Exile and Lutheranism – Introductory Remarks
The migrations of Lutherans in the early modern period seem to have made less of an impression on the European historical consciousness than, for instance, the emigrations of the Reformed Huguenots or the (mixed-confessional) emigrations from Europe to America. Only the Salzburg Protestants have achieved a certain degree of prominence. They are considered to be the population that was affected in a particularly dramatic and almost prototypical way by sectarian intolerance, persecution and exile in 1731/1732 because of their Lutheran beliefs. At the same time, the so-called Great Salzburg Expulsion is a good example of the contribution of Lutherans to mythologizing religious flight and confessional migration. The political instrumentalization of this migration process, as well as fundraising activities, sermons, pamphlets, poems, songs, leaflets and pictures raised public awareness for the cause of the emigrants. These initiatives, however, were rarely started by the emigrants themselves, but rather by the Protestant, mainly Lutheran, environment they came in contact with.1 Lutheran emigrants, like for instance the Salzburgers, were involved to varying degrees in the transfer of cultural and linguistic phenomena and material goods – in particular those relating to ecclesiastical and religious matters (religious books, liturgical objects) – but also skilled handicrafts and certain economic structures. In the wake of their journeys, the figure of the confessional refugee also spread throughout Central Europe's Protestant landscape.
The treatment and instrumentalization of confessional migrations in politics and the media is an important factor in the mythologizing of confessional refugees as long-suffering individuals who set out for foreign lands with the "walking-staff of the exile" in hand, singing hymns and trusting in God. Although the Salzburgers are in many ways an exceptional case, they nonetheless may be classified as belonging to a major emigrational event. The movements of Lutheran communities since the 16th century largely extended over longer periods of time and took place under different circumstances. Austrians, Bohemians, Moravians, Silesians, Hungarians and many other people from areas inside and outside of the Holy Roman Empire shaped the image of the Lutheran "exulants" (exiles), which served as a point of reference for the Salzburger emigration.
It was some time before research on confessional migrations could free itself from religiously edifying mythmaking. The term "confessional migration" coined by Heinz Schilling (born 1942) made an important contribution to clarify the social-historical aspects of the debate. However, this term mainly referred to Reformed, i.e. Calvinist migrants. Even the so-called "Reformation of the Refugees" – which is now recognized in research as a separate, unique form of expression of the Reformation – is primarily regarded as a Reformed phenomenon.2 In contrast to the Reformed Dutch or Huguenots, members of the larger Lutheran immigrant groups were often less easily and less permanently identifiable as belonging to a minority. The reasons for this were shared linguistic, religious, economic and social characteristics and the (often favourable) conditions in the receiving countries. As a result, they did not fill the exceptional position of a minority which could be regarded as particularly innovative in religious or economic respect. Therefore, the migration of Lutherans in the early modern period appears to be unsuited to be told as a story of success or failure. This is particularly relevant in regard to the cultural transfers that accompanied migration and settlement processes. Undoubtedly, migrations were always associated with the immigration of peoples and the transmission of ideas and material goods, which could then be interpreted and re-contextualized in the new settlement sites. Such re-interpretations and adaptations are easier to locate, for instance, in the context of French Huguenot colonies in Brandenburg-Prussia than in the case of the many migrations from Habsburg lands to the neighbouring Lutheran territories of the empire. Here, emigrations were based on established contacts, and the areas of destination were neither socio-culturally nor linguistically distinct from their home countries. Besides this, the migrants were often not able to settle in groups, but were spread out over certain areas.
