"David Collins has provided a deeply-nuanced and compelling analysis of the intersection of medieval hagiography, humanist scholarship, and reforming agendas in Germany during the generations of Erasmus and Luther. In the process, he illuminates complex relationships between the devotional pieties of, on the one hand, the late middle ages, and, on the other, the reformations of the sixteenth century. This excellent book will be of interest to students of both medieval and early modern Christianity." --Thomas Head, author of Hagiography and the Cult of Saints: The Diocese of Orléans, 800-1200
"In this brilliantly structured and meticulously researched study, Collins demonstrates the compelling interest of saints' lives authored by a range of northern intellectuals. Steering deftly between the Scylla of Erasmus's acclaimed life of St. Jerome and the Charybdis of Luther's equally acclaimed mockery of the saints, Collins recovers the fascinating, nuanced contexts of hagiographic composition in the liminal period 1470-1530. The four central chapters bring to life holy bishops, eccentric hermits, patriotic authors, and demanding patrons. Anyone with an interest in how medieval devotions survived Europe's passage to modernity will want to read this book." --Alison Knowles Frazier, author of Possible Lives: Authors And Saints In Renaissance Italy
"Collins's subtle and nuanced analysis forces the reader to reconfigure his or her understanding of hagiography ... [an] important and rewarding study." --Catholic Historical Review
is a valuable contribution to our understanding of pre-Refromation German humanism and its relationship to Catholicism."-- R. Emmet McLaughlin, The American Historical Review
About the Author
David Collins is an Assistant Professor of Medieval and Early Modern European History at Georgetown University.