Calvin 500

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Posts 40
Joe Newell | Forum Activity | Posted: Tue, Sep 7 2010 9:16 AM

I preface this by saying that I don't have much money.  Certainly not the level of funds commensurate with my voracious reading appetite!  That said, I can't help but stare longingly at the Calvin 500 collection on Logos' site.

 

He is a fascinating character to me.  Both pastoral and scholarly, he seems not as fiery as Luther but I believe that his theology and career would be fascinating to study.  Still, the collection includes ten (10!) biographies and I can't help but wonder at the level of redundancy in this massive collection.

 

Dollars aside, would those of you who own this describe it as a diversified package of Calvinistic material?  At 40,000 pages, I'll never read it. All but I still don't want to keep covering the same trodden ground in volume after volume.

 

Appreciate your advice.  All comments helpful, no doubt.

 

Posts 5794
DIsciple II | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 7 2010 9:55 AM

In addition to comments offered here I recommend you check out

http://www.calvin500.com

 

 

Posts 401
Timothy Ha | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 7 2010 12:18 PM

I got this during Pre-pub, so I don't need that discount - but nice information indeed.

JesusChrist.ru - Russian Christian Portal, with free Bible software; Timh.ru - blog

Posts 40
Joe Newell | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 7 2010 12:32 PM

Are you happy with it, Timothy?

Posts 13418
Mark Barnes | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 7 2010 1:03 PM

The Calvin 500 collection contains a certain amount of filler, in my opinion. I certainly wouldn't pay anywhere near $1,000 for it, though $390 is obviously much better value (though I only paid $249 on prepub as I already had some Calvin stuff). Of the material that is there, Calvin's own works are by far the most valueable. I'm not saying the others aren't worth having, but their quality is quite variable, and they're all public domain stuff.

It depends on your library, but if you already have good historical bent to your library, you could search your library for references to these resources to see how well they're cited. Schaff's History of the Christian Church mentions a few of them. Dyer is 'graphic and impartial', M'Crie is 'valuable as far as it goes'. Google Scholar or Google Books might tell you something similar.

For myself, I find the added books occasionally helpful, but if I wanted to read a biography of Calvin, or an assessment of his theology, I'd probably choose something else.

Posts 19262
Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 7 2010 5:10 PM

Mark Barnes:
I wanted to read a biography of Calvin, or an assessment of his theology, I'd probably choose something else.

These two were on the recommended reading list for the course on Calvin's Institutes that I took; at least I think that's why I picked them both up. Haven't read them yet, but they look very good and get good reviews on Amazon.com:

  • Calvin: Origins and Development of His Religious Thought, by François Wendel
  • A Life of John Calvin: A Study in the Shaping of Western Culture, by Alister E. McGrath

I haven't read any of the bios of Calvin in the Calvin 500 collection yet so I don't have any comparison to offer. I would expect that the more current authors have more recent scholarship available to them, though, so they're likely to be more comprehensive. It's annoying that the publication date for all the ones in the Calvin 500 collection is 2009. I wish Logos would show the real publication date in that field more consistently, not the date a previously print-based book was published electronically.

Another biography of Calvin available from Logos outside of the Calvin 500 collection is John Calvin: A Pilgrim's Life by Herman J. Selderhuis.

Posts 13418
Mark Barnes | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Sep 8 2010 12:34 AM

Rosie Perera:
It's annoying that the publication date for all the ones in the Calvin 500 collection is 2009. I wish Logos would show the real publication date in that field more consistently, not the date a previously print-based book was published electronically.

Agreed.

Posts 1498
HJ. van der Wal | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Sep 8 2010 1:45 AM

Rosie Perera:

 

  • Calvin: Origins and Development of His Religious Thought, by François Wendel
  • A Life of John Calvin: A Study in the Shaping of Western Culture, by Alister E. McGrath

Just to make sure I haven't missed anything: these resources are not available in Logos?

I have Wendel's book in French, but I haven't had the time to read it. (If only I could make a Logos Reading Plan for print resources....)

Another good work of French origin is Bernard Cottret's biography of Calvin (although he can sometimes be critical of Calvin). I believe the English translation is published by T&T Clark.

I haven't bought the biography by Selderhuis (and if I do, I would buy it in Dutch), but I know that prof.Selderhuis is an excellent reformed church historian.

The resources in the Calvin 500 collection (which I bought in prepub) will keep me busy for some time. I especially like the works by Calvin himself. One resource in the Calvin 500 collection which often appears on recommended reading lists is Niesel's book on the theology of John Calvin.

Posts 19262
Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Sep 8 2010 5:34 PM

Hendrik-Jan van der Wal:

Rosie Perera:

  • Calvin: Origins and Development of His Religious Thought, by François Wendel
  • A Life of John Calvin: A Study in the Shaping of Western Culture, by Alister E. McGrath

Just to make sure I haven't missed anything: these resources are not available in Logos?

Correct. I should have been more explicit about that, but I would have provided links to the product description pages if they'd been available in Logos.

P.S. They'd be good additions to Logos, though.

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