Desiderius Erasmus
Erasmus (1466-1536)
Despite a chronic
shortage of money,
he succeeded in
learning Greek by
an intensive, dayand-night study for
three years.
Scholar and Reformer
Erasmus felt called
upon to use his
learning in a
purification of the
doctrine and in a
liberalizing of the
institutions of
Greek New Testament
Erasmus dedicated
his work to Pope
Leo X as a patron of
learning and
regarded this work
as his chief service
to the cause of
Martin Luther
Only as an
independent scholar
could Erasmus hope
to influence the
reform of religion.
The Adages
“In the land of the
blind, the one-eyed
man is king.”
Education of a Christian
The prince should
be loved, and he
suggested that the
prince needed a
education in order to
govern justly and
benevolently to
avoid becoming an
Pope Leo X
“Nobody is further
from wisdom than
those people with
their grand titles,
learned bonnets,
splendid sashes and
bejeweled rings,
who profess to be
wisdom’s peak.”
The Reformation
R.C. Trench wrote:
“Erasmus laid the
egg of the
Reformation and
Luther hatched it.”

Desiderius Erasmus