The migrants were, nonetheless, characterized and united by the self-designation "exulant" ("exile"). This term is effectively a Lutheran invention that has its own inter-confessional, geographic and historical transfer history. It is a derivation of the Roman legal term "exul", which originally meant an outcast.3 The designation "exul" or "exul Christi" already appeared in 1548 in the context of the Augsburg Interim in the writings of affected clergymen, concerning the resignation or expulsion of Lutheran pastors.4 In the second half of the 16th century some of the so-called Gnesio-Lutherans from Ernestine Saxony referred to themselves as "exules". Some of these conservative Lutherans were ready to accept their dismissal if this was seen as the only way to uphold their profession of faith and abidance by the divine truth. They accordingly either distanced themselves from intra-Lutheran positions or from secular authorities, whom they accused of exceeding their powers.5 Exile was thus to be understood only in a secondary sense as a geographic change like an emigration. Firstly, and above all, it was a state of mind and the self-attribution of the members of a church of true believers, whose destiny had been shaped by persecution. At the same time, exile rarely denoted a permanent, and frequently only a temporary condition: the idea of a temporary state of exile, which was aimed at the (re-)establishment of the rightful divine order, was reinforced in the legitimatory writings with examples from the Old Testament. The goal was the recovery of the (spatial or spiritual) homeland – either on earth or in heaven. The notion of exile as a temporary intermediate state or a step in the lifelong pilgrimage or peregrinatio of a true Christian is also evident in the word form of "exulant", a term that became increasingly common from around the year 1600. It derives from the Latin present participle "exulans" and hence linguistically implies precisely this condition of temporariness.6 Of course, if one only stays temporarily at a place of refuge, this has consequences for settlement and integration, the relationship with the host society and also for cultural exchanges and transfers.
The term "exulant" in the sense of a steadfast confessional refugee is indeed of Lutheran origin. Still, the term is also found, albeit less commonly, in connection with the Reformed confessional migrants, and even in the Catholic context.7 Its early history already points to the prominent role of the clergy, who shaped the term "exulant" as authors, communicators, propagators and mediators and, at the same time, as those who were most affected. They moreover influenced, if not directed, the migrations themselves.8
The idea of the exile in the context of the Lutheran confessional migrations is not limited to the clergy, however. "Exulant" was soon understood to denote migrants of all tiers of society who regarded themselves as religious refugees and justified their migration in confessional terms. The concept primarily expresses the point of view of those affected and especially their self-fashioning. By contrast, the territorial authorities and religious institutions of the (Catholic) opposition frequently did not speak of exiles, but rebels who rejected feudal dependencies and governmental orders and could therefore be prosecuted criminally. In some cases, though, they also used the more neutral, imperial legal term "emigrants".9
There is a mixture of voluntariness and coercion in confessional migrations – in religious, but also in political and legal, respects. From 1555, the so-called Ius emigrandi provided the framework in the empire for dissenting subjects to leave a territory in a regulated manner. However, the Ius emigrandi's origins lie in a Protestant concession to the Catholics at the Imperial Diet of 1530. It is therefore probably to be less understood as an early individual basic right to freedom of worship than as a provision for implementing the Ius reformandi.10 Martin Luther's (1483–1546) interpretation of Matthew 10:23 in the year 1526, on the other hand, already corresponds by and large to the idea of individual freedom of worship. He writes:
Und wo ein Fürst odder herr das Euangelion nicht wil leyden, Da gehe man ynn ein ander Fuerstenthum, da es geprediget wird, wie Christus spricht: "Verfolgen sie euch ynn einer stad, so fliehet ynn die andere".11
In reality, however, the situation was more complicated: for members of religious minorities emigration was only one of several ways to deal with the authorities' attempts to introduce confessional uniformity. A change of location depended on economic, social and political factors, and had to be considered carefully. Besides emigration, another way was conversion to the Catholic majority faith (while often certain forms of Lutheran piety were secretly retained).12 The theological rationale for such clandestine Protestant practices, which were widespread since the end of the 16th century in re-catholicized areas, were contentious issues in Lutheranism. As were the questions of whether and when a pastor should obey an expulsion order or whether he should leave his flock at all.13 Similarly unclear was the extent to which Lutherans prepared to emigrate could rely on the imperial emigration laws, especially if the enforcement of the Reformation in their home territories had been carried out, not on the basis of the imperial, but rather the provincial estates, or if areas beyond the empire's borders were concerned. For the large emigrations of Lutherans in early modern Central Europe, these problems were of vital importance.
Religiously legitimized forms of mobility were not new developments of the Reformation period. Antiquity and the Middle Ages offer numerous examples, from pilgrims and mendicant orders to the Jewish Diaspora and the Hussites of Bohemia. If one looks for Lutheran migrants or migrations, one finds ample evidence already in the early Reformation era, a time in which Lutheranism was still establishing itself and which is otherwise connected with the migrations of followers of more radical Reformation movements like the Anabaptists. Larger Lutheran-dominated migration movements, however, are cum grano salis a phenomenon of the "long" 17th century, extending from the 1590s until the 1730s. It is very difficult to give precise numbers of those affected, because statistical records of the pre-modern era in no way measure up to our own current standards. Thus the exile lists or civic records, for instance, do not include people who were not present on a given date at a specific place or part of a certain social context. Admission to citizenship remained economically or politically unrealistic for many migrants. It is therefore also impossible to quantify the numerous immigrants without citizenship, those who moved around nomadically or those who were just passing through. In addition, as many families were broken up as a result of the emigration, one cannot necessarily presume an average family size of five people as one usually does for the early modern period. Accordingly, when statistics linger in the relevant literature – such as 11,000 inner-Austrian emigrants, 36,000 families of Bohemian exiles or 20,000 Salzburgers – they are always to be treated with some caution.
