The Danish Peace Academy
Holger Terp: Danish Peace History
Working paper 1
The first student rebellion
uring the Nordic war between Denmark and Sweden 1657-1659, while Copenhagen was the capital of the dual monarchy Denmark and Norway, Jesper Baltzarsen Könecken or Jasper Könekenii (1629-1715) as he later was called in the Netherlands, in training for the ministry preached to the war-torn state. Among the audience in the pews were students from his own university, citizens and the defenders of Copenhagen. At that time people were allowed to speak in the course of the service who were not actually the minister of the church congregation.
Taken by surprise, the patriots heard from the learned young man, that according to the New Testament, wars for Christians were unlawful. Also, it was the view of Könecken, that Christians should not be rulers5. And if war were unlawful for the Christian Danish monarch, so it also was unlawful for the Christian Swedish king Charles Gustav (1622-1660). Accordingly Könecken wrote two letters to the Swedish monarch, demanding him to stop the war6.
Jesper Baltazsen Könecken was not alone in his views, but disappeared from history, until the church historian Holger Rørdam (1830-1913) published a learned biography “the fanatic Jesper Baltzarsen Könecken” in his journal Churchhistorical Collections in 1853; the second biography on Könecken7. Two years later Rørdam published his most important study on the Danish and Norwegian students participation in the defence of Copenhagen against Charles Gustav8.
On October fifth, 1658 all students at the University of Copenhagen were ordered by the king to “military service”; on the walls at day and guard duty at night. Of the 600 students less than 266 ‘volunteered’, though the penalty for disobedience was arrest and exile9. This means that more than three hundred forty students absented their military duty. In his name index Rørdam records “the students of the University of Copenhagen during the siege”; including the name of Könecken10. However Rørdam publish “the newly found” university conscription registers from September 1658 and January 4th 1659; without the name of Könecken11.
Parts of the files of the University were destroyed during the British terror bombardment of Copenhagen in 180712. As the war year 1659 passed the students dissatisfaction with the military service grew, proved the later research of Holger Rørdam.
The total number of students in the university of Copenhagen in 1658 was 600 so the total given by Helweg is a misunderstanding. The drafted students were the subject of royal letters or orders concerning “greater precision in the fulfilment of their military duties”13, and, that “the professors ordered the students to be at their post”14. The rebukes did not work; so the students were drafted15. Neither did this help. A month later a new letter from the king shows, that even the conscription had failed. Again the professors were commanded to “order the students to diligent to stay at their posts yet some time”16.
Among the personalities who escaped their war duties can be mentioned the young medical student Niels Stensen / Nicalaus Steno, which according to the biography of Alan Cutler emigrated to Amsterdam while Copenhagen still was surrounded by the Swedish army.
The head master of the university, Rasmus Enevoldsen Brochman posted his resignation on May 21, 1659 thereafter he wrote two apologies to the King. On September 12, 1659, three days after the second letter from the king the Academic Council agreed to continue as usual! Therefore first after the drafting of the students in October 1659 the new head master of the university was appointed17.
Later next year, while the Kings Council agreed on a cut in the defence expenses in Norway18, the king commanded to the new head master of the university, that “the arms of the deserted students should be returned”19.
Because of his pacific and anti-authoritarian views in the newly absolute state of Denmark, Jesper Baltzarsen Könecken was condemned in 1663 by the Copenhagen University Academic Court and expelled from Denmark after spending some time in prison20. Via Sweden he settled in the Netherlands, where he continued to express and publish his pacific views21.
5 The concept patriot is borrowed from the
first volume of Dansk identitetshistorie. 1991.
6 The first letter is dated September 16, 1658. Bishop Brochmand helped Könecken to become a student in 1648 and Könecken was a house teacher and friend of professor M. Peder Spormand.
7 Starkii, Casp. Henr.: Kurße Nachricht von dem fanatischen Außtionario zu Lübeck Iasper. Könekenio. In: Dänische Bibliothec oder Sammlung von alten und neuen gelehrten Sachen aus Dännemarck. 1-5. Stück. Cph. u. Leipzig 1737-44. and 6-9. Stück. Cph. 1745-47. Vol. 8, 1746. pp. -674.
