In the new building an exhibition details Melanchthon’s work and its effects, showcasing, often for the first time, manuscripts, prints, paintings and busts. Included in these items is an original salary receipt and the first city history of Wittenberg, handwritten by Melanchthon. Works and letters by Melanchthon and his contemporaries, such as the momentous “Confessio Augustana,” the Augsburg Confession of 1530, are explored with a focus on their importance for Reformation theology and the development of Protestantism. One of the central exhibits is a larger-than-life portrait of Melanchthon by Lucas Cranach the Younger, restored for the exhibition.
Special elements integrated into the exhibition cater to our younger guests. Children receive a cast-iron key at the entrance that gives them access to chests and cabinets with hidden games and also unlocks hidden media stations specifically aimed at children. The complex historical story of the Reformation is told from the perspective of Magdalena, Melanchthon’s ten-year-old daughter. She guides visitors using graphic images and audio content, providing information about the way people lived and worked in the Melanchthon household.
The herb garden behind the house, laid out according to historical models (including medicinal plants, as was a tradition for scholars interested in the powers of herbs) invites young and old to linger after their visit to the museum.