Franciscus Pescennius Niger in the court of Nicholas Báthory and his Scholasticum Orosianae Iuventutis Dramma
Franciscus Niger (Franjo Niger, Francesco Negro), a Venetian humanist with Dalmatian origins, was the author of one of the most popular letter writing handbooks of the late 15th and early 16th century. In his autobiographical Cosmodystichia he recounts his times spent in the court of Nicholas Báthory, bishop of Vác, in detail. The aim of this study is to analyze the historical context of this relationship, and to consider the possible connection of his Scholasticum Orosianae Iuventutis Dramma, performed on the day of St Nicholas, to bishop Nicholas Báthory. This study argues that the literary genre of this work (dramma) written in ’Orosium’ has to be interpreted on the basis of the definition given to ’dramatic’ works in the Rhetorica (1480) of Niger, and its plot follows the tradition of late medieval Boy Bishop (episcopus puerorum) plays, where a child bishop was elected by its fellow students on the day of St Nicholas. The identification of Orosium with Arad is difficult to maintain, given the scarcity of late medieval sources on the history of the city, but significantly an earlier medieval charter uses the name ’Orosiensis’ for Várad (Oradea, RO).
A Viennese Bibliophile in the Hungarian Royal Library in 1525: New evidence from the inventory of Johannes Alexander Brassicanus’ bequest (1539)
Johannes Alexander Brassicanus, the Viennese humanist and diplomat (1500–1539) is a controversial figure for the students of the „Corvinian Library”. While providing important data on the books he saw in Buda in 1525, Brassicanus has mostly been discredited as a liar. This article attempts at giving more authenticity to his words on the basis of his bequest inventory, recently rediscovered in the Vienna University Archives (Fasc. 49 Nr. 100). Perhaps the most important heritage Brassicanus left behind was his library, which consisted of more than 1300 books. The inventory of his bequest minutely describes various possessions, mostly books the notary and his witnesses, some literary experts saw in Brassicanus’ house at the end of 1539. In addition to the items the inventory describes, it also demonstrates some organizational principles Brassicanus applied to his books. From the sequence of 16 items, it is clear that Brassicanus kept the Latin manuscripts together, which he acquired in Buda in 1525 December. He is likely to have done so with a group of Greek items too. By comparing the extant manuscripts, which the inventory describes, and the references Brassicanus is making to them in his description of the Corvina Library and his books selected for publication, the article offers some new suggestions for identification of either extant or lost Corvinas. In addition, it attempts to clarify some of Julius Hermann’s suggestions for the provenance of a few authentic Corvina items, which do not seem to have belonged to Brassicanus
As Approved by Ortodox Churches, Additions and Correction to some Editions of the Second Helvetic Confession in Hungarian
On the frontispiece of the 1742 edition printed at Kolozsvár (Clausenburg, Cluj-Napoca in Romania) it reads recenly reprinted as approved by Ortodox Churches. This renewed form is distincted by a supplement, Formula Consensus Ecclesiarum Helveticarum Reformatarum 1675 by the Zurich professor Johann Heinrich Heidegger (1633–1698), appended first in Hungarian to the 1742 edition of the Confession, and appeared in subsequent editions. There is a mistake in numbering the pages of the 1679 edition of this Confession, which became repeated without correction in bibliographies also. The same mistake occures in 1742. The 16th century Debrecen printing house was destroyed in 1705 by raiding Austrian troops. Restarted in 1713, the first book to be printed there was the Second Helvetic Confession. So far it was taken for a Késmárk print (Kežmarok, Slovakia). See Barnabas Nagy, Geschichte des Zweite Helvetischen Bekenntnisses in dem osteuropäischen Ländern = Joachim Staedtke (Hrsg.), Glauben und Bekennen. Vierhundert Jahre Confessio Helvetica Posterior. Beiträge zu ihrer Geschichte und Theologie, Zürich, 1966. Zwingli Verlag,109–202. But this office stopped working in 1710. The fonts and ornaments went into the possession of Debrecen and used in 18th century books (see pictures 1, 3 and 4). So the 1713 edition of the confession has been definitely a Debrecen print. Among the ornaments used earlier at Késmár, there is a child blowing bubbles. This one dates back to the 16th century. As a symbol of uncertainity of life it has been applied also in verses and songs, even as late as the 20th century. The same picture, and