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the cave and the warm leaves in the cave, This is indeed madness. Hast thou
it might be well.
Oan: heard a star whisper? Did Ul, thy father, tell thee that he heard the stars whisper I will make thee a song of Ala! when he was in the tree-top? And of what moment is it that a star be a piece of
Uk (furiously): the day, seeing that its light is of no value ?
Thou shalt make me no such song! Thou art a fool!
Thou shalt make me a song of the deerOk and Un:
liver that thou hast eaten! Did I not give
to thee of the liver of the she-deer, because Thou art a fool!
thou didst bring me crawfish?
Truly I did eat of the liver of the she-
deer; but to sing thereof is another matter. But it was so born unto me. And at
Uk: that birth it was as though I would weep, yet had not been stricken; I was moreover
It was no labor for thee to sing of the glad, yet none had given me a gift of meat. stars.
our clubs and casting
stones, with which we slay Aesh to eat; Uk:
also the caves in which we dwell, and the It is a madness. How shall the stars
Stone whereon we make sacrifice; wilt profit us? Will they lead us to a bear's thou sing no song of those ? den, or where the deer foregather, or break
Oan: for us great bones that we come at their marrow? Will they tell us anything at It may be that I shall sing thee songs of all? Wait thou until the night, and we them. But now, as I strive here to sing shall peer forth from between the boulders, of the doe's liver, no words are born unto and all men shall take note that the stars me: I can but sing, “O liver! O red cannot whisper. . . . Yet it may be that liver!" they are pieces of the day. This is a deep
That is a good song: thou seest that the Oan:
liver is red. It is red as blood. Aye! they are pieces of the moon!
But I love not the liver, save to eat of What further madness is this? How
it. shall they be pieces of two things that are
Uk: not the same? Also it was not thus in the
Yet the song of it is good. When the song. Oan:
moon is full we shall sing it about the
Stone. We shall beat upon our breasts I will make me a new song.
and sing, “O liver! O red liver !" And change the shape of wood and stone, but a all the women in the caves shall be song is made out of nothing. Ho! ho! I
affrightened. can fashion things from nothing! Also I
Oan: say that the stars come down at morning and become the dew.
I will not have that song of the liver!
It shall be Ok's song; the tribe must say, Uk:
“Ok hath made the song!" Let us have no more of these stars.
Ok: It may be that a song is a good thing, if it be of what a man knoweth. Thus, if Ave! I shall be a great singer; I shall thou singest of my club, or of the bear sing of a wolf's heart, and say, “Behold, that I slew, of the stain on the Stone, or it is red!"
ters as are of common understanding. If Thou art a fool, and shalt sing only, it may be, to go forth and slay a deer, or
a man sing of a deer, so shall he be drawn, "Hai, hai!" as thy father before thee. But Oan shall make me a song
even a moose. And if he sing of his castclub, for
my the women listen to his songs.
ing-stones, it may be that he become more
apt in the use thereof. And if he sing of Oan:
his cave, it may be that he shall defend it I will make thee no songs, neither of
more stoutly when Gurr teareth at the
boulders. But it is a vain thing to make thy club, nor thy cave, nor thy doe's liver. Yea! though thou give me no more flesh, of me; or of the moon, which is never two
of the stars, that seem scornful even yet will I live alone in the forest, and eat the seed of grasses, and likewise rabbits, nights the same; or of the day, which that are easily snared. And I will sleep goeth about its business and will not linin a tree-top, and I will sing nightly:
ger though one pierce a she-babe with a
Aint. But as for me, I would have none The bright day is gone.
of these songs. For if I sing of such in the The night maketh me sad, sad, sad,
council, how shall I keep my wits? And sad, sad, sad
if I think thereof, when at the chase, it Uk:
may be that I babble it forth, and the
meat hear and escape. And ere it be time Ok and Un, arise and slay!
to eat, I do give my mind solely to the (Ok and Un rush upon Oan, who stoops care of my hunting-gear. And if one sing
and picks up two casting-stones, with when eating, he may fall short of his just one of which he strikes Ok between the portion. And when one hath eaten, doth eyes, and with the other mashes the hand not he go straightway to sleep? So where of Un, so that he drops his club. Uk shall men find a space for singing? But arises.)
do ye as ye will: as for me, I will have Uk:
none of these songs and stars. Behold! Gurr cometh! he cometh swiftly if, remembering these wild words of Oan,
Be it also known to all the women that from the wood!
they do sing them to themselves, or teach (The Tribe, including Oan and Ala, rush
them to the young ones, they shall be for the cave-mouths. As Oan passes beaten with brambles. Cause swiftly that Uk, the latter runs behind him and the wife of Ok cease from her wailing, crushes his skull with a blow of his and bring hither the horses that were slain club.)
