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The Reuchlin ‘Affair’ Unfolds

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Chapter Summary

Reuchlin's response to Pfefferkorn's public accusations in the Handt Spiegel is the Augenspiegel. Hoogstraeten therefore required the faculty to examine the Augenspiegel for any unorthodox precepts it might contain. His arguments for the preservation of Jewish books are all based on Canon Law and he cannot be reproached on this. Reuchlin's conscious public act of defiance could not go without some consequences and thus proceedings were initiated against him. The costs of the trial were awarded against Hoogstraeten, and he was ordered to refrain from any further public statements on the affair. Georgius Benignus a member of the Papal Commission set up by Pope to examine Reuchlin's Augenspiegel. He analysed, in the form of a dialogue, Reuchlin's arguments for the preservation of the Talmud and concluded that instead of Church and State condemning Reuchlin, he should be praised for his scholarship and as an august member of Germany's literati.

Keywords:Augenspiegel; Canon Law; Georgius Benignus; Handt Spiegel; Hoogstraeten; Pfefferkorn; Reuchlin



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