Religion Past and Present

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Religion Past and Present (RPP) Online is the online version of the updated English translation of the 4th edition of the definitive encyclopedia of religion worldwide: the peerless Religion in Geschichte und Gegenwart (RGG). This great resource, now at last available in English and Online, Religion Past and Present Online continues the tradition of deep knowledge and authority relied upon by generations of scholars in religious, theological, and biblical studies. Including the latest developments in research, Religion Past and Present Online encompasses a vast range of subjects connected with religion.

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Jablonski, Daniel Ernst

(404 words)

Author(s): Meyer, Dietrich
[German Version] (Nov 20, 1660, Nassenhuben – May 25, 1741, Berlin), son of the “senior” of the Bohemian and Moravian Brethren (I) Peter Figulus (died 1670 in Memel) and of Elisabeth, daughter of the educator J.A. Comenius. Jablonski attended school in Lissa, studied theology in Frankfurt an der Oder, and spent the years 1680–1683 in Oxford, where he came to appreciate the Anglican Church as a “model of the first Christian church” (1708). He thereafter officiated as army chaplain in Magdeburg (168…

Jackson, Mahalia

(215 words)

Author(s): Siebald, Manfred
[German Version] (Mahala; Oct 26, 1911, New Orleans, LA – Jan 27, 1972, Evergreen Park, IL), an Afro-American singer. Raised as the daughter of a dock worker and Baptist pastor, Mahalia Jackson began singing in the choir of her church congregation already as a five-year-old. From 1927 onward, she worked as a domestic employee in Chicago, but increasingly earned her livelihood from singing in churches. After being discovered by T. Dorsey (1935), she attained international fame through concerts and …


(1,848 words)

Author(s): Otto, Eckart | Niehoff, Maren | Campanini, Saverio
[German Version] I. Old Testament – II. Judaism I. Old Testament 1. Name The anthroponym Jacob (יַעֲקוֹב/ yaʿaqôb) is attested as a common name throughout the ancient Near East from Mesopotamia and Egypt in the 2nd millennium as ia( ) qub-( ēl) to late 1st-millennium Palmyra as yʿqwb. As a sentence name it derives from the verbal root ʿqb (Old South Arab. and Eth.: “protect”; Ug.: “be near”), so that the theophoric form may be translated “God protects” or “God is near.” In the Hebrew Bible, only the hypocoristic form without a theophoric subject ¶ occurs. The Hebrew Bible derives the n…

Jacob Anatoli

(7 words)

[German Version] Anatoli, Jacob

Jacob Baradaeus

(181 words)

Author(s): Hage, Wolfgang
[German Version] ( Būrdʿānā, “the tattered,” Gk Tzantzalos; c. 490, northern Mesopotamia – Jul 30, 578, on the way to Egypt to settle a Syriac-Coptic dispute). A strict ascetic, Baradaeus (at the prompting of the Ghassanid Arabs and the empress Theodora) was ordained in 542/543 in Constantinople by Theodosius of Alexandria as bishop of Edessa. Constantly travelling in the East, as far as Egypt, he ordained many priests and (with two companion bishops) 27 bishops ¶ and two patriarchs (in sequence) and, thus, reorganized his “Jacobite” Syriac Orthodox Church (Syria: V, 2)…

Jacob ben Asher

(139 words)

Author(s): Fram, Edward
[German Version] ( Baʾal ha-Turim; c. 1270–1343). Jacob ben Asher fled the German lands together with his father's household and settled in Toledo in 1305. Although he was not himself a rabbi, he composed a four-part code of rabbinic law that integrated much of his German heritage with local Spanish traditions. Unlike Maimonides's earlier Mishne Tora, the Arbaʿa Turim (The Four Rows, see Exod 28:17) introduced multiple possibilities into the legal discussion and was organized in a functional rather than conceptional format. The work very quickly became…

Jacob ben Meir Tam

(151 words)

