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Title: Lipsius, iam Lapsius?
Subtitle: Justus Lipsius im frühneuzeitlichen Est-, Liv- und Kurland
Author(s): VIIDING, Kristi
Journal: Humanistica Lovaniensia
Volume: 72    Date: 2023   
Pages: 189-210
DOI: 10.2143/HLO.72.0.3292718

Abstract :
This article deals with the relations between the early modern Low Countries and Livland in the years 1590-1700, based on how people related to the famous Flemish humanist, philosopher, and philologist Justus Lipsius (1547-1606) through his books and ideas. The attitude towards Lipsius in early modern Estland and Livland ranged from flattery and recognition to contempt and warnings in the spirit of orthodox Protestantism. Personal contacts with Lipsius were rare and only in the form of correspondence between 1591 and 1606, not face-to-face meetings. Contacts with him occurred mainly in Livland and Courland, which remained under the influence of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. Such contacts were partly formed during the ‘Niederlandisierung’ that took place in the book culture of this region. The decisive preparatory step for this process was the invitation of the first Livonian printer Claes Mollin from Antwerp to Riga (1588) and the exclusive privilege to import books to Riga in 1592. The main way to learn about Lipsius’ ideas was through his books. Private libraries were the first to acquire works by Lipsius. It was not until the middle of the 17th century that the libraries of academic institutions also began acquiring them. His Letters, Six Books on Politics, and Two Books on Constancy were his canonical books, which were widely read and used in teaching activities, including in making entries in alba amicorum and florilegia. Very few Livonians, on the other hand, were interested in his antiquarian, philological and other philosophical works on antiquity. The Latin idiom that Lipsius developed and promoted (Lipsianism) was only exceptionally cultivated in Livland. Lipsius did not inspire anyone in Livland to publish and translate his works.

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