Fast Reviews of Books in Renaissance Intellectual History:
Contact: Dr. Heinrich C. Kuhn
Document created: 2003-01-15
Andreae, Johann Valentin
Matlová, Jana (ed.)
Beneš, Jiří (coed.)
Oehler, Friedrich (trans.)
Böhling, Frank (trans.)
[Theophilus <latin, german>]
Stuttgart-Bad Cannstatt [Frommann-Holzboog] 2002
Series:Johann Valentin Andreae: Gesammelte Schriften ; 16
Price: EUR 108 (89 for subscribers)
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This title was reviewed by: Martin Schmeisser of "Seminar für Geistesgeschichte und Philosophie der Renaissance (LMU München)"
Item arrived at GGREN on:2002-12-06
Review was finished on:2002-12-23
- This is the 16th volume (of ca. 20 volumes) of a new edition of the opus of the famous protestant theologian Johann Valentin Andreae (1586 - 1654) known above all as the "inventor" of the rosicrucian movement. This volume contains the first bilingual (i.e. German and Latin) and critical edition of Andreae's dialogue Theophilus. One of the most ambitious 17th century plans for reform (written in 1622), eloquently demonstrating the necessity of an extensive renewal of the Christian society by a radically new comprehension of Christian education. Though the Theophilus has been approved by the "referent", the Konsistorium of Württemberg didn't give the licence to print. Consequently the Theophilus was not printed until 1649. Meanwhile Andreae had to defend himself against the severe reproach of religious heterodoxy, rosicrucianism and weigelianism. The original manuscript perished during the blaze of Calw in 1634. After 26 years of odyssey the editio princeps was realised in 1649 under the personal protection of August, Duke of Braunschweig (Der Theophilus wird von dem, so er liebet, wol geschüzzet werden" (p. 21)) based on Comenius' personal copy of the original manuscript. Andreae himself describes the adventurous peregrinations of his Theophilus: "Vigesimus sextus annus agitur, cum mihi domeo emissus est Theophilus, Hyperaspites contra Invidiam et Calumniam, gemellas Erebi sorores, futurus, qui postquam causae suae innocentiam Ecclesiae Patriae Antistitibus probasset, peregre abiit, et hospites hinc inde non iniquos, et illiberales reperit. Ex iis est Vir Clarissimus et Praestantissimus, ac de re literaria merens Joh. Amos Comenius, qui Ornatissimo et Doctissimo Juveni, Magno Hesenthalero ad Patrios Lares redituro, comitem illum addidit, mihique erronem, et periisse inter Germaniae turbas creditum restituit. His ergo vitam debet Theophilus, ego gratias." (p. 52)
The Latin version of the text is based on the editio princeps of 1649, taking into account the errata of the rare copy of the Amsterdam "Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica". The German translation follows on the Latin text closely. The edition is provided with a brief introduction and concise annotations.
- In the first part of the introduction (p. 7 - 16) Johann Valentin Andreae is presented as a "Erneuerer der christlichen Gesellschaft und Vorkämpfer für eine Gesellschaftsreform"- innovator of a new Christian society and pioneer for a social reform - and as a radical reformer of the Christian pedagogy, who defended Johann Arndt's Reformprogramm against the fanciful theology of Weigel. Andreae concentrated his intellectual ambition entirely on pedagogical problems, focusing on the practical values of Christian thought, by privileging experience over speculation in his new system of education.
The second part of the introduction (p. 16 - 22) gives a brief overview of the historical background of the genesis of Theophilus.
The third part (p. 22 - 28) is a roughly sketched description of the structure and the content of Theophilus.
The fourth part (p. 29 - 36) describes concisely the intellectual relationship between Johann Valentin Andreae and Comenius.
The last part (p. 36 - 38) of the introduction contains some editorial information.
After the introduction the Latin text of the Theophilus is preceded with a German translation. The Theophilus is divided into three dialogues (I. De religione christiana (p. 56 - 139), De disciplina christiana (p. 140 - 215), De literatura christiana (p. 216 - 309)). The last part (p. 310 - 469) of the book contains some supplements, also provided with German translations and annotations.
- prospective audience.
This volume is the best modern edition of the Theophilus, an essential text for anybody concerned with the history of the Reformation along with: history of education, Andreae and his time, Rosicrucians, Comenius, Weigl, and German history of the early 17th century. The concise but useful introduction and the elegant and precise translation provides an easy access to the text even for non experts.
- The volume is handy and elegant, clad in blue cloth and available at a startlingly high, but surely fair price.
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Biblographic data formatted for downloading
Author1: Andreae, Johann Valentin
Author2: Matlová, Jana ((Haupt-)Herausgeber/in)
Author3: Beneš, Jiří (coed.)
Author4: Oehler, Friedrich (trans.)
Author5: Böhling, Frank (Übersetzer/in)
main Title: Theolphilus
edition: Theophilus <latin, german>
series: Johann Valentin Andreae: Gesammelte Schriften ; 16
place of publ.: Stuttgart-Bad Cannstatt
no of pages etc.: 469 pp.
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