Religion Past and Present

Get access Subject: Religious Studies
Edited by: Hans Dieter Betz, Don S. Browning†, Bernd Janowski and Eberhard Jüngel

Religion Past and Present (RPP) Online is the online version of the updated English translation of the 4th edition of the definitive encyclopedia of religion worldwide: the peerless Religion in Geschichte und Gegenwart (RGG). This great resource, now at last available in English and Online, Religion Past and Present Online continues the tradition of deep knowledge and authority relied upon by generations of scholars in religious, theological, and biblical studies. Including the latest developments in research, Religion Past and Present Online encompasses a vast range of subjects connected with religion.

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(806 words)

Author(s): Beutel, Albrecht
[German Version] The term edification (“building up”) in its metaphorical religious sense was introduced by the NT (Gk οἰκοδομή/ oikodomē, Lat. aedificatio). It denotes a central aspect of ecclesiology (Church) involving the interplay between the part and the whole. Despite both the deficient and inflationary senses the word has taken on in modern usage, its original, precise sense is vital for theological reflection on the church and the local congregation. The metaphorical use of edification in the NT, borrowed loosely from OT usage, refers t…

Edifying Literature

(3,117 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich | Weismayer, Josef | Beutel, Albrecht
[German Version] I. To the Reformation – II. Modern Era – III. Present I. To the Reformation The term “edifying literature” (or “devotional literature”) embraces all Christian literature that is not liturgical, juristic, merely informative, or scholarly (history, theology) but is meant to edify and encourage piety and Christian conduct. But the boundaries distinguishing e…


(314 words)

Author(s): Ehrenschwendtner, Marie-Luise
[German Version] (Scots Gaelic: Dun Eideann), capital of Scotland. Situated near the Firth of Forth, Castle Rock had probably long served as a stronghold when King David I founded Holyrood Abbey there and granted Edinburgh market rights in 1130. Elevated to city status by Robert the Bruce in 1329, Edinburgh rose to become the political and economic center of Scotland and …

Edinburgh Conference (1910)

(1,350 words)

Author(s): Walls, Andrew F. | Koschorke, Klaus
[German Version] I. The Conference – II. Reception in Asia, Africa, and Latin America – III. Ecumenical Significance I. The Conference The “World Missionary Conference to consider Missionary Problems in relation to the Non-Christian World” met in the assembly hall of the United Free Church of Scotland in Edinburgh from Jun 14 to 23, 1910. Originally conceived as a successor to the conferences of London …

Edmund, Saint

(142 words)

Author(s): Fichte, Jörg O.
[German Version] (Eadmund; 840–869), king of East Anglia, was slain in 869 by the Vikings after refusing to share his kingdom with the pagan conqueror Inguar. Before he was beheaded, his body, like that of St. Sebastian, was riddled with arrows. He was already being revered as a martyr shortly after his death, and in the 10th century his remains were translated to Bury St. Edmunds, whose abbey then became a pilgrimage site. Feast day, Nov 20. Jörg O. Fichte Bibliography T. Arnold, Memorials of St. Edmund's Abbey, vol. I, 1890, 3–209 F. Hervey, ed., The History of King Edmund the …


(972 words)

Author(s): Dietrich, Walter
[German Version] ( ‘edôm) means “reddish,” and the parallel term Seir ( sē'îr) “rough,” probably the brush in the mountains. They designate a landscape or ethnicity south of ¶ the Dead Sea: in the first instance, to the southeast, between Wādī l-Ḥasā and the Gulf of Aqaba, but also in the Wādī l-'Araba and the southern Negeb. “Seir” occurs first in the Amarna Letters (Amarna; EA 288.26; mid-14th cent.) and in a place list of Ramses II (mid-13th cent.), “Edom” in a letter from the eighth year of Merneptah…


(15,718 words)

