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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La Salle, Jean Baptiste de

(313 words)

Author(s): Schotte, Alexandra
[German Version] (Apr 30, 1651, Reims – Apr 7, 1719, Rouen), was a pastor and educator who founded the French primary school system. He was canonized in 1900. The son of an old French aristocratic family, La Salle was ordained to the priesthood in 1678 and appointed cathedral canon in Reims in the same year. He acquired his first impressions of educational practice while working in the institute of the “Sisters of the Infant Jesus” (School Sisters) established by his spiritual mentor Abbé Nicolas …

Läsare

(345 words)

Author(s): Montgomery, Ingun
[German Version] (“readers”). The so-called “läsare” go back to the Swedish Herrnhuter revival movement (Bohemian and Moravian Brethren, Revival/Revival Movements). The movement began around 1750 in Västergötland, where the appellation läsare was first used for edification meetings characterized by diligent Bible readings. The readings attained their greatest significance in Norrland, where they gave rise to a deep and austere piety that manifested itself in frequent “village praying hours” during which laypersons read aloud…

Lasaulx, Amalie von

(204 words)

Author(s): Berlis, Angela
[German Version] (Oct 19, 1815, Koblenz – Jan 28, 1872, Vallendar) joined the order of the Borromeans (Sister Augustine) in Nancy in 1840, trained as a pharmacist, and began working at Aachen Hospital in 1842. She took permanent vows in 1843 and offici-¶ ated as the first mother superior of the St. Johannis Hospital in Bonn from 1849 to 1871, becoming widely known through care of the wounded from the German-Danish War (1864) and the Austro-Prussian War (1866). Lasaulx concerned herself with the theological issues of the time and cultivat…

Las Casas, Bartolomé de

(815 words)

Author(s): Delgado, Mariano
[German Version] (1484, Seville – Jul 18, 1566, Madrid). From 1502 to 1514, Las Casas was a prospector, field chaplain (ordained priest in 1507), and encomendero in Hispaniola (Dominican Republic, Haiti) and Cuba. At Pentecost in 1514 he was converted to a messianic Christianity out of pity and compassion for the Indians (Native American Indians), in whom he saw “scourged Christs.” Appointed Protector de los Indios by Cardinal F. Jiménez de Cisneros in 1516, he led an unsuccessful mission in Hispa…

Lascaux Grotto

(263 words)

Author(s): Koch, Guntram
[German Version] is a long, multi-branched cave located in the vicinity of Montignac (Dordogne, near Périgueux) that was discovered in 1940. Its walls and ceilings are decorated with the most extensive cylce of paintings ever discovered in a prehistoric cave. At first, they were very well preserved, but have suffered greatly from algae. The cave was closed in 1963 and a viewing copy was installed nearby. Almost 1,500 individual depictions have been counted. Animals, especially wild horses, but als…

Lasitius, Johann

(249 words)

Author(s): Meyer, Dietrich
[German Version] (Jan Lasicki; 1533 or 1534, Lasice – after Jan, 1599). From the lower Polish nobility and with a humanist education, Lasitius joined the Reformed in Poland. As the tutor of the sons of the Polish nobility, he visited the Western European centers of education in Strasbourg, Geneva, Zürich, Basel, Paris, and Heidelberg, traveled to England, Italy, and Bohemia, and maintained contacts with Calvin, T. Beza, and S. Castellio. He suffered from the schisms of his church in Poland (Antitr…

Lasker-Schüler, Else

(382 words)

Author(s): Meier, Andreas
[German Version] ( née Elisabeth Schüler; Feb 11, 1869, Elbertfeld – Jan 22, 1945, Jerusalem). “The greatest lyric poet Germany ever had” (G. Benn) was the daughter of a Jewish banker. In 1894 she married Berthold Lasker, a physician, with whom she moved to Berlin. There through Peter Hille ( Das Peter Hille Buch, 1906) and the Neue Gemeinschaft, founded by Heinrich and Julius Hart, she came into contact with the bohemian world of Berlin. During a second marriage (1903–1912) to Georg Lewin, whom she gave the pseudonym Herwarth Walden – the background of her autobiographical Mein Herz (1912)…

Laski, Jan

(302 words)

Author(s): Zschoch, Hellmut
[German Version] (à Lasco; 1499, Łask – Jan 8, 1560, Pińczów). The scion of high Polish nobility, Laski received a broad Humanistic education as a young man. A period of study with Erasmus of Rotterdam in Basel in 1525 left an indelible impression on him. Political circumstances prevented a career in the church hierarchy of Poland. Contacts with Melanchthon in 1537 and A. Hardenberg in 1539 indicated his sympathy for the Reformation, which was recognized in 1542 when he was appointed superintenden…

Lassalle, Ferdinand

(290 words)

Author(s): Jähnichen, Traugott
[German Version] (to 1846: Lassal; Apr 11, 1825, Breslau [Wrocław] – Aug 31, 1864, Geneva, following a duel). On May 23, 1863, Lassalle became president of the first German labor party, the General German Workers' Association, one of the two parties that later formed the Social Democratic Party. He came from a well-to-do merchant family of liberal, assimilated Jews in Breslau. As a student of law and philosophy in Breslau, Berlin, and Paris, he was attracted to the left-wing Hegelians. During the …

Lasso, Orlando di

(376 words)

