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Luther's new discoveries from scripture spread quickly across Europe. There were two reasons for this. First, the Bible, now available in translation, became widely read and talked about in Germany. Secondly, the advent of Gutenberg's printing press meant copies of Luther's own writing would soon be found right across Germany.
Pamphlets were shipped to other countries, concealed in bales where necessary, so they were undetected.
In Cambridge, those who were sympathetic to Luther's ideas met at the town's White Horse Inn - on what is now King's Parade - to study Luther, Melanchthon, and other German Reformers. Now, through the work of Oxford University's Taylor Institution (or Taylorian), we can, as it were, join them in their discovery, 500 years later.
The Taylorian is developing a series of short books on Luther's theology under the title Treasures of the Taylorian: Reformation Pamphlets. These give us a deeper grasp of his new discoveries and radical thinking set against the theological context of the day.
Works include a parallel text of medieval German and modern English. So for medievalists and the rest of us alike - Welcome to Oxford's 'White Horse Inn'!
This is a seminal document in German literature generally, in translation studies, and in Reformation theology.
While Luther's translation of the Bible was not the first translation from Latin, it was the first to reach a mass audience. The Open Letter gives a glimpse into translation technique by one its most successful practitioners.
Learn why the ‘solas’ (by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone ...) had that word ‘alone’ added, when it doesn’t appear in the original. What were Luther’s guiding principles?
Luther was no typical scholar, as he had been no typical monk. Enjoy his irreverent and brilliant rhetoric.
Luther’s sermon serves as a fine introduction to the 95 Theses. The Sermon rejects scholastic teaching about indulgences and proposes a theology of grace.
Some 24 editions appeared within three years across Germany and Switzerland. Two of these editions are held in the Taylorian.
This book includes:
· The 95 Theses in Latin, with a new English translation by Howard Jones, and explanatory footnotes.
· A side-by-side facsimile of the two Taylorian copies on facing pages, with a digital reconstruction of the broadsides from which they were printed. This is available with the entire book content at editions.mml.ox.ac.uk, prepared by Emma Huber.
. A detailed guide to the book-history in ‘The Taylorian Copies’ by Henrike Lähnemann. This features an analysis of the woodcuts in the Basel edition, and the marginalia added to the Taylorian copy of the Leipzig edition.
· A preview to the follow-up pamphlets in the debate by Henrike Lähnemann.
· An account of the acquisition history by Christina Ostermann. Oxford University