L’image négative de Luther dans la propagande en vers français des années 1520-1530

During the first half of the sixteenth century (ca. 1520-1540), Franc saw the appearance of several texts in verse and the vernacular composed against Luther. This article examines these texts to understand the function of poetry in works that do not so much aim to inform or offer theological reflection, but to edify and to serve graphic and hyperbolic polemic. Here the Peasants’ War and the Meaux Affair prove to be largely determinative for the view adopted by the opponents of Luther and the Reformation. In creating a diabolical image of him, they do not hesitate to promulgate the tale of his ignoble death, and expect the salvation of the church from moral reform as much as from the suppression of the Protestant movement.