The Confessionalization of Humanism in Reformation Germany by Erika Rummel

By Erika Rummel

This booklet bargains with the influence of the Reformation debate in Germany at the so much famous highbrow circulation of the time: humanism. even though it is right that humanism stimulated the process the Reformation, says Erika Rummel, the dynamics of the connection are larger defined by means of announcing that humanism used to be co-opted, maybe even exploited, within the spiritual debate.

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It appears that a particular conjunction of circumstances gave rise to the original misconception. The terminological latitude of the words "humanist" and "theologian" created linguistic conditions favorable to such a confusion. There was, moreover, an overlap in the issues that engaged humanists and reformers. Both groups were challenging the status quo and confronting the same professional group: scholastic theologians. 93 The hostility of the scholastic doctors against the New Learning thus became a concern common to both groups.

37 Melanchthon specifically blamed Karlstadt for fostering anti-intellectual tendencies. "38 Similarly, Johann Bugenhagen wrote from Hamburg in 1526 that certain "boorish donkeyheads" thought they knew the way to heaven and set themselves up as teachers of others. All they had to offer was a show of holiness. They hated all learning, especially language studies, and "persuaded simple lay folk to keep their children from studying and to let them remain great donkeys. "39 A published exchange of letters between Eobanus Hessus, Luther, and his followers is perhaps meant to combat the image of the reformers as foes of humanistic learning.

What madness is this? How suddenly has our hope collapsed? How is it that the glory was lost, which seemed practically within our grasp? And we were expecting nothing of this sort! "31 Two runaways, named Blattus ("cockroach") and Gryllus ("grasshopper"), appear on the scene. " RUNAWAY: I think we are within our rights and doing well. HUMANIST: What? You inauspicious birds, or rather, worms—for you are no human beings —do you really think that you are doing what is truly right? But I see Cockroach does not speak nor make any noise with his wings.

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