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Groote, Gerard (1340–1384)

  1. Paul Jensen

Published Online: 25 NOV 2011

DOI: 10.1002/9780470670606.wbecc0619

The Encyclopedia of Christian Civilization

How to Cite

Jensen, P. 2011. Groote, Gerard (1340–1384). The Encyclopedia of Christian Civilization. .

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 25 NOV 2011


Gerard Groote was the Dutch founder of a late medieval renewal movement called the Devotio Moderna or New Devotion, which spread around Northern Europe after his death; on this all scholars agree. By the time of his death, he had firmly established two of the movement's three branches — the Brothers and the Sisters of the Common Life. Groote was born into a family of wealthy cloth merchants in the town of Deventer on the Ijssel River in the diocese of Utrecht. His father, who also served as town treasurer, and his mother both died from the plague in 1350, when Groote was 10. Nearly a decade later, Deventer's record keeping changed from Latin to Middle Dutch. Had Groote followed his father vocationally, he would have kept the city's records in the vernacular language. Instead, as founder of the New Devotion, he translated and wrote spiritual texts in Middle Dutch so laity could access them for meditation in their heart language.


  • .groote, gerard (1340–1384);
  • medieval renewal, the devotio moderna or new devotion;
  • groote, influenced by writings of Augustine, cassian, and bernard;
  • groote, and a divine call to apostolic work;
  • imitation, legal opinions, his resolutions and intentions