1607–1676

Introduction

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Born: March 12, 1607, Gräf­en­hain­i­chen (near Wit­ten­berg), Ger­ma­ny.

Died: May 27, 1676, Lüb­ben an der Spree, Spree­wald, Ger­ma­ny.

Buried: In a crypt be­low the al­tar at Paul-Ger­hardt-Kirche, Lüb­ben an der Spree, Spree­wald, Ger­ma­ny.

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Biography

Gerhardt was the son of Chris­tian Ger­hardt, Bur­ger­meis­ter of Gräf­en­hain­i­chen, and hus­band of An­na Ma­ria Bert­hold (mar­ried 1655).

He en­rolled at the Un­i­ver­si­ty of Wit­ten­berg in 1628. He ap­pears to have fre­quent­ly preached in Ber­lin in the 1640’s.

In 1651, at the rec­om­men­da­tion of the Ber­lin cler­gy, Ger­hardt was ap­point­ed Lu­ther­an Probst (chief pastor) at Mit­ten­wal­de, near Ber­lin. In 1657, he re­turned to Ber­lin as third di­ac­o­nus of St. Ni­cho­las’ church.

However, Ger­hardt be­came involved in the con­test be­tween Elec­tor Fried­rich Wil­helm (who was of the Re­formed Church) and the Lu­ther­an clergy of Ber­lin; Ger­hard was re­moved from of­fice in Feb­ru­a­ry 1666, though he re­mained in Ber­lin.

In No­vem­ber 1668, he ac­cept­ed the post of arch­idi­a­co­nus at Lüb­ben an der Spree, was in­stalled in June, 1669, and stayed there un­til his death. The mot­to on his por­trait at Lüb­ben read The­o­lo­gus in crib­ro Sa­tan­ae ver­sa­tus (a the­o­lo­gian sift­ed in Sa­tan’s sieve).

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