Gerrard Winstanley in translation

Hessayon, Ariel. 2019. Gerrard Winstanley in translation. Notes and Queries, 66(4), pp. 544-546. ISSN 0029-3970 [Article]

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As far as I am aware, it has not previously been noted that a text by the Digger leader Gerrard Winstanley (1609–1676) was translated from English into a foreign language during the seventeenth century. This brief communication is intended to alert readers to a Dutch manuscript version of Winstanley’s The New Law of Righteousnes (London: Giles Calvert, 1649). Entitled ‘Nieuwe Wet der Gerechtigheyt’ and described as being in octavo, the work was listed in the library catalogue of Petrus Serrarius (1600–1669). Most likely this was a unique manuscript since I have yet to find reference to a copy elsewhere. Furthermore, because – to the best of my knowledge – this Dutch version has never come to light, it may no longer be extant. But as we shall see, it does appear that the translator was probably Serrarius himself. For although Serrarius’s ownership of Winstanley’s New Law of Righteousnes is unrecorded there is no reason to doubt either that he had once possessed a copy or else had borrowed it. Indeed, Serrarius’s interest in Winstanley’s writings is confirmed by another entry in his library catalogue: Winstanley’s The Mysterie of God (London: Giles Calvert, 1649).

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17 September 2019Published

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11 Jun 2020 11:53

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17 Sep 2021 01:26

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