Bilstein [Bilstenius], Johannes
- Klaus Wolfgang Niemöller
(b Ober- or Niedermarsberg, c1560; d after 1595). German writer and theologian. During his youth he lived for a time at Emden and in 1581 matriculated at the University of Marburg, but in 1582 he transferred to Rostock, where he studied with David Chyträus. He was again living at Marburg in 1587. In 1588 he matriculated at the University of Basle, where on 15 May 1593 he became a doctor of theology. He gave some lectures at Kassel in 1590. Between 1584 and 1596 he published numerous learned books on grammar, rhetoric and so on, among them Syntagma Philippo-Rameum artium liberalium (Basle, 1588, 2/1596), which includes a chapter on music (‘De musica’, 355–60). In this book, which he wrote for a private pupil at Marburg in ten weeks in 1587, he steered a middle course – as its title suggests – between the views of Philipp Melanchthon and Petrus Ramus. In the chapter on music he subscribed to Ramus’s definition ‘Musica est ars bene canendi’ as well as to the rules for ligatures set out by Friedrich Beurhaus, whose ...