The Schwenckfeld Bible

THE REFORMATION was a time of reawakening of Bible study, and Caspar Schwenckfeld was a serious student of the Bible. His personal Bible, pictured here and on our cover was printed in Worms, Germany, in 1529, by Anton Koberger. (Koberger had printed a German translation of the Scriptures in Nurnberg in 1483—the year of Luther’s birth, and 51 years before Luther’s own translation of 1534.)

Schwenckfeld’s detailed notes throughout the text show how exhaustive and penetrating was his reading and reflection on the biblical books. Above is the book of Genesis; the woodcut shows the creation, Fall, and expulsion of Adam and Eve. Below is a portion of the book of Psalms, Schwenckfeld especially loved this part of the Bible and viewed it as prophetic of the coming of Christ.

The notes are those of Schwenckfeld and of his scholarly follower Adam Reissner, who possesed Schwenckfeld’s Bible after his death. This Bible is preserved, along with many other reformation-era documents and later Schwenckfelder writings, in the Schwenckfelder Library in Pennsylvania.

By the Editors

[Christian History originally published this article in Christian History Issue #21 in 1989]

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