Hochmann (of Hochenau), Ernst Christoph

Hochmann (Of Hochenau), Ernst Christoph a German mystic, and principal representative of the Wittgenstem separatists, born at Hochenau (Lauenburg) in 1661 (according to Hagenbach, 1670) and educated at Halle University. During his residence there (1699) he began to attract attention by his addresses to the Jews, whom he endeavored to convert to Christianity. In 1702 he made a journey through nearly all Germany, and attacked the lukewarmness of the clergy with great boldness, oftentimes entering the pulpit either during the discourse or immediately after it. He also conducted devotional exercises in private houses, which were largely attended by the people. "He was a man of rare gifts, and was inspired by a sincere and resigned type of piety, which brought many sides to his heart." He suffered great persecution, and was even imprisoned frequently, but it "was all borne by him with patience, and even with a certain degree of humor." His adherents, in spite of all these difficulties, were numerous, and his influence over them without bounds. Stilling says that an old pietist related to him "that Hochman once preached on the great meadow below Elberfeld, called the Ox Comb, with so much power and eloquence that his many hundreds of hearers fully believed themselves raised to the clouds, and that they had no other thought than that the morning of eternity had really dawned." The theological views of Hochmann were in the main the same as those of the great mystics, Jacob Baehme (q.v.), Weigel, Gichtel, etc. He opposed infant baptism, and held that the Lord's Supper should be administered only to the chosen and faithful disciples of Christ. He also insisted on a complete separation of Church and State, and had most peculiar views of the matrimonial state. The charge has been laid against him that he disbelieved the doctrine of the Trinity, but we think without just cause. He was, however, a fervent believer in the doctrine of perfection, and held that only those men should preach the Gospel who felt that the Lord called them to this sacred work. He died in 1721. Hochmann's writings were published in pamphlet form, and were few in number. They are of value mainly as an index to his life and works as a Christian man. A complete list of them may be found in Gobel, Gesch. d. christl. Lebens in d. rheinisch- westphal. evangel. Kirche (Coblenz, 1852), 2, 809 sq. Among these we consider as particularly valuable his Glaubensbekenntniss sammt seiner an die Juden gehaltenen Rede (1703, 12mo): — Necessaria supplicatio et dehortatio ad Germaniae Rectores s. Magistratus de dura persec. sic dictor. Pietistarum (without year or date). — Hurst's Hagenbach, Ch. Hist. of the 18th and 19th Centuries, 1, 167-8; Adelung's Jocher, Gelehrt. Lex. Add. 2, 2029-2030; Fuhrmann, Handwörterb. d. Kirchengesch. 2, 318; Herzog, Real-Encyklop. 6, 163-164. (J. H. W.)

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