Protestantism and Primogeniture in Early Modern Germany

Paula Sutter Fichtner

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"The book relates primarily to the development of early modern German states, on which it has much to offer. . . . It also addresses such themes as marriage, the role of women and religiosity in the higher echelons of German society. It is essential reading for anyone interested in Germany in the first two post-Reformation centuries."—M. J. Kennedy, New German Studies

"Challenging a commonplace in historiography, the author argues against the identification of the Protestant Reformation with the rise of absolutist princely states in early modern Germany. . . . Based on family correspondence, Fürstenspiegel, and legal records, Fichtner reconstructs the impact of confessional allegiance on the politics of princely inheritance."—Ronald Po-chia Hsia, Catholic Historical Review

"This little book offers a big corrective to a commonly held view of the Reformation. . . . As Fichtner shows convincingly, the relationship between religious discipline and political self-interest is far more complicated than scholars have supposed. . . . The great merit of Fichtner’s study is to make persuasively clear that historians must take religion seriously as an independent interest that, to be sure, could be shaped by political and economic interests but could also shape them in turn."—Mark U. Edwards, Jr., Renaissance Quarterly

"This is the best statement on religion and politics in early modern Germany that I can remember reading. The book is fascinating for scholars and students alike."—Steven Ozment, Harvard University

A winner of the American Academy of Religion’s 1991 Awards for Excellence in the Study of Religion
ISBN: 9780300241808
Publication Date: September 10, 1989