The Lutheran migrations became a mass phenomenon in the context of the re-catholicization of Habsburg territories such as the Austrian hereditary lands, the lands of the Bohemian Crown, Upper Hungary and the Archbishopric of Salzburg, which was at times a Habsburg satellite state. Almost always the clergy and the schoolmasters were the first to be expelled by mandate, because, to the state administration, they represented a particular danger as propagators of false teachings. Afterwards, the remaining subjects were ordered to convert – an order which, in light of recent research, more than a few people followed.14 In general, the authorities did not force people to emigrate, since this would have meant a loss of tax-paying subjects. However, the goal was to create a confessionally uniform class of subjects so as to have a stable, orderly and godly state. In practice, however, and depending on the region, there remained many loopholes for openly or secretly practicing Lutheranism, even under the conditions of harsh re-catholicization measures. In some areas, only those were expelled who, from the administration's point of view, were truly recalcitrant; others decided to emigrate voluntarily in view of worsening religious, social and economic circumstances. When individuals fled from their conditions as subjects or circumvented emigration provisions, they were in direct defiance of the law and could be classified as rebels, whom the authorities sought to have extradited.15
The Habsburg Territories in the 17th Century
Depending on region and local circumstances, the spectrum of resistance against the re-catholicization of the Habsburg territories extended from rebellions and rioting to flight or expulsion and to more or less voluntary and planned migrations. In some cases, the emigrations were effectively return migrations of families who had recently resided in Upper Germany. Dramatic scenes took place especially in Inner Austria (Styria, Carniola and Carinthia) due to the forceful re-catholicization measures. In Upper Austria, which was already a migration area in the 1590s and then became even more of one in the 1620s, the confessional problem merged on several occasions with political and social uprisings. In Lower Austria it remained quiet until the 1620s, when Lutherans there also left the country and emigrated to Protestant Southern Germany.16 While the migration initially mostly impacted the economically powerful city dwellers, it soon affected members of all tiers of society, from nobles to inhabitants of rural areas. The emigrations continued on a smaller scale throughout most of the 17th century, although they were not always clearly connected to re-catholicization measures, but often more attributable to political and socio-economic causes. As in Bohemia, the proportion of the rural population among migrants from the hereditary lands rose after 1650.17
When choosing their destinations, the migrants were often able to rely on existing contacts. Host regions of the exiles from the hereditary lands were neighbouring Protestant territories such as the Lutheran County of Ortenburg in Bavaria, but chiefly also the Upper German imperial cities such as Regensburg, Ulm and the economically thriving Nuremberg. As a result, economic relations and communications between Regensburg or Nuremberg and the hereditary lands intensified. Some immigrants were given citizenship, achieved positions in the city councils, married into established families and helped to cultivate the city's art and cultural scene, for example by establishing literary societies. Specialists such as goldsmiths, but also visual artists and authors (including women authors such as Catharina Regina von Greiffenberg (1622–1694)) from the hereditary lands made Nuremberg temporarily into an important centre of cultural transfers between the Austrian exiles and 17th-century Baroque culture.18 The relatively rapid integration was probably also facilitated by the fact that, in contrast to other immigrant groups, there were no significant confessional or linguistic barriers.
