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History of the Catholic Church from the Renaissance to the French Revolution by Rev. James MacCaffrey

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He retired to Zurich where he was appointed preacher in the cathedral.
Here he denounced the lives of the clergy and the abuses in the
Church, relying, as he stated, upon what he had seen himself in Italy
during his residence there as chaplain to the Swiss mercenaries. Like
Luther, he well knew how to win the attention and sympathy of the mob
by his appeals to the national feelings of his countrymen, and like
Luther he insisted that the Scriptures were the sole rule of faith. He
denounced in the strongest language the immorality and vices of the
clergy, celibacy, vows of chastity, pilgrimages and the veneration of
the saints, but for so far he had not broken entirely with the Church.

The preaching of the Indulgences promulgated by Leo X. in Constance
was entrusted to the Franciscans. Their work was a difficult one
especially as the Grand Council of Zurich forbade them to persist, as,
indeed, did also the able and zealous Hugo von Hohenlandenberg, Bishop
of Constance, in whose diocese Zurich was situated. Zwingli, confident
of the support of the city authorities, attacked the doctrine of
Indulgences and was backed by the Grand Council, which ordered, at his
instigation, that the Word of God should be preached according to the
Scriptures, regardless of tradition or the interpretation of the
Church. Later on he directed his attacks against the meritoriousness
of good works and the practice of fast and abstinence (1522), and
about the same time he addressed a petition to the Bishop of Constance
demanding that he should not interfere with the preaching of the pure
Word of God nor set any obstacle to the marriage of his priests. He
admitted publicly that his relations with women had been disgraceful,
that he had learned from his own personal experience how impossible of
fulfilment was the vow of chastity, and that marriage was the only
remedy that would enable him to overcome the emotions of carnal lust
referred to by St. Paul in his epistle to the Corinthians (I. 7, 9).
The bishop refused to yield to this demand insisting on the strict
observance of celibacy, and appealed to the Grand Council to support
him with the full weight of their authority (April 1522).

Incensed by this refusal Zwingli shook off the yoke of ecclesiastical
authority, rejected the primacy of the Pope, and the infallibility of
General Councils, denounced celibacy and vows of chastity as
inventions of the devil, and called upon the Swiss people to support
him in his fight for religious freedom. Once before, in 1520, Leo X.
had summoned Zwingli to Rome to answer for his teaching, but the
summons had been unheeded. Adrian VI. made another attempt to win him
from his dangerous course by a letter full of kindness and sympathy,
but his remonstrance produced no effect (1523). The Grand Council of
Zurich, hopeful of securing a preponderating influence in Switzerland
by taking the lead in the new movement, favoured Zwingli. Instead of
responding to the appeal of the Bishop of Constance it announced a
great religious disputation to be held in January 1523, to which both
Zwingli and his opponents were summoned for the explanation and
defence of their views. Zwingli put forward sixty-seven theses, the
principal of which were that the Bible is the sole rule of faith, that
the Church is not a visible society but only an assembly of the elect,
of which body Christ is the only true head, that consequently the
jurisdiction of the Pope and of the bishops is a usurpation devoid of
scriptural authority, that the Mass, Confession, Purgatory, and
Intercession of the Saints are to be rejected as derogatory to the
merits of Christ, and finally, that clerical celibacy and monastic
vows, instead of being counsels of perfection, are only cloaks for sin
and hypocrisy. The Bishop of Constance refused to take part in such a
disputation. His vicar-general, Johann Faber of Constance, however,
attended the meeting, not indeed to take part in the discussion but
merely to protest against it as opposed to the authority of the Church
and of the councils. As his protests were unheeded, he undertook to
defend the doctrines attacked, but in the end the Grand Council
declared that the victory rested with Zwingli.

