Paulus Speratus

December 13, 1484, Swabia, Germany (possibly at the castle of Röthlen, near Ellwangen).

August 12, 1551, Marienwerder, Pomerania (now Kwidzyn, Poland).


Speratus’ original family name seems to have been Offer or Hoffer. He probably enrolled at the University of Freiburg in 1503, and is also said to have studied in Paris and at some Italian universities.

Speratus had a turbulent career, owing to his Reformationist views. By 1518, he was a preacher in Dinkelsbühl, Bavaria. At the end of that year, he was invited to become a preacher at the cathedral in Würzburg. He went to Würzburg in 1519, but his preaching was too evangelical for the bishop, and he had to leave, apparently at the start of 1520. Moving to Salzburg, Austria, he preached for some time in the cathedral, until disagreements with the archbishop forced him out.

He moved to Vienna in autumn 1520, where he seems to have earned a Doctor of Divinity degree at the university. He married, probably as early as 1519, one of the first priests who dared to take this step. In 1523 he went to Wittenberg and helped Martin Luther assemble the first Lutheran hymnal. In 1524, the Margrave Albrecht appointed Speratus court preacher at Königsberg (now Kaliningrad, Russia). There he also had charge of the Altstadt church until 1525. In 1526, Speratus was chosen as clerical commissioner to visit parishes in Prussia, and in 1529, he became Lutheran bishop of Pomerania, with residence at Marienwieder.

  1. Erzurn dich nicht sei nicht neidisch
  2. Es ist das Heil uns kommen her
  3. Gelobet sei Gott, unser Gott
  4. In Gott gelaub ich, dass er hat aus nicht
    • In God I Trust, for So I Must

Speratus’ burial place