The situation of the Bohemian exile was somewhat different, it involved German-speaking Lutherans and Czech-language (Neo-)Utraquists in addition to the Bohemian Brethren. With the start of the Thirty Years' War and the defeat of the Bohemian Revolt at the Battle of the White Mountain (1620), larger migrations were set into motion from the lands of the Bohemian Crown (Bohemia, Moravia, particular areas of Silesia and parts of Upper and Lower Lusatia). Starting with the expulsion in 1621/1622 of preachers and schoolmasters (a practice also common elsewhere), it is possible to distinguish individual waves and prevalent classes of migrants.19 Lutherans and (Neo-) Utraquists went to Saxony and Central Germany, where they had often already established contacts in the cities and at the universities of Wittenberg, Leipzig and Jena. For many members of the clergy, emigration to Saxony in fact meant a return to their native country. They had originally left in 1609 for Bohemia after Rudolf II's (1552–1612) Letter of Majesty had granted Bohemia's and Silesia's Protestant estates the free exercise of religion.20 The Saxon authorities were divided over the Bohemian immigrants: rather than actively supporting immigration, they tended to respond cautiously, albeit with an increasing administrative burden. This was not least because Saxony was on the Habsburg side for an extended period of the Thirty Years' War. Officially, the Electorate of Saxony only welcomed Bohemian Lutherans, which caused many exiles to associate more closely with the Lutheran faith only after arriving at their places of exile (Pirna, Zittau, Dresden, etc.).
The Peace of Prague (1635) and, finally, the Treaty of Westphalia (1648) dashed any hopes of return and the restitution of property, which prompted more and more exiles to settle down permanently in their new northern and central German settlements. This led to an intensification of longer-term transfers between the immigrants and the host societies in a variety of areas. For instance, in Upper Lusatia the exiles contributed to improving the craft of weaving, in the royal seat of Dresden they dominated wine selling and trade along the Elbe River. Here, a Bohemian parish was established in which Czech traditions were strongly cultivated. However, in the 18th century it became increasingly difficult to find a Lutheran clergyman who had a command of the Czech language. The Christian Weise Library in Zittau to this day houses a large number of Czech-language volumes from the libraries of Bohemian exiles. Only few so-called exile cities like for instance Johanngeorgenstadt in the Erzgebirge show evidence of a closed settlement of emigrants that was based on a privilege granted by a sovereign or landlord. Most of the other immigrants were spread throughout the localities along the border area.21
The emigration from the Bohemian lands continued with varying intensity and diverse regional characteristics until the 18th century, as is shown especially by the close border regions of Silesia and Upper Lusatia. Silesia was indeed itself a site of immigration as well as emigration or passage and was also at times affected by re-catholicization. Due to its territorial complexity and uncertain imperial status as a Bohemian possession, which was fragmented internally into numerous dominions, the situation here differed greatly from region to region. It was only in a few regions that the prohibition against Protestantism went so far as to cause lasting emigrations, as in the area of the Grüssau Abbey or in the County of Glatz.22 Otherwise, the Lutheran way of life was often more or less tolerated. In the turmoil of war and religious conflict, the Baroque literature of Silesia dealt with confessional restrictions, forced displacements and steadfastness of religious devotion. Topoi were frequently adopted from the writings on confessional exile and emigration, which a number of Silesian Baroque poets had experienced first-hand.23
In the Treaty of Westphalia, it was stipulated that three Churches of Peace would be built in Silesia (in Swidnica, Jawor and Głogów). Located in the middle of a region threatened by re-catholicization, these churches became gathering places for Lutherans, and their services regularly attracted large segments of the population from officially Catholic dominions. Depending on how close the proximity was to a Protestant territory, to the Peace Churches or, later, to the Grace Churches (built after the Convention of Altranstädt, 1707/1709), there was also a steady traffic of Silesian Lutherans who travelled to the church services beyond the Silesian border. There, so-called Border Churches were built or renovated in Polish, Brandenburg and Lusatian territories. Journeys like these to church services could, in the long term, lead to actual emigrations.24
Silesia, however, also served for a long time as a gateway to the Holy Roman Empire and as a relay of confessional exchange eastward. In the late 17th century, during the so-called Mourning Decade (a decade of almost complete, if temporary, abolishment of Lutheranism with military and prosecutorial measures), this had an impact on the exiled Protestant clergy from Upper Hungary (Slovakia), who often only narrowly escaped the galleys and now entered the empire through Silesia. Some of them undertook important literary work there, reporting on the hardships of re-catholicization in Upper Hungary during the period of Emperor Leopold I (1640–1705). Silesia's relay function also boosted the influence of the Grace Church of Cieszyn (Upper Silesia) in officially Catholic areas in the south and east, which contributed not least to the spread of Lutheran Pietism in central Europe.25 As late as the 19th century Silesia was affected by confessional migrations. The expulsion of the Zillertal Protestants from Tyrol in the 1830s, who settled in the Jelenia Góra Valley at the foot of the Giant Mountains (Krkonoše) on the estate of the Countess Friederike von Reden (1774–1854), and the near-simultaneous emigration of the so-called Old Lutherans from Silesia to Australia, who refused to submit to the Prussian Union of Churches, are considered as the last examples of Lutheran "religious flight" in central Europe.26