Flushed with his triumph Zwingli now proceeded to put his theories
into practice. Supported by a mob he endeavoured to prevent the
celebration of Mass, religious processions, the use of pictures and
statues, and the solemn ceremonial associated with Extreme Unction and
the Viaticum. He compiled an introduction to the New Testament for the
use of the clergy, called upon them to abandon their obligations of
celibacy, and set them an example by taking as his wife a woman who
had been for years his concubine. He and his followers, supported by
the majority of the Grand Council, went through the city destroying
altars, pictures, statues, organs, and confessionals, and erecting in
place of the altars plain tables with a plate for bread and a vessel
for wine. The Catholic members of the Grand Council were driven from
their position, and Catholic worship forbidden in Zurich (1523-5).

The system of Zwingli was much more rationalistic and, in a certain
sense, much more logical than that of Luther. Imbued with the
principles of pantheistic mysticism, he maintained that God is in
Himself all being, created as well as uncreated, and all activity.
Hence it was as absurd to speak of individual liberty or individual
action as to speak of a multiplicity of gods. Whether it was a case of
doing good or doing evil man was but a machine like a brush in the
hands of a painter. In regard to sin he contended man may be punished
for violating the law laid down by God even though the violation is
unavoidable, but God, being above all law, is nowise to blame.
Concupiscence or self-love is, according to him, at the root of all
misdeeds. It is in itself the real original sin, and is not blotted
out by Baptism. His teaching on the Scriptures, individual judgment,
ecclesiastical authority as represented by the bishops, councils, and
Pope, good works, indulgences, purgatory, invocation of the saints,
and vows of chastity differed but slightly from what Luther had put
forward. On the question of Justification, and particularly on the
doctrine of the Eucharist, the two reformers found themselves in
hopeless conflict.[3]

Zwingli's teaching did not at first find much favour in other portions
of German Switzerland. Lucerne declared against it in 1524. The city
authorities forbade the introduction of the new teaching, and offered
an asylum to those Catholics who had been forced to flee from Zurich.
Other cantons associated themselves with Lucerne, and a deputation was
sent to Zurich to request the city authorities to abandon Zwingli and
to take part in a general movement for a real and constitutional
reform. But the Grand Council, mindful of the political advantages
which would accrue to Zurich from its leadership in the new religious
revolt, declined to recede from their position.

While Zwingli was at work in Zurich, Oecolampadius (1482-1531) set
himself to stir up religious divisions in Basle. He was born at
Weisnberg, studied law at Bologna and theology subsequently at
Heidelberg, was ordained priest, and appointed to a parish in Basle
(1512). With Erasmus he was on terms of the closest intimacy, and, as
Basle was then one of the great literary centres of the world, he soon
became acquainted with Luther's pamphlets and teaching. Some of the
clergy in Basle, notably Wolfgang Capito, a warm friend of Zwingli,
were already showing signs of restlessness especially in regard to the
Mass, purgatory, and invocation of the saints, and Oecolampadius was
not slow to imbibe the new ideas. In 1518 he was appointed preacher in
the Cathedral of Augsburg, but, having resigned this office on account
of failing health, he withdrew to the convent of Altmunster, where,
for some time, he lived a retired life. Subsequently he acted as
chaplain to the well-known German knight, Franz von Sickingen, and
finally, in 1524, he accepted the parish of St. Martin's in Basle.

He now proclaimed himself openly a supporter of Zwingli, advocated the
new teaching on justification and good works, and attacked several
Catholic doctrines and practices. For him, as indeed for most of the
other reformers, clerical celibacy was the great stumbling block. He
encouraged his followers by taking as his wife a young widow, who was
subsequently in turn the wife of the two renowned Lutheran preachers,
Butzer and Capito. At first the city authorities and a large body of
the university professors were against him, but owing to the
disturbances created by his partisans full liberty of worship was
granted to the new sect (1527). Not content with this concession, they
demanded that the Mass should be suppressed. In 1529 the followers of
Oecolampadius rose in revolt, seized the arsenal of the city, directed
the cannon on the principal squares, and attacked the churches,
destroying altars, statues, and pictures. Erasmus, disgusted with such
methods of propagating religion, left Basle and sought a home in
Freiburg. The Catholics were expelled from the city council, their
religion was proscribed, and Basle joined hands with Zurich in its
rebellion against the Church.

