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John Kmetz

(b Basle, Oct 11, 1495; d Basle, April 1562). Swiss humanist, musician and lawyer. The son of the printer Johannes Amerbach, he began studying the classics in Engental (near Basle) as the private pupil of Conrad Leontorius, who in 1507 described him as ‘both talented and lazy’. Between 1507 and 1509 he continued his education in Schlettstadt at the distinguished humanist school run by Hieronymus Gebwiler and by 1510 had matriculated at the University of Basle. In 1513 he was awarded the degree of baccalaureus artium, and upon graduation moved to Freiburg im Breisgau, where as a candidate for the degree of magister artium he specialized in ethics, physics and grammar. While in Freiburg he also began studying law under Ulrich Zasius and later continued these studies with Andrea Alciati in Avignon where, in 1525, he was awarded the degree of doctor juris. It was during his student days that Amerbach’s close relationship with Erasmus began; when the Dutch humanist died in Basle in ...