To save content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about saving content to .
To save content items to your Kindle, first ensure email@example.com
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about saving to your Kindle.
Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
Was Calvin another Luther? Certainly in the early decades of the Reformation it was a common perception among Catholics that the evangelicals were united in their opposition to Roman tradition and hierarchy, and that subtle differentiations were of little consequence when seeking to curtail a movement that challenged the authority of the Catholic Church. Thus it is not rare to find “Lutheran” used as the generic term for evangelicals, a term intended to contrast not with “Catholic” but “Christian.” (The term reciprocates the pejorative “Papist” and the reverence for the pope it implies.) Given the ease with which Catholic opponents grouped all evangelicals together with little concern for points of difference among them, Calvin was indeed seen as another Luther and, like his counterpart in Wittenberg, a dangerous enemy of the church.
Although religious polemic is typically understood and studied as a phenomenon of mutual antagonism across the confessions—Protestant against Catholic and Catholic against Protestant—the growth of the early modern polemic traditions was the product of heated internal controversy. In a series of theses intended to point to rhetorical aspects of conflicts within the Lutheran and Catholic confessions, this paper brings forward features of polemical writings from the disputes between Gnesio-Lutherans and Philippists in the wake of the Augsburg Interim of 1548 and those between and among Jesuits and Jansenists in the seventeenth century. Early modern religious thought, I suggest, cannot be understood without attention to the fissures within the Lutheran and Roman Catholic traditions.
The history of the Reformation begins, and often ends, with Martin Luther. The history of Luther's biography is a chronicle of the perspectives from which Luther has been approached. Throughout the twentieth century, with few exceptions, his greatness was accepted as being beyond question, with each interpreter offering a new explanation for the Reformer's heroic place in European religious history. Scott Hendrix has been contributing to Luther studies since Luther and the Papacy (1981); his Short Introduction (2010) and an earlier biography (2009) are marked by lucidity and accuracy. His careful work on the little-known Urbanus Rhegius (1489–1541) and other Reformers has brought these significant participants in the expansion of religious reform out of the shadows of historical oblivion. For care with material and clarity of exposition, Hendrix is well positioned to write the American Luther biography of this anniversary year.
Philip Melanchthon's 1539 treatise On the Authority of the Church and the Writings of the Ancient Fathers (hereafter De ecclesiae autoritate) occupies a prominent place in the canon of his theological writings. Few texts of the Reformation period state so clearly the principles according to which the Fathers and the councils of the church may be considered authentic sources for Christian doctrine. To set the work within the canon of Melanchthon's theological work is not necessarily to say that other genres are not present in it, however. The compartmentalization of a thinker's work, while perhaps heuristically necessary, always risks distortion. The danger is all the more present with regard to an author like Melanchthon, whose intellectual interests were broad and whose historical importance is many-sided. The scope of Melanchthon's activities is broad, and so are the contexts and ramifications of his important writings. In 1960 Peter Fraenkel called De ecclesiae autoritate Melanchthon's “patrology”—not an inaccurate label, but an overly restrictive one.