The revolt soon spread into other cantons of Switzerland. In Berne and
Schaffhausen both parties were strong and determined, and for a time
the issue of the conflict was uncertain, but in 1528 the party of
Zwingli and Oecolampadius secured the upper hand. Similarly in St.
Gall, Glarus, etc., victory rested with the new teaching. Other
cantons, as for example, Solothurn, wavered as to which side they
should take, but the three oldest cantons of Switzerland, Uri, Schweiz
and Unterwalden, together with Zug, Freiburg and Lucerne, refused to
be separated from the Church.

Apart altogether from the question of religion, there was a natural
opposition between populous and manufacturing centres like Berne and
Basle, and the rural cantons, devoted almost entirely to agricultural
and pastoral pursuits. When religious differences supervened to
accentuate the rivalry already in existence, they led almost
inevitably to the division of Switzerland into two hostile camps.
Zurich, Basle, Berne, Schaffhausen, and St. Gall, though they were the
most important cities, soon found themselves unable to force their
views on the rest of the country, as they were withstood by the
federal council, the majority of which was still Catholic. The latter
insisted that a conference should be held to settle the religious
disputes. The conference was arranged to take place at Baden in 1526.
Eck, assisted by two other Catholic theologians, Faber and Murner,
undertook to defend the Catholic position. Zurich refused to send
representatives, but the reforming party were represented by
Oecolampadius, Haller, and others of their leaders. The conference was
attended by delegates from twelve cantons, and was approved of by the
Swiss bishops. After a discussion lasting fifteen days during which
Eck defended the Catholic doctrine regarding the Mass, Eucharist,
Purgatory, and the Intercession of the Saints, the majority of the
cantons decided in his favour, and a resolution was passed forbidding
religious changes in Switzerland and prohibiting the sale of the works
of Luther and Zwingli.

It was soon evident, however, that peace could not be secured by such
measures. The rural and Catholic cantons were in the majority, much to
the disgust of flourishing cities like Berne and Zurich. These states,
believing that they were entitled to a controlling voice in the
federal council, determined to use the religious question to bring
about a complete change in the constitution of the country by
assigning the cantonal representation in the federal council on the
basis of population. They formed an alliance with the other Protestant
cantons and with Constance to forward their claims (1527-8), but the
Catholic cantons imitated their example by organising a Catholic
federation to which the Archduke, Ferdinand of Austria, promised his
support (1529).

Zwingli was most eager for war, and at his instigation the army of
Zurich, backed by Berne, took the field in 1529. The Catholic states,
however, made it clear that they were both able and willing to defend
the constitution, but the bond of national unity and the dislike of
civil war exercised such an influence on both parties that a conflict
was averted by the conclusion of the Peace of Kappel (1529). The
concessions secured for his party by this Peace did not satisfy
Zwingli, who desired nothing less than the complete subjugation of the
Catholic cantons. Negotiations were opened up with Philip of Hesse,
with the German Lutherans, and with Francis I. of France, and when the
news of the formation of the League of Schmalkald reached the
Protestants of Switzerland, it was thought that the time had come when
the triumph of Zurich and Berne, which meant also the triumph of the
new teaching, should be secured. Zwingli besought his followers to
issue a declaration of war, but it was suggested that the reduction of
the Catholic cantons could be secured just as effectively by a
blockade. In this movement Zurich took the lead. The result, however,
did not coincide with the anticipations of Zwingli. The Catholic
cantons flew to arms at once, and as their territories formed a
compact unit, they were able to put their united army into the field
before the forces of Zurich and Berne could effect a junction. The
decisive battle took place at Kappel in October 1531, when the
Zwinglians suffered a complete defeat, Zwingli himself and five
hundred of the best men of Zurich being left dead on the field. The
army of Berne advanced too late to save their allies or to change the
result of the war. The Catholic cantons used their victory with great
moderation. Instead of crushing their opponents, as they might have
done, they concluded with them the second Peace of Kappel (1531).
According to the terms of this treaty, no canton was to force another
to change its religion, and liberty of worship was guaranteed in the
cantonal domains. Several of the districts that had been wavering
returned to the Catholic faith, and the abbot of St. Gall was restored
to the abbey from which he had been expelled.

