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LUTHER MAKES OTHERS TRANSLATORS.
it by heart. The Vulgate had stirred the inquiry of scholars; but with the publication of Luther's version, Christianity issued from the school and the church, and seated herself by the hearths of the people.
The excitement created among the enemies of the Reformation by this version was proportionate to the joy with which it was received by the reformed. The monk in his cell, and the prince upon his throne, uttered cries, now of anger and now of fear. The king of England denounced the work to the elector Frederick and to the duke of Saxony. The governments of Austria and Bavaria ordered all copies to be placed in the hands of the magistrates, and many were burned. The success of these edicts, however, was by no means equal to the hopes of those who issued them.
* Even after my injunctions to the contrary," says the duke of Saxony, “many thousand copies have been sold and read in my
dominions." To counteract its influence, many Roman Catholic versions were also published. Emsner, one of the councillors of the duke of Saxony, issued the first, but his version proved a mere transcript of that of Luther, a few alterations in favour of some of the tenets of the church of Rome alone excepted. An edition, with ampler alterations, was made by the monks of Rostock, in Lower Saxony. In 1534, another monk attempted a new version from the Vulgate, with the same design. He confessed himself, however, to be unacquainted with the
108 OTHER GERMAN TRANSLATIONS. originals, and produced a mere transcript of Luther's'; another of his opponents, John Eckius, of Ingoldstadt, in Bavaria, published the old Testament in 1537, subjoining å correct edition of Ensner's New Testament, and this version, corrected from time to time, has often been reprinted. Various other Roman Catholic versions have also been made ; one in 1631, by Caspar Utenberg, under the patronage of the elector of Cologne; another, in 1808, by Willman and others, at Ratisbon ; another, in 1812, by the brothers Van Ess; another, by Gosner of Munich, in 1815 ; and another, by Kistemaker at Münster, in 1825. All, however, are on the basis of Luther's version, and it illustrates his influence to notice that in the German polyglot Bible, published in 1849, the editors give the text of Luther, and give, in the margin, the variations of the most important German versions. “It is very perceptible," said Luther, " that papists, from my translation and other German works, have learned to preach and write in German also, and steal, as it were, my own language from me without giving me the thanks which are my due, but rather use it in new assaults upon ine. However, they are perfectly welcome, and it is well pleasing to me that I have taught even ungrateful pupils." “I seek not fame. My conscience bears me witness that I have consecrated all my powers faithfully to the work, and no sinister motives have influenced me; for I have not received the smallest recompense, neither sought it nor yet
VERSIONS FOUNDED ON LUTHER's.
my own glory. God is my witness, that I have done all from love to God and to the brethren."
Though we speak of this version as Luther's, it must not be supposed that the other reformers had no share in the work. Days and months were devoted to it by others as well as by himself. For many weeks together, a large party might have been noticed in Luther's rooms, of the most eminent scholars of Europe. Luther presided, having before him the Latin, Hebrew, and new German Bible ; Melancthon, an insignificant, spare man, opened his Greek books, the Seventy, or the New Testament; Creuziger had in his hand the Hebrew and Chaldec Scriptures ; Dr. Bugenhagen, or Pomeranus, the Vulgate ; Dr. Bugenhagen and Justus Jonas, the rabbinical paraphrases. Each gave his views on the passage under consideration, and master George Borer marked them down. Days were thus devoted to a single verse. The edition of 1541 contains the results of all these labours; and Luther's own copy-a copy constantly used by him, after having passed through several hands, including Bugenhagen's and Melancthon's, is now in the British Museum.
The version of Luther is the basis of several versions. On it is founded the Belgic version, of 1526; the Swedish version, of 1541 ; the Danish version, of 1550 ; the Icelandic or Norse, of 1584 ; the Finnish, of 1542; and an early Dutch version, of 1560. A German-Swiss translation was made by Leo Juda, 1525-9;
LEFEVRE AND FAREL. and in 1667, a revised version, in the same tongue, was published at Zurich. These languages (the Finnish excepted) all belong, with the German, Saxon, English, and Gothic, to the Teutonic family of tongues.
This history of the Bible, in connexion with the religious movement in Germany, has been given at this length, because it furnishes a fair type of the progress of the Reformation elsewhere. We must notice, however, the history of translation in Switzerland and France.
Towards the close of the fifteenth century, and some years before Luther's labours had begun, there was a professor of theology in Paris whose teaching had excited much interest. He came originally from Etaples, in Picardy. He had received a rude education, but
was a man,” says Beza, “ of true genius and piety.” Though attached at that time to the Romish church, he resolutely opposed the barbarism which prevailed in most of the universities of Europe. He condemned the dry metaphysical inethods of inquiry then common even in theology; revived a taste for the study of classical antiquity; and feeling that no human science could regenerate our race, he went direct to the Scriptures, and sought to win to the study of them the hearts of his pupils. Full of gravity and unction in the pulpit, his intercourse with all classes was distinguished by a kindly familiarity, and large numbers of students from various nations gathered around him.
SAINTS' LEGENDS—THE BIBLE.
Among his pupils was a young student from Dauphiné, a man of quick feeling and strong sense. A warm attachment sprang up between the two. The old doctor and the young disciple were soon known throughout Paris for their love to each other, and their zeal for the faith.
At that time the doctor was engaged in editing the legends of the saints, and arranging them as their names appear in the calendar. Two months of these biographies were already prepared, when the puerility of the whole was forced upon the mind of the writer. He began to regard them “as mere sulphur, fit only for lighting the fire of idolatry ;" turned from them with disgust to the Epistles of Paul, and became a changed man. With characteristic openness, he declared his sentiments; and in the very heart of the Sorbonne, where he laboured, he proclaimed the great doctrines of the gospel with a zeal and fervour never surpassed. These events took place before the year 1512, and the doctor's name was Lefèvre.
His pupil, Farel, listened with avidity to his new instructions, studied the Bible, and soon embraced the new faith. “ There is a righteousness," said the tutor, “ of faith, and a righteousness of works ; the one is of man, and the other of God; the one is earthly and fleeting, and the other is Divine and eternal." it,” says Farel, “in a word; and as soon as it was told me I believed." Thus was conducted to the truth, in the very year when Luther was receiving his doctorate, the man who won for
" I saw