Boreel, Adam (1603-1667)

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Adam Boreel, Heer van Duynbeke, born 2 November 1603 at Middelburg in the Dutch province of Zeeland, died 1667. He was learned and skilled in Hebrew. His idea of the nature of the Christian church, viz., that it should be an invisible church without organization or sacraments, was refuted by the Calvinist professors Maresius and Hoornbeek. His tract, Onderhandeling noopende den broederlijcken Godtsdienst aangevangen in presentie der vrienden in Amsterdam, and several manuscripts were preserved by Galenus Abrahamsz de Haan. Bock, in his book, Historia Antitrinitarioram, considers him a Socinian, following Sand's verdict.

In Amsterdam Boreel, together with Daniel van Breen and Michiel Coomans, led the Collegiant movement. There he also met Galenus Abrahamsz de Haan, whom he influenced; to that extent Boreel was significant in Mennonite history. Galenus' idea that the true church could be found nowhere on earth was certainly nurtured by the anti-church views of Boreel.


Benthem, Heinrich Ludolf. Holländischer Kirch- und Schulen-Staat. Franckfurt und Leipzig : Gottschick, 1698.

Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe; Schneider, 1913-1967: v. I, 246.

Hylkema, C. B. Reformateurs. Haarlem : H. D. Tjeenk Willink & zoon, 1900-1902: v. I-II.

Kühler, Wilhelmus Johannes. Het Socinianisme in Nederland. Leiden: Sijthoff, 1912.

Molhuysen, P. C. and P. J. Blok. Nieuw Nederlandsch Biografisch Woordenboek, 10 vols. Leiden, 1911-1937: v. VI, 163-165. Available online at

Author(s) Christian Neff
Date Published 1953

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MLA style

Neff, Christian. "Boreel, Adam (1603-1667)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1953. Web. 24 Feb 2018.,_Adam_(1603-1667)&oldid=143986.

APA style

Neff, Christian. (1953). Boreel, Adam (1603-1667). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 24 February 2018, from,_Adam_(1603-1667)&oldid=143986.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 1, p. 389. All rights reserved.

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