yesterday, that I may apportion them. Uk:
Had Oan wisdom, he might have eaten O men! O men with the heart of hy- thereof; and had a mammoth fallen into enas! Behold, Gurr cometh not! I did our pit, he might have feasted many days. but strive to deceive you, that I might the
But Oan was a fool! more easily slay this singer, who is very
Un: swift of foot. . . . Gather ye before me, for I would speak wisdom. . . . It is not
Oan was a fool! well that there be any song among us other
All the Tribe: than what our fathers sang in the past, or, if there be songs, let them be of such mat
Oan was a
MARTIN LUTHER AND HIS WORK
SEVENTH PAPER: THE FINAL BREAK WITH ROME
BY ARTHUR C. McGIFFERT
Professor of Church History in Union Theological Seminary, New York
HE most notable fruit of Luther's I beg you to excuse me to the moderately
awakened interest in national re- wise for I know not how to deserve the form was his famous address “To the favor and grace of the overwise. Often I German Nobility,” published in August, have sought it with much labor, but hence1520. In the dedicatory letter to his col- forth will neither have nor care for it. God league Amsdorf he says:
help us to seek not our glory but His alone.
The time for silence is past and the time The work itself was a ringing appeal to speak is come, as the preacher Solomon to the German Emperor, princes, and nosays. In conformity with our resolve I have bility to take in hand the reformation of put together a few points concerning the Germany, religious, ethical, social, and ecoreformation of the Christian estate in order nomic. Because of the claim of pope and to lay them before the Christian nobility of hierarchy that the civil power had no jurisGermany in case it may please God to help diction in the matter, and no one but they His church by means of the laity, since the could reform the church, a terrific onclergy whom this task rather befitted have
slaught was made upon them. The curgrown quite careless. I send it all to your rent criticisms of the avarice and extortion worship to judge, and to amend where of the Curia and the current impatience at needed. I am well aware that I shall not its spoliation of Germany were given pasescape the reproach of taking far too much
sionate expression. “Do we still wonupon me in presuming, despised and insig- der," he exclaimed, “why princes, noblenificant man as I am, to address such high men, cities, convents, land, and people estates on such weighty subjects, as if there
grow poor? We should rather wonder were no one in the world but Dr. Luther
that we have anything left to eat.' "Oh, to have a care for Christianity and to give noble princes and lords, how long will advice to such wise people. I offer no ex- you suffer your land and your people to be Let who will blame me. Perhaps I
the prey of these ravening wolves?” still owe God and the world another folly. The incompatibility between the spiritThis debt I have now resolved honestly to ual office and temporal power of the pope discharge, if I can, and to be court fool for
was also depicted in vivid fashion: once. If I fail, I have at least one advantage, that no one need buy me a cap or shave How can the government of the empire my poll. But it remains to be seen which consist with preaching, prayer, study, and shall hang the bells on the other. I must the care of the poor? These are the true fulfil the proverb “When anything is to be employments of the pope. Christ imposed done in the world a monk must be in it were them with such insistence that he forbade it only as a painted figure.”
to take either coat or scrip, for he that has
to govern a single house can hardly perform complained of the over-emphasis of rethese duties. Yet the pope wishes to rule ligion. It sounds strange enough to hear an empire and remain pope.
a monk insisting that such common human
virtues as find play in the ordinary relationLuther conceded that the bishop of ships of life are far more important than Rome should still be the spiritual head of any religious exercises. This difference in Christendom whom all should honor and the estimate of life was more decisive than obey in spiritual things so long as he was any difference of doctrine between Luther true to Christ. But he would have his and the Roman Church, at this or any temporal power brought altogether to an subsequent time. It was prophetic of a end and would deprive him of all admin- new world. istrative authority over the church in Ger- The address to the German nobility many. The management of its affairs, the was not simply an appeal for reformation appointment and deposition of its officials, and an attack upon the forces that hinthe trial of ecclesiastical cases, the grant- dered it, but also a program of reform ing of dispensations and the like, he would on a large scale. All sorts of evils were put into the hands of the German ecclesi- dealt with, and the range of topics was astical authorities presided over by the very wide. Amazement has often been primate of Germany, the Archbishop of expressed that a monk should possess so Mayence. The new national feeling, extensive a knowledge of men and things. growing rapidly in Luther's day, here The amazement is misplaced. Luther had found utterance. In religion, as in every long been a public man in touch with the thing else, the nation should, he thought, movements of the day and in corresponmanage its own affairs and live its own dence with leaders of thought in many life.
parts of Germany and abroad. It would But freedom from a foreign yoke was have been surprising had he not known not, in his opinion, all that Germany what men were thinking and talking needed. The false claims of the clergy about. As a matter of fact he said little must be exposed and their usurped power that was new. More than any other of taken from them. They possessed no pre- his important works the address to the rogatives not belonging of right to all nobility reflected the ideas of his contemChristians. They were only ministers ap- poraries.
