Academic journal article Seventeenth-Century News

Siegmar Dopp. Vaticinium Lehninense-Die Lehninsche Weissagung. Zur Rezeption Einer Wirkungsmachtigen Lateinischen Dichtung Vom 18. Bis Zum 20. Jahrhundert

Academic journal article Seventeenth-Century News

Siegmar Dopp. Vaticinium Lehninense-Die Lehninsche Weissagung. Zur Rezeption Einer Wirkungsmachtigen Lateinischen Dichtung Vom 18. Bis Zum 20. Jahrhundert

Article excerpt

Siegmar Dopp. Vaticinium Lehninense--Die Lehninsche Weissagung. Zur Rezeption einer wirkungsmachtigen lateinischen Dichtung vom 18. bis zum 20. Jahrhundert. Noctes Neolatinae, 21. Hildesheim, Zurich, and New York: Georg Olms Verlag. 132 pp. 34.80 euros. Although the last few years have seen an increased interest in Neo-Latin works and, as a result, a remarkable number of editions, commentaries, and the like, an incredible number of texts still remain to be presented to a larger public. This is notably the case for smaller and relatively unknown texts, which have so far received minor attention from scholars but which have had particularly interesting historical impact.

The book under review represents a substantial effort to fill this gap: Siegmar Dopp dedicates an entire monograph to a hundred-verse prophecy poem, the Vaticinium Lehninense, including the Latin text, its German translation, a linguistic and historical commentary, and an overview of reception from the eighteenth up to the twentieth century. The prophecy treats the rise of the Protestants, the different dynasties reigning over the Mark Brandenburg (one of the most important provinces in the Holy Roman Empire), and their decline.

Dopp starts with a short, informative introduction to the Vaticinium, which is essential for the reader to deal with the text and the following chapters. The Vaticinium purports to be written by a monk, Frater Hermannus, in the monastery of Lehnin (situated near the city of Potsdam) in the thirteeenth century. Dopp, however, informs us right at the beginning that this ascription is most likely not to be trusted: it is more plausible that the text is a forgery from the seventeenth century produced for the purposes of propaganda and manipulation.

After a short summary of the textual tradition (we lack an autograph but do have a large number of early modern manuscripts), he presents the Latin text, without an apparatus, to allow a quicker comprehension. The text is followed by a translation into German, which follows the original very closely. This helps provide an impression of the style in which the Vaticinium is written, but in some cases it might also obscure the meaning. The choice to structure the different paragraphs by using subtitles, as in prior editions of this text, is a helpful one, as it also supplies a summary of the content.

Then follows a short excursus on the word Israel (v. …

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