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Kelpius, Johannes (1673–1708), mystic and communitarian leader, was born in the Schässburg region of Transylvania-Saxony, the son of Georg Kelp, a Lutheran pastor (mother’s identity unknown). Young Kelp (Latinized as Kelpius) studied at three universities (Tübingen, Leipzig, and Altdorf) and received a master’s degree from Altdorf in 1689 with a treatise on natural theology. The scholarly world was also impressed by two more technical publications on ethics and theology, which he completed by the age of seventeen. He met the learned Johann Jakob Zimmermann, with whom he shared a deep interest in the theosophy of the shoemaker-mystic Jakob Boehme and the cabalistic speculations of the Rosicrucians. Kelpius accepted the calculations of Zimmermann, a noted mathematician, that the millennium would arrive in 1694, and he joined the pietist brotherhood of scholars (the Chapter of Perfection), who decided that the New World was the right place to await the Second Coming....