Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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1. Concept

The Latin legal term libertinus (“freedman”), which in the Acts of the Apostles (6,9) attaches to the persecutors of St. Stephen, passed into French (libertine) around 1480 via vernacular biblical commentaries, and from there it entered the other modern European languages, including English. From 1545, Calvinist and Catholic preachers were using it to discredit morally those who did not unconditionally a…

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Walther, Gerrit, “Libertine”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 22 March 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_COM_023376>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20190801

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