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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Lange, Ernst

(459 words)

Author(s): Orth, Gottfried
[German Version] (Apr 19, 1927, Munich – Jul 3, 1974, Windhaag, Austria). In the German churches of the 20th century, Lange was an ecumenist second only to D. Bonhoeffer. He was known in Germany for his contributions to church reform, homiletics, and the theory of adult church education (Education of ¶ adults). In 1960, together with Alfred Butenuth, he initiated the reform project of the “storefront church” in Berlin-Spandau (1960–1965; 1963–1965 professor of practical theology in Berlin): the church must be reformed as a mission to the world. …

Lange, Helene

(207 words)

Author(s): Roggenkamp-Kaufmann, Antje
[German Version] (Apr 9, 1848, Oldenburg – May 13, 1930, Berlin) was a prominent personality in the middle-class women's movement (see also G. Bäumer). Orphaned at an early age, Lange was raised in a Württemberg vicarage. She moved to Berlin in 1871, trained as a teacher, and was appointed director of a teachers' seminary for women in 1876. She initiated the academ-¶ ization of the higher girls' education by introducing curricula for secondary schools (1889) and grammar schools (1893). Her commitment, which led to the founding of the Allgemeiner Deutscher …

Lange, Joachim

(298 words)

Author(s): Sträter, Udo
[German Version] (Oct 26, 1670, Gardelegen, Altmark – May 7, 1744, Halle). After attending school in Osterwieck, Quedlinburg (1687), and Magdeburg (1689), Lange entered the university at Leipzig in the fall of 1689. There he joined A. Francke and the Collegium Philobiblicum and because a private tutor for C. Thomasius. In 1690 he followed Francke to Erfurt and in 1692 to Halle; in 1693 he moved to Berlin and joined the circle around P. Spener, K. v Canstein, and J. Schade. After receiving his master's degree in absentia from Halle, he was appointed principal in Köslin, Farther Pom…

Langer, Susanne Knauth

(139 words)

Author(s): Lachmann, Rolf
[German Version] (Dec 20, 1895, New York – Jul 17, 1985, Old Lyme, CT), philosopher, was influenced by the organic philosophy of A. Whitehead and E. Cassirer's philosophy of symbolic conception centered around the distinction between discursive and presentative symbolization. Langer demonstrated the fruitfulness of this approach in an interpretation of rites and myths, but especially in a universal philosophy of art. From the mid-1950s, Langer developed a foundation for anthropology based on process theory. ¶ Thought was reconstructed as the result of an evolution of em…

Langeveld, Martin Jan

(214 words)

Author(s): Heimbrock, Hans Günter
[German Version] (Oct 30, 1905, Haarlem, The Netherlands – Dec 17, 1989, Naarden, The Netherlands), a prominent Dutch educator of the 20th century. From 1937 to 1972, he was professor of the philosophy of education at the University of Utrecht and the founder of the “Utrecht School.” Historically, Langeveld stands at the intersection of a pedagogics oriented on the humanities and a pedagogics oriented on the theory of action. He developed the notion of upbringing in constant consideration of the h…

Langgässer, Elisabeth

(676 words)

Author(s): Niefanger, Dirk
[German Version] (Feb 23, 1899, Alzey – Jul 25, 1950, Rheinzabern) was a poet shaped by Catholicism, important especially in the years immediately after World War II. The daughter of a Jewish (later Catholic) architect, she trained as a teacher in Darmstadt. She was dismissed from teaching after the birth of a daughter out of wedlock, who would later become the author Cordelia Edvardson (born Jan 1, 1929). The father was the Jewish constitutional lawyer, Hermann Heller (1891–1933). From 1930, Lang…

Langhans, Ernst Friedrich

(190 words)

