Phillipp was prepared for the Latin School in Pforzheim by his private tutor Johannes Unger. In his class he was by far the best student. He was given the opportunity to learn Greek by the rector Georg Simler and the instructor Johannes Hiltebrant.
On March 15, 1509 the humanist Johannes Reuchlin conferred upon him the humanist name "Melanchthon." Reuchlin is said to have told Melanchthon:
"Your name is Schwarzerdt [German for "black soil"], you are a Greek, and so your new name shall be Greek. Thus I will call you Melanchthon, which means black soil [in Greek]."
The good relations between Reuchlin and scholars at Heidelberg University allowed Melanchthon to be admitted to university at the age of twelve. During his studies at Heidelberg, Phillip lived with the theologian Pallas Spangel. Melanchthon completed his studies as early as possible on June 10, 1511, receiving the degree of baccalaureus artium.
Heidelberg around 1620
Copperplate, Matthaes Merian d. -.