other symbols, had decorated the works of Johann Gerhard (1582–1637) Meditationes sacrae és Exercitium pietatis quotidianum quadripartitum (1606) in Hungarian, and also appeared in ceilings or balkonies of painted village churches in Transylvania (see picture 2). It is also seen in the Debrecen edition of the Confession (picture 1). There is a traditional prayer for ordaining protestant ministers as used in the northern district of the country attached to the 1713 Debrecen edition of the Confession (see picture 3). It was known earlier only as a pamphlet printed by unknown printer and place. Yet in a contemporary manuscript note on the froncispiece of the copy preserved in the Debrecen Reformed College Library now it is cleared up, that it was edited by the dean of a northern reformed district Mihály Rimaszombati (1633–1717). An edition of the Service Book (Agenda) printed and sometimes bound together with the 1713 Debrecen edition of the Confession was also his edition and known by his name in the 18th century at different parts of the country. There is not always a clear and easy distinction between an appendix of a printed work and works printed, bound and sold together. There seems to be three different type of such books preserved in one and the same volume. Works being only printed as integrate part of another work, cannot be classified as Convulutum (jointly published volumes or tracts) or Colligatum (composite volume, bound together in a Sammelband or pamphlet volume). In that case these works can not be described in bibliotraphy records and catalogues as if they were independent editions, as they are linked or precondition one another. Works by different authors printed at the same time and known only in a joint edition can be classified as a Convolutum of the editor or printer. Usually such items are not known in separately sold or preserved copies. A Colligatum consists of different and independent works, usually not linked which are collected, appended and bound together by the owner. Such items should be described only as independent or unattached original works.
The literacy of a Calvinist pastor Apáti Madár Miklós’ readings
Miklós Apáti Madár (1662–1724), Hungarian pastor (and physician), was graduated in the Low Countries. Concerning his book culture, we can gain information from his written omniarium and album amicorum, his dissertations at the University of Leiden and the Vita triumphans civilis (1688). The fragmentary inventory of his 57 books (1692–1696), which he shared with his environment after his return. In his works he cited more than 160 authors. The Holy Bible was his fundamental source, and he has read also classical authors, historians and the members of Hugo Grotius’ school in constitutional theory. Puritanism and Coccejanism influenced him, but he knew the orthodox reformed authors as well. He was a committed follower of the philosophy of Descartes. Five of his books remained to our age, testifying that he was interested in the Renaissane Neoplatonism, the Hermetic teachings, the Protestant Mysticism, and possibly, the Kabbalah.
„Ponam thronum eius sicut dies coeli”
In der Studie wird eine bisher unerforschte deutsche Türkenpredigt des 17. Jahhunderts (Predigten Zu Zeit deß Türken-Kriegs Von Anno 1683. In welchen das Christen-Volk Zur Buß / vnd Andacht / Dann auch Zu Lob- vnd Dank-Sprechung Auffgemahnet worden [München, 1687–1692], Bd. 3: Fünfzehende Türken-Predig) untersucht, in deren Mittelpunkt die Krönung Josephs I. zum König in Ungarn bzw. die Rückeroberung von Eger stehen. Im ersten Teil der Predigt versucht Balthasar Knellinger SJ das Erbfolgerecht der Habsburger mit biblischen Parallelen zu unterstützen, im zweiten Teil redet er über die Rückeroberung der Burg von Eger, da nach ihm Leopold I. die Vertragspunkte von der Übergabe der Burg am Vortag der Krönung von Joseph (am Festtag Mariä Empfängnis) unterschrieb. So war dieser Vortag ein doppelter Feiertag. Die Predigt stand im Dienst der Antitürkenpropaganda des Wiener Hofes. Das Ziel des bayerischen Kanzelredners war einerseits die Informierung der Untertanen über die Erfolge des Türkenkrieges (unter anderem wegen der Anregung zur Zahlung der Türkensteuer), andererseits die Unterstützung des Erbfolgerechts der Habsburger auf dem ungarischen Thron. Daß er seine Predigten auch im Druck erschienen ließ, konnte seine Ansichten nicht nur seine Hörerschaft kennenlernen, sondern ein wesentlich breiterer Kreis auch, da diese Predigtsammlung in erster Linie für die Priester auf dem Land gedacht war, die diese Predigten später als Hilfmittel für ihre eigenen Predigten benutzen konnten.
A digitális változat és a nyomdai változat között kisebb eltérések lehetnek.