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Beissel, Johann Conrad, 1690-

Reformer; born in Eberbach, Germany, in 1690; becoming a Dunker he was forced to leave his native country and emigrated to Pennsylvania, where in 1733 he established at the village of Ephrata a monastic society, which at one time numbered nearly 300. The Capuchin habit was adopted )by both sexes and celibacy was considered a virtue, though not an obligation. Soon after the death of Beissel, in 1768, the society at Ephrata began to decline. A history of the Ephrata society was published in 1901.

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