On 14 June 1527, Martin Luther (1483–1546) wrote a letter to the mayor and council of Coburg. The city had introduced the Reformation from 1524 with the support of Duke John of Saxony (1468–1532, duke from 1486, elector from 1525), brother of Elector Frederick the Wise (1463–1525, elector 1486–1525).
In the autumn of 1524 Duke John had approved a new order of worship, monasteries were dissolved and, in 1528/29, the first visitation of churches and schools in the region was carried out.
In the letter shown here, Luther asks the city officials to accept as schoolmaster Magister Philip Eberbach (d. 1529) appointed by Philip Melanchthon (1497–1560) for Coburg.
Melanchthon campaigned for improvements in the educational system, which is why he was awarded the title “Teacher of Germany”. He also repeatedly recommended teachers to the citzens of Coburg and his Latin grammar was used as a textbook. In 1527, Eberbach became the first Protestant school principal and, in 1527, he was the headmaster of the former Benedictine school of Saalfeld monastery. The last provost had put himself under the protection of the city in 1525. He was retired in 1529 with an annual pension. Legally, the school was finally transferred under the administration of the city council in 1555, when it became the city council’s school of Coburg.