The Revolt of Martin Luther

By Robert Herndon Fife | Go to book overview

32
THE DIET IN SESSION

EVEN before Christmas representatives of the estates were to be seen on the roads leading toward Worms from all parts of the empire. Princes, like William, duke of Bavaria, with five hundred horse, and Philip, the landgrave of Baden, with six hundred; great bishops, like those of Wrzburg and Bamberg, with attendant princes and knights and troops of retainers; the lesser nobility; representatives of the cities; councilors versed in the law, canon and civil; ambassadors from England, France, Venice, Poland, and Hungary, and even the Turkish island of Djerba -- all found their way along the highways of the left bank of the Rhine or crowded the ferries that crossed the wintry stream from the east. In spite of the efforts of Emperor Maximilian through the two decades preceding, robber barons still plied their trade, and the representatives of cities and the lower nobility, especially those who were concerned in feuds, chose their roads with care and came under military protection, for there were dangers in the Frankish lands to the north from those who did not respect a safe-conduct even when issued by an electoral archbishop. On the way the French ambassador was robbed when crossing the land of jlich on the lower Rhine;1 and later, during the session of the Diet, its members were disturbed by the news that a merchant convoy had been held up and pillaged at Kronberg, presumably by a dependent of Franz von Sickingen, and an Italian merchant murdered in sight of the walls of Worms.2 The strife for food and lodgings grew acute, and there were wild scenes in the taverns, where knives were drawn. Rank and power asserted themselves everywhere: the soldiers of the princes confiscated wood for fuel, and in spite of attempts at regulation by the imperial officials, the prices of food and drink were raised to fantastic figures by the citizens and the monks in the cloisters, which did duty as hostels.3

____________________
1
Sanuto, I Diarii, XXIX, 580 f.
2
Lazarus Spengler report, April, 1521, DRA, II, 889.
3
See letters of Frankfort and Strasbourg delegates, Dec. 23, 1520, and Jan. 7, 1521, DRA, II, 770 ff.

-614-

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The Revolt of Martin Luther
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Introduction vii
  • Contents xi
  • 1 - Early Days at Home and School 3
  • 2 - The Schoolboy Abroad 20
  • 3 - Early Years at the University 32
  • 4 - The Scholastic Learning 47
  • 5 - Entrance into the Cloister 66
  • 6 - The Novitiate Year 79
  • 7 - Brother Martin of the Eremites 91
  • 8 - Student of Theology 104
  • 9 - The Young Lecturer 128
  • 10 - The Journey to Rome 161
  • 11 - Professor and Preacher at Wittenberg 179
  • 12 - Interpreter of Augustine and Paul 203
  • 13 - The Final Break with Scholasticism 224
  • 14 - The Attack on Indulgences 245
  • 15 - In Battle with the Dominicans 272
  • 16 - The Hearing at Augsburg 288
  • 17 - An Attempt at Compromise 305
  • 18 - The Leipzig Disputation the Prelude 327
  • 19 - The Leipzig Disputation the Combat 349
  • 20 - The Leipzig Disputation the Aftermath 368
  • 21 - A Battle of Polemics 395
  • 22 - Humanistic Friends and Allies 415
  • 23 - Growth as Teacher and Preacher 436
  • 24 - The Rising Tide of Revolt 463
  • 25 - The Attack on the Sacraments 479
  • 26 - The Break with Rome 491
  • 27 - Appeal to the Secular Classes 507
  • 28 - The Final Break with Church Tradition 524
  • 29 - The Bull and the Counterattack 539
  • 30 - Book-Burning on Rhine and Elbe 562
  • 31 - Prelude to the Diet at Worms 587
  • 32 - The Diet in Session 614
  • 33 - Martin before the Diet 649
  • 34 - Refusal to Compromise 670
  • Conclusion 693
  • List of Abbreviations 694
  • Selected Bibliography 695
  • Index 715
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