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Govert Jan van Rijswijk, born 1764 at The Hague, died 1838 at Amsterdam, was an outstanding Dutch Mennonite preacher. He did not have a specifically theological training. He was at first the manager of a type foundry (1784-1800), and during this time he frequendy addressed the meetings of the Rijnsburg Collegiants. In 1797 he took part in an essay contest on "Indifference and Carelessness in Attendance at Religious Meetings," and won an honorable distinction. He therefore decided to devote his life to the ministry. In 1800 he became the preacher of the Hengelo congregation and served until 1806, followed by service at Monnikendam 1806-8, Joure 1808-17, and Den Hoorn on Texel 1817-24. In 1824 he had to resign because of approaching blindness; he soon lost his vision completely. He spent his last years in Leiden.

Van Rijswijk published a number of theological and devotional books: Proeve van Onderzoek over de oogmerken van het Lijden en Sterven van Jezus Christus (Amsterdam, 1792); Schets der christelijke Leere . . . (Amsterdam, 1809, 2d ed. 1816, 3d ed. 1842); Lijkrede op Jezus (Amsterdam, 1813); Het Hoofdzakelijke der Christelijke Leere . . . (Amsterdam, 1814, 2d ed. 1825); Leerredenen en Kerkelijke Redevoeringen (2 vv., Amsterdam, 1816 and 1825); Vragen betrekkelijk de kennis en het goed verstand der heilige Schriften . . . (Amsterdam, 1826). Van Rijswijk owned a good collection of Mennonite works, including some rare ones. He gave them to the Library of the Amsterdam Mennonite Church.


Catalogus der werken over de Doopsgezinden en hunne geschiedenis aanwezig in de bibliotheek der Vereenigde Doopsgezinde Gemeente to Amsterdam. Amsterdam: J.H. de Bussy, 1919: 223, 312, 313, 325.

Doopsgezinde Bijdragen (1861): 35; (1869): 95; (1875): 27; (1896): 166 f.

Doopsgezind Jaarboekje (1837): 113 f.

Glasius, B. Godgeleerd Nederland III. 's Hertogenbosch, 1856: 248 f.

Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. III, 514.

Hoop Scheffer, Jacob Gijsbert de. Inventaris der Archiefstukken berustende bij de Vereenigde Doopsgezinde Gemeente to Amsterdam, 2 vols. Amsterdam: Uitgegeven en ten geschenke aangeboden door den Kerkeraad dier Gemeente, 1883-1884: v. II, 620 f.

Naamlijst der tegenwoordig in dienst zijnde predikanten der Mennoniten in de vereenigde Nederlanden. Amsterdam (1829): 32, 34, 50.

Author(s) Nanne van der Zijpp
Date Published 1959

Cite This Article

MLA style

Zijpp, Nanne van der. "Rijswijk, Govert Jan van (1764-1838)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1959. Web. 26 Jun 2017.,_Govert_Jan_van_(1764-1838)&oldid=109335.

APA style

Zijpp, Nanne van der. (1959). Rijswijk, Govert Jan van (1764-1838). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 26 June 2017, from,_Govert_Jan_van_(1764-1838)&oldid=109335.

Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 4, pp. 335-336. All rights reserved.

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