Religion Past and Present

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The lexicon series Religion in Past and Present (abbreviated RGG ; in the first three editions still " The Religion ...") is a concise dictionary for theology and religious studies . The main focus of the RGG is ( Protestant ) Christianity . In addition, however, many topics from other religions as well as philosophy , ethics , political science , economics , psychology , sociology , literature and other related areas are dealt with. In short, content-intensive articles, people, terms, places, events, institutions and much more are explained from different perspectives. A liberal theology predominates .

History of appearance

1st edition

The first edition was published by Friedrich Michael Schiele and Leopold Zscharnack . It was published from 1909 to 1913 by JCB Mohr (Paul Siebeck) in Tübingen and presented a summary of research in theology up to the 19th century and a look beyond the traditional canon of subjects. It arose from the booklets for religion in history and Present from the liberal religious history school within theology and is still today a much praised example of a sovereign position of theology within science.

Years of publication of the individual volumes:
Vol. 1: A to Germany. 1909.
Vol. 2: Deutschmann to Hessen. 1910.
Vol. 3: Heßhus to Lytton. 1912.
Vol. 4: Maaßen to Rogge. 1913.
Vol. 5: Raw to cypress. 1913.

2nd Edition

RGG, 2nd edition in the foreground; left some volumes of the 3rd edition

The 2nd edition appeared from 1927 to 1931 and was edited by Hermann Gunkel and Leopold Zscharnack. It represented a complete reworking. A greater link between "religion and culture" and a more intensive presentation of non-Christian religions was included. The changed situation of theology after the First World War is also reflected in the individual articles.

Religion in the past and present: concise dictionary for theology and religious studies / edited by Hermann Gunkel and Leopold Zscharnack. 2., completely reworked. Edition Tübingen: Mohr
Vol. 1: A-D. 1927. XI S., 2052 Col.
Vol. 2: E-H. 1928. VIII S., 2068 Sp.
Vol. 3: I-Me. 1929. XI, 40 p., 2176 col.
Vol. 4: Mi-R. 1930. VIII S., 2184 Sp.
Vol. 5: S-Z. 1931. XII S., 2158 Col.
Vol. 6: Register tape / arrangement by Oskar Rühle. 1932. VI S., 896 Col.

3. Edition

The 3rd edition was published by Kurt Galling ; it appeared from 1957 to 1965. Like the previous edition, RGG 3 paints a picture of the theological situation at that time. The rethinking after the end of the Second World War , the processing of what happened and a growing ecumenism are included in the edition.

Years of publication of the individual volumes:
Vol. 1 (A-C) 1957
Vol. 2 (D-G) 1958
Vol. 3 (H-Kon) 1959
Vol. 4 (Kop-O) 1960
Vol. 5 (P-Se) 1961
Vol. 6 (Sh-Z) 1962

The 3rd edition is also available in digital form as volume 12 of the digital library .

4th edition

RGG, 4th edition

The 4th edition was edited by Hans Dieter Betz , Don S. Browning, Bernd Janowski and Eberhard Jüngel and appeared from 1998 to 2005. It comprises eight volumes.

Years of publication of the individual volumes:
Vol. 1 (A-B) 1998
Vol. 2 (C-E) 1999
Vol. 3 (F-H) 2000
Vol. 4 (I-K) 2001
Vol. 5 (L-M) 2002
Vol. 6 (N-Q) 2003
Vol. 7 (R-S) 2004
Vol. 8 (T-Z) 2005
Register 2007

In this completely revised edition, almost 4,000 authors from 74 countries presented the current state of knowledge, the methodological problems and future research fields in 15,665 articles. The authors did not all come from a theological or religious studies context. So is u. a. The former SPD chairman Kurt Beck was also represented with an article on media policy. A list of abbreviations was also published in addition to the German edition. In 2008 an unabridged, discounted paperback study edition was published by UTB .

This edition was also published as Religion Past and Present in English by Brill in Leiden .

Editions / bibliographical information

  • Hans Dieter Betz u. a. (Ed.): Religion in the past and present. Concise dictionary for theology and religious studies . 8 volumes and a register volume. Mohr Siebeck Verlag , Tübingen 1998-2007, 4th edition: ISBN 3-16-146941-0 ; Study edition: UTB, Stuttgart 2008, ISBN 978-3-8252-8401-5 (out of print).
  • Editing of the RGG4 (Ed.): Abbreviations Theology and Religious Studies according to RGG4 , Tübingen 2007, ISBN 978-3825228682 (UTB 2868).


Other theological dictionaries

Comparable specialist encyclopedias are:

See also

Web links

Wikisource: Religion Past and Present  - Sources and Full Texts