Confessional Migration in the "Era of Tolerance"
The emigration of Salzburg Protestants in the 1730s is also part of this long tradition of central European migrations since the Reformation. It was preceded by repressions and expulsions of rural residents and miners in the Salzburg Defereggen Valley, Berchtesgaden and among the so-called "Dürrenberger Knappen" (salt miners). One of the first displaced Dürrenberger miners was Joseph Schaitberger (1658–1733), who was expelled after serving a prison term. Forced to leave his children behind, he moved to Nuremberg, where many migrants from the Habsburg territories had already settled, and published edifying writings, whose specific impact on the mobilization of Protestants in the Alps, however, is debated. Intermediaries like Schaitberger, though, made sure that the confessional situation in the bishopric was widely known.27
Prince Bishop Leopold Anton von Firmian (1679–1744), a social and administrative reformer, carried out confessional examinations of Salzburg subjects which led to a worsening of the situation. Additionally, traditional forms of social protest increased the sectarian-political tensions. As a result, delegations of Salzburg Protestants took up their concerns with the Diet of Regensburg. This led to what became a famous petition from 19,000 people, and, by the end of 1731, resulted in expulsions and emigrations that continued into the summer of the following year. Notwithstanding the provisions of the Treaty of Westphalia, which had actually never been ratified by Salzburg, the Protestants were not granted regulated terms for their departure. At the same time, the Prussian envoy at the Diet tried to attract as many emigrants as possible to colonize Prussia's depopulated north-eastern territory. Brandenburg-Prussia quickly began to channel the migration into the kingdom, to lend support to the immigrants and to finally place the majority in north-eastern Prussia. The Salzburgers were usually spread out over ethnically mixed areas. This not only meant social adjustments, but also massive changes in the organization of feudal labour and farming methods.28
For the Hohenzollern state and the empire's Protestants in general, the Salzburgers' emigration was a very welcome occasion to spread propaganda that emphasized the moral superiority of the Reformation and denounced the inhumanity of the Catholic side. Although the emperor sent troops to help with the expulsion of the Salzburg Protestants, he abstained from other foreign policy measures in order to avoid upsetting the empire's political balance. As soon as the empire's authorities became involved in the defence of the Protestants, the Catholic powers based their arguments on positions that were already familiar from the time of the early emigrations of the Counter-Reformation. These included the view that the emigrants were heretics, who did not belong to the tolerated belief systems, or the contention that religion was in fact not an issue at all, but rather political rebellion. The fact that the Salzburgers' emigration could become a display of Protestantism that involved both Reformed Protestants and Orthodox Lutherans and especially Lutheran Pietists was due to a specific overlapping of confessional and political interests.
In pietistic circles, in particular, important advocates for the Salzburg emigrants could be found. Among these were the pastor Samuel Urlsperger (1685–1772), who was himself a descendant of Styrian immigrants. From his location in Augsburg, he became one of the most important propagandists for the cause of the Salzburgers. Through his contacts to Halle Pietism, but also to the religious societies of Great Britain such as the London Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, he arranged for several hundred Salzburgers to obtain permission to emigrate to the colony of Georgia. Everyone involved in this latter undertaking regarded the support of the Salzburg Protestants as their own prestigious project and all were disappointed when there were initially not enough Salzburgers to fill the ships to America.29
Afterwards, the authorities of the Alpine lands strove to advance religious homogenisation somewhat more quietly. Success, however, was only limited in the case of the so-called transmigrations. In several regions of the hereditary lands officially ordered deportations were carried out (in the 1730s under Charles VI (1685–1740), but also under Maria Theresa (1717–1780) in the 1750s and 1770s) and Protestants unwilling to convert were forced to leave for Transylvania. This area was suited as a target destination, as the eastern lands outside the boundaries of the Holy Roman Empire had served the Habsburg administration for some time as a bulwark against foreign powers. However, because it was outside of imperial-legal influence and largely unnoticed by the rest of the empire, its border location also meant that it could enjoy certain religious concessions. In any case, one should not overlook the fact that the resettlements occasionally tore apart families in painful ways and were partly enforced with massive military intervention.30 Hence migrations motivated by religious and political reasons and even deportations were also part of the so-called tolerant 18th century.
