Historia ioannis cochlaei de actis et scriptis Martini Lvtheri Saxonis chronographice




Shoults Fb 1565 C



[Paris: Nicolas Chesneau]


The crowning glory of Cochlaeus’s works came with the publication of his long and ferocious yet comprehensive biography of Luther. At almost 200,000 words, Cochlaeus’s Historia (1549) would become the foundational work for most other anti-Lutheran polemics until the 20th century. In it, Cochlaeus describes Luther as keeping company with the devil and even accuses him of being the devil incarnate. He quotes extensively from other contemporary Luther detractors – for example Sir Thomas More, Henry VIII’s Chancellor, writing here under the pseudonym William Ross. On page 62, More as Ross exhorts Luther – ‘merdas suas resorbeat, & sua relingat stercora, quibus tam foede linguam suam calamumq…’ – to suck back his excrement (merdas) and relinquish the dung (stercora) which fouls his speech and writing (calamum – pen).


Cab 10 scripta2.jpg


Johannes Cochlaeus, “Historia ioannis cochlaei de actis et scriptis Martini Lvtheri Saxonis chronographice,” ourheritage.ac.nz | OUR Heritage, accessed March 21, 2023, https://ourheritage.ac.nz/items/show/10362.