Textbooks on the Reformation, and its aftermath, history, and long-term impact; largely ignore the role that women played, sometimes the wife of Martin Luther is mentioned briefly. While there have been some scholarly books written about the women of the Reformation, it has largely been silent in the popular presses. Derek Wilson, in Mrs. Luther and Her Sisters, looks to correct that lack of exposure by examining the roles, impact, and influence had on the direction of the Reformation and the rise of Protestantism. Mr. Wilson, of course, starts with the wife of Martin Luther but quickly moves onto to other women that have largely fallen out of the historical picture.
“Joyful will I be
And bless his holy name.
He is my help and stay
And comfort in my shame.”
Each chapter looks at a variety of women in short biographical portraits and what they accomplished. It is most a combination of chronological, but also in thematic, order. This is a highly enlightening work, especially with the growth of looking at minorities in historical studies. Students of the Reformation will find this book highly useful as an introductory work, not too scholarly’ but still enough information to get an idea of what was happening and why.