New Resource: Luther Biography

As a part of our latest CTQ release, we’ve highlighted the new Luther bibliography, which you can find by clicking here.

From the introduction of the bibliography, written by our Electronic Resources Librarian, Rev. Robert E. Smith, who did the work of compiling the 80 page document:

“The five hundredth anniversary of the Lutheran Reformation generated quite a bit of interest in the study of Martin Luther, his friend and colleague, Philipp Melanchthon, and their times. A major portion of the studies made as a result were conducted in the English language. They included translations of the work of Luther, sometimes of works never rendered in English and sometimes fresh versions of well-known works. New biographies were written, in-depth analysis of themes, thought, and events produced, and reviews of all of these works penned. Essays appeared in a wide range of journals, conference proceedings, anthologies, and festschriften. This bibliography was compiled at the request of the editors of Lutherjahrbuch to add to their ongoing Lutherbibliographie. It covers the publication years 2013-2017.”

There is, in fact, even more of a story behind that second to last sentence about the editors of Lutherjahrbuch and the “Lutherbibliographie.” In 2017, Dr. Benjamin Mayes (whose long list of titles include Assistant Professor of Historical Theology at CTSFW, Assistant Editor of CTQ, Co-General Editor of “Luther’s Works: American Edition,” and General Editor of “Gerhard’s Theological Commonplaces”) attended the International Lutheran Congress in Wittenberg, Germany. There he met a German scholar, Dr. Michael Beyer, who works for the main journal of Luther studies (“Lutherjahrbuch”), and is responsible for the annual bibliography of Luther studies.

Dr. Beyer told Dr. Mayes about his desire to find a North American collaborator, since it is difficult for him to get access to our databases to find English-language Luther studies. As such, when Dr. Mayes returned to CTSFW, he connected Dr. Beyer with Rev. Smith in our library. Since then, Rev. Smith has been helping to make the annual bibliography of Luther studies (the “Lutherbibliographie”), the first fruits of which are now available at the link here and through the CTQ web page (

And why was it hard for Dr. Beyer to find a North American collaborator? Because he prefers the phone to email but does not speak English well, and only with a thick Saxon accent. Dr. Mayes, who has excellent German skills, was an essential part of the collaboration: he served as the translator between Dr. Beyer and Rev. Smith.