Abecedarians were a
16th centuryGerman sect of Anabaptistswho effected an absolute disdain for all human knowledge, contending that Godwould enlighten his elect from within themselves, giving them knowledge of necessary truths by visions and ecstasies, with which human learning would interfere..
They rejected every other means of instruction, and claimed that to be saved one must even be ignorant of the first letters of the
alphabet; whence their name, A-B-C-dariansfact|date=September 2008. They also considered the study of theologyas a species of idolatry, and regarded learned men who did any preaching as falsifiers of God's word. Nicholas Storchled this sect, preaching that the teaching of the Holy Spiritwas all that was necessary. Andreas Karlstadtadopted these views, abandoned his title of doctor and became a street porter.
*University of North Carolina used the term to name a study of early childhood education.
In a 19th-century American
one-room school, an abecedarian or a-b-c-darianwas a student in the youngest group of scholars in the typical one-room schoolof 19th-century America, so-called because they were just learning their “a-b-cs.”
In his autobiographical reminiscences on his school days, Warren Burton recounted that he “was three years and a half old when I first entered the Old School-house as an abecedarian.” cite book
title =The District School As It Was, By One Who Went To It.
publisher =J. Orville Taylor
location =New York
Noah Webster’s early school dictionary contains the following entry for abecedarian: A-be-ce-da'-ri-an, n. One who teaches or is learning the alphabet. cite book
authorlink =Noah Webster
title =A Dictionary for Primary Schools
publisher =F.J. Huntington
location =New York
* [http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01035b.htm Catholic Encyclopedia]
* [http://www.fpg.unc.edu/~abc/ The Carolina Abecedarian Project]
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