COMENIUS, JOHANN AMOS [SSNE 6616]
- COMENIUS, KOMENSKY
- First name
- JOHANN AMOS
- Social status
- MORAVIAN CHURCH
Text sourceJohann Amos Comenius (1592-1670) was a Bishop of the Moravian Church who lived in Germany after the outbreak of the Thirty Years' War [1618-1648]. After travelling through Germany, Poland and Prussia, Comenius became an effective leader of the exiled Moravian community. He began to publish and his works were translated into several languages. He said to have been influenced by Boehme and paraclesus and the 'magician' Ramon Lully. Comenius maintained Theodore Haak [SSNE 6622], an exile from the Palatinate in Germany as his agent in Britain and Haak had a role to play in ensuring the Bishop of Loncoln welcomed Comenius to Britain as a religious refugee. Comenius also became a friend of Samuel Hartlib [SSNE 6617] and came to live in London after an invitation by him to help establish a commission for the reform of education to include that of the Indians in New England and Virginia. The scheme failed and he withdrew to Sweden. Commenius was an associate, if one can use that term, of the Hamburg based Rosicrucian society, 'Drei Rosen' and was closely connected with Zesen, the group's founder. In some sources, such as Hans Schick's 'Das Ältere Rosenkreutzertum' (Berlin, 1942), Comenius is linked with the Freemasons and Rosecrucianism although neither of these connections has been established. However, according to some authors such as Stewart, Comenius was the bridge between Rosicrucianism and organised British Freemasonry, albeit this view ignores Henry Adamson's poem 'The Muses Threnodie' which suggests this link was already in Scottish Freemasonry by 1638. It states: "For what we do presage is not in grosse, For we bretheren of the Rosie Cross, We have the Mason word and second sight, Things for to come we can fortell alright
A.C.F. Jackson, 'Rosecrucianism and its effect on Craft Masonry' in Ars Quatuor Coronatorum, vol. 97, 1995, pp.121 and 131-2; Trevor Stewart's response to M. Baigent, 'Freemasonry, Hermetic Thought and the Royal Society of London' in Ars Quatuor Coronatorum, vol.109, 1996, pp.159-160.