Documents of Brotherly Love / Buch

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  • 107039
  • 9780974360232
  • 1.2 kg
  • 740
  • James W. Lowry
James W. Lowry Documents of Brotherly Love Dutch Mennonite Aid to Swiss Anabaptists... mehr
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James W. Lowry

Documents of Brotherly Love

Dutch Mennonite Aid to Swiss Anabaptists

Volume I, 1635-1709


The 82 documents in this source book, from the 17th and 18th centuries, are selected from rarely accessed holdings in archives from Amsterdam to Zurich. Until now, the archaic handwriting of the originals has kept them as a hidden treasure except for a few scholars who could decipher them. Some of these documents have been published by historians in the past, of whom are Ernst Müller, Anna Brons, Ernst Correll, John Horsch, and Delbert Gratz. Later historians habe frequently cited passages from them, but a corpus as comprehensive as this collection has never before been published.


After a decade of careful research, selection, and examination of materials drawn from an ever-enlarging scope of possibilities, the Amsterdam Archives Committee is happy to make available to the reading public this anthology of source materials. Serving both scholarly and general readership interest, transcriptions of the original documents are placed side by side with English translations, with frequent annotation to enhance understanding.


Central to the documents is the theme of the generous assistance given by Doopsgezinden (Mennonites) in the Netherlands to their distressed Swiss brethren, by means of the Dutch Committee for Foreign Needs. Johann Heinrich Ott, in Document 5, writes: "I simply do not see how or why the Mennonites [in the Netherlands] concern themselves so much...with the Swiss Anabaptists." The answer from the Netherlands, in essence, was clear and decisive: These are our Brothers! In Document 52 the Zonist congregation in Amsterdam invites the Swiss now living in the Palatinate to "...Write us a letter from time to time so that brotherly affection not be cut off, because we reach out with heart and soul to strengthen the brothers in body and spirit. Comfort all the brothers and sisters on our behalf, and remember us in your prayers, just as we also shall fervently pray the Lord that He will turn away His Oppression from you and also bring you into the land of the living." Thus unfods one of the noblest, most heart-warming stories in Anabaptist history: the Dutch Mennonite compassions for their persecuted co-religionists.


This volume provides insight into the convivtions, conditions, and interactions of various Anabaptist groups prior to immigration to America. It opens to the reader a broad view of the social, political, and religious values (such as freedom of conscience, and function of church and state) that prevailed in that era. Rather than offering extended commentaries, it provides a reliable base for further theological, historical, genealogical and linguistic interpretations.



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