Oecolampadius followed Zwingli to the grave in a short time, having
been carried off by a fever about a month after the defeat of Kappel,
and the leadership of the movement devolved upon their successors,
Bullinger and Myconius.

With regard to the Sacraments Luther and Zwingli agreed that they were
only signs of grace, though in the explanation of this view Zwingli
was much more extreme, because much more logical, than Luther.
Believing as he did that justification depended upon faith alone, he
contended that the Sacraments were mere ceremonies by which a man
became or showed himself to be a follower of Christ. They were devoid
of any objective virtue, and were efficacious only in so far as they
guaranteed that the individual receiving them possessed the faith
necessary for justification. But it was principally in regard to the
Eucharist that the two reformers found themselves in hopeless
disagreement. Had Luther wished to be consistent he should have thrown
over the Real Presence as well as Transubstantiation, but the force of
tradition, the fear that any such teaching would arouse the opposition
of the people, and the plain meaning of the texts of Scripture forced
him to adopt a compromise. "Had Doctor Carlstadt," he wrote, "or any
one else been able to persuade me five years ago that the sacrament of
the altar is but bread and wine he would, indeed, have done me a great
service, and rendered me very material aid in my efforts to make a
breach in the Papacy. But it is all in vain. The meaning of the texts
is so evident that every artifice of language will be powerless to
explain it away." He contended that the words "This is My body and
This is My blood" could bear only one meaning, namely, that Christ was
really present, but while agreeing with Catholics about the Real
Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, he rejected the doctrine of
Transubstantiation, maintaining in its place Consubstantiation or

Though Luther insisted so strongly on the Real Presence, it is not
clear that in the beginning he had any very fixed views on the
subject, or that he would have been unwilling to change any views he
had formed, were it not that one of his lieutenants, Carlstadt, began
to exercise his privilege of judgment by rejecting the Real Presence.
Such an act of insubordination aroused the implacable ire of Luther,
who denounced his former colleague as a heretic, and pursued him from
Wittenberg and Jena, where he had fled for refuge. In the end
Carlstadt was obliged to retire to Switzerland, where his doctrine
found favour with the Swiss reformers.

From the beginning of his campaign Zwingli realised that the Real
Presence was not in harmony with his theory of justification, and
hence he was inclined to hold that the Eucharist was a mere sign
instituted as a reminder of Christ's death. But in view of the clear
testimony of the Holy Scripture he was at a loss how to justify his
position. At last by pondering on other passages that he considered
similar to the text "This is My body," where the word "is" should be
interpreted "signifies," he contended that the true meaning of
Christ's words at the Last Supper is, "This signifies My body."
Oecolampadius agreed with this interpretation, though for a different
reason, comparing the Blessed Eucharist to a ring that a husband going
away on a long journey might give to his wife as a pledge and reminder
of his affection.[4]