The re-catholicization measures in the early modern period by no means led to a complete separation of Protestant from Catholic Europe. The manifold connections between the areas of departure and the host countries, the transfers of goods, money, ideas and people were in large part due to the Lutheran emigrants. Much like in the 16th century, when Strasbourg, Geneva and Frankfurt am Main had become hubs of information and exchange for Reformed exiles, in the 17th century cities like Nuremberg, Regensburg, Dresden, Hamburg and Leipzig became national, multinational and sometimes even multi-confessional centres of transfer. Furthermore, there was the appeal of universities such as Wittenberg, Leipzig and Altdorf, which traditionally attracted a large number of Protestant students from the Habsburg territories where no Lutheran educational institutions existed. Trade links that were not limited to local border traffic and included the exchange of information, also connected Protestant and Catholic Europe. These were not curtailed in any way by re-catholicization. Protestant churches outside the Habsburg sphere of influence regularly attracted a large number of believers from neighbouring Catholic and re-catholicized territories to church services.
The migrations themselves were frequently not hurried flights, but often based on the transmission of information and knowledge that had long preceded the relocation. Thus the migration process could be well prepared for in advance in the country of origin – through inquiries, travel and correspondence or through the sale or lease of property (whose earnings one might continue to live off while residing in the host country). Such planning, however, did not automatically mean that the settlement and integration would be successful. How quickly or easily one was able to set down roots at the target destination often depended less on confessional than economic or linguistic conditions, and not least on a willingness, or need, to consider making the temporary place of exile a permanent home. This consequently influenced the readiness to obtain citizenship and affected marital relationships and family reunifications. Various difficulties pertaining to the structures of the early modern corporative state, however, could hinder settlement or cause it to fail altogether. These included, for example, the Bürgergeld (the money a person had to pay to become a citizen of a certain city), the restrictive admission policies of the guilds and fear of the resident population that the settlement of immigrants would lead to a decrease of the "auskömmliche Nahrung" ("adequate nourishment"). Failed migrant careers were therefore hardly rare: alms records illustrate how many exiles lived on the streets, either temporarily or for longer terms, and survived on handouts.31
The maintenance of contacts in the former homeland was frequently useful. Migrants with specific geographic knowledge or language skills were active in trade or diplomacy. They were of vital importance for contacts and exchange between the home country and the place of migration. The lucrative, and mostly illegal, sale of devotional literature between Protestant southern and central Germany and the Habsburg territories in the 17th century was often organized by migrants.32 That said, there has been little discussion in the research about the return migrations of immigrants, who have largely disappeared from the authoritative accounts of the exiles. Only occasionally one finds a few derogatory remarks about them, such as that someone had fallen from true Lutheranism, decided in favour of the "fleshpots of Egypt" and returned to the "papacy". However, there are many signs that return migrations must have been very common, not only from southern and central Germany, but irrespective of the geographical distance between the new and old homelands. Even some Salzburg Protestants considered a return from Prussia-Lithuania to the Alpine region, as did individual "transmigrants" who made their way from Transylvania to Carinthia on foot.33 Little is known about what ideas and experiences the return migrants brought back home with them.
The Cultivation of Migrant Traditions
In regard to the cultivation of traditions of the migrant Lutherans, the Salzburg Protestants of the 18th century played one of the most important parts (as did the Reformed Huguenots, who came to be regarded as ideal examples of immigrants: enlightened bearers of culture, successful business people and loyal subjects). Even the migrations of the re-catholicization period were in some cases instrumentalized as confessional propaganda only in the 18th century, finding their way into Protestant history books and martyrologies.
