University of Erfurt

Bibliotheca Gerhardina

The theologians Johann Gerhard (1582-1637) and Johann Ernst Gerhard (1621-1668) shaped the image of Lutheran orthodoxy in the 17th Century to a large extent. Well-known are the numerous edifying writings and the nine-volume edition of "loci theologici" of Johann Gerhard. His son earned great merit in the Oriental languages. The diverse interests of the Gerhards led to a universal library with a broad base, which included all the former areas of science. It was acquired in 1678 for the ducal collections in Gotha and contained over 6,000 individual titles, of which more than 4,000 of the stock still exist today. With the acquisition of this significant Protestant scholarly library of the early modern period, the 203 volume handwritten legacy of the Gerhards has also been integrated into the ducal stock. It consists of the extensive correspondence of the Gerhards, their theological work manuscripts, life documents and letter collections of the 16th Century, and also of legal, medical, philosophical, philological, historical and scientific texts.

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