

Leu, Stefanie. Metaphorical and Metonymic Processes in Late Middle English and Early Modern English Religious Discourse. A Cognitive Corpus-based Study (ongoing dissertation project)

Gather, Kirsten. 2014. Syntactic Dislocation in English Congregational Song between 1500 and 1900 - a Corpus-based Study. Frankfurt/Main: Peter Lang.

Rütten, Tanja. 2011. How to do things with texts. Patterns of instruction in religious discourse 1350-1700. Frankfurt/Main: Peter Lang.

Groeger, Dorothee. 2010. The pamphlet as a form of communication. A corpus-based study of Early Modern religious pamphlets. Aachen: Shaker

Boggel, Sandra. 2009. Metadiscourse in Middle English and Early Modern English religious texts. A corpus-based study. Frankfurt/Main: Peter Lang.