Born in Neustadt am Rübenberge, he was educated at the universities of Marburg (1543) and Wittenberg, where he studied theology. At Wittenberg, his talents were recognized by Philipp Melanchthon. As magister, he became in 1575 a minister and inspector of churches in Lüneburg.
He wrote plays and in later years became involved in mediating theological disputes.
He died on February 27, 1598 at Lüneburg.
Dedekind was the author of Grobianus et Grobiana: sive, de morum simplicitate, libri tres (Cologne, 1558). This work had first been published in 1549 as Grobianus, but it appeared with additions known as Grobiana in 1554.
Dedekind's work appeared in England in 1605 as The Schoole of Slovenrie: Or, Cato turnd wrong side outward, published by one "R.F.". The "Schoole" was imagined as a place where one was instructed to use one's greasy fingers to grab at the nicest portions of any dish and snatch food belonging to fellow diners. Holding back the desire to urinate, fart, and vomit is taught to be bad for one's health; thus, one has to indulge freely in all three activities.
The work also inspired Thomas Dekker's The Guls Horne-Booke (1609).
The Portrait of Friedrich Dedekind was found in Hannover (2008) by: Eberhard Doll, hidden for more than 400 years under the front cover of his own personal Bible, at the Gottfried Whilhelm Leibniz Library. This portrait was painted in beautiful water colors and underneath, a hand-written autograph in Latin was dedicated to his elder son Euricius. Signed by Friedrich, Luneburg 1589.
- Der christliche Ritter ("The Christian Knight") (1576)
- Papista conversus (1596)
- Polybiblio: Grobianus et Grobiana: sive, de morum simplicitate, libri tres (in English)
- Gull’s Hornbook (in English)
- Eberhard Doll (2002). "Dedekind, Friedrich". In Bautz, Traugott. Biographisch-Bibliographisches Kirchenlexikon (BBKL) (in German). 20. Nordhausen: Bautz. cols. 373–379. ISBN 3-88309-091-3.
- Facsimile des "Grobianus"
- Biographischer Artikel zu Friedrich Dedekind im BBKL (in German)