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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.  The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes.  1917.
 
Letter to his Wife
By Martin Luther (1483–1546)
 
TO my dearly beloved wife Katharine Luther; for her own hands.  1
  God greet thee in Christ, my dearly loved Katie! I hope if Doctor Brück receives leave of absence, as he gives me fair hope of doing, that I can come with him to-morrow, or the day after. Pray God that he bring me home safe and sound. I sleep extremely well: about six or seven hours consecutively, and then two or three hours afterward. That, as I take it, is due to the beer. But I am just as abstemious as at Wittenberg.  2
  Doctor Caspar says that the caries under which our gracious Elector suffers has eaten no further into the foot; but such martyrdom no Dobitzsch, no prisoner on the ladder of Jack the Jailer’s tower, endures, as his Electoral Grace has to undergo from the surgeons. His Electoral Grace is as sound in his entire body as a little fish, only the devil has bitten and stung him in the foot. Pray, pray on! I hope God will hear us, as he has begun to do. For Doctor Caspar believes too that God must help here.  3
  As Johannes [Rischmann] goes away, necessity and fairness alike demand that I let him depart honorably from me. For you know he has served us faithfully and diligently, and according to his ability has truly held to the Gospel in humility, and has done and suffered everything. Wherefore think how often we have given presents to worthless knaves and ungrateful scholars, where it was simply thrown away. So in this case be liberal, and let nothing be wanting to such a pious fellow; for you know it is money well spent, and is well pleasing to God. I know well that there is but little in the purse; but I would willingly give him ten gulden if I had it. Less than five gulden, however, you must not pay him, for he has no clothing. Whatever you can bestow above that, do, I beg of you. The parish coffer might, it is true, honor me by giving something to such a man, seeing that I must support my servants at my own expense, for their church’s service and use; but as they will. Do not you let anything be lacking, so long as we still have a mug. Think where you have gotten it. God will give other things, that I know. Herewith I commend you to God. Amen.  4
  And say to the parson from Zwickau that he should be content, and make the best of his lodging. When I come I will tell how Mühlpford and I were guests at Riedesal’s house, and Mühlpford exhibited much wisdom to me. But I was not thirsty for such a drink. Kiss the young Hans for me; and bid little Johnny and Lena and Aunt Lena pray for the dear Elector and for me. I cannot find anything in this city to buy for the children, although it is the time of the Fair. Since I can bring nothing special, have something on hand for me to give.
Tuesday after Reminiscere [February 27th], 1532.    
  5
 
 
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