Squire Adamsson Print Edition
First written in 1862-63 and revised in several subsequent editions, Squire Adamsson was one of the most widely read Swedish novels in the second half of the 19th century. The author, Paul Peter Waldenström (1838-1917), was then a young student in Uppsala, and would later go on to be an influential preacher, critiquing the religious practice of the Lutheran state church and founding the Mission Covenant Church of Sweden. The heroine of the novel is Mother Simple, who assists Adamsson in his journey toward understanding the limitless nature of God’s grace. Several of the themes in this novel build on concepts within Lutheran Pietism as popularized by Spener, Francke, Zinzendorf and C.O. Rosenius, particularly the nature of God’s grace, congregational polity, and the practice of faith. Furthermore, Waldenström’s emphasis on the subjective experience of faith bears similarity to notions of temptation (anfäktelse) articulated by both Luther and Kierkegaard. This new English translation of Squire Adamsson is published by the devotional journal Pietisten in honor of the 150th anniversary of the novel. The translation was completed by Mark Safstrom, lecturer in Swedish at the University of Illinois, and features extensive notes and a scholarly introduction. The novel is introduced by Gracia Grindal, professor emeritus of rhetoric at Luther Seminary.