Kops, Jan (1765-1849)

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Jan Kops was born 6 March 1765 in Amsterdam and died 9 January 1849 in Utrecht, Netherlands. His parents, Jacobus Kops, a yarn merchant, and Hillegond Schotvanger, belonged to the conservative Old Frisian Mennonite congregation, but Jan Kops joined the progressive Lamist congregation. He studied at the Amsterdam Theological Seminary (1781-1787), and then served as pastor of the Leiden congregation (1787-1800).

He became deeply interested in politics, and he was an ardent Patriot, and in 1795, when the Dutch Mennonites obtained equal political rights with the members of the Reformed Church, Kops became a member of the city government at Leiden. In 1799 he was appointed director of agriculture in the Netherlands, whereupon he resigned from his ministry and moved to The Hague. In 1815 he became professor of botany and agricultural economics at the University of Utrecht. In 1816-1843 he preached in the Utrecht Mennonite congregation. He published a number of books and papers on agricultural economy, but no theological books, except two sermons. One of his outstanding publications in the field of botany (in collaboration with J. C. Sepp, was Flora Batava (first vol. at Amsterdam, 1800). In 1830 he became a trustee of Algemene Doopsgezinde Sociëteit (Dutch General Mennonite Conference) and a curator of its seminary.

Kops was married to Johanna Daams of Haarlem.

Albertus Kops, who was one of their children, was born in 1814 in Amsterdam and died in 1874 in Utrecht. He married Grietje Cleyndert of Zaandam. Their son Jan Kops (b. 1846 at Utrecht, d. 1872 at Tjalleberd) studied theology at the Amsterdam Mennonite Seminary and became pastor of the Tjalleberd congregation in September 1872. He served only a few months before an untimely death. His daughter Geertruida Kops (1853-1941) was married to W. I. Leendertz.


Baert, J. Jan Kops, pionier van Hollands Landbouw. The Hague, 1943.

Doopsgezinde Bijdragen (1875): 55.

Doopsgezind Jaarboekje (1850): 37.
Naamlijst der tegenwoordig in dienst zijnde predikanten der Mennoniten in de vereenigde Nederlanden. Amsterdam, 1829: 35 f.

Nederland's Patriciaat XL (1954): 209.

Poole, L. G. te. Bijdragen tot de kermis... van de Dg. te Leiden. Leiden, 1905: passim.

van der Poel, J. M. G. Heren en Boeren. Wageningen, 1949: chapters III-VIII.

Visscher, H. and L. A. van Langeraad. Biographisch Woordenboek von Protestantsche Godgeleerden in Nederland, A-L v. I Utrecht, 1903- : V, 232-36.

An autobiographical manuscript by Kops, "Levensbericht," is found in the Utrecht University Library.

Author(s) Nanne van der Zijpp
Date Published 1956

Cite This Article

MLA style

van der Zijpp, Nanne. "Kops, Jan (1765-1849)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1956. Web. 19 Apr 2018. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Kops,_Jan_(1765-1849)&oldid=95627.

APA style

van der Zijpp, Nanne. (1956). Kops, Jan (1765-1849). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 19 April 2018, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Kops,_Jan_(1765-1849)&oldid=95627.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 3, p. 226-227. All rights reserved.

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