8 Rørdam, Holger Fr.: De danske og norske Studenters Deltagelse i Kjøbenhavns Forsvar mod Karl Gustav : Et Bidrag til Kjøbenhavns Universitets Historie 1658-60. C. G. Iversen, 1855. – 228 pp. See also: Rørdam, H.: Københavns Universitets Beskatning og Trængsler i Krigsaarene 1657-1660. In: Historisk Tidsskrift, 2. række VI pp. 478-481 and Matzen, H.: Københavns Universitets Retshistorie 1.
9 Rørdam 1855 p. 26. According to Rørdam, the 87 student witnesses in the court case of the student Niels Kragh, ‘hardly accounted for more than one third of the students who took to the walls at the beginning of the war, though Rørdam himself questions the high number: ‘A not insignificant numbers had evaded from the war service, though it cannot be accepted it is certain, that one and two abstained during a time when it had been more honourable for him, if he had laid down the book to catch the sword’.
10 The citizens of Copenhagen is recorded in: Marquard, E.: Kjøbenhavns Borgere 1659. 1920. Marquard index 1) Census over those who can go to the walls January 10th., 2) Census over accommodated December 1659, 3) The students, including: conscription register over the regiment of the students, list over the students January 1659 and the students receipts for financial assistance. No mention of Könecken.
The names of the students at the University of Copenhagen are recorded in: Birket Smith, S.: Kjøbenhavns Universitets Matrikel I 1611-67. 1890. Birket Smith wrote that in the year 1659 'some confusion has entered into parts of the great report of the university's headmaster R. E. Brockmand'. It has the character of an scramp draft. In the printed volume of the student register of the university of Copenhagen 14 close hand-written folio pages is missing! 'Umiddelbart efter følger i Manuskriptet paa 14 tæt skrevne Foliesider en meget ordrig Skildring af danske, særligt Københavnske Tilstande ved begyndelsen af den anden svenske Krig'. Skildringen er oversat af Engelstoft og publiceret i tidsskriftet Skandinavisk Museum 1803.
11 Konsistoriets Arkiv: Acta belli Svecici. Four of the students are listed as dead!
12 ”Konsistoriets Kopibøger for Aarene 1646-1671, der existerede dengang [Professor L.] Engelstoft udgav sine Analer, nu er forsvundne”. Fortegnelse over Konsistoriets Arkiv i Selmers Købenahvns Universitets Aarbog 1842 pp. 20-26. Rørdam, Holger: De danske og norske Studenters Deltagelse i Kjøbenhavns Forsvar mod Karl Gustav p. 5. The 500 year jubilee volume of the University of Copenhagen is here only quoting Rørdam’s De danske og norske Studenter…
13 Kongebrev, hvori der paalægges Studerende større Nøjagtighed i opfyldelsen af deres militære pligter, August 15, 1658. Ibid. p. 171.
14 Kongebrev, til Professorer om at tilholde Studenterne at varetage deres Poster, dated September 9, 1658. Ibid. p. 174.
15 Konfirmation paa Studenternes leges Militares, dated October 5, 1658. Ibid. p. 73-78.
16 Kongebrev, til Professorer om at tilholde Studenterne endnu nogen Tid flittigt at tage vare paa deres Poster, dated November 9,1658. Ibid. p. 180.
17 Engelstoft: Nogle Fragmenter om Dr. Rasmus Enevoldsen Brochmans rectorat ved Kiöbenhavns Universitet i Aarene 1658 og 1659. In: Skandinavisk Museum, 1803, vol. 2 pp. 121-134. Brochman’s two apologies to the King are dated June 16 and 30, 1659 regarding the university and the students: “At Universitetets Privilegier maatte fornyes, og at alt, hvad der i den sidste svenske Feide (1657-1658) var passeret i adskillige maader, særdeles med Vagt, Indqvartering og Rytterhold og andet, som Akademiet for sin underdanige Trofasthed at betee, sig saa godvillig paatog taalmodig leed og udstod, aldrig kulde komme Akademiet, dets Professorers eller Supposita, nærværende eller tilkommende, paa nogen af deres Privilegier, enten i Fred eller i Feides Tid”… Engelstoft p. 126.
18 Aktstykker og Oplysninger til Rigsrådets og Stændermødernes Historie i Frederik III’s Tid, Vol 1 1648-50 / Editor C. Rise Hansen, 1959. See also: Aktstykker og Oplysninger til Statskollegiets Historie 1660-1676, 2 Vols. / Editor J. Lindbæk, 1903-1910.
19 Kongebrev til Universitetets Rektor om Afleveringen af de forløvede studenters Vaaben, dated September 19, 1659. Rørdam, Holger: De danske og norske Studenters Deltagelse i Kjøbenhavns Forsvar mod Karl Gustav pp. 200-201.
