Hemelar, John

, a very learned man, born at the Hague, was a fine poet and orator; and to be compared, says Gronovius, in his “Orat. funeb. J. Golii,” with the Roman Atticus for his probity, tranquillity of life, and absolute disregard of honours and public employments. He went to Rome, and spent six years in the palace of cardinal Cesi. He wrote there‘ a panegyric on pope Clement VIII. which was so graciously received, that he was offered the post of librarian to the Vatican, or a very good benefice; and preferring the latter, was made a canon in the cathedral at Antwerp. Lipsius had a great esteem for him, as appears from his letters. He was Grotius’s friend also, and published verses to congratulate him on his deliverance from confinement. He was uncle by the mother’s side to James Golius, the learned professor at Leyden, who gained so vast a reputation by his profound knowledge in the Oriental languages: but Golius, who was a zealous protestant, could never forgive his having converted his brother Peter to popery. Hemelar applied himself much more to the study of polite literature and to the science of medals, than | to theology. “He published,” says Gronovius, " extremely useful commentaries upon the medals of the Roman emperors, from the time of Julius Caesar down to Justinian, taken from the cabinets of Charles Arschot and Nicholas Rocoxius; wherein he concisely and accurately explains by marks, figures, &c. whatever is exquisite, elegant, and suitable or agreeable to the history of those times, and the genius of the monarchs, whether the medals in question be of gold, silver, or brass, whether cast or struck in that immortal city. It is a kind of storehouse of medals; and nevertheless in this work, from which any other person would have expected prodigious reputation, our author has been so modest as to conceal his name.’ 7 This work of Hemelar’s, which is in Latin, is not easily to be met with, yet it has been twice printed iirst at Antwerp, in 1615, at the en.I of a work of James De Bie and secondly, in 1627, 4to which Clement has described as a very rare edition Bayle mentions a third edition of 1654, folio, but the work which he mistakes for a third edition, was only a collection of engravings of Roman coins described by Gevartius, in which are some from Hemelar’s work. The other works of this canon are some Latin poems and orations. He died in 1640. He is sometimes called Hamelar. 1


Gen. Dict. —Moreri. —Foppen Bibl. Belg. Clement BibU’Curieuse. —Saxii Onomasticon.