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Ladd, George Trumbull (19 January 1842–08 August 1921), theologian, philosopher, and psychologist, was born in Painesville, Ohio, the son of Silas Trumbull Ladd, a businessman and treasurer of Western Reserve College, and Elizabeth Williams. Ladd graduated from Western Reserve College in 1864 and from Andover Theological Seminary in 1869. Also in 1869 he married Cornelia Ann Tallman of Bellaire, Ohio; they had four children. He was a minister for nearly a decade, spending two years in a small church in Ohio and eight years in the large Spring Street Congregational Church in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Ladd wrote and read feverishly throughout his life. Having a passion for scholarship, he grew tired of the pastorate and sought freedom in the academic world. He justified this transition by planning a defense of his faith in opposition to the increasingly scientific and secular world. According to his biographer E. S. Mills, “he would serve as the mediator between the old and the new so that the best of both worlds of learning and experience might be preserved.” In 1879 Ladd accepted a post in the department of philosophy at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine. Two years later he moved to New Haven, Connecticut, and began his long association with Yale University. At Yale, Ladd was appointed professor of moral and mental philosophy....

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Lyman, Eugene William (04 April 1872–15 March 1948), philosopher of religion and theologian, was born in Cummington, Massachusetts, the son of Darwin Eugene Lyman and Julia Sarah Stevens. His “public-minded” father owned the village store and served for a time in the state legislature; his mother operated a millinery shop in connection with her husband’s store. Regularly, Julia Lyman read biblical stories, John Bunyan’s ...

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Tillich, Paul (20 August 1886–22 October 1965), Protestant theologian and philosopher, was born Paul Johannes Oskar Tillich in Starzeddel in the German state of East Prussia, the son of Johannes Tillich, a Lutheran pastor, and Wilhelmina Mathilde Dürselen. His father was appointed superintendent of the province of Schönfleiss-Neumark several years later, but in 1900 the family moved to Berlin. At age twelve Tillich’s formal education began at the Gymnasium in Königsberg-Neumark and continued at the Friedrich Wilhelm Gymnasium in Berlin with a classical curriculum. Through his study of Greek culture, Tillich developed an interest in the history of philosophy, especially the thought of Immanuel Kant, Johann G. Fichte, and Friedrich W. Schelling. He gradually turned away from the conservative Lutheran theology of his father and from his mother’s rigid moralism, a process that produced in him an intense “consciousness of guilt,” as he later put it in ...

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Wieman, Henry Nelson (19 August 1884–19 June 1975), philosopher of religion and theologian, was born in Rich Hill, midway between Joplin and Kansas City, Missouri, the son of William Henry Wieman, a Presbyterian minister, and Alma Morgan. The first of eight children, young Wieman attended church in his childhood, but he often stayed at home with his infant siblings and read poetry: Longfellow, Byron, and Tennyson. He was not taught religion and never joined most young Presbyterians in memorizing the “Shorter Catechism,” but Wieman recalled catching something by contagion from his parents, especially his mother, a woman of “profound piety and religious devotion,” who moved with “invincible propulsion,” like “a force of nature” (Wieman, “Intellectual Autobiography,” p. 6, and “Theocentric Religion,” p. 339). At fourteen he read ...