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Luther. Engraved by C.E. Wagstaff after Hans Holbein. c1840.

Luther. Engraved by C.E. Wagstaff after Hans Holbein. c1840.

by Holbein, Hans

Martin Luther (1483-1546). From the original Picture by Holbein in his Majesty’s Collection at Windsor. Engraved by Charles Edward Wagstaff (1808-1850), for Portraits illustrative of The Pictorial History of England, c1840. 

The Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge was established in 1825 with the aim of making good books at low prices available to the working class. Lord Brougham (Henry Peter Brougham) was the main instigator, and became Chairman of the Society, with a very large Committee of eminent people with a wide range of qualifications. The Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge produced many well-illustrated publications, including Portraits illustrative of The Pictorial History of England in 1840 with the finest examples of illustrative portraiture, by the best engravers.

Luther was well educated. He studied law but became a monk. He was disillusioned by the immorality and corruption he witnessed among the Catholic priests at a church conference in Rome. Returning to Germany he studied theology at the University of Wittenberg, received a doctorate and became a professor of theology at the university. He rejected catholics’ dependence on religious dogma, and believed that faith alone would bring spiritual salvation. During 1519 Martin Luther continued to lecture and write of theology. His criticism of the Roman Catholic Church led to his being excommunicated, and made him more determined in disproving Roman Catholicism. Thus began the German Protestant Reformation – with Luther translating the New Testament into the German language to give ordinary people the opportunity to read God’s word. He set up a new Lutheran church. Despite being a fugitive, he returned to the university where he was appointed Dean of Theology. He was one of the most influential and controversial figures in the Reformation movement, and his actions seriously eroded confidence in the Roman Catholic Church.

Page size: 25 x 16cm (9 7/8 x 6 3/8 inches). Engraving measures approximately 130 x 102 (5 1/8 x 4 inches).

Stock Number: apPort.LutherPrice: $50.00