BORA, KATHARINA VON: Luther's wife; b. of an old family of Klein-Laussig, near Bitterfeld in Meissen, Jan. 29, 1499; d. at Torgau Dec. 20, 1552. She was placed in the Cistercian convent of Nimpsch at Grimma (17 m. s.e. of Leipsic) when a child and became a nun in 1515; with the cognizance of Luther she and eight other nuns fled from the convent Apr. 4, 1523, and repaired to Wittenberg. She is said to have refused an offer of marriage from Dr. Kasper Glatz, vicar at Orlamünde, and at the same time to have expressed a preference for Amsdorf or Luther. She was married to the latter June 13, 1525, and bore him six children. She proved a true wife, was a good housekeeper, and the marriage was a happy one. After Luther's


death (Feb. 18, 1546) she remained at Wittenberg, much of the time in poverty. Her death was due to an accident which occurred as she was on the way, with her children, to Torgau to escape the plague at Wittenberg.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: W. Beste, Die Geschichte Katharinas von Bora, Halle, 1843; F. G. Hofmann, Katharina von Bora oder Luther als Gatte und Vater, Leipsic, 1845; A. Stein, Katharina von Bora, Luthers Ehegemahl, Halle, 1897; A. Thoma, Katharina von Bora, Berlin, 1900. Consult also the various biographies of Luther. The chief of the many libels concerning Luther's marriage is Eusebius Engelhard's (Michael Kuen) Lucifer Wittenbergensis, 2 vols., Landsberg, 1747-49.


BORDELUMIANS: A separatistic sect formed at Bordelum, a village of Sleswick, about 1739, under the leadership of a pietistic Saxon theological student named David Bähr. They originally consisted of fifteen or twenty persons, and claimed to be saints who had advanced further than Paul according to Rom. vii, 24. Since they believed that they had received special gifts from God, they decried the Church as the house of the devil, and despised the sacramants. As being pure, to whom all things were pure, they rejected marriage in favor of free love, and instituted a communism of property for their financial support. An edict of Christian VI, issued June 11, 1739, condemned the leaders to imprisonment; those who had led an immoral life were punished according to the laws, and the remainder were admonished. The leaders managed to escape the punishment, however, Bähr, who had seduced a married woman, fleeing to Jena. Expelled from that city, he returned to Holstein, and was imprisoned at Glückstadt. Having become a cripple in consequence of the rough treatment to which he had been subjected in prison, he was released, and died wretchedly, still unconverted, at Bredstädt in 1743. His adherents caused much trouble to the pastor of Bordelum.


BIBLIOGRAPHY: Acta historico-ecclesiastica, vol. v, part 29, p. 653 sqq., and Supplement, pp. 1014 sqq., 20 vols., Weimar, 1734-38, continued in 13 vols., till 1790.


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