Mosellanus, Peter

Mosellanus, Peter an eminent German scholar of the time of the Reformation, was born in the little village of Proteg, on the Moselle in 1493. His family name was Schade, but after the literary fashion of the age he changed it to Mosedlanus. His parents were honest and pious, and in easy circumstances. He was educated at Cologne, and distinguished himself by uncommon precocity of mind, and graduated as master of arts in 1514. In the following year he began to lecture at Freiberg, and published several learned works. He took rank at once among the very first Greek and Latin scholars of the age, and in 1517, after the death of Richard Crocius, was called to Leipsic as professor of Greek and Latin literature. The year following he applied to Luther and Spalatin for the then vacant professorship of Greek at the Wittenberg University, but Melancthon was chosen in preference to him, and Mosellanus remained at Leipsic. With the study of Greek and Roman literature he combined a careful and reverent study of the Bible in the original. This, in connection with the influence of his friends, Luther, Camerarius, Melancthon, Hessus, and others, predisposed him favorably to the great movement of the Reformation. He was decidedly the most popular teacher of the university, and attracted students from every direction, and was twice chosen rector. At the personal request of prince George, he opened the Leipsic Disputation(1519) between Eck and Luther with a most excellent address — "Oratio de ratione disputandi, praesertim in re theologica." With the leaders of the Reformation he. remained ever after in constant communication, and was, greatly beloved by them for his scholarship and suavity of manners. Luther called him an Erasmian, because of his close application to classical studies notwithstanding the excitement of the time in which he flourished. These labors of Mosellanus in behalf of the revival of classical literature in Europe were arduous and extremely important, and a full list of his philological works may be found in Vite Germanorum philisophorum a Melchiore Adamo (Francf. 1705), page 26 sq. He died, while yet scarcely more than a youth in age though hoary with learning, Feb. 17, 1524. See Hallam, Introd. to the Literature of Europe, i, 188; De Wette, Luther's Bliefe, 2:542; Viti Lud. A. Seckendorf Commentarius historicus et apologet. de Lutheranismo (Leips. 1694, 1696); Loscher, Vollstandige Reformations-Acta et Documenta (Leips. 1729), 3:567 sq.

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