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708BOOK REVIEWS Protestant Politics:Jacob Sturm (1489-1553) and the German Reformation. By Thomas A. Brady,Jr. [Studies in German Histories.] (Atlantic Highlands, NewJersey: Humanities Press. 1995. Pp. xix, 449. $65.00.) In delineating the career of Strasbourg's greatest poUtical leader of the Reformation era,Jacob Sturm,Thomas Brady also offers the reader the finest detaUed narrative of the poUtical history of the early German Reformation that is avaUable in any language. Beginning as a local magistratejacob Sturm was propeUed onto the Imperial stage by the Reformation movement and the confessional parties that it engendered. Sturm became the leading city poUtician in the Schmalkald League, the partner of Landgraf PhUip of Hesse, and he spent the best years ofhis life representing the south German cities in imperial affairs. He experienced intimately the great poUtical events ofhis generation: the Peasants' War of 1524-25, the Imperial Diets of the 1520's, '30's, and '40's, the formation of the Schmalkald League, the Protestant defeat in the Schmalkald War, the Interim and its aftermath. Although he beUeved that laws could not change beUefs , as a good "MarsigUan" he suppressed reUgious dissenters in Strasbourg whUe tacitíy encouraging diversity of opinion in the Strasbourg Latin school. Both Marbach and Jean Sturm, ferocious opponents of each other, could plausibly claim his legacy. His greatest achievement, according to Brady, came when he almost single-handedly charted Strasbourg's recovery from the Interim and the threat of clerically led revolution within his Alsatian city. His story is the story of the politics of first-generation German Protestantism on both the imperial and the local level. Brady places his poUtical narrative in a larger framework. Playing off the nineteenth-century preoccupation with German nationaUsm and feUed opportunities to buUd a nation-state, Brady contrasts the faUures of the Protestant project on the imperial level with its success in various local contexts. In general, he shows how the Empire's medieval heritage of particularism and locaUsm allowed Protestantism to flourish and take roots while at the same time limited its abUity to become an enduring unified national force. The structure of the Holy Roman Empire bears heavier responsibiUty for the fate of German Protestantism than does the aUegedly deficient or conservative nature of EvangeUcal theology whether Luther's, Bucer's, or ZwingU's. This is a poUtical biography that transcends the genre. Mark U. Edwards,Jr. St. OlafCollege Martin Bucer: Reforming Church and Community. Edited by D. F. Wright. (NewYork: Cambridge University Press. 1994. Pp. xiv, 195. $59 95.) Scholars have long recognized the important place held by the church in Martin Bucer's theology. This coUection of essays, pubUshed to commemorate book reviews709 the 500th anniversary of the Strasbourg reformer's birth, is an exceUent introduction in EngUsh to Bucer's ecclesiology and to the related issues of the ministry , church and state, and the sacraments, both in general and individuaUy. Most of the thirteen scholars who contributed to this volume have been or are presently involved in producing the critical edition of Bucer's works. Their essays reflect their thorough famUiarity with Bucer's thought and represent the best of recent research on the Strasbourg reformer. Because the essays focus on the theme ofchurch and community, the volume has an internal coherence that is often lacking in such coUections. Moreover, many of the essays complement one another in their treatment of a given topic. For instance, both Peter Matheson and CorneUs Augustijn deal with Bucer's relations with the CathoUc Church. Matheson argues that despite Bucer's harsh criticism of the Old Church, his hope that the CathoUc Church could be reformed from within led him to become involved in the reUgious coUoquies of 1540-41. Augustijn takes up the idea of reforming the Catholic Church from within in his analysis of Bucer's ecclesiology at the time of the reUgious coUoquies. There is a simUar pairing of topics in BasU HaU's description of Bucer's last years in England and in Gerald Hobbes's discussion ofthe influence that Bucer's Psalms commentary had on the earUest translations of the Psalms into EngUsh. The evolution and elaboration of Bucer's own ideas on...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1534-0708
Print ISSN
0008-8080
Pages
pp. 708-710
Launched on MUSE
2016-10-05
Open Access
No
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