Familists


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Familists

(făm`ĭlĭsts), religious community founded in Friesland in the 16th cent. by Hendrik Niclaes. Niclaes, a merchant of Münster and originally a Roman Catholic, claimed to have been chosen prophet and prepared by special outpouring of the "spirit of the true love of Jesus Christ." His teachings combined elements of German mysticism with Anabaptist doctrines and the ethic of religious perfection. Making Emden his headquarters, he spread his beliefs, traveling much, particularly in Flanders and England. At Emden was first established (c.1540) the Family of Love, as his community was called. It held that the divine spirit of love within it placed it above Bible, creeds, liturgy, and law. However, since no specific form of worship was prescribed, many of its members remained in the Roman communion. They were, however, bound together into a hierarchical communistic organization. In 1560, Niclaes had to leave Emden, and he escaped to England. There his movement gained adherents although its emotionalism was frowned upon by the orthodox. There was some government procedure against them under Elizabeth I and James I. Although the sect died out in the 17th cent., it strongly influenced similar radical groups.
References in periodicals archive ?
In 1998, Italian scholar Giorgio Mangani suggested that the heart shape represented ideas of religious tolerance and the maps were hermetic allegories of Brotherly, or Familist, Love.
Scholars who have written on the play usually emphasize Familism and the problem of transgressive speaking; a royal proclamation issued on October 3, 1580, claimed that Familists employed 'a monstrous new kind of speech' (5) that threatened to undermine religious, social, and political order.
As Christopher Hill documents, some groups such as the Familists and the Quakers went so far as to claim "that only the spirit of God within the believer can properly understand the Scriptures." (6) This spiritual democratization developed out of such radical views that the church was a community of believers, each illuminated by the inner light, and that salvation lay in the unmediated power of God working within the individual soul.
I dare take upon me, to be the Herauld of New-England so farre, as to proclaime to the world, in the name of our Colony, that all Familists, Antinomians, Anabaptists, and other Enthusiasts, shall have free Liberty to keep away from us, and such as will come to be gone as fast as they can, the sooner the better.
Winthrop's A Short Story of the Rise, reign, and ruine of the Antinomians, Familists, and Libertines recounts, for example, Hutchinson's response to a visit made to her after her banishment by "foure ...
Rufus Jones ascribed Fox's mystical tendencies to the Familists, originated by the Dutch mystic Henry Nicholas (b.
Though his detailed exegesis is carefully limited, Tallack ranges widely in the course of his argument, drawing starting-points and examples from unexpected sources: John Winthrop's 'A Short Story of the Rise, Reign, and Ruine of the Antinomians, Familists, and Libertines that Infected the Churches of Massachusetts Bay', for example, or Poe's two reviews of John Lloyd Stephens's Arabia Petraea, or Incidents of Travel in Egypt, Arabia, and the Holy Land.
The Seventh-day people maintained a more continuous history than many of the contemporary seventeenth-century sects with which they are often listed - Quakers, Diggers, Levellers, Ranters, Seekers, Familists, and Fifth Monarchists - groups which (with the obvious exception of the Quakers) normally flourished for a few decades, only to disappear.
(29) Familists, moreover, had cut devotional ties with the moral law, and in this sense they were antinomians; but, as Michael Winship has noted, if all Familists were antinomians, not all antinomians were Familists.
While historians should read Poole for her contribution to the history of representations and for providing a more variegated picture of the puritan, one must nevertheless question her own lapses into classificatory vagueness: can Familists really be considered "puritan," for example, in the same way that the authors of the Martin Marprelate tracts were "puritan"?
This would become a very common idea among radicals in early modern Europe, espoused by groups such as the Anabaptists and mid-seventeenth-century sects like the Muggletonians, Quakers, Familists, Ranters and Diggers, with well-known exponents including Thomas Hariot, John Bunyan and George Fox (before their conversions), Jacob Boehme, Laurence Clarkson, Lodowick Muggleton, and Gerard Winstanley.

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