Author(s): Fram, Edward
[German Version] (Rabbenu Tam, “our teacher Tam,” likely following Gen 25:27 in which the word “tam” suggests studiousness; c. 1100–1171) was the scion of a leading rabbinic family (his grandfather was Rashi). He left Ramerupt, where he had lived for many years, to move to Troyes (Champagne), after escaping death during the second of the Crusades in 1146. Rabbenu Tam was considered the greatest halakhic (Halakhah) authority of his age, even by distant contemporaries. His revival of talmudic dialec…

Jacob, Benno

(325 words)

Author(s): Janowski, Bernd
[German Version] (Sep 7, 1862, Breslau [Wrocław] – Jan 24, 1945, London). After doctoral studies (diss.: Das Buch Esther in der LXX, 1889, publ. 1890), Jacob taught religion at a college in Breslau, then served as a rabbi in Göttingen (1891–1906) and Dortmund (1906–1929). He was one of the most significant biblical scholars of the 20th century. His time in Hamburg (1929–1938) saw the completion of his monumental commentary on Genesis (1934, repr. 2000) and the start of his work on his equally monumental commentary o…

Jacob, Günter

(375 words)

Author(s): Lepp, Claudia
[German Version] (Feb 8, 1906, Berlin – Sep 29, 1993, Berlin). After studying theology in Tübingen, Berlin, and Marburg, Jacob received his licentiate in theology in 1929 and served a curacy in Berlin. In 1931/1932 he served as an assistant pastor in Körlin and from 1932 to 1939 as pastor in Nossdorf. In 1933 he was cofounder of the Pastors Emergency League. He was a member of the provincial Fraternal Council. After several interments, he served as a soldier from 1939 to 1945 and became a prisoner…

Jacobi, Friedrich Heinrich

(560 words)

Author(s): Sandkaulen, Birgit
[German Version] (Jan 25, 1743, Düsseldorf – Mar 10, 1819, Munich), philosopher and novelist. He was one of the most outstanding personalities of classical German philosophy, their “gray eminence.” He called himself a “privileged heretic,” aptly characterizing his epoch-making double role. Owing to his thorough problem analyses, which were initially devoted to B. Spinoza's metaphysics (which only really became known through Jacobi) and to I. Kant's just published transcendental philosophy, Jacobi …

Jacobi, Gerhard

(126 words)

Author(s): Nicolaisen, Carsten
[German Version] (Nov 25, 1891, Bremen – Jul 12, 1971, Oldenburg), Dr., became cathedral preacher in Magdeburg in 1927, was pastor in Berlin from 1930 onward, officiated as general superintendent of the church district of Magdeburg from 1946 onward and as regional bishop of Oldenburg from 1954 to 1967. Jacobi was a co-founder and leading member of the Confessing Church in Berlin as well as a member of its executive committees. In 1966, he acted as co-initiator of the regular ecumenical dialogue be…

Jacob Isaac of Lublin

(204 words)

Author(s): Dan, Joseph
[German Version] (ha-Choseh, “The Seer”) (1745–1815, Lublin) is regarded as the father of Hasidism in Poland and Galicia and is one of the leading representatives of the third Hasidic generation. The epithet “The Seer” was given to him as he was believed to have miraculous visionary powers. His most important teachers were Rabbi Dov Baer of Mezhirech, the spiritual heir of Baʾal Shem Tov, and Rabbi Elimelech of Lizhensk, from whom he distanced himself after a number of years of wandering, when he …


(7 words)

[German Version] Syria: V, 2


(208 words)

Author(s): Carter, Grayson R.
[German Version] Defined broadly, Jacobitism is a tradition or movement in Great Britain, whose adherents after 1688 supported the hereditary claims of the Roman Catholic Stuart dynasty over the parliamentary title of the Protestant William of Orange (and his Hanoverian successors). Apart from its military and diplomatic dimensions, exemplified in the invasion attempt of 1715 and 1745, Jacobitism also had important intellectual, social, literary, philosophical, nationalistic, and theological dimensions. Not all Jacobites were Roman Cath-¶ olic: many High Church (High C…