Luther resented bitterly such a theory as an attack upon his
authority, especially as Zwingli refused to allow himself to be brow-
beaten into retracting his doctrine. Instead of submitting to the new
religious dictator, Zwingli sought to justify himself by the very
principle by which Luther justified his own revolt against the
Catholic Church. He contended that Luther's theory of justification
involved logically the rejection of the Eucharist as well as of the
other Sacraments, that the Scriptural texts could be interpreted as he
had interpreted them, and that he was not bound to take any cognisance
of the Christian tradition or of the authority of the councils. He
complained that Luther treated himself and his followers as heretics
with whom it was not right to hold communion, that he proscribed their
writings and denounced them to the magistrates, and that he did
precisely towards them what he blamed the Pope for doing to himself.
Luther found it difficult to meet this line of argument. Much against
his will he was obliged to support his opinions by appealing to the
tradition of the Church and the writings of the Fathers, which latter
he had denounced as "fetid pools whence Christians have been drinking
unwholesome draughts instead of slaking their thirst from the pure
fountain of Holy Scripture."[5] "This article (The Eucharist)," he
wrote, "is neither unscriptural nor a dogma of human invention. It is
based upon the clear and irrefragable words of Holy Writ. It has been
uniformly held and believed throughout the whole Christian world from
the foundation of the Church to the present time. That such has been
the fact is attested by the writings of the Holy Fathers, both Greek
and Latin, by daily usage and by the uninterrupted practice of the
Church. . . . To doubt it, therefore, is to disbelieve the Christian
Church and to brand her as heretical, and with her the prophets,
apostles, and Christ Himself, who, in establishing the Church said:
'Behold I am with you all days even to the consummation of the

The opposition of Luther did not put an end to the controversy. The
Zwinglian theories spread rapidly in Switzerland, whence they were
carried into Germany, much to the annoyance of Luther and of the
Protestant princes for whom religious unity was necessary at almost
any cost. Luther would listen to no schemes of compromise. He
denounced the Zwinglians in the most violent terms, as servants of the
devil, liars, and heretics for whose salvation no man should pray.
Having rejected Transubstantiation in order to rid himself of the
sacrificial idea and of the doctrine of a Christian priesthood, he
fought strongly for the Real Presence on the ground that God's body,
being united to the divinity, enjoyed the divine attribute of
ubiquity. To this Zwingli made the very effective rejoinder that if
the words of Scripture "This is My body and this is My blood" are to
be interpreted literally they could bear only the sense put upon them
by the Catholics, because Christ did not say "My body is in or under
this bread," but rather "This (the bread) is My body." Furthermore, he
pointed out that Luther's explanation concerning the ubiquity of
Christ's body led clearly to a confusion of the divine and human
nature of Christ, and was in consequence only a renewal of the
Monophysite heresy, condemned by the whole Christian Church.

This unseemly dispute between the two leaders of the new movement did
not please the Protestant princes of Germany, for whom division of
their forces might mean political extinction. The Elector of Saxony
supported Luther warmly, while Philip of Hesse was more or less
inclined to side with Zwingli. A conference was arranged between the
two parties at Marburg (1529), at which Luther and Oecolampadius were
present to defend their views. On a few secondary matters an agreement
was arrived at, but on the main question, the Real Presence, Luther
would yield nothing, and so the Reformers were divided into two
parties, German Lutherans and Swiss Reformed.

[1] /Precis Historique de l'Abbaye et du Pelerinage de Notre-Dame-des-
Ermites/, 1870.

[2] /Realencycl. fur Protestantische Theol./, xxi., p. 778.

[3] Schwane, op. cit., p. 141.

[4] Schwane, op. cit., p. 349.

[5] Dollinger, /Die Reformation/, i., pp. 430-51.

[6] Alzog, iii., 256-7.

(c) Northern Europe.

See bibliography, chap. ii. (a). Karup, /Geschichte der
Katholischen Kirche in Danemark/, 1863. Munter, /Kirchengeschichte
von Danemark und Norwegen/, 1823. Theiner-Cohen, /La Suede et la
Saint-Siege sous les rois Jean III., Sigismond III., et Charles
IX./, 1842. Butler, /The Reformation in Sweden/, 1884. De Flaux,
/La Suede au XVIme siecle/, 1861. Englestoft, /Reformantes et
Catholici tempore, quo sacra emendata sunt, in Dania
concertantes/, 1836. Schmitt, /Die Verteidigung der Kathol. Kirche
in Danemark gegen die Religionsneuerung im 16en Jahr/, 1899.
/Confutatio Lutheranismi Danici/, etc. (written 1530, ed. 1902).

