Academic journal article Mennonite Quarterly Review

Die Lieder Des Peter Riedemann. Studien Zum Liedgut der Taufer Im 16. Jahrhundert

Academic journal article Mennonite Quarterly Review

Die Lieder Des Peter Riedemann. Studien Zum Liedgut der Taufer Im 16. Jahrhundert

Article excerpt

Die Lieder des Peter Riedemann. Studien zum Liedgut der Taufer im 16. Jahrhundert. By Ursula Lieseberg. European University Studies. Series 1: German Language and Literature 1692. Frankfurt/Berlin/Berne/ New York/Pads/Vienna: Peter Lang. 1998. Pp. 209. $37.95.

Lieseberg's previous book, Studien zura Martyrerlied der Taufer im 16. Jahrhundert (1991) is a thorough investigation of the larger body of songs of the Swiss Brethren, the Mennonites and the Hutterian Brethren, as she refers to them. She proceeds from an examination of the sources to descriptions of what she calls primary and secondary martyr songs. That book also included useful lists of the songs, the martyrs and the melodies, and provided systematic access to a body of materials usually considered marginal.

Her new book is less ambitious but still a useful work, dealing with the 46 known songs of the Hutterite leader Peter Riedemann. In her systematic fashion Lieseberg discusses these songs in sequence in much the same way that she annotated the martyr literature. Her interest is on the contents of these texts and their relationship to Riedemann's theology as expressed in his Rechenschaften.

She devotes a major part of her study to the "chief functions" (Hauptfunktionen) of the songs as praise, religious teaching and encouragement in faith, communion, baptism and common ownership. …

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