The basic details, of course, came from the contemporary writings that accompanied the migrations. Family registers, sermons, flight narratives and devotional writings contributed to the emergence of a consciousness of religious exile, both among the emigrants and among the members of the host societies. In general, the authors of depictions of religious coercion, persecution, flight and spiritual salvation were members of the clergy. This was due to the fact that the clergy was often directly affected by re-catholicization and expulsion measures. For this reason, the inference was made later that other groups were also always likely to suffer similar fates. Also, migrant clergymen were familiar with the publication of religious literature and had access to the necessary contacts and markets. Their publications aimed at the edification of the remaining members of the community in the former homeland or devout Christians in general, who were to perceive the examples of religious flight and martyrdom as commendable evidence of a god-fearing existence. Finally, the authors often used such writings as a means of finding new appointments in the destination lands or as an accompanying document when raising funds for their exile communities.34
Among the earliest writings that were published shortly before or after the actual emigration journey, there are farewell sermons and writings of consolation from the exiled clergy such as those of the Prague Lutheran pastor Sigismund Scherertz (1584–1639) and those of Fabian Natus (1591–1634).35 In other cases, stories of adventurous flights were published, some of which sold extremely well, like the repeatedly reprinted narrative of the Austrian clergyman Paulus Odontius (d. 1605).36 The intended audience was fellow exiles, Lutherans in the host countries and those who remained at home. Many texts were smuggled to the latter group as small-format books, which contributed to the building of covert Protestant structures. This highlights the fact that religious-cultural transfers are processes that do not simply run in a single direction, but are multidimensional. In the case of the Bohemian exiles in Saxony, such publications also contributed to the subsequent incorporation of the Bohemian emigration into a Lutheran and German-language context.
Contemporary publications were often developed in the years afterwards into grand migration narratives, which made historical-documentary or biographical-genealogical claims. Among the better known examples is the Historia persecutionum of 1648, which is attributed to Johann Amos Comenius (1592–1670) and Adam Hartmann and was initially conceived as an annex to the Book of Martyrs by John Foxe (1516–1587). It told the story of true Christians in Bohemia, who, it is claimed, had been continually persecuted since the Christianization of Bohemia in the 9th century, which finally culminated in the emigrations of the 17th century. The book originally came from a Reformed Brethren context and was translated after its first edition in Latin into several European vernaculars. It was reprinted a number of times and in the 19th century it appeared in a new German translation in the wake of a growing interest in the German-Protestant churches of other countries.37 Diptycha exulum, a book by Luneburg pastor Georg Heinrich Goetze (1667–1728), by contrast, was of a more Lutheran-orthodox stance. It was published in 1714 and consisted primarily of biographies of steadfast theologians from the Bohemian hereditary lands who were presented as champions of true Lutheranism.38 Evangelisches Österreich from the 1730s by the Hamburg author Bernhard Raupach (1682–1745), situated the secret Protestant structures in the Austro-Salzburg Alps in a continuous chronology leading up to the formation of the pietistic conventicles in the author's era.39 Other narratives such as the writings surrounding the Salzburger emigration of 1731/1732 emphasized the charity of the monarch, who had taken in the persecuted exiles out of Christian compassion.40 The Salzburger publications are in any case an excellent example of the new communication opportunities for presenting a migration process in the form of texts, images, sermons, songs, medallions and much more.
If we look for recurring themes in such migration narratives, the topos of Christian constancy which stems from a tradition of Protestant martyr histories and places the migration process in salvation-historical contexts should be underscored. The steadfastness of the truly pious, the concept of a lifelong peregrinatio, a Christian neo-stoicism approximating the idea of constantia: all of these are replete with biblical, primarily Old Testament exempla, like the exodus out of Egypt and the Babylonian captivity, and supported by biographical details.41 A further subject is a particular frontier myth of early modern exile. The idea that bearers of culture or at least industrious settlers transformed an inhospitable landscape into arable land or brought a languishing community to flourish played a role in the founding of the Bohemian-Saxon exile settlement of Johanngeorgenstadt as much as it did in the context of the Salzburgers' settlement in Prussia.42 In conjunction with the panegyrics offered to the welcoming monarch, a picture of the exiles' "benefit" to the host country is presented that is even more pronounced in regard to the Reformed migrants than in regard to the Lutherans.43 At the same time, the writings served to separate the migrants from the locals, creating exile-group identities at the places of exile which included the idea that only those could be considered good Christians who had suffered from significant hardships.
The transfer of exile myths, the contents and routes of transfer, are therefore of vital importance for a more general understanding of Lutheran exile, which is detached from specific individual migration processes. Some migrations were first conceived of as "Lutheran" religious flights or confessional migrations only in the destination countries themselves or even later – in the retrospective writings and cultivated traditions of subsequent generations. In some respects, the Lutheran martyrdom presented in such migration narratives contains an almost inexorable logic, which leaves no room for deviation from confessional norms, for doubts or even return migrations.