Author(s): Grethlein, Christian | Zenkert, Georg | Harich-Schwarzbauer, Henriette | Fox, Michael V. | Klauck, Hans-Josef | Et al.
[German Version] I. Concept – II. Philosophy – III. Greco-Roman Antiquity – IV. Bible – V. Church History – VI. Ethics – VII. Practical Theology and Pedagogy – VIII. Judaism – IX. Islam I. Concept Traditionally, “education” has denoted the intentional interaction of adults with the younger generation in order-usually-to influence them positively; whether it makes sense to speak of education when negative goals are deliberately pursued is …

Educational Novel (Bildungsroman)

(84 words)

Author(s): Ziolkowski, Eric
[German Version] Bildungsroman (educational novel) is the label coined by Karl Morgenstern in the early 1820s for a literary genre that depicts the mental and intellectual education of the main protagonist, from childhood to maturity, thereby contributing to the reader's education ( Bildung). The prototype is C.M. Wieland's Geschichte des Agathon, although Morgenstern and likewise W. Dilthey and other later critics saw J.W. v. Goethe 's Wilhelm Meisters Lehrjahre as the preeminent example. Eric Ziolkowski Bibliography R. Selbmann, Der deutsche Bildungsroman, 1984.


(5,784 words)

Author(s): Zenkert, Georg | Preul, Reiner | Schweitzer, Friedrich | Leschinsky, Achim
[German Version] I. Terminology – II. History – III. Philosophy – IV. Philosophy of Religion, Dogmatics, Ethics – V. Practical Theology and Education – VI. Social History I. Terminology This article deals with formative education, corresponding to the German term Bildung (cf. Fr. formation). (The related article education deals with the subject area of Erziehung, covering education and training. Bildung or formation may be considered more general, with cultural overtones, while Erziehung places more emphasis on schooling.) ¶ Even in its earliest form, OHG bildunga (“creat…

Education of Adults

(2,610 words)

Author(s): Vogel, Norbert
[German Version] I. General Remarks – II. Practical Theology and Educational Theory and Practice I. General Remarks The concrete focus of this article is on the situation in Germany. 1. Institutions The pluralism of adult education agencies in Germany, which is founded in history as well as democratic theory, manifests itself in a series of institutions offering specific, sometimes also convergent educational programs. For the advancement of the public, adult education centers ( Evening classes ) are of particular significance with th…

Education, Theory of

(7,852 words)

Author(s): Nipkow, Karl Ernst | Koerrenz, Ralf | Tenorth, H.-Elmar | Schweitzer, Friedrich
[German Version] I. The Term – II. History – III. Present-Day Emphases – IV. Significance for Theology I. The Term The expression “theory of education” (or: “education theory and methodology” – Ger. Pädagogik) serves as a “collective term for all theoretical and practical endeavors in respect of education. As a theory, it refers to the essence of the teaching(s) or science(s) ‘about’ and ‘for’ education, and also to educationally significan…

Edwards, Jonathan

(560 words)

Author(s): McDermott, Gerald R.
[German Version] (Oct 5, 1703, East Windsor, CT – Mar 22, 1758, Princeton, NJ). American philosopher-theologian who described the revival (Revival/Revival movements) in his Northampton (MA) parish in A Faithful Narrative (1737) and defended the Great Awakening in The Distinguishing Marks (1741) and Some Thoughts Concerning the Revival (1743). In 1746 he published an analysis of religious experience, Religious Affections. After losing his pulpit (1750) in a controversy over communion qualifications, Edwards led a mission to Indians in Sockbridge (MA), where he wrote Freedom of …

Edward VI, King

(190 words)

Author(s): Cameron, Euan
[German Version] of England (Oct 12, 1537, Hampton Court – Jul 6, 1553, Greenwich), Henry VIII's only legitimate son by Jane Seymour. Edward VI was educated by such Renaissance scholars as John Cheke (1514–1557), Richard Coxe (1500–1581) and Roger Ascham (1515–1568) who inclined towards Protestantism, and until 1549 was dominated by his uncle Edward Seymour, Duke of Somerset and Lord Protector. Somerset began to introduce the Reformation in England. He enhanced state control over the church, introduced Thomas Cranmer's Protestant Book of Homilies (1547), oversaw the first …

