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Theodor Undereyk

Theodor UndereykBiography, German theologian

German theologian
Theodor Undereyk
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro German theologian
Was Religious scholar Theologian
From Germany
Type Religion
Gender male
Birth 15 June 1635, Duisburg, Düsseldorf Government Region, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany
Death 1 January 1693, Bremen, Free Hanseatic City of Bremen, Germany (aged 57 years)
Star sign GeminiGemini
The details


Theodor Undereyck (born June 15, 1635 in Duisburg, and died on January 1, 1693 in Bremen) was a Protestant pastor, spiritual writer and pioneer of pietism in the German Reformed Church.

Theodor Undereyck was born in 1635 as the son of businessman Gerhard Undereyck and his wife Sara, née Salanger. After the death of his parents in 1636 by the plague, he grew up as an orphan in the house of his uncle Johann Undereyck in Alstaden.

From 1653 to 1658 he studied Protestant theology in Duisburg, Utrecht, and Leiden, and among others, Gisbert Voetius and Johannes Cocceius (a student of Ludwig Crocius). Although his teachers were partly contrary to each other, but were orthodox Reformed theologians and representatives of Nadere Reformatie. In particular Cocceius strongly influenced him in the direction of a federally theological thought, so that he was also considered one of the "big catechists of Coccejanismus". Voetius influenced him in the direction of a puritanical way of life and its emphasis on the importance of Christian conventicles. From 1658 to 1659 Undereyck undertook a study trip to Switzerland, France, and England.

In 1660, he became pastor of the Reformed church in Mülheim an der Ruhr. There he led approximately 1661 one of the first Pietist conventicles in Germany. From 1668 he was an associate court preacher in Kassel to Countess Hedwig Sophie (1623-1683). In 1670 he became pastor primarius in the community of St. Martini in Bremen and remained so until his death. In Bremen, he continued, despite initial difficulties with the clergy ministry through its reforms and helped there Pietism breakthrough. His followers Joachim Neander and Cornelius de Hare (whose funeral sermon provides valuable biographical information on Undereyck) translated and continued Undereyck's work.

Undereyck published 5 books, including two catechisms and a lay dogmatics, in which he conveyed the ideas of the English and Dutch Reformed theology to German-speaking readers in edifying language. He dedicated his most extensive and sophisticated writing to the fight against emerging atheism.

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