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Klettenberg, Susanna Katharina von

(313 words)

Author(s): Weigelt, Horst
[German Version] (Dec 19, 1723, Frankfurt am Main – Dec 13, 1774, Frankfurt am Main), a Pietist author and poetess from a respected patrician family in Frankfurt. In her youth, she experienced a Lutheranism shaped by the Enlightenment and, under the influence of J. Fresenius, she turned to the Pietism of Halle around 1743. Since she was unable to accept its scheme of conversion, however, she affiliated with the Pietism of Herrnhut after 1751, primarily as the result of the mediation of F. Moser (B…

Lavater, Johann Kaspar

(421 words)

Author(s): Weigelt, Horst
[German Version] (Nov 15, 1741, Zürich – Jan 2, 1801, Zürich). After studying theology at the Collegium Carolinum, Lavater undertook an educational tour to Germany, staying several months in Barth with J. Spalding and in Berlin, where he visited ¶ M. Mendelssohn. During his lengthy period of candidacy he was an active writer. Around 1768 Lavater – up to this point symphatetic to a moderate Enlightenment – underwent a religious reorientation: his attention became focused on Christ, whose continued work both in history and in the presen…


(270 words)

Author(s): Weigelt, Horst
[German Version] K. v. Schwenckfeld had followers (“Confessors of the Glory of Christ”) in the 16th century, especially in Silesia and the county of Glatz (Kłodzko), as well as in southwestern Germany. While the Schwenckfelders in Glatz were eliminated by the Counter-Reformation, those in the southwest did not die out until the mid-17th century. Those in the Silesian principalities of Liegnitz-Brieg-Wohlau and Schweidnitz-Jauer formed larger communities, however – initially in cities and towns, af…

Gaßner, Johann Joseph

(195 words)

Author(s): Weigelt, Horst
[German Version] (Aug 22, 1727, Braz, Austria – Apr 4, 1779, Pondorf/Donau), became an early sacristan in Dalaas in 1751 and parish priest in Klösterle (diocese of Chur) in 1758. He healed several sick persons by means of exorcism both in Klösterle and elsewhere (Ellwangen, 1774). He was court chaplain in Regensburg from 1775 (stays in Sulzbach and Amberg), and became pastor and dean of Pondorf in 1776. As a consequence of measures taken by civil and church authorities (including a papal brief in …

Feneberg, Johann Michael

(302 words)

Author(s): Weigelt, Horst
[German Version] (Feb 7 or 8, 1751, Marktoberdorf – Oct 12, 1812, Vöhringen/Iller), after studies in Kaufbeuren and Augsburg, became a novice in the Jesuit College in Landsberg/Lech in 769. He began the study of philosophy in Ingolstadt in 1771, and became a Gymnasium teacher in Regensburg in 1774. In 1779, ordained a priest, he was granted the early benefice in his home congregation. Through the mediation of J.M. Sailer he became Gymnasium professor in Dillingen in 1785, where he became involved …

Rosenbach, Johann Georg

(174 words)

Author(s): Weigelt, Horst
[German Version] (Jan 1678 Heidelberg – Apr 4, 1747, Ebersdorf), a spur-maker’s apprentice who became a radical Pietist, grew up in Heilbronn; in 1701 he was converted by the notary Johann Adam Raab in Erlangen. After his conversion, he worked as an itinerant preacher in Franconia and Württemberg. His time in the Nuremberg territory led to the so-called Rosenbach Affair (1703/1707), a literary controversy over soteriology and ecclesiology. In 1705 he went to Halle and then Berlin, where he joined …

Bonnet, Charles

(295 words)

Author(s): Weigelt, Horst
[German Version] (Mar 13, 1720, Geneva – Jun 20, 1793, Genthod), naturalist and philosopher. Bonnet studied jurisprudence from 1739 to 1743; yet his interests were in the natural sciences (1740, empirical demonstration of parthenogenesis in aphids). After completing his studies, he was especially interested in investigations in entomology and plant physiology. After 1762 (with worsening eyesight), he returned to philosophical questions and published several works, including La Contemplation de la nature (1764) and La Palingénésie philosophique (1769). …


(449 words)

Author(s): Weigelt, Horst
[German Version] 1. Samuel (Aug 31, 1685, Kirchheim unter Teck – Apr 20, 1772, Augsburg). After studying theology at Tübingen (M.A. in 1705, consistorial examination in 1707), in 1708 he set out on several years of educational travel (with ducal support) throughout Germany (where he visited A.H. Francke in Halle), Holland, and England. In 1713 he was appointed pastor in Stetten in the Rems Valley; in 1714 he was appointed court chaplain and consistorial councilor in Ludwigsburg. He was suspended in …


(2,439 words)

Author(s): Leppin, Volker | Weigelt, Horst | Ludwig, Frieder | Sparn, Walter
[German Version] I. Definition The use of spiritualism as a precise technical term was shaped by the Soziallehren of E. Troeltsch, who used it to distinguish between two groups Luther had lumped together as Schwärmer (“Enthusiasts”): spiritualists and Anabaptists. The common characteristic shared by the groups called spiritualists is their belief in the direct effect of the Holy Spirit (Spirit/Holy Spirit) within each individual, in contrast to the outward working of the Spirit through the words of Scripture. As a rule, this belief i…