Andrzej Frycz Modrzewski

Steven Avery

Andrzej Frycz Modrzewski (1503-1572)

Andrzej Frycz Modrzewski (Latin: Andreas Fricius Modrevius) (ca.1503 – autumn 1572) was a Polish Renaissance scholar, humanist and theologian, called "the father of Polish democracy". His book De Republica emendanda (O poprawie Rzeczypospolitej) was widely read and praised across most of Renaissance Europe, influencing thinkers such as Jean Bodin, Hugo Grotius and Johannes Althusius.[1][2]
... He was among the original Editorial Advisors of the scholarly journal Dionysius. As an anti-abortion activist, he became the first chairman of the board of Americans United for Life.[4]

Andreas Fricius Modrevius
Andrzej Piotr Modrzewski


Sylvae Quatuor
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Steven Avery

Modrzewski - Sylvae quatuor.

BCEME p. 94-95
At the Diet of Piotrków (1565), the Calvinist party used its political muscle to convince King Sigismund August of Poland and the other
nobles to suppress Antitrinitarian belief. The king subsequently requested his secretary Andrzej Frycz Modrzewski, one of the foremost Polish
humanists of his generation, to write up a summary of the theological positions presented, in order to find a compromise. The result, Sylvae
, completed in 1565, mentions the comma on several occasions.

Modrzewski cites the comma on the first page of his work, as part of his account of the orthodox conception of the Trinity.98 The Trinity,
Modrzewski continued, was revealed in the baptism of Jesus:
O what theatre is this, how vast and magnificent, in which the Son of God is announced, and proven by the earthly descent of the Holy Spirit! What more outstanding or weighty testimony to the divine Trinity could exist? The Father speaks from the heavens; the Son is baptized in the Jordan; the Holy Spirit appears in the form of a dove. These things are one, as the apostle John says, for they testify to one thing. With one breath and will, they inaugurate the world’s teacher and master, whom all would hear.99

But even when presenting the orthodox position, Modrzewski introduces doubt whether the unity of the three heavenly witnesses is one of testimony or essence. In summary, Modrzewski claimed to have demonstrated that there are three persons in the divine realm, as attested in Jn 10:30, 14:10 and 1 Jn 5:7–8. However, he noted that since the time of Arius to the present, there had been heated disagreement as to the nature of that unity.100 Modrzewski acknowledged the exegetical discussions of the word unum in Jn 10:30, and suggested that the correct reading was perhaps unus. But there were theological problems with the passage as well. If we confess both the Father who generates and the Son who is generated to be God, do we not have two gods? If orthodox theologians distinguished the person of the Father from the person of the Son, but insisted that they are also the same in essence, then they already have three persons: Father, Son and the divine essence. When the Father generated the Son, did he make him a God? And what of the reciprocal relationship between them? If the Son received sonhood when he was generated, was the Father given fatherhood at that same moment?101 As for the comma, that text on which the orthodox had relied so heavily in demonstrating the existence of the Trinity, Modrzewski pointed out that Erasmus, Calvin and Bèze had all argued that the unity of the three heavenly witnesses in this text, like that of the earthly witnesses, is one of testimony, not of essence. Modrzewski thus avoided the text-critical issue almost entirely in favour of exegetical concerns.102 Modrzewski sent the manuscript of the Sylvae to Basel for publication, but it was intercepted and destroyed by a Polish Calvinist student, Krzystof Trecy (Trecius). However, Modrzewski had kept his notes, and rewrote the treatise, which circulated in manuscript until it was finally published at Raków in 1590, some years after his death.103

98 Modrzewski 1590, 1. Further, see Bludau 1904a, 280; Wilbur 1945–1952.
99 Modrzewski 1590, 20–21.
100 Modrzewski 1590, 22.
101 Modrzewski 1590, 22–23.
102 Modrzewski 1590, 32. See also Modrzewski 1590, 5, 263.
103 Wilbur 1945–1952, 2:325.

Modrzewski, Andrzej Frycz. Sylvae quatuor. [Raków]: [Sternacius], 1590.

This is a very unusual method of questioning for the 1500s.
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Steven Avery

A History of Unitarianism: Socinianism and its antecedents - (1945)
Earl Morse Wilbur




Also see if ref above is different.
103 Wilbur 1945–1952, 2:325.

Wilbur, Earl Morse. A History of Unitarianism. 2 vols. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1945–1952.
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Steven Avery

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Steven Avery

Silvae quatuor: 1. De tribus personis et una essentia Dei. 2. De necessitate conventus habendi ad sedandas religionis controversias. 3. De Jesu Christo filio Dei homousio. Omnia nunc primum edita. Adjecta est quaestio theologua (Andreae Dudithii) ab eodem auctore examinata. (Dudith de Horehonicza, Andreas: Epistola ad Johannem Laticium in qua de divina triade disputatur.) (1590)

There may be some more, but these look like the main spots.
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