Trithemius, John

, a celebrated abbot of the Benedictine order, and one of the most learned men in the fifteenth century, was born February 1, 1462, at Tritenheim, in the diocese of Treves. After finishing his studies he took the Benedictine habit, and was made abbot of Spanheim in the diocese of Mentz, in 1483, which abbey ke governed till 1506, and resigned it to be abbot of St. James at Wirtzberg. He died Dec. 13, 1516. Trithemius was well acquainted both with sacred and profane literature, and left various works, historical and biographical, among which the principal are, a treatise “On the illustrious ecclesiastical Writers,” Cologn, 1546, 4to; in this book he gives some account of 870 authors; another “On the illustrious Men of Germany;” and a third on those of the “Benedictine Order,1606, 4to, translated into French, 1625, 4to; six books “On Polygraphy,1601, fol. translated into French; a treatise “On Steganography,” i.e. the various methods of writing in cyphers, 1621, 4to, Nuremberg, 1721. There is a scarce book on this work, attributed to Augustus, duke of Brunswick, entitled “Gustavi Seleni Enodatio Steganographiæ J. Trithemii,1624, fol. There are also various “Chronicles,” in “Trithemii Opera historica,1701, fol. 2 vols, published by Freher, to which we may add his works on religious subjects, 1605, fol. “Annales | Hirsaugienses,” 2 vols. folio, a carious and important work, and others. 1


Niceron, XXXVI If. Freheri Theatrum. —Dupin.