Author(s): Körndle, Franz
[German Version] (Orlandus Lassus, Orlando de Lassus; 1532 probably at Mons, Spanish Hainaut – Jun 14, 1594, Munich), Franco-Flemish composer. Taken into the service of Ferdinando Gonzaga, viceroy of Sicily, he came to Italy (Mantua, Genoa, Palermo, Naples, and Rome), where in 1553/1554 he was director of music for the Basilica of St. John Lateran. In 1554, however, he returned to his homeland. After a brief stay in England, he worked in Antwerp, where he published his first book of motets. From there he was summoned to Munich in 1556 by Duke Albrecht V of ¶ Bavaria, as a tenor and compose…

Last Judgment

(2,320 words)

Author(s): Hjelde, Sigurd | Sauter, Gerhard | Klein, Peter K.
[German Version] I. History of Religions – II. Dogmatics – III. Art History I. History of Religions The Last Judgment is a divine judgment of all humankind that takes place at the end of time (End of the world). Unlike the particular judgment of each individual immediately after death, it is necessarily associated with the idea of universal history, which plays a fundamental role in Zoroastrianism (Zarathustra) as well as in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Here the understanding of reality is shaped by the eon…

Last Sacraments

(9 words)

[German Version] Anointing of the Sick

Late Antique Religions

(575 words)

Author(s): Hahn, Johannes
[German Version] The “Constantinian turn” in 312 ce, after which Christianity and the church were massively promoted by the state, was not matched by a general decline of pagan (polytheistic) cults in Late Antiquity and the centuries immediately following. The 2nd and 3rd centuries had witnessed new religious developments such as the invasion of Eastern cults, worship of the sun, and the increasing popularity of oracles. Now in the 4th century, despite growing imperial pressure (conflict over the altar…

Late Antiquity

(1,073 words)

Author(s): Schneider, Helmuth
[German Version] Ever since C.-L. de Montesquieu and E. Gibbon, Roman history of the 4th and 5th centuries has been viewed primarily as a history of decadence and decline. The centuries preceding the fall of the Roman Empire in the West were interpreted consistently as a period of deterioration that affected architecture, art, and literature as well. In 1764 Johann J. Joachim Winckelmann spoke of a deterioration of sculpture and painting in the period after Commodus, and J. Burckhardt was referring explicitly to architecture, art, and literature when he used such terms as aging, senilit…

Lateran Councils

(2,427 words)

Author(s): Rieger, Reinhold
[German Version] The Lateran Councils, which were held in the papal palace in Rome, the Lateran, belong among the so-called “papal councils,” because they were convened and largely defined by the bishop of Rome. In the wake of the Counter-Reformation they were counted as the 9th-12th and the 18th ecumenical councils. First Lateran Council. Called in June 1122 by Pope Callistus II, this synod, which met Mar 27–28, 1123 and was attended only by Western representatives, set out to continue the Gregorian “reforms,” after the Concordat (Concordats) of …

Lateran Treaties

(401 words)

Author(s): Hollerbach, Alexander
[German Version] The Lateran Treaties were an agreement, signed in the Lateran Palace on Feb 11, 1929, by cardinal secretary of state P. Gasparri and Mussolini, between the Apostolic See and the Kingdom of Italy, comprising a trattato (treaty) and the Italian concordat. A special financial agreement formed an integral part of the trattato. The major purpose of the agreement was to resolve the so-called Roman question, which had become urgent since the dissolution of the Papal States – in other words, to clarify the position of the Holy See in the …

Latermann, Johannes

(167 words)

Author(s): Wartenberg, Günther
[German Version] (Feb 7, 1620, Gellershau- sen, Coburg – 1662, Austria), studied in Helmstedt (G. Calixtus, K. Horneius). During the 1645 Conference of Thorn, he joined C. Dreier and M. Behm from Königsberg. Latermann represented their concerns consistently and, in a vigorous disagreement with the Lutheran clergy of the city under C. Myslenta, sparked the “Latermann Affair” that culminated in the Syncretistic Controversy. Sponsored by Elector Frederick William I, he became associate professor at t…

Latimer, Hugh

(177 words)

Author(s): Ehrenschwendtner, Marie-Luise
[German Version] (1485, Thurcaston, Leicestershire – Oct 16, 1555, Oxford). The son of a free peasant, Latimer studied theology from 1506 onward at Clare College, Cambridge (B.A. 1510, M.A. 1514). Having initially defended the old faith as a preacher and university lecturer, he joined the Reformation around 1524 under the influence of T. Bilney. Highly esteemed at the court of Henry VIII for a time (appointment as bishop of Worcester in 1535), he fell out of favor from ¶ 1539 during the turmoil surrounding Anne Boleyn; he delivered his most famous sermons under Edward VI. …

Latin

(773 words)

Author(s): Moreschini, Claudio
[German Version] When the Christian message expanded beyond the boundaries of Palestine between 50 and 120 ce, it used the language spoken in the eastern part of the Empire, especially by the Jews in Palestine and the Diaspora (II, 1) – Koine Greek. Here there was a Greco-Jewish literature, which included the Greek translation of the Old Testament, the Septuagint (Bible translations). Under Claudius and Nero, groups of Greek-speaking Christians were already forming in Rome and in Italy; they used Greek texts th…

Latin America

(5,448 words)

Author(s): Dreher, Martin N.
[German Version] I. General; Geopolitics – II. Religious Affiliation – III. Christianity I. General; Geopolitics America, with an area of over 42,000,000 km2, is generally divided into North America, Central America, and South America. Latin America, a substantial part of the continent, comprises the countries originally colonized by Spain, France, and Portugal. The term covers South America and Central America together with Mexico. First used between 1862 and 1867 during the French intervention in Mexico, it was …
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