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hope of attacking me by force. These men request that I at least honor Your Holiness’s rank, and that I excuse both your innocence and mine in letters of humility: the matter is not yet at the final pitch of desperation, if Leo X, through his innate goodness, will set his hand to it.’ And a little later, the rebel monk dared to prescribe the laws of peace to the highest Pontiff. He added, ‘No one should assume, Most Holy Father, that I will hereafter make a recantation, unless he wishes to involve his cause in a still greater storm. Furthermore, I will not endure laws

in Luther’s lives

Jews in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries a polemical literature intended for internal purposes, a special section of which is devoted to the matter of apostates. It was clear to the authors of this polemical literature that at that time Goldin, Apostasy and Jewish identity.indd 37 20/08/2014 12:34:43 38 Apostasy and Jewish identity there were apostate Jews among the Christians, and that it was they who taught the Christians the arguments of the Jews. The polemical books fulfill a three-fold function: to strengthen Jews against Christian arguments, to serve

in Apostasy and Jewish identity in High Middle Ages Northern Europe