20 Rørdam, Holger Fr.: Efterretninger om Sværmeren Jesper Könecken. In: Kirkehistoriske Samlinger, 2. række, vol. 3. 1853, pp. -261. [In: Southwest University Library].
Könecken, Jesper Baltzarsen: De bellis Christianorum Novi Testamenti. Hand-written copy recorded by the court during his trial at the University of Copenhagen; filed in the Record Office: Konsistoriets Kopibøger 1656-58, No. 12.13.06 Fol. 333-336. See also Ludvig Helweg: Den danske Kirkes Historie 1855, vol. 1 p. 390.
21 Bibliotheca Danica : Systematisk Fortegnelse over den danske Litteratur fra 1482 til 1830 efter Samlingerne i Det store kongelige Bibliothek i Kjøbenhavn. Med Supplementer fra Universitetsbibliotheket i Kjøbenhavn og Karen Brahes Bibliothek i Odense, Vol 1.1877 ; Vol 3. 1896. Bibliotheca Danica includes: “domestic published authors, Danish authors publications translated into foreign languages” and “foreign authors publications published in Denmark regardless language” (Introduction p. IX). In the first printed volume of Bibliotheca Danica he is headlined Jasp. Könecken under the subject theology and the name is spelled in Latin: Könekenius when indexed. In Vol. 3 his first name is spelled in Dutch: Jasper and his surname is spelled in Danish, under the headline history. In the online edition of Bibliotheca Danica there is a second Latin version of his surname: Könekenii. In the printed Latin student register 1611-1667 of the University of Copenhagen from 1890, he is spelled Casper Baltazar Køneche. All the Dutch publications of Jesper Baltzarsen Könecken was according to Bibliotheca Danica published within two years, 1665 and 1666. One of the publications Pacifica Belgis is recorded twice in the printed Bibliotheca Danica. Though aimed at being complete, Bibliotheca Danica fail to index six booklets of Könecken recorded by Jasp. Henr. Strackii in Dänische Bibliothek, 1746. Vol. VIII pp. 672-674. The volumes of Könecken in the nuclear safe box of the Royal Library of Copenhagen may surely be unique.
Könekenii, Jasperi: Mediationes Pacificæ Jasper Köneken Haunia-Dani Latino Belgicæ : Una cum petitione, pacificæ fui in Anglian legationis, ad Proceres Belgii premissâ. Wrede-willende Handeling aen de Hoogmoogende Heeren Staeten in den Haagh / … Typis datæ Amstelodami, d. 10-20 April 1665. – [22+8+10+5] pp. Mediationes Pacificæ includes the first letter to the Swedish king Charles Gustav. In the Royal Library, Copenhagen.
Könekenii, Jasperi: Pacifica Belgis per gratiam Dei, quoad ipsi modo pacem ita non nimium nolint, ad Angliæ Regem Carolum II : Oratio. Hagæ circa Idus Maji 1665. – 11+3 pp. [Pacifica Belgis includes Könecken's second letter to the Swedish king Charles Gustav. In the Royal Library, Copenhagen. Recorded in Bibliotheca Danica online; title only – title in Bibliotheca Danica slightly different from Rørdam’s. Two editions?].
Könekenii, Jasperi: Testimonium Veritatis p. t. ad ommes imprimis in Belgio & Religionis & Literarum Præsules. Simpliciter scriptum Amstelodami d. 17/27 1665 a. Jasp. Balt. Könekenio, Daniæ Relegato Unctocharo atque Pacifico. In the Royal Library, Copenhagen? Recorded in Bibliotheca Danica online; short title only: Testimonium veritatis p. t. ad ommes imprimis in Belgio et religionis et literarum præsules. Dutch records in Koninklijke Bibliotheek
http://www.kb.nl/index-en.html? English records? No Swedish records: From: "Britt-Marie Lagerqvist"
email@example.com Sent: Tuesday, August 12, 2003 10:22 AM Subject: Angående Jesper Baltzarsen Könecken. Hej! Några handlingar som inkommit till Konung Karl Gustav från ovanstående person har inte påträffats hos Riksarkivet. Ej heller har sökning efter publikationer gett resultat. Med vänlig hälsning Britt-Marie Lagerqvist. Check Archiv der Hansestadt Luebeck
Muehlendamm 1-3, 23552 Luebeck firstname.lastname@example.org.