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Encyclopedia > Daniel Ernst Jablonski

Daniel Ernst Jablonski (November 20, 1660 - May 25, 1741), German theologian, and reformer, known for his efforts to bring about a union between Lutheran and Calvinist Protestants.

Jablonski was born at Nassenhuben, near Gdańsk, Poland. His father was a minister of the Moravian Church, who had taken the name of Peter Figulus on his baptism; the son, however, preferred the Bohemian family name of Jablonski. His maternal grandfather, Johann Amos Comenius (d. 1670), was a bishop of the Moravian Church. Having studied at Frankfort-on-the-Oder and at Oxford, Jablonski entered upon his career as a preacher at Magdeburg in 1683, and then from 1686 to 1691 he was the head of the Moravian college at Lissa, a position which had been filled by his grandfather.

Still retaining his connection with the Moravians, he was appointed court preacher at Konigsberg in 1691 by the elector of Brandenburg, Frederick III, and here, entering upon a career of great activity, he soon became a person of influence in court circles. In 1693 he was transferred to Berlin as court preacher, and in 1699 he was consecrated a bishop of the Moravian Church.

At Berlin Jablonski worked hard to bring about a union between the followers of Luther and those of Calvin; the courts of Berlin, Hanover, Brunswick and Gotha were interested in his scheme, and his principal helper was the philosopher Gottfried Leibniz. His idea appears to have been to form a general union between the German, the English and the Swiss Protestants, and thus to establish un academique sancta catholica and apostotic academique evangelica and reformata ecclesia. For some years negotiations were carried on with a view to attaining this end, but eventually it was found impossible to surmount the many difficulties in the way; Jablonski and Leibnitz, however, did not cease to believe in the possibility of accomplishing their purpose. Jablonski's next plan was to reform the Church of Prussia by introducing into it the episcopate, and also the liturgy of the English Church, but here again he was unsuccessful.

As a scholar, Jablonski brought out a Hebrew edition of the Old Testament, and translated Bentley's A Confutation of Atheism into Latin (1696). He had some share in founding the Berlin Academy of Sciences, of which he was president in 1733, and he received a degree from the university of Oxford.

This article incorporates text from the public domain 1911 Encyclopędia Britannica.



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