Jacob Joseph of Polonnoye

(208 words)

Author(s): Dan, Joseph
[German Version] (died c. 1782, Polonnoye, Ukraine) was a Hasidic theologian (Hasidism), ¶ preacher and rabbi. He was a prominent disciple of the founder of the movement, Rabbi Israel Besht (Baʾal Shem Tov). Jacob served as a rabbi in Shargorod, in the Ukrainian area of Podolia, from which he was expelled in 1748. Late in his life he became the rabbi of Polonnoye. Jacob was never a leader of a Hasidic community, but he wrote the first Hasidic book to be published: Toledot Yaʾakov Yosef. (The titles of his books are based on biblical phrases which include his name, here Gen 37:2…

Jacob of Edessa

(242 words)

Author(s): Tubach, Jürgen
[German Version] (c. 640, ʿĒn Dēbā near Antioch – Jun 5, 708, Tell ʿAddā monastery), Syrian Orthodox theologian. After studying under Severos Sēbōkt at the Qennešrin monastery, Jacob of Edessa went to Alexandria and subsequently returned to Edessa, where he was appointed bishop in 684. Owing to contentions with the clergy over the observance of the church canons (Canons/Canon collections), however, he relinquished his office already in 688 and retired to a monastery in the vicinity of Samosata. Fr…

Jacob of Mies

(92 words)

Author(s): Hilsch, Peter
[German Version] (Jakobell; c. 1370–1429), Hussite theologian. Like his friend J. Hus, Jacob of Mies studied as a follower of J. Wycliffe in Prague ( magister in 1397). A mastermind of the Hussite movement following Hus's departure, his introduction of the compulsory lay chalice (1414; Chalice) represented the first step toward the Utraquist church in independence from Rome. Although himself an “iconoclast,” he became an opponent of the radical Taborites after the outbreak of the Hussite revolution in 1419. Peter Hilsch Bibliography P. de Vooght, Jacobellus de Stříbro, 1972 (Fr.).

Jacob of Paradyz

(263 words)

Author(s): Mertens, Dieter
[German Version] (Jacobus de Paradiso, de Claratumba, de Erfordia, Carthusiensis; 1381–1465) is attested after 1400 as a Cistercian in the Paradyz monastery (Goscikowo near Miedzyrzecz/Meseritz) and from 1420 onward in the Claratumba monastery (Mogiła), when he was also enrolled at the University of Cracow. He was awarded a Dr.theol. in 1432 and became a Carthusian in Erfurt in 1442/1443 (not to be confused with J. v. Jüterbog [died 1461], another Carthusian in Erfurt). Jacob of Paradyz wrote more…

Jacob of Sarug

(205 words)

Author(s): Nagel, Peter
[German Version] (451, Upper Mesopotamia – 521, Batna/Sarug), prolific Syrian church author. Having become an ascetic at a young age, he officiated as episcopal visitor in Haura and was appointed bishop of Batna/Sarug in 518. He was initially a follower, though later an opponent of the School of Antioch (Antiochene theology) and professed a Christology situated between the positions of Alexandria (Alexandrian theology) and Chalcedon (Chalcedonian Definition). He ¶ mainly wrote metrical homilies ( mēmre), but also hymns, prose homilies and letters on biblical exegesis …

Jacob of Viterbo

(152 words)

Author(s): Weinbrenner, Ralph
[German Version] (c. 1250, Viterbo – 1307/1308, Naples), OESA, a Scholastic theologian (Scholasticism), a student of Giles of Rome, and, from 1302, archbishop of Benevent and Naples. He studied and lectured at the University of Paris (1283: lecturer in the order, 1288: Bac.theol., from 1293: lectureship as Mag.theol.). From 1300 to 1302, he officiated as primus lector in the studium generale of the Augustinian Hermits in Naples. His tractate De regimine christiano (ed. H.-X. Arquillière, 1926) had a formative impact on the ecclesiology of the subsequent period. Ralph Weinbrenner Bib…
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