Dr. Martin Christ


Junior Fellow (Max Weber Centre for Advanced Cultural and Social Studies)


Max-Weber-Kolleg (Steinplatz 2) / Raum 507c (4. OG)

+49 361 737-2809

Office hours

nach Vereinbarung

Visiting address

Max-Weber-Kolleg für kultur- und sozialwissenschaftliche Studien
Steinplatz 2
99085 Erfurt

Mailing address

Universität Erfurt
Max-Weber-Kolleg für kultur- und sozialwissenschaftliche Studien
Postfach 90 02 21
99105 Erfurt

Dr. Martin Christ


Panel organiser at Deutscher Historikertag 2023 in Leipzig: "City Branding: Urbanity and the Construction of City Images in Europe and South Asia", with Susanne Rau & Sara Keller

New article: ‘The London Bills of Mortality. State of the Art and Future Directions of Research’, Bulletin of the German Historical Institute (2023), pp. 39–75.

Video: Talk on 'Spatialisation' at the 2022 annual conference of the "Religion and Urbanity" group (FOR 2779)

Personal Information

  • 10/2022-04/2023 Parental leaves (50%)
  • Since 10/2018 Postdoctoral Researcher (Habilitand), Max Weber Centre (University of Erfurt), Humanities Centre for Advanced Studies "Religion and Urbanity" (FOR 2779)
  • 10/2017-09/2018 Teach@Tübingen Fellow, Tübingen University
  • 10/2013-09/2017 PhD (funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council), University of Oxford. Supervisor: Prof. Dr. Lyndal Roper, Thesis: Biographies of a Reformation: Religious Change and Confessional Coexistence in Upper Lusatia, 1520-1635
  • 10/2014-09/2015 Guest PhD Researcher at Technical University of Dresden. Supervisor: Prof. Dr. Gerd Schwerhoff (funded by Alexander von Humboldt Stiftung)
  • 10/2012-09/2013 Master of Letters (Distinction), St. Andrews, Supervisor: Prof. Dr. Bridget Heal
  • 10/2009-09/2012 Bachelor of Arts (First Class Honours), University of Warwick

Download detailed CV (pdf)



Research Focus

  • Religious and Confessional Coexistence, especially in central Europe
  • History of Death and Burials
  • Urban History, especially England and Germany
  • Conversions, especially to Lutheranism
  • Group Formation in Historical Perspective

Research Project

Urban Orders of the Dead. Burials in London and Munich, c. 1550-1870

The project focuses on two important urban centres of the early modern period, London and Munich, in order to analyse the profound changes in the treatment of dead bodies during the period. The comparison between Munich and London makes it possible to look at the dynamics of the re-location of the dead and the associated ideas about urban space and society in a comparative perspective. Through a comparative look at the Anglican commercial metropolis of London and Catholic Munich, a small town by comparison, it is possible to ask how the cities changed as a result of the reorganisation of the dead during this period and how confessional and urban factors influenced each other in the process.

One of the central theses of the project is that the importance of the dead for the cities can only be properly understood if the dead are analysed in their entirety and thus the entire urban necrogeography is examined. This approach means a reconstruction of "Deathscapes", which bring together diverse burial sites that have previously been considered separately. This includes urban, courtly, Jewish or dishonourable burial spaces. In doing so, the project sheds light on the different discourses, groups of actors, practices and spaces that played an important role in the reordering of the dead. The project also examines conflicts between different actors and disruptions in the treatment of the dead, for example during plague epidemics or the Great Fire (1666). The project shows that how town magistrates, clerics and courtly actors dealt with the dead can tell us much about urban societies as a whole. In order to conceptualise this change, the project works with Michel Foucault's concept of power and uses an adaptation of biopower, which shows that control over the dead was always linked to control over the living.



  • Biographies of a Reformation. Religious Change and Confessional Coexistence in Upper Lusatia, c. 1520-1635 (Oxford/New York: Oxford University Press, 2022).

Winner of the 2021 RefoRC Book Award, Winner of the 2021 Gerald Strauss Prize, Winner of the 2021 Ecclesiastical History Society Book Prize

  • Reviews (published by April 2023): Alexander Kästner (Historische Zeitschrift); Christophe Duhamelle (Francia Recensio); Graeme Murdock (Huguenot Society Journal); Friedrich Pollack (Lětopis. Zeitschrift für sorbische Sprache, Geschichte und Kultur); Christine Marianne Schoen (The Journal of Ecclesiastical History); Paul W. Knoll (Austrian History Yearbook)

Edited Volumes

  • Death and the City in Premodern Europe (with Carmen González Gutiérrez), Special Issue of Mortality. An Interdisciplinary Journal of Death and Dying (2022).
  • The Moment of Death in Early Modern Europe (with Benedikt Brunner), under contract in the series “Intersections” (Brill) (2023).
  • Early Modern Cultures of Death: Graveyards, Burials and Commemoration in Central Europe, c. 1500-1800 (with Petr Hrachovec and Jan Zdichynec), under consideration in the series “Studies in Central European History” (Brill) (2023).

