Jan Amos KOMENSKÝ - life, work, legacy

De uno Deo


De Christianorum uno Deo, Patre, Filio, Spiritu sancto fides antiqua contra novatores


On the One God of the Christians, the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost, the ancient faith against the innovators


Origin of the work:
  1640 Leszno

  1659 Amsterdam



This is Comenius’ polemic tract against the Socinians, defending the teaching of the Holy Trinity with dialectic proofs.

In 1640 the free lord (baron) Jonáš Schlichting of Bukovec, the nephew of the Všov judge and administrator of Leszno, Lord Jan Jiří Schlichting, held to be a leading figure among the Polish Socinians, brought his 18 year-old son to study at the Leszno Gymnasium. Comenius, as rector, accepted the young man under the condition that he would not, through his faith, cause the indignation of the other students. On this occasion, Jonáš Schlichting offered Comenius Socinian books refuting the teaching of the Holy Trinity, first advanced by Tertullian, and the divinity of Christ. In parting, both exchanged views, with Comenius noting that recognising Christ as a mere prophet was Mohammedan teaching.

The rationalist Socinian explanation of the mystery of revelation and the Christian faith were abhorrent to Comenius, who after this event decided to justify the teaching of the divine Trinity through dialectic proofs; this work was the result. Comenius began with the dogma that God exists as the greatest and endlessly perfect being. He is the only One, as reason and Scripture make clear. Uniqueness may also mean multiplicity, in the case of God a triplicity, expressed in the three divine Persons – the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost. Faith in the Trinity is as old as baptism, if not older, as shown by thirty pieces of evidence.

The work published in Amsterdam is a mere excerpt (revised and completed by Comenius) of the original, much longer treatment, which was lost in the fire at Leszno in 1656.


For further study, see also:

J. V. Novák & J. Hendrich, Jan Amos Komenský, jeho život a spisy. Prague 1932, pp292-294 & 567-568

Jan Kumpera, Jan Amos Komenský, poutník na rozhraní věků. Prague & Ostrava 1992, pp217-218




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