Author(s): Raupp, Werner
[German Version] (May 2, 1829, Wimmis near Thun, Switzerland – Mar 17, 1880, Bern), was pastor at the Waldau sanatorium (near Bern) from 1858 and became associate professor (1871), then full professor (1876) of systematic theology and the history of religion in Bern; he was a cofounder of the Kirchlicher Reformverein (Church Reform Society, 1866). Langhans caused a stir with his profusely documented work Pietismus und Christenthum im Spiegel der äußeren Mission [Pietism and Christianity in the light of foreign mission; 1864], in which he sharply criticized Pietist/…

Lang, Johann

(213 words)

Author(s): Scheible, Heinz
[German Version] (1486/1488, Erfurt – Apr 2, 1548, Erfurt). From 1500, Lang studied in his home town ¶ (B.A. 1503), where he joined the Augustinian Hermits in 1505/1506 and was ordained priest in 1508. With like-minded Luther, he was transferred to Wittenberg in 1551 (M.A. 1512, Bacc. biblicus 1515). From 1512 to 1516, he was professor of ethics. Having been recalled to Erfurt in 1516, Lang became prior and continued his studies of theology (Bacc. sententiarus 1516, Lic. theol. 1517, Dr. theol. 1519). He belonged…

Lang, John Dunmore

(179 words)

Author(s): Hutchinson, Mark
[German Version] (Aug 25, 1799, Grennock, Inverclyde, Scotland – Aug 8, 1878, Sydney, Australia), Presbyterian minister, politician, educationalist, and propagandist. The first Presbyterian to the mainland of Australia (moving to Sydney in 1823), Lang helped local independent churches adapt to Presbyterian structures and link with the Established Church of Scotland. Evangelical, energetic if troublesome, Lang was responsible for the migration of most of the first generation of Australian Presbyter…

Langland, William

(550 words)

Author(s): Burrow, John
[German Version] (c. 1330 – c. 1390, London?), Middle English poet. The son of an Oxfordshire gentleman, Langland was brought up in the west of England. He spent much of his adult life in humble circumstances in London, as a married clerk in minor orders. His only known writing is the alliterative poem, Piers Plowman, on which he worked for many years. The 55 surviving manuscripts of the poem show it in three main states: the A version (dated c. 1365–1370), the B version (c. 1370–1377), and the C version (in the 1380s). Piers Plowman describes a series of visions (10 in the B version), d…

Language

(7,082 words)

Author(s): Maier, Bernhard | Hennigfeld, Jochem | Tietz, Christiane | Schroeter-Wittke, Harald | Sørensen, Jørgen Skov | Et al.
[German Version] I. Linguistics and Religious Studies – II. Philosophy – III. Philosophy of Religion – IV. Fundamental Theology – V. Ethics – VI. Practical Theology – VII. Missiology – VIII. Liturgics I. Linguistics and Religious Studies 1. Linguistics As studied by linguistics (Philology), language is an inventory of audible signs combined ¶ according to specific rules to facilitate interpersonal communication. There is a general distinction between language as a transindividual system of signs ( langue) and its actualization by an individual speaker ( parole). Within …

Language, Liturgical

(7 words)

[German Version] Liturgical Languages

Languet, Hubert

(185 words)

Author(s): Dingel, Irene
[German Version] (1518, Vitteaux, France - Sep 30, 1581, Antwerp, Belgium), studied law in Poitiers and earned a doctorate in Padua. He was won over to the Reformation after reading Melanchthon's Loci communes, whereupon he went to Wittenberg in 1549 to meet the praeceptor. The latter's recommendation to the councilor of Electoral Saxony, Ulrich von Mordeisen, enabled him to enter the service of August I, Elector of Saxony (until 1577). Diplomatic missions led him, among other places, to Paris and to the imperial court in Vienna. He was …

Laodiceans, Letter to the

(305 words)

