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Debating the SacramentsPrint and Authority in the Early Reformation$
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Amy Nelson Burnett

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780190921187

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190921187.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 12 April 2021

Martin Bucer and Bugenhagen’s Psalms Commentary

Martin Bucer and Bugenhagen’s Psalms Commentary

(p.121) 6 Martin Bucer and Bugenhagen’s Psalms Commentary
Debating the Sacraments

Amy Nelson Burnett

Oxford University Press

In early 1524, Johannes Bugenhagen published a Latin commentary on the Psalms. Its printer commissioned Martin Bucer to translate the work. Bucer’s translation adapted the commentary’s contents to the interests of a literate urban audience. His changes included greater attention to practical piety, a more polemical tone, and an emphasis on spiritual communion and rejection of host adoration with regard to the Lord’s Supper. Bugenhagen became aware of these changes after an excerpt from the commentary discussing the Lord’s Supper was published under his name, and he denounced Bucer for attributing to him a position he did not hold. The episode highlights the difficulty of translating concepts from Latin into German and the role of printers in fanning controversy; illustrates differences in the spiritual priorities of Wittenberg and the radicalized Erasmian reformers and shows how positions unquestioned before 1525 became controversial after the outbreak of the Eucharistic controversy.

Keywords:   Johannes Bugenhagen, Martin Bucer, Psalms, translation, print

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