Jan Amos KOMENSKÝ - life, work, legacy

Judicium Valeriani Magni 

/Huldrici Neufeld/ Judicium de Judicio Valeriani Magni Mediolanensis super catholicorum et acatholicorum credendi regula sive Absurditatum echo

(Writing as Ulrich Neufeld) An assessment of the judgement of Valerianus Magnus of Milan on the rule of the Catholic faith and non-Catholics, or an Echo of absurdity


Origin of the work:
  1644 Elbląg

1644 (Gdansk), place of issue not given

1658 Amsterdam, in a collected edition entitled the De regula fidei

A reply to the treatise Iudicium de Acatholicorum et Catholicorum regula credendi by the Prague Capuchin Valerianus Magnus, and an attempt at providing logical proof of the contradictions therein.

Valerianus Magnus hope to win Comenius over to a unification of the Unitas Fratrum and the Catholic Church. In his reply to Magnus’ treatise, Comenius commends Valerianus for wanting to bring salvation to all the world, that through fundamental questions he wishes to arrive at the roots of things, and that at the same time he shows his opponent’s positive side. In contrast, he does not like the fact that Magnus requires complete submission. Above all, however, he draws attention to three problems that make unification with the Catholic Church impossible, specifically: that Magnus sets the authority of the Church and the Pope above that of the Bible, that he claims that only the Catholic Church is entitled to interpret the mysteries of Scripture, and that he hold that the miracles which have occurred in the Catholic Church attest to its orthodoxy. Comenius does not dispute the possibility of these miracles having occurred, but ascribes them to the omnipotence of God, and certainly not to the credit of individuals.

Comenius’ tract was published anonymously in 1644 under the pseudonym Ulrich Neufeld.

All of the details within the text, however, did not serve to end the debate with Valerianus Magnus, which continued in another polemic (Judicium Neufeldii). Both were later published in the volume De regula fidei judicium duplex (A double judgement on the rule of faith), published in Amsterdam in 1658.


For further study, see also:

J. V. Novák & J. Hendrich, Jan Amos Komenský, jeho život a spisy. Prague l932, pp358-364

M. Blekastad, Comenius. Oslo & Prague 1969, pp386-387

Dějiny české literatury I. Prague 1959, pp412, 431 & 432

Jan Kumpera, J. A. Komenský, poutník na rozhraní věků. Prague & Ostrava 1992, pp222-223




Muzeum Jana Amose Komenského

Přemysla Otakara II. 37
Česká republika, EUROPE
tel.: +420 572 63 22 88-9