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Biology And Theology In Franzius's Historia Animalium Sacra (1612)

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Chapter Summary

In 1612, the protestant theologian Wolfgang Franzius published a book entitled Historia animalium sacra. The book demonstrates that Franzius was genuinely interested in the life of animals; as Änne Bäumer observes, he described all groups of animals, whether they were apt for allegorical use or use in sermons or not. Franzius's treatment of biological problems is interesting in itself. Moreover, the Historia animalium sacra was a work with great influence on the Protestant Northern Europe throughout the seventeenth century and in the beginning of the eighteenth. Franzius was driven by a wish to find out how the animals really live and to teach this to his fellow clergymen and students. In the treatment of his sources, Franzius used reason and logics; he did not accept the conclusions of authorities without testing them.

Keywords: Änne Bäumer; biology; Historia Animalium Sacra; theology; Wolfgang Franzius



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