Journal Articles and Book Chapters

  • ‘The London Bills of Mortality. State of the Art and Future Directions of Research’, Bulletin of the German Historical Institute (2023), pp. 39–75.  
  • ‘Text, Image and Music: The Hymns of Martin Behm (1557–1622) and Religious Education in Context’, in: Hyun-Ah Kim (ed.), Music and Religious Education in Early Modern Europe (Leiden: Brill, 2023), pp. 169–197.
  • ‘The Conversion of Gottfried Rabe: Visual Propaganda and Conversion in Early Seventeenth-Century Germany’, Renaissance Studies (2023), pp. 36–56.
  • Entangling Urban and Religious History: A New Methodology (Version 1) (with Martin Fuchs, Elisa Iori, Sara Keller, Asuman Lätzer-Lasar, Klara-Maeve O'Reilly, Susanne Rau, Jörg Rüpke, Emiliano R. Urciuoli, Simone Wagner). Zenodo (2022) https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.7002796
  • ‘Co-Spatiality in the Early Modern European Bedchamber’, Religion and Urbanity Online (2022).
  • ‘Between Divine Intervention and Urban Authority: The Gute Policey in Early Modern Baltic Towns’, Religion and Urbanity Online (2022).
  • with Saskia Limbach, ‘Möglichkeiten und Grenzen konfessioneller Koexistenz. Briefwechsel, Studien- und Druckorte Oberlausitzer Geistlicher in der zweiten Hälfte des 16. Jahrhunderts’, Archiv für Reformationsgeschichte (2022), pp. 233–265.
  • ‘Friedhöfe in gemischtkonfessionellen deutschen Städten der Frühen Neuzeit’, Zeitschrift für Moderne Stadtgeschichte (2022), pp. 23–38.
  • ‘Preaching During Plague Epidemics in Early Modern Germany, c. 1520–1618’, Studies in Church History (2022), pp. 91–111.
  • ‘Sensing Multiconfessional Towns in Early Modern Germany’, German History 40/ 3 (2022), pp. 317–339.
  • ‘Introduction: Death and the City in Premodern Europe’ (with Carmen González Gutiérrez) Death and the City in Premodern Europe (Special Issue: Mortality, 2022), pp. 129–143.
  • ‘Regulating Urban Death in Early Modern German Towns’, Death and the City in Premodern Europe (Special Issue: Mortality, 2022), pp. 206–221.
  • ‘Converting Tondalos: Pilgrimages, Music and Sound in Early Modern Lutheranism’, in Matthew Laube et. al. (eds.) Theatres of Belief, Music and Conversion in Early Modern Europe (Brepols, 2021), pp. 25–43.
  • ‘Between Ego Documents and Anti-Catholic Propaganda. Printed Revocation Sermons in Seventeenth-Century Lutheran Germany’, in Nina Lamal, Jamie Cumby, Helmer J. Helmers (eds.), Print and Power in Early Modern Europe (1500–1800) (Brill: Leiden, 2021), pp. 390–406.
  • ‘Das Jahrhundert der Reformation in einer lausitzischen Kleinstadt. Lauban und seine lutherischen Prediger, ca. 1520–1620’, Neues Lausitzisches Magazin 142 (2020), pp. 47–81.  
  • ‘Conflict and Coexistence. The Case of Early Modern Upper Lusatia’, in Gerhild Scholz Williams, Sigrun Haude, Christian Schneider (ed.), Rethinking Europe: War and Peace in the Early Modern German Lands (Chloe. Beihefte zum Daphnis; Brill, Leiden 2019), pp. 215-233. 
  • with Friedrich Pollack ‘Die Reformation der Sorben. Chancen und Probleme einer akteurszentrierten Perspektive‘, in Friedrich Pollack, Lubina Mahlig, Susanne Hose (eds.), Reformation und Konfessionsbildung bei den Kleinen Völkern Ostmitteleuropas. Die Lausitzen und das Baltikum im Vergleich (Schriften des Sorbischen Instituts 67, Domowina Verlag: Bautzen, 2019), pp. 111–126.
  • 'Labeling Ethnicities: Das Beispiel der Sorben in der Frühen Neuzeit‘, in Matthias Bähr, Florian Kühnel (ed.), Verschränkte Ungleichheit. Praktiken der Intersektionalität in der Frühen Neuzeit (Zeitschrift für Historische Forschung, Beihefte, Band 56, 2018), pp. 120-152.
  • 'Between Domestic and Public: Johann Leisentrit’s (1527-1586) Instructions for the Sick and Dying of Upper Lusatia’, in Marco Faini, Alessia Meneghin (eds.), Domestic Devotions in the Early-Modern World (Intersections; Brill: Leiden, 2018), pp. 82–107.
  • ‘Von Kühen, Ketzern und Chimären. Zur Darstellung religiöser Persönlichkeiten des frühen sechzehnten Jahrhunderts in den Ratsannlen des Johannes Hass‘, in Lars-Arne Dannenberg, Mario Müller (ed.), Stadtchronistik in den Lausitzen in vergleichender Perspektive (Beihefte zum Neuen Lausitzischen Magazin 19, Hildesheim 2018), pp. 131-151.
  • ‘Catholic Cultures of Lutheranism? Confessional Ambiguity and Syncretism in Sixteenth-Century Upper Lusatia’, in Kat Hill (ed.), Cultures of Lutheranism: Reformation Repertoires in the Early Modern World (Past and Present Supplements 12), 2017, pp. 165-188.
  • ‘The Town Chronicle of Johannes Hass: History Writing and Divine Intervention in the Early Sixteenth Century’, German History, 1/2017, pp. 1-20.

For the General Public

with Sara Keller, Jörg Rüpke, Erfurt, the Blue City | Die blaue Stadt (Erfurt, 2020).

Reviews and Conference Reports

  • Francia recensio
  • traverse. Zeitschrift für Geschichte
  • European History Quarterly
  • History. The Journal of the Historical Association
  • Bulletin of the German Historical Institute
  • H-Soz-Kult
  • German History
  • Historische Zeitschrift
  • Zeitschrift für Historische Forschung

Beiträge für die Blogs