Becmann’s News From the Royal Joachimsthal Grammar School

In the project the hand-written history of the Prussian grammar school " Joachimsthalsches Gymnasium" from its beginning in 1607 until 1741, was transcribed and edited. Author of the school chronicle was its deputy director Bernhard Ludwig Becmann (1694–1760).

Project Description

At its time, the "Jachimthalsche Gymnasium" was one of the most important educational institutions in Brandenburg-Prussia. The earliest historical account of the school which was founded in 1607 was presented by Bernhard Ludwig Beckmann or Becmann according to his own script, who served as the school’s under-deputy director, sub-director and finally deputy director.

While he had intended his vast, hand-written account to be published, this goal was never reached. The manuscript covers the period from 1607 until 1741.

Today, the papers are part of the Childhood and Youth Collection of the Stiftung Stadtmuseum Berlin.

Becmann’s text has been transcribed and saved on a supplementary CD. The account is not limited to important developments and critical moments, it permits insights into everyday life at a school in the 17th century until the mid-18th century. Thematically, he addresses issues concerning school facilities, income and administration, catering and clothing of the students, instructional practice and school governance or conflicts resulting from running a princes’ school committed to Reformed denomination in a state that was predominantly Lutheran.

The transcription is complemented by a detailed introduction summarizing and historically contextualizing the chapters of the original manuscript.


Beise, Karl-Walter/Ritzi, Christian/Rückriem, Georg (Hrsg.) (2012): Bernhard Ludwig Becmann. Nachrichten von dem Königlichen Joachimsthalischen Gymnasio, welche deßen Zustand vom Anfang bis auf gegenwärtige Zeiten in einem Zusammenhang vorstellen. Bad Heilbrunn: Klinkhardt. 86 S. + CD. (Quellen und Dokumente zur Geschichte der Erziehung).

Project Management

  • Dr. Christian Ritzi (BBF)

Project Team

  • Dr. Stefan Cramme (BBF)
  • Karl-Walter Beise (Universität der Künste Berlin)
  • Prof. em. Dr. Georg Rückriem (Universität der Künste Berlin)
  • PD Dr. Jonas Flöter (Friederich-Schiller-Universität Jena)
  • Agnes Winter

Project Details

Project type: Publishing project
Completed Projects
06/2010 – 06/2012
Contact: Stefan Cramme