Paul Crell

 

From Arent Furly to Shaftesbury, 10 October 1704

Its a pleasure to see how every corner of his room is fill'd with renown'd Greeks & Romans; I was scarce an half an hour with him, but I imagin'd myself at Athens in the midst of a learned croud.; O divine rapture! but alas of too short a duration; for no sooner was I struck with admiration & reverence for their Great Wisdom & Virtues, but I perceived them to be of another & More noble Generation, than that of My contemporarys, to whom I returned with shame & confusion.

 

From A HISTORY OF UNITARIANISM, Socinianism (etc), 1945 by Earl Morse Wilbur

In November, 1924 the author visited Andreaswalde, a little farming village about ten miles southwest of Lyck, and a mile from Baitkowen station. So far as known no other Unitarian had ever done so. The place of Paul Crellius's residence (grandson of Professor John Crellius of Raków), where he was living at an advanced age at the middle of the eighteenth century, was easily identified, as was the pond at the foot of the knoll on which it stood, where the Socinians immersed their members by night in order to avoid a sensation. Across the road was a large old farm-house with thatched roof, 'the Arian church,' in whose ample living-room the brethren used to worship. My visit was none too soon. Half the old building had been torn down and reconstructed in the preceding summer, and the remaining part was to follow in the next season. On the estate is a hill known as the Arianer Berg (locally, "Oriander"), which was no doubt their burial place.   cf. the author's illustrated article, 'The last Socinian Church visited,' Christian Register, civ, 627 ff (June 25, 1925).

A HISTORY OF UNITARIANISM, SOCINIANISM AND ITS ANTECEDENTS
Cambridge, Massachusetts : Harvard University Press 1945,
note on page 518.

 

From SHAFTESBURY, 1984 by Robert Voitle

    Before Shaftesbury left Holland he had committed himself to sending Crell to Leiden for a year of study with Thomas Crenius (1648-1728) and Jacob Gronovius (1641-1716). Shaftesbury had manage to live in Holland for nearly a year at [pound] 200, he granted Crell [pound] 500 for the expenses of his year in Leiden.

Part of Crell's attraction for Shaftesbury, his dedication to the classics, can be seen in Arent Furly's description of a visit to Crell in Leiden:

Its a pleasure to see how every corner of his room is fill'd with renown'd Greeks & Romans; I was scarce an half an hour with him, but I imagin'd myself at Athens in the midst of a learned croud.; O divine rapture! but alas of too short a duration; for no sooner was I struck with admiration & reverence for their Great Wisdom & Virtues, but I perceived them to be of another & More noble Generation, than that of My contemporarys, to whom I returned with shame & confusion.

Arent Furly is also an intellectual protégé of Shaftesbury's and he well knows what his master wants to hear. Arent's father  . .  .     To Benjamin, Crell is "an industrious, indefatigable, ingenious, Learned, young man, of a [sweetest] disposition, great Sobriety & Singular Modesty."14

      14. Arent Furly to the Earl of Shaftesbury, October 10, 1704 NS, in PRO 30/24/45/i/154-55 ; Benjamin Furly to the Earl of Shaftesbury, August 10, 1705, NS, in PRO 30/24/45/ii/70.

p. 222.

 

'Only three letters survive which have any bearing on the actual elections that took place in May [1705]; one of these, written from Leiden by Crell at the beginning of July, quotes Shaftesbury as saying he had been vary active politically.'   (page 236.)

 

'One of the many reasons which drew Shaftesbury to London at this time was to meet Crell on his trip from Leiden.'   (page 237)

 

Shaftesbury is most anxious that Crell sail in a good convoy, with a Spanish or French pass for him, "he being a Polander & Neuter," and, with a touch of his old fears, he hopes that Crell will appear to be a young man seeking his fortune in England who knows of no one beyond those to whom his letters are directed, least of all the Earl of Shaftesbury. Furly and Wilkinson took good care of Crell. Harry choose one of Furly's ships, the Susanna, which had an "armall defence of 4 guns & sailes under Convoy of 6 men [of] war," captained by a personal friend, John Howlatson, who "does assure me he'l take care for him & when . . . they are safe arrived he'l himself conduct him to your Lordship att Chelsey & he'l provide all necessaries for him." There need be no fear of duty on his books since he has letters from the rectors of Leiden.     .  .   after lying windbound for two or three weeks—part of which Crell spent in a room at The Brill so that his studies could go on uninterrupted—the fleet found a fair wind, and on September 4 [1705] Shaftesbury wrote to Furly that Crell was with him. When Shaftesbury went back to St. Giles's house, Crell went onto Cambridge where he seems to have learned English very rapidly, indeed. Crell's own almost weekly letters written in Latin, the only language he and Shaftesbury shared fluency in, are so full of the Ancients that there is room for little else, alas.   (page 237)

 

' . .     during this visit [1706] to Chelsea the oddly rounded hand of Paul Crell, now writing in English, appears among Shaftesbury's correspondence.'   (page 263)

 

Shaftesbury's party set off from Reigate to Dover on June 28 [1711]. There were eleven of them. Besides the Earl and his wife, there were her gentlewoman Frances Whitney, Bryan Wheelock (d. 1735)—John's nephew who was to marry Frances in Naples—Mrs. Belle Skinner, Paul Crell, and five servants. Shaftesbury dated a letter from Dover on the second and that night his party arrived in Calais.   (page 374)

 

There are no famous last words. We have only the bare recital by Crell that the third Earl of Shaftesbury died at his house in Chiaia on February 15, 1713 NS. (Etc.)     (page 412)

THE THIRD EARL OF SHAFTESBURY
Baton Rouge and London : Louisiana University Press 1984.

 

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Last updated 6 December 2003

W. Paul Tabaka
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