poraries. Not Hutten alone, but many pointed to serve in religious things, and besides, had attacked the evils of the day, were subject to the people, not lords over religious, ecclesiastical, social, and ecothem. Civil rulers "ordained of God for nomic, as severely and as intelligently as the punishment of the bad and protection he. And so far as his constructive proof the good" were supreme in their own gram went it was as vague and unpraclands and the clergy were as completelytical as any of theirs. There was much under their jurisdiction as anybody else. homely good sense in his proposals of reIf the existing ecclesiastical authorities form--the abolishment of the mendicant failed to do their duty and left the church orders, the reduction of festivals and holiunreformed, the civil rulers must take the days, the abandonment of enforced clerical matter in hand and force a reformation in celibacy, the improvement of schools and spite of hierarchy and pope. Liberty from universities, the regulation of beggary, and the domination of the spiritual power, the like, but some of his suggestions were from dependence upon its offices and from quite impracticable and revealed a vast dread of its penalties, was one of the ignorance particularly of economics and watchwords of the book. In it was politics. wrapped up the promise of a new age. He wanted to put a bridle on the FugNo less important was Luther's declara
gers, the great money-lenders of the day. tion of freedom from bondage to exclu- “How is it possible," he exclaimed, "that sively religious duties. Perhaps the most in a single man's lifetime such great and extraordinary thing about the book is kingly wealth can be collected together its complete break with what may be if all be done rightly and according to called the monastic ideal of life. As in his God's will? I am not skilled in accounts, important "Sermon on Good Works," but I do not understand how a hundred published some months before, Luther guilders can gain twenty in a year or how one can gain another, and that not from conditions of an earlier day were restored. the soil or cattle, where success depends At the same time he had one merit not not on the wit of men but on the blessing shared by all venturing into unfamiliar of God."
fields. He recognized his own ignorance. In this he was only giving voice to the “I know," he wrote, “that I have sung a common and oft-expressed sentiment of lofty strain, that I have proposed many the knights and nobles, the rural magnates things that will be thought impossible and of the age, whose prosperity and prestige attacked many points too sharply. But were threatened by the extension of trade what was I to do? I was bound to say and the growth of cities. Like them, he it. If I had the power, this is what I was opposed to commerce and in favor of should do.” Thus he closes his discussion, agriculture, and he supported his position and the words from such a man are very as he always did by appealing to the Bible. significant. Ordinarily he was sure enough Thus he said: “This I know well, it were of himself and let it be known to everymuch more godly to increase agriculture body. Evidently his confidence was not and lessen commerce, and they do best mere self-conceit, the fond persuasion that who, according to the Scriptures, till the he was always right. It was a confidence ground to get their living. As is said to felt only in his native sphere and jusall of us in Adam, 'Cursed be the earth. tified by his long and hard experience When thou workest in it it shall bring therein. forth thistles and thorns to thee, and in The address to the nobility produced the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat thy a tremendous sensation and had an enorbread.'”
mous sale. Most of its ideas had been exThe greatest misfortune of the Germans pressed many times before, but Luther had he believed was the growing custom of his own inimitable way of putting things, mortgaging their property. He said of it: and the very fact that it was he who said
them meant a great deal for the circulaBut for this many a man would have to tion of the book. Men were already lisleave unbought his silk, velvet, jewelry, tening eagerly to all he had to say, and spices, and all sorts of luxuries. The sys- his venture into the field of national retem has not been in force more than a hun
form met with a wide and instant redred years and has already brought pov
sponse. It is not recorded that the work erty, misery, and destruction on almost all
brought him reputation as a statesman princes, foundations, cities, nobles, and heirs.
and led princes to seek his counsel in poIf it continue for another hundred years litical affairs, but it did show them that Germany will be left without a farthing,
he was a power to be reckoned with, and we shall be reduced to eating one another. The devil invented this system and of national independence and regenera
and it gave new standing to the cause the pope has done injury to the whole world
tion. by sanctioning it.
At the end of the address to the no
bility Luther remarked: “I know still anThe reigning extravagance in food and other song concerning Rome. If they wish dress likewise troubled him, and he wished to hear it I will sing it and will pitch it to see it controlled by legislation. At the high. Do you understand, dear Rome, same time he thought the nation could do what I mean?" without its elaborate system of laws and This new work appeared a few weeks could best be governed by wise rulers later under the title “The Babylonish using only the Bible as their guide.
Captivity of the Church." It dealt with Naïve enough much of this sounds, but the traditional sacramental system, repreit is only what we might expect. Luther's senting it as a bondage from which Christraining and experience had not fitted him tendom must be freed if the needed reforto play the rôle of a statesman or econo- mation were to come. Unlike the former mist and he showed his limitations very work, it was written in Latin, as befitted clearly. Society he rightly saw was all too a theological discussion, and appealed prilittle governed by Christian principles, but marily to theologians instead of the genlike many another he fondly imagined all eral public. Doctrinally it was far and would be mended if the more primitive away the most radical book Luther had