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Accessible yet authoritative biography of the colorful character who instigated the Protestant Reformation
Martin Luther, the Augustinian friar who set the Protestant Reformation in motion with his famous Ninety-Five Theses, was a man of extremes on many fronts. He was both hated and honored, both reviled as a heretic and lauded as a kind of second Christ. He was both a quiet, solitary reader and interpreter of the Bible and the first media-star of history, using the printing press to reach many of his contemporaries and become the most-read theologian of the sixteenth century.
Thomas Kaufmann’s concise biography highlights the two conflicting “natures” of Martin Luther, depicting Luther’s earthiness as well as his soaring theological contributions, his flaws as well as his greatness. Exploring the close correlation between Luther’s Reformation theology and his historical context, A Short Life of Martin Luther serves as an ideal introduction to the life and thought of the most important figure in the Protestant Reformation.
For the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, a new translation of Martin Luther’s most famous works by leading Luther scholar and pastor William Russell
This volume contains selections from Martin Luther’s most evocative and provocative writings, freshly translated, for the 21st century. These documents, which span the Reformer’s literary career, point to the enduring and flexible character of his central ideas. As Luther’s reform proposals emerged, they coalesced around some basic priorities, which he delivered to wide-ranging audiences–writing for children, preaching in congregations, formulating academic treatises, penning letters to family and friends, counter-punching critics, summarizing Biblical books, crafting confessions of faith, and more. This book demonstrates that range and provides entry points, for non-specialists and specialists alike, into the thought and life of the epoch-defining, fascinating, and controversial Martin Luther. With attention to the breadth of his literary output, it draws from his letters, sermons, popular writings, and formal theological works. This breadth allows readers to encounter Luther the man: the sinner and the saint, the public activist and the private counselor, the theologian and the pastor. These writings possess a practical, accessible arc, as Luther does not write only for specialists and church officials, but he applies his chief insights to the “real-life” issues that faced his rather wide variety of audiences.
An exquisite Deluxe Edition of the Anglican prayer book and literary masterpiece commemorating the 350th anniversary of the 1662 edition intimately familiar to our most enduring writers
As essential to the canon as the Bible and the plays of Shakespeare, The Book of Common Prayer has been in daily use for centuries. Originally produced for the Church of England in the sixteenth century by Thomas Cranmer, who was burned at the stake upon the accession to the throne of the ardently Catholic Queen Mary, it contains the entire liturgy as first presented in English—as well as some of the oldest phrases to be used by modern English speakers. Here are daily prayers, scripture readings, psalm recitals, and the services marking such religious milestones as baptism, confirmation, and marriage, all from the 1662 edition, whose influence can be seen in the work of some of the greatest writers in English literature, from Donne and Swift to Austen and the Brontës.
This beautiful deluxe edition includes a new introduction by The New Yorker’s book critic James Wood, discussing how The Book of Common Prayer has influenced the English language and literature. Its small trim size allows for easy portability as a daily devotional.
Bunyan wrote the first part of The Pilgrim’s Progress when he was in prison for conducting unauthorised Baptist religious services outside of the Church of England. It was published in 1678; the second part was published in 1684. In Bunyan’s hands a pious tract is transformed into a work of imaginative literature whose influence, both indirectly on the English consiousness and directly on the literature that followed, has been immeasurable. The rich countryman’s phrases that Bunyan borrowed or invented have become enshrined in the language, and many of the characters he created to people his imaginary world have won for themselves an independent and unforgettable existence.