Jan Amos KOMENSKÝ - life, work, legacy

De cultura ingeniorum


De cultura ingeniorum oratio. Habita in scholae Patakinae auditorio majori 24. Novembris anno 1650


A speech on educational ability. Given in the grand auditorium of the Sárospatak school, November 24th 1650



Origin of the work:
  1650 Sárospatak

  (1652 Sárospatak), undated, no place given, in the volume Primitiae laborum scholasticorum

1657 Amsterdam, in: Latinitatis schola triclassis

1657 Amsterdam, Opera didactica omnia III

1894 Praha, J. A. Komenského Řeč o vzdělávání vtipu..., otištěno z Besedy Učitelské, Czech translation by F. J. Zoubek

1955 Prague, in: Praeceptor gentium. Vychovatel národů; in Latin & Czech, Czech translation by J. Patočka, M. Klučka & F. Heřmanský

1957 Prague, Opera didactica omnia III (phototype edition)

1992 Prague, J. A. Comenii Opera omnia, vol. 15/III

1960 Prague, Vybrané spisy J. A. Komenského, vol. II


With the opening of the first class, Comenius launched teaching at the Sárospatak school on November 24th 1650. In doing so he gave an outstanding speech in which he emphasises the importance of education by noting the advantages in the spiritual, moral and material areas held by educated nations, as opposed to the barbarian lands. Man is born that he might learn how to behave like a person, and to that end should be educated; without diligent endeavour and care, however, no-one will obtain an education. Comenius also enumerates that means for attaining the end: above all, parents who provide their children with the foundation of education of the soul, as well as reliable teachers, public schools, good books, a relationship to the subject matter taught, and pious men, trained in practical matters, wise officials ensuring a sufficient number of good schools for all, and finally and ultimately God’s favour.




In conclusion he shows how beneficial and useful education could be for the entire Hungarian nation, and calls upon all to join the common effort required by this great work.

This speech forms the first part of the three-part Primitiae laborum scholasticorum in illustri Patakino gymnasio (First fruits of scholastic labour at the enlightened Sárospatak Gymnasium), which was published at Sárospatak in 1652 (the Primitiae laborum).


For further study, see also:

Vybrané spisy J. A. Komenského, vol. II Prague 1960, p479

J. V. Novák & J. Hendrich, Jan Amos Komenský, jeho život a spisy. Prague 1932, p452

J. A. Comenii Opera omnia, vol.15/III. Prague 1992, pp335-339




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