• Benyák, Bernát József
  • Known name forms: Benyák, Bernát
  • Born: 1745, died: 1829
  • Benyák entered the Piarist order in 1764. Having finished his university studies in philosophy and theology he was appointed as professor of rhetoric in the Piarist gymnasium of Pest, where he held his classes in Hungarian already in 1777. He was then moved to Székesfehérvár to direct the gymnasium, but later was moved to Vác, Debrecen, Trenčín and was vice-director also in Banská Štiavnica, where he also offered his classes in Hungarian. Next to Hungarian and Latin he mastered also Greek, German, Italian and French. He also contributed to Hungarian school drama literature through translations from Latin. In 1784 he criticised Joseph’s language decree and a year later prepared a general, valid criticism of the Ratio educationis with the title Difficultates adversus Systema Studiorum. According to Benyák, the Ratio was too broad in its subjects: “ex multis inter se nullo modo connexis singula tractare”. Overburdening students made them nervous and unsuitable for public service. Subjects should be taught in greater blocks instead of breaking them into short classes, which follow each other without a break. The study of physics was almost completely neglected, although this subject (including experiments) would need at least a year and should be more important than philosophy.

    In 1790-1793 he prepared a major reform plan for the education committee of the parliament considering also the principles of the Ratio Educationis. He wrote several works in Latin, among others a Magyar grammar.

  • Works:

    Theoria Scholarum et Rei Litterariae pro Hungaria, Croatia et Transilvania