What a surprise! The picture of a medieval pulpit above shows Martin Luther at the far right as a carved apostle. And placed next to the church fathers St. Augustine and Gregory the Great!? Were prophetic wood carvers at work there? And what would Luther think about that? To be put on the same level as St. Augustine? Or even with the four Evangelists and St. Paul? And on top of that next to the founder of the claim of medieval papacy?

Well then, it is amazing what one comes across when traveling! A rather tedious amount of research yielded a solution to the mystery: The inscriptions on the beautiful pulpit of the Naumburger Cathedral from the year 1466 have only three original relief panels with depictions: 1) a depiction of the 12 year old Jesus in the temple, 2) a relief of Gregory, and 3) a relief of St. Augustine. Yet most of the carved columnar figures next to them were missing for a long time. In the 1930s the pulpit was restored and supplemented in Halle’s workshop for historic preservation and, lo and behold, the Lutheran wood carver or individual who commissioned the work smuggled Martin Luther in and set him up on a row with apostles and church fathers.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.