"Repulsive blasphemies": Paul Nagel's appropriation of unprinted works of Jakob Böhme and Valentin Weigel in his Prodromus astronomiae apocalypticae (1620)

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In April 1620, a work entitled Prodromus astronomiae apocalypticae was issued by the Torgau chiliast Paul Nagel (†1624) through a Danzig printer. In addition to offering the promised herald or introduction to his unique millenarian expectations, the text also contained substantial extracts from unpublished manuscripts by the Görlitz theosopher Jakob Böhme (1575-1624) and the dissident Lutheran pastor Valentin Weigel (1533-1588). Nagel's Prodromus provoked the first debate in print concerning aspects of Böhme's theosophy, when the bookwas attacked by a Lutheran theologian in Königsberg, Philipp Arnold. The present article investigates the nature of Nagel's appropriation of Böhme and Weigel. In addition to considering the appeal of the work of these two "enlightened philosophers" for Nagel, it also considers the implications of Nagel's appropriations for our understanding of the transmission history of Böhme's first work, Morgen Röte im Auffgang (1612).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)597-620
Number of pages24
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes

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