In an age so distinguished for historical research as the present, it would be remarkable if there were no demand for a Life of Luther founded upon new investigations. In the English language the want of such a work is much greater than in the German. In the latter, the facts newly discovered, though they lie scattered in many different publications, are recorded; while, in the former, they are nearly or quite unknown. To say nothing of Luther sletters, edited by De Wette, and of Melancthon s, by Bretschneider, without which no good biography of Luther can be written, elaborate historical essays, almost without number, on points connected with the life of the Reformer have been published within a few years in Germany, of which hardly a trace can be found in English or American books. The year 1846, the third centennial of Luther sdeath, was, in this respect, unusually prolific. In the recent histories, too, of old towns and cities, in the publications of learned societies, in the later critical biographies of many of the associates and contemporaries of the Reformer, and in several special and general histories relating to the affairs of Germany in that period, important additions have been made to our knowledge of the life and times of Luther. A bout three years ago, the Committee of Publication of the American Sunday-school Union applied to the writer to prepare a life of Luther, to be published under the auspices of that society.
(Typographical errors above are due to OCR software and don't occur in the book.)
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