Edzard, Esdras

(151 words)

Author(s): Friedrich, Martin
[German Version] (or Edzardus) (Jun 28, 1629, Hamburg – Jan 1, 1708, Hamburg). After studying Protestant theology and oriental languages, he received the Lic.theol. in 1656 and was a private scholar in Hamburg from 1657. From 1659 on, Edzard taught Hebrew language and literature to many students, including A.H. Francke (I), while also working for the conversion of the Jews of Ham…

Effective History/Reception History

(5,400 words)

Author(s): Steinmann, Michael | Schüle, Andreas | Rösel, Martin | Luz, Ulrich | Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] I. Philosophy – II. Fundamental Theology – III. Applications I. Philosophy The concept of effective history ( Wirkungsgeschichte) takes on philosophical significance in the hermeneutics of H.G. Gadamer, where it represents the attempt to clarify the fundamental requirement for understanding texts and make this understanding transparent in its own historically conditioned context. …

Egard, Paul

(199 words)

Author(s): Sträter, Udo
[German Version] (c. 1580, Kellinghusen, Holstein – 1655, Nortorf), a Holstein pastor; after studies in Rostock, he was initially deacon, then rector in Rendsburg, and, from 1610, pastor in Nortorf. Egard was a dedicated advocate of inner-Lutheran church critique, the author of edifying books and of practice-orientated interpretations of the Bible. As a supporter and defender of J. Arndt ( Ehrenrettung Johannis Arndten, 1624), he is assigned to the orthodox wing of the Arndt School. Egard was the first Luther…

Egbert of York

(134 words)

Author(s): Fichte, Jörg O.
[German Version] (died 766) belonged to the Northumbrian royal family and was a reforming archbishop of York (from 735 an archdiocese once again) who ¶ endeavored to abolish abuses in church administration and pastoral care. He founded the famous cathedral school in which he taught theology himself – Alcuin was one of his students. The numerous writings attributed to him include the canon collection Excerptiones e dictis et canonibus SS. Patrum (transmitted from dates in the 11th cent.), the Dialogus ecclesiasticae institutionis, a collection of canon law decisions, the Poenitential…

Egbert, Saint

(121 words)

Author(s): Fichte, Jörg O.
[German Version] (Ecgberht; died 729) was a Northumbrian monk from the monastery at Lindisfarne who voluntarily exiled himself to Ireland in order to attain spiritual perfection. From there, he prepared the missions of Wigbert to Frisia and of Willibrord to Germany. From 716 on, he lived on Iona, where he enforced the Roman calculation for the date for Easter and imposed the Roman tonsure on the monks. His feast day is April 24. Jörg O. Fichte Bibliography Beda, Historia Ecclesiastica, ed. C. Plummer, 1896, 3.4; 4.3; 5.9–10 W. Levison, England and the Continent in the Eighth Century, 1946 M.…

Egede, Hans

(141 words)

Author(s): Haanes, Vidar L.
[German Version] (Jan 21, 1686 Harstad, Norway – Nov 5, 1758 Stubbekøbing, Denmark), “The Apostle of Greenland.” From 1707 to 1717 Egede was a Lutheran pastor in Lofoten, Norway. He was a pioneer missionary to Greenland in 1722. Egede's wife, Gertrud Rask, was a remarkable missionary in her own right. After many difficulties, their unselfish service during a smallpox epidemic…

Egeria (Aetheria)

(340 words)

Author(s): Röwekamp, Georg
[German Version] The Lady Egeria (also known as Aetheria) is the author of a personal pilgrimage account to the sacred sites (III) in the Near East that was discovered in 1884 by Gian F. Gamurrini in an 11th-century manuscript. The author's name can only be deduced from a letter written by Valerius of Bierzo (died 691), the various versions of which attest to several different fo…
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