From Judaism to Calvinism: The Life and Writings of Immanuel Tremellius (c.1510-1580), 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

From Judaism to Calvinism

The Life and Writings of Immanuel Tremellius (c.1510-1580), 1st Edition

By Kenneth Austin


352 pages

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Hardback: 9780754652335
pub: 2007-08-28
eBook (VitalSource) : 9781315254890
pub: 2016-12-05
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Immanuel Tremellius (c.1510-1580) was one of the most distinguished scholars of the Reformation era. Following his conversion to Christianity from Judaism, he rose to prominence in the mid-sixteenth century as a professor of Hebrew and Old Testament studies, teaching in numerous highly prestigious Reformed academies and universities across northern Europe. Through his activities in the classroom, and his connections with many of the leading religious and political figures of the age, he had a significant impact on the world around him; but through his published writings, some of which were printed through until the eighteenth century, his influence extended long beyond his death. This study of Tremellius' life and works, his first biography since the nineteenth-century, and the first ever full-length study, uses a chronological framework to trace his spiritual journey from Judaism through Catholicism and on to Calvinism, as well as his physical journey across Europe. Into this structure is woven a broader thematic analysis of Tremellius' place within the history of the Reformation, both as a Christian scholar and teacher, and as a converted Jew. The book includes a detailed examination of Tremellius' two most important publications, his Latin translations of the New Testament from Syriac, of 1569, and of the Old Testament from Hebrew, of 1575-1579. By looking at their composition, the figures to whom they were dedicated, their appearance, textual annotations, choice of language and publishing history, much is revealed about biblical scholarship in the sixteenth century as a whole, and about the roles which these works, in particular, would have filled. It is on these works, above all, that Tremellius' long-term international reputation rests. Encompassing issues of theology, education and religious identity, this book not only provides a fascinating biography of one of the most neglected biblical scholars of the sixteenth century, but also sheds much light on th


’ Austin's survey of Tremellius's scholarship is detailed and thorough… Austin's book rescues Tremellius from earlier contradictory and hazy accounts and provides a full description of his travels, his teaching and his scholarship… It is an important contribution to the study of the Reformation.’ Renaissance Quarterly ’Readers with an interest in Hebrew studies in the early modern era will benefit greatly from this work, as will those who seek to know more about a figure whose significant impact on the intellectual life of early modern Europe has largely been left aside until now. The work is particularly well-suited to upper-level undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty.’ Archiv für Reformationsgeschichte ’Kenneth Austin has produced a major, well-researched, and finely argued study of a nearly forgotten but highly significant figure in the development of sixteenth-century Protestant biblical studies.’ Religious Studies Review ’Detailed, careful, and fascinating, Austin’s study of this important scholar should be welcomed by those interested in Jewish-Christian relations, Reformation history, the history of exegesis and of early printed Bibles and biblical reception.’ Sixteenth Century Journal

Table of Contents

Contents: Preface: Introduction; A Jew in a renaissance city; Conversion and the flight into exile; Beginning a life in exile; Regius professor; Bridging the gap: Zweibrücken and Hornbach; Professor of the Old Testament at Heidelberg; The Novum Testamentum; The Testamenti Veteris Biblia Sacra; The last years; Conclusion; Appendix; Bibliography; Index.

About the Author

Kenneth Austin is Lecturer in Early Modern History at the University of Bristol, UK.

About the Series

St Andrews Studies in Reformation History

With the publication of its 100th book in 2012, the St Andrews Studies in Reformation Studies series celebrated an impressive publishing achievement. Since its establishment in 1995 the series has consistently offered high-quality, innovative and thought-provoking research in the field of early modern religious history. By encouraging authors to adopt a broad and inclusive interpretation of ’Reformation’, the resultant publications have done much to help shape current interdisciplinary interpretations of early-modern religion, expanding attention far beyond narrow theological concerns. Each title within the series has added to a body of international research showing how the ripples of the Reformation spread to virtually every corner of European society, both Protestant and Catholic, and often beyond. From family life, education, literature, music, art and philosophy, to political theory, international relations, economics, colonial ventures, science and military matters, there were few aspects of life that remained untouched in some way by the spirit of religious reform. As well as widening conceptions of the Reformation, the series has for the last fifteen years provided a publishing outlet for work, much of it by new and up-and-coming scholars who might otherwise have struggled to find an international platform for their work. Alongside these monographs, a complementary selection of edited volumes, critical editions of important primary sources, bibliographical studies and new translations of influential Reformation works previously unavailable to English speaking scholars, adds further depth to the topic. By offering this rich mix of approaches and topics, the St Andrews series continues to offer scholars an unparalleled platform for the publication of international scholarship in a dynamic and often controversial area of historical study.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / General