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Un livre du maître au XVIe siècle: Erasme expliqué par Hegendorf

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Christophorus Hegendorphinus, who was born at Leipzig in 1500 and died at Luneburg in 1540, is chiefly known for his Dialogi pueriles, which were often published together with the Paedologia of Petrus Mosellanus. Hegendorphinus became rector of the University of Leipzig at the early age of twenty-three. This did not prevent him from leaving behind a large body of work in which we find many facets of the man reflected: the jurist, the teacher, the exegete, the textual editor, the scholiast, the dramatist, and even the catechist (he was the author of one of the first Lutheran catechisms). He had a great admiration for Erasmus, whom he numbered among the 'optimarum literarum principes'. His personal contacts with the scholar from Rotterdam do not appear to have been particularly numerous, unlike his borrowings from Erasmus's work. Hegendorphinus's familiarity with Erasmus's writings was far-reaching and he enjoyed imitating them (he wrote a Methodus conscribendi epistolas, with considerable borrowings from Erasmus's epistolographic work) and annotating them (in addition to an edition of De copia to which he added many scholia, he also produced an Explicatio locorum implicatissimorum in Colloquiis Erasmi, published by Johann Setzer at Hagenau in 1526, together with the Christiana studiosae iuuentutis institutio.) Hegendorphinus's aim in bringing out this Explicatio was to furnish readers of the Colloquia with a key to a number of obscure allusions, quotations or expressions. In his 58 explanatory notes he systematically, and often tacitly, made use of the Adagia. 'Erasmian' expressions were already present to excess in the Dialogi pueriles, as becomes clear from the (printed) marginalia in an improved and enlarged edition of this work published by Valentin Schumann at Leipzig in 1520. Although this edition contains six new dialogues it seems to have been quite forgotten. The writer of the present article had the good luck to come across a copy in the University Library of Leipzig and is at the moment engaged in preparing a critical edition.


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