Johann Campanus

Johann Campanus
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Short Name: Johann Campanus
Full Name: Campanus, Johann, 1565-1622
Birth Year (est.): 1565
Death Year: 1622

Campanus, Johann, was born on June 24, c. 1565, at Wodnian in Bohemia. At the Uni¬versity of Prag (Prague), he graduated b.a. 1592, M.A. 1596. In 1592 he became master at Iglau, thereafter at Teplitz, and then professor at Königingratz. He was in 1596 appointed Rector of the St. Heinrich school, in the Neustadt, Prag, and in 1600 Rector at Kuttenberg. Ultimately he became Professor of Greek and Latin and of Bohemian History in the University of Prag, where he was some time Dean of the Philosophical Faculty, and in 1612 Rector of the University. He died at Prag, Dec. 13, 1622.

Brought up at Wodnian as a Hussite, he became a Lutheran; then a Calvinist; was in 1619 assessor of the Utraquist Consistory of the Teynkirche in the Altstadt, Prag; and on Nov. 16,1622, formally became a Roman Catholic. His Latin Version of the Psalms, pub. at Prag, 1611, and his Latin Odes, Prag, 1612, were introduced for the senior scholars to sing in church and school. A complete ed. of his sacred poems appeared as Sacrarum Odarum Libri Duo. Quorum Prior Psalmos Davidicos, Posterior hymnos Dominicales et feriales continet. Accessere Cantica Canticorum in Odaria liii. nee non Melodiae pro omnibus Psalmis, Odis, & Canticorum Odariist ejusdem Authoris. Frankfurt-am-Main, 1618. [Wernigerode] A full list of his works is given in his Biographie, by G. J. Dlabcz, Prag, 1819.

Two of his poems have passed into English:
i. Borando coeli defluant. Advent. First published in his Odarum Sacrarum. Liber Posterior, Prag,v1612 [Strahow, Prag.], p. 1, "Ode 1, De Adventu Domini” in 5 stanzas of 4 lines, with the heading :—
"Sol Christus est, ros Christus est, hie quern rigat Fovetque, frigus pellit, aestum mitigat."
It appears in a full and good German translated in Johann Franck's Geistliches Sum, 1674, No. 2, (ed. 1846, p. 2), beginning:—
“lhr Himmel tröpfelt Thau in Eil." Franck's version was included in the 1688 (No. 317) and later editions of Crüger's Praxis pietatis melica; in Bunsen's Versuch, 1833, No. 85, and his Allgemeine Gesang-Buch, 1846, No. 29. Bunsen, 1833, p. 878, calls it "One of the most profound hymns of that believing yearning, which recognises in the Incarnation of Christ the pledge of the union of God with the soul." The only translation in common use from Franck is:—
Ye heavens, oh haste your dews to shed, in full in the 2nd Series, 1858, of Miss Winkworth's Lyra Germanica, p. 3. Thence as No. 20 in her Chorale Book for England, 1863, and as No. 15 in Bosworth's Collection, 1865. Stanzas ii.-v. beginning, "O living Sun, with joy break forth," are included as No. 121 in Dr. Thomas's Augustine Hymn Book, 1866.
Another translation is "Descend, ye heavens, in gentle dews," by Dr. G. Walker, 1860, p. 25.
ii. Veni Kedemptor gentium. Advent. Ode ii. of his Liber Posterior ed., 1612, p. 2 (1618, p. 276), in 7 stanzas of 4 lines, headed " Ex hymno Ambrosii.
“Alvus tumescit virginis
Quantum potest vis Numinis."
Two stanzas may be compared with the Ambrosian, viz.:—
"Veni Redemptor gentium,
Pulchrum renide lilium
Splendore fulgens flammeo:
Hie partus est dignus Deo!
vii. 41
Praesepe iam tuum micat,
Lumenque noctis emicat,
Quod nulla lux interpolet
Ut luceat plus quam solet."
A full and good German translation by Johann Franck, beginning " Komm, Heiden-Heiland, Lösegeld," appears in C. Peter's Geistliche Arien, Guben, 1667, No. 1, repeated in his own Geistliches Sion, 1674, p. 1 (ed. 1846, p. 1); and'included in many subsequent collections as the Berlin Geistliche Liedersegen, ed. 1863, No. 1596. The form tr. into English is that in Bunsen's Versuch, 1833, No. 78 (1881, No. 11). Bunsen, doubtless not knowing that it was a direct tr. from Campanus, calls it at p. 878 "the only successful version from the Ambrosian hymn [Veni Redemptor], more profound and delightful than the Latin." Bunsen omits stanzas ii., iii., and alters i., iv. The translations in common use are:—
1. Redeemer of the nations, come. By Miss Wink worth in full from Bunsen in the 1st series of her Lyra Germanica, 1855, p. 186, repeated in her Chorale Book for England, 1863, No. 23, and in Dr. Thomas's Augustine Hymn Book, 1866.
2. Come, Ransom of our captive race. From Bunsen, omitting his stanza iii., as No. 3 in Dr. Pagenstecher's Collection, 1864, signed "F.C.C."
3. O Glory of Thy chosen race. In full from Bunsen by Dr. F. J. A. Hort for Church Hymns, 1871, No. 70, with an added doxology. [Rev. James Mearns, M.A.]

--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)


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