Author(s): Günther, Matthias
[German Version] The origin of the Latin Epistle to the Laodiceans ( Ep. Lao.), transmitted in numerous biblical manuscripts since the 5th/6th century and later translated back into Greek, remains a puzzle. Widely distributed in the West, it cannot be identified either with the correspondence to the Laodiceans mentioned in Col 4:16b ( contra Lindemann, who speculates that Colossians may have been intended for Laodicea) or with the letter to the Laodiceans rejected in the Muratorian Fragment (ll, 64f.) as a Marcionite counterfeit. The arguments for…

Laos

(823 words)

Author(s): Gern, Wolfgang
[German Version] A Southeast Asian state situated between Vietnam, China, Burma, Thailand, and Cambodia, Laos has a population of approx. 5 million (growth rate: 2.6%), of which 58% are Hīnayāna Buddhists of the Theravāda school, 34% adherents of tribal religions (mostly among the mountain tribes), 2% Christians, and 1% Muslims; Confucianism and Taoism are also represented. The population is made up of a total of 70 ethnic groups and tribes; 55% of the inhabitants are Lao Loum (“Lowland Lao”), 27%…

Lao Tsu

(773 words)

Author(s): Röllicke, Hermann-Josef
[German Version] (Lao Zi; Chinese “Old Master”) is the historically unverifiable but traditional and glorified author of an ancient Chinese composition of the same name, the scope of which had not yet either been fixed or sorted or even given a title in the 4th and 3rd centuries bce. It seems probable that the Jixia Academy of the northeastern state of Qi played a decisive role in the editorial consolidation of the text in the 3rd century bce. The title Tao te Ching first appears on the basis of the rearrangement of the two sections of the book and after the end of the Han Dynasty (206 bce–220 ce). Ot…

La Peyrère, Isaac de

(186 words)

Author(s): Strohm, Christoph
[German Version] (probably 1596, Bordeaux – Jan 30, 1676, near Paris). Having studied jurisprudence and absorbed the ideas of Calvinism and late French Humanism, La Peyrère was suspected of atheism within the Reformed Church as early as 1626. In 1656, he attempted to evade the acute threat from the Spanish-Flemish Inquisition by converting to Catholicism and joining the order of the Oratorians. His messianic theory divides the history of salvation into three periods: the election of the Jews as th…

Laplace, Pierre Simon

(361 words)

Author(s): Hess, Peter M.J.
[German Version] (Mar 23, [not 28], 1749, Beaumont-en-Auge, Normandy – Mar 5, 1827, Paris). Laplace briefly studied theology at Caen, until his fascination with mathematics drew him to Paris. Under the influence of J. de R. d'Alembert he turned his attention to problems in analysis and in mathematical astronomy. The brilliance of his prolific papers won him an election to the Academy of Sciences at the age of 24, and to a professorship at the École Militaire. Laplace contributed to the progressive…

Lardner, Nathaniel

(178 words)

Author(s): Leppin, Volker
[German Version] (Jun 6, 1684, Hawkhurst, Kent – Jul 24, 1768, Hawkhurst, Kent). After his formation at a Presbyterian academy in London from 1699 to 1703 and studying in Utrecht and Leiden, Lardner was an independent preacher from 1709, and a private chaplain and tutor from 1713. While officiating as an assistant preacher in London (from 1721), he worked on his main publication, a work of popular enlightenment entitled The Credibility of the Gospel History (17 vols., 1727–1757), which was based on a series of lectures. The basic notions of historical criticism impart…

Larraín Errázuriz, Manuel

(186 words)

Author(s): Campos, Maximiliano Salinas
[German Version] (Dec 17, 1900, Santiago de Chile – Jun 22, 1966, Talca), bishop of Talca (1938–1966), chief representative of the Catholic Action in Chile (1950–1962), vice-rector of the Universidad Católica de Chile and, in 1964, president of the CELAM (Latin American Council of Bishops). Larraín joined the reformers at Vatican II and supported the farmers' movements in his diocese and country. ¶ Together with Cardinal R. Silva Henríquez, he initiated the agrarian reform of the church's agricultural properties. He advocated the democracia cristiana in terms of replacing the …
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