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Chapter Summary

This introductory chapter provides an overview of the key themes discussed in the book, which introduces Paul Lautensack's biography. After brief remarks on his long, successful and unexciting career in Bamberg, it focuses on the last decades of his life spent in Nuremberg, during which he produced his speculative tracts. As a painter, Lautensack had only limited formal education and apparently he read very little theology besides the Bible and the catechism. Whilst Lautensack neither made important contributions to the development of Reformation theology nor inspired any major dissenting movement, it is exactly his idiosyncrasy and lack of learning that make him a fascinating and unique object for study. The book presents Lautensack's speculative diagrams, and demonstrates which Biblical quotations, lists of names, theological terms, letters and small images appear in these diagrams, and how Lautensack arranged and permuted them.

Keywords: Bamberg; biblical quotations; catechism; Lautensack's speculative diagrams; Nuremberg; Paul Lautensack; reformation theology



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