The Early Federal Theologians

David A. Weir

in The Origins of the Federal Theology in Sixteenth-Century Reformation Thought

Published in print March 1990 | ISBN: 9780198266907
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191683107 | DOI:
The Early Federal Theologians

Show Summary Details


The origins and development of the early federal theology, with its key identifying feature of a prelapsarian covenant, can be traced to a certain group of theologians of the late 16th century. Zacharias Ursinus was the first Reformed theologian to propose this idea, and it is logical to examine the view of some of his followers and colleagues to see whether they follow suit. After examining the theological works of Ursinus's colleagues, this chapter affirms that the federal theology has its origins in the Palatinate of the Holy Roman Empire between 1560 and 1590. The chapter gives a brief overview of the political and religious history of the Palatinate, identifies the first generation of federal theologians emanating from Heidelberg, and gives a brief survey of the history of the schools to which these theologians belonged: the Faculty of Theology of the University of Heidelberg, the Casimirianum in Neustadt an der Hardt, and the Herborn Academy.

Keywords: federal theology; prelapsarian covenant; Zacharias Ursinus; Palatinate; Holy Roman Empire; federal theologians; Heidelberg; Faculty of Theology; Casimirianum; Herborn Academy

Chapter.  8193 words. 

Subjects: Christian Theology

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.