Father Friedrich Spee von Langenfeld, SJ
Poet and Crusader for Justice



Father Friedrich Spee von Langenfeld, SJ on Germany Scott 1627 Father Friedrich Spee von Langenfeld, SJ on a German cancel
GERMANY, 1991, the 4th centenary of Spee's birth, Scott 1627 and its FDI cancel

Spee was born February 25, 1591, in what is today Düsseldorf, and at age nineteen entered the Society of Jesus at Trier. After ordination he did pastoral work in Peine and taught philosophy and moral theology at the Jesuit colleges in Paderborn, Cologne, and Trier. He condemned intolerance, torture, the persecution of witches and the witchcraft trials of his day in his Cautio Criminalis, and suffered in turn because of it. His career was spent amid the Thirty Years War, and it was while ministering to plague-ridden prisoners of war and the wounded that he himself fell sick and died. Two volumes of his poetry survived him as well as spiritual songs and hymns, some available on CD today. The stamp alludes to his music as well as his Cautio Criminalis. More