Langmann
To forget one's ancestors
is to be a brook without a source,
a tree without a root.
Descendents of Ioannes Langmann from Tuscany (1019 AD)

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The following poem (in old German) appears in a family history book, a copy of which is in the Deutsche Museum in Berlin. It explains how the Langmann family lived in Nuremberg prior to the year 1280, and with other families were driven out of the city during a revolt by the artisan-workers in 1349, to return, helped by Emperor Karl IV, the following year. Hans Langmann remained a senator (city councillor) until his death in 1369, and the family later included many clerics.

 

Vor Alten Jaren

Vor alten Jaren ist gewiss
diss Geschlecht man die Langman hiess,
Welches vor der Zeit umb dass Jar
1280 in der Statt wonhafft war,
Wie man bey vielen Geschlechten findt
dennen sie befreundt gewessen sindt,
Demnachs aber fuernem ehrlich Leutt
beruembt; und es war zu der Zeit
Nach Christi im 1347 Jar,
herr Hanss Langman erwoeltt war
Von seinem Geschlecht der erst im Rath
in Nuernberg der fuernemen Reichs Statt,
Darin dient er dem Vatterlandt,
biss sich der Aufflauff anfing zuhandt,
Mit sonnderlicher Begird und grossem Vleiss,
dann er verstendig war unnd weiss,
Ward auch von dem gemainen Povel zwar
aus der Statt vertrieben im 1349 Jar
Beneben andern dess Raths, wie man list,
doch von Carlo dem Vierten wieder eingesetzt ist,
War hernach noch ein lange Zeit
im Rath biss auff dass Jar 1369 bereitt
Durch den Thot er war hinweg genumen.
nach im (ist) keiner zu Rath mehr kumen,
Wiewol sie noch lanng hernach
in der Statt gewonnt und gleich auch
An vielen Orten hin und her
den Gaistlich gestifft zu grosser Ehr
Von ihren Vermoegen denselben gethan
wie die Kirchen unnd Closter zaigen an.
Lezlich wie alles nach einandter in der Waeldt
vergehet unnd gar nichts besteht,
Also auch diesse Langmenen zusam
ein Endt haben genumen mit ihrem Nam,
Sint abgestorben vor langer Zeit
lenger denn vor 200 Jaren bereit.

(Translation)

cloister

Engelthal bei Nurnberg, 1591

Langmann: Adelheid L., out of a Nuremberg family, took the veil some time between 1325 and 1330 as a nun in the convent of Engelthal outside Nuremberg, where she died on November 22, 1375. True to the tradition of the convent, in which during the blooming of the mystical period the visionary lives were quite typical--we have in the small book "Von der genaden uberlast" (Burdened down by the godly grace; published by Karl Schroeder 1871) an account of the visionary lives of the convent sisters written at the command of the mother superior--and also L. wrote her experiences down in a manner similar to that of her more celebrated sister in the faith (and close relative), Christina Ebner (1277-1356). From her diaries, especially dating from the years between 1330 and 1347, and from word passed around at the time by mouth, her 'Offenbarungen' (Revelations) took shape, and these are today preserved in two hand written copies. The seemingly monotonous writings touch only slightly on general living conditions during the 14th century, but provide a picture as a link in a row of holy visions in the cloisters of the German middle ages which should not be underestimated. For Adelheid frequent bodily self-torment and asceticism were interchanged with excitement, raptures and conversations with God, and all this was not just kept inside the walls of the convent at Engelthal. At different times was she sought out by people from the outside who were looking for her advise, solace, and quite often healing. She was herself again and again plagued by thoughts of suicide. In speech and beliefs--there are numerous concords here to the High Song--she was influenced by her spiritual friend and adviser, Ulrich, the later abbot to Kaisheim (1340 to 1360) who also was a friend of Margarethe Ebner in Medingen and Heinrich von Noerdlingen.
Die Offenbarungen der Adelheid Langmann, published by Phillip Strauch, Strassburg 1878. See also Anz. f. deutsches Alterthum 6, 214 f. and Schoenbach, Supplement to Wiener Abendpost 1878, No. 129 and 130. Strauch.

About Adelheid Langmann (this takes about 5 to 10 seconds to load), Dominican nun in the convent at Engelthal outside Nuremberg during the years 1330 to 1375, and her Ebner relatives, we find the following (in Bavarian dialect):

"Das puch gehoert in das closter zu sant kather(inen) prediger orden in nuerwerg... Item an dem puch stet zum ersten Bl.3a-6a Von dem namen Jhesus. Bl.6a-12b und von dem paternoster. Bl.13a-20b und von der lieb gocz." ...

"und von der heiligen langmanyn zu Engeltal und wie sie ir heiliges leben gefuert hat." ...

"Anno domini MCCC pei der zal oder mer was in der stat ze Nurnberg ain erweriges geschlecht die heisen die langman und gehoerte die Ebner an. von den ward geboren ein kint daz ward geheiszen Adelheidis. waz wunder got von jugent auf mit ir gethan hat und der heilig geist mit ir gewurckt hat, wert ir her nach horen. also waz zimlich oder lewtselig oder geistlich oder gotlich was, daz hilt daz kint und was doch frolich pay den lewten an alle verlaszenheit." ...

"...do man zalt von critvs gepvrt CCC jor vnd dor nach in dem LXXIIIII jar starb disev fraw olhait Langemenin an dem tag cecilia virginis et martiris."


Descendents of Ioannes Langmann

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We are the children of many sires, and every drop of blood in us in its turn betrays its ancestor.
[Ralph Waldo Emerson, 1803-1882]