Johannes Thomae Bureus Agrivillensis Johan Bure — was a Swedish polymath , antiquarian , mystic , royal librarian, poet, and tutor and adviser of King Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden. He is a well-known exponent of Gothicism. He was Sweden's first national archaeologist riksantikvarie and first head of Sweden's national library riksbibliotekarie. He was also the first to document runes.
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I started to look for information about this interesting character and his ideas and took up the idea to find out if there were more people in which these two interesting elements came together. I noticed that not only information about Bureus is quite scarse, but that the subject as a whole is very under lighted.
It is reviewed in the book reviews section. If this article catches your interest, I suggest you contact mr. Flowers to order his small but highly informative booklet. This book is available, but very expensive, like most of the Brill publications.
More information on the bottom of this article. Flowers claims that he first wrote about Bureus in The first thing I saw of him was the article in Tyr and later I got his booklet Johannes Bureus and Adalruna of You can read about this in short in my previous article The Northern Tradition in the Renaissance. The article you are reading now will focus on Johannes Bureus. He had a good education in Uppsala, Stockholm and later he studied in Germany and Italy.
In he studies theology, in he is professor and from on Royal antiquarian. Bureus died a cripple in During his studies, Bureus learned Latin and Hebrew. Also Bureus was interested in astronomy, which may have caused another interest of his: Rosicrucianism. Bureus and Worm and Brahe were captured by these Paracelsian writings aiming for world reform based on alchemy and spiritual revolution. But actually I want to talk of another interest of Bureus. In Bureus became civil servant since he was appointed as editor of religious texts in Stockholm.
Just before he moved there, Bureus ran into a rune-stone that awakened his curiosity. He lived in an area that has many rune-stones, but he never really noticed them before he saw the stone in front of the Cistercian cloister of Riddarholm.
He was captivated by the strange scripts and wanted to learn how to read them. In and Bureus made an extensive trip through his native country to find more runestones so he could write down, translate and interpret the texts. King Karl IX even assigned him to translate certain stones. Like I said in my previous article, people became interested in their own past. The rune-stones could be helpful and later ancient texts were bought from Iceland.
Bureus was one of the first persons to scientifically study the language of the runes. He even wrote a small booklet called Runa: ABC-boken to allow other people to understand the language.
This booklet can be found online on the site of the Royal Libary of Sweden here. After his trip and notes of all the rune-stones he could find, Bureus wrote several books about the runes, including one with information about the different stones he ran into Monumenta Sveogothica Hactentus Exculpta , Obviously many got lost since…. Bureus was not the only one in his time studying in runes, because his Danish contemporary Ole Worm took up the same work in his own country.
The two had many things in common and knew eachother. As for Northern mythology, Flowers suggests that Bureus and Worm may have know Grammaticus as I wrote in my other article Tycho Brahe definately had a copy and also may have possessed or at least seen copies of the Eddas. Both were in a good position for that, since both have been royal antiquarians. As you can see in the image, Bureus has one rune less than the younger Danish futhark.
According to Flowers the first group of five runes referred to the progenitor , the second to the generation and the last to the generated , thus God, creator, creation, quite a Hermetic idea. His row looks mostly like the younger Danish futhark. They seem to be a simplification of the younger Danish futhark. Especially Postel was obsessed by the search for the original or perfect language. Several people were of the opinion that the entire world had one language before the confusion at the tower of Babel.
Then everybody got a different language so nobody could understand the other. For many Renaissance people the original language was the language of the Old Testament and the Kabbalah : Hebrew.
Postel wrote a book how the entire Hebrew script came from the single and smallest letter Yod. Also common was the idea that Japhet, a son of Noah, was the last man to possess the original language, so often you will read about the Japhetian language or the sons of Japheth descendants or the race or the initiated, whatever they meant who still possess the original language. Another thing is that the original language came from the original land.
These two things where not necessarily connected, but often they were. She writes almost the same in Rose Cross p. In his ethnographic studies, Bureus then sought to clarify precisely the knowledge with which Abaris, the northern Thracian sage, had influenced Pythagoras.
Bureus shared these ideas with the Rosicrucians, but however they too were looking for Hyperborean knowledge, they did not agree with Bureus. Also the Confessio Fraternitates the second Rosicrucian manifesto speaks about the Rosicrucian i.
But, Bureus also had ideas that were shared with others, or in this case it may be better to say that he took it over from someone else. An idea of Postel was that ancient Sibyls gave the original Knowledge to people like Pythagoras. And so we come to the next paragraph. Bureus had another use of the word though. As we saw, Bureus divided his runes in three groups of five.
Three is a significant number in his system, just as it was in the ancient Northern culture. Taken literally, Runic texts make typical reference to sacred microcosmis events, such as the claiming of land or the remembrance of the dead. According to Bureus, it conveys the glory of macrocosmic structures, such as the majesty and kingship described in his Gothic manual Adulruna Rediviva. It is strange to see how Bureus may have studied the mythology of his own ancestors, but how heavily he was influenced by foreign interpretations of these myths.
Othin was the Son, or the Verbum Dei, the sapientia of the Pythagoreans, Mars, and Hercules, Freya was identical with the Holy Spirit, or the foecunditas universi, the bonitas divina, the Diana of the Ephesians.
To these three gods, Bureus linked three of his runes. This force is actually andronygous. Bure points to an image of Thor found in Uppsala which is masculine in the upper body, feminine below. It has been turned 90 degrees to the left. The same Bureus does with the two runes on the left and the right. The left rune is for Odin and the right rune Freya. Above and below are the rune R and U and U and R.
In the same manner Bureus has two more figures the other visible faces of the cube which Flowers explains at length in his booklet. This shifting around with letters, appointing numerological values to them, making words, changing words and sentences is quite like the Kabbalah method of Notaricon and the figure on the bottom left face of the cube even is called NotAriKon. In this manner Bureus works towards his ultimate masterpiece, which can also be found in his ABC-boken, the runic cross.
This figure has an extremely layered explanation. The seven runes forming Christ are linked to the days and planets. The three crowns refer to the national symbol of Sweden, which were cut into a runestone, but which probably have not always been there. The secret calculation of time.
Flowers closes off his booklet with a chapter about the secret calculation of time. Like I said, like in Kabbalistic systems, each letter had a numerological value and Bureus had the habbit of playing with this in order to refer to years in which something great apocalyptic would happen. He did this with his runic system, but also in his Latin texts. You may have noticed the strange capitals in the title of the Rosicrucian text that I mentioned?
Well, the capitals are Roman numerals. This short article really cuts the man short. Most of it is stuffed away in Swedish libraries. Some investigations have been done, but they are mostly written in Swedish. I hope more investigation will follow. Waddington and Arthur H. Thanks a lot for the information. Thanks so. I would like to know what happened in the city of tuna inthe year of Thank you very much.
Neither the year , nor the city of Tuna is mentioned in my article. I forgot to add that the lyrics for this album were written by the same Thomas Karlsson mentioned in your article.
Your email address will not be published. Investigating Bureus Flowers claims that he first wrote about Bureus in Bureus and the runes In Bureus became civil servant since he was appointed as editor of religious texts in Stockholm.
Obviously many got lost since… Bureus was not the only one in his time studying in runes, because his Danish contemporary Ole Worm took up the same work in his own country.
The secret calculation of time Flowers closes off his booklet with a chapter about the secret calculation of time. Conclusion This short article really cuts the man short. I totally missed your reply, sorry! So, any idea what it might be a reference to?
Johannes Bureus, the Renaissance rune magician