Re: What’s in a name? Sept. p. 12.
Another and perhaps more important reason for Luther to change his name was that he wanted to give expression to his newly-won freedom, freedom from the years as a monk and from the restrictive interpretation of the Scriptures by Rome. As a professor at the University of Wittenberg it was customary to take on a representative name.
He wanted to be called Eleutherios, the Free Man. Since this spelling would have been too awkward and cumbersome for most people at that time, he chose to incorporate it into his name, thus being called Luther rather than Luder. In his famous letter to Archbishop Albrecht of Mainz from Oct.31, 1517 he signed for the first time as Martin Luther. (see Martin Luther: Rebel in an Age of Upheaval, Heinz Schilling. Oxford Uni- versity Press 2017).