1575, Middleburg, Holland.

Jan­u­a­ry 27, 1620, Veere, Holland.

Grote Kerk Veere, Holland.


Valerius was the son of a French military clerk and notary, François Valéry. His father had a somewhat prosperous career, and in 1592 obtained a position as Court Scribe to Pieter van Reigersbergh, the Burgemeester (mayor) of the city of Veere. Valerius’ father liked to play the organ, and bought a small church organ for 24 guilders when a church was pulled down after the liberation of Middelburg in 1575, during the war between the Hapsburg Spanish and the Dutch republicans. In 1592, Valerius became a clerk, like his father before him, with the equipment and ammunition officer of Zeland, and mayor of his hometown of Veere (on the island of Noord-Beveland). In 1598, the admiralty of Middelburg recommended Valerius to the Estates General for the position of inspector of the convoys and license holders of Veere. In 1606, he became the collector of the convoy and license payments of Veere and master of the fortifications of the town, and became a notary for the Estates of Zealand. In 1616, he was elected alderman of his town.

If he had merely been a notary and alderman, Valerius would have been long forgotten. However, he also belonged to the rederijkerskamer (chamber of eloquent speakers) of Veere, an amateur poets’ society. Valerius only wrote religious texts, though this was uncommon in the rederijkersmovement. He penned a number or Dutch hymns, many of which are still sung today, collected in his Neder-Landtsche Gedenck-Clanck (Dutch remembrance-tunes).

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