At the beginning of the sixteenth century political power in Denmark
was vested to a great extent in the hands of the bishops and nobles.
It was by these two parties that the king was elected, and so great
was their influence that, as a rule, the candidate chosen by their
votes was obliged to accept any conditions they cared to impose. The
bishops, as in most countries at the time, held enormous estates,
granted to their predecessors by the crown or bequeathed by generous
benefactors for the maintenance of religion. Unfortunately, with some
exceptions, they were not men zealous for religious interests, or
capable of understanding that a serious crisis was at hand. In every
direction the need of reform was only too apparent, and, as such as
work had not been undertaken by those who should have undertaken it, a
splendid opportunity was afforded to the men who desired not the
welfare of religion but rather the overthrow of the Church.

Christian II. (1513-23) wished to put an end to the supremacy of the
bishops and nobles and to assert for himself and his successors
absolute control. He was a man of great ability and determination,
well acquainted with the tendencies of the age, and not particularly
scrupulous about the means by which the success of his policy might be
assured. To such a man Luther's attack on the bishops of Germany
seemed to be almost providential. He realised that by embracing the
new religious system, which enabled him to seize the wealth of the
Church and to concentrate in his own hands full ecclesiastical power,
he could rid himself of one of the greatest obstacles to absolutism,
and secure for himself and his successors undisputed sway in Denmark.
Though his own life was scandalously immoral he determined to become
the champion of a religious reformation, and against the wishes of the
nobles, clergy, and people he invited a disciple of Luther's to
Copenhagen, and placed at his disposal one of the city's churches.
This step aroused the strongest opposition, but Christian, confident
that boldness meant success, adopted stern measures to overcome his
opponents. He proclaimed himself the patron of those priests who were
willing to disregard their vows of celibacy, issued regulations
against the unmarried clergy, and appealed to the people against the
bishops and the nobles. As the Archbishop-elect of Lund was unwilling
to show himself to be coerced into betraying the interests confided to
his charge, the king commanded that he should be put to death.

By these violent methods he had hoped to frighten his subjects into
compliance with his wishes, but he was doomed to speedy and complete
disappointment. The bishops and barons, though divided on many
questions, were at one in their resistance to such despotism, and they
had behind them the great body of the people, who had little if any
desire for a religious revolution. Christian II. was deposed, and in
his place his uncle, Frederick I. (1523-33), became king of Denmark.
At his coronation the new monarch pledged himself to defend the
Catholic religion and to suppress heresy. Soon, however, motives
similar to those that had influenced his predecessor induced him also
to lean towards Lutheranism. At first his efforts for the spread of
the new teaching were carried out secretly, but once he felt himself
secure on the throne, he proclaimed himself publicly a Lutheran (1526)
and invited Lutheran preachers to the capital. A Diet was called in
1527 at Odensee to consider the religious controversy that had arisen.
In this assembly the king, basing his defence on the ground that
though he had pledged himself to protect the Catholic Church he was
under no obligation to tolerate abuses, contended that the suppression
of abuses and the purifying of religion were the only objects he had
at heart in the measures that he had taken. Owing mainly to his own
stubbornness and the cowardly and wavering attitude of the bishops, it
was agreed by the Diet that till a General Council could be convoked
full toleration should be given to the Lutheran preachers, that in the
meantime no civil disabilities should be inflicted on supporters of
the new religion, that those of the clergy who wished to marry should
be allowed to do so, that the archbishop should apply no longer to
Rome for his pallium, and finally that the confirmation of the
appointment of bishops should be transferred from the Pope to the

By these measures, to which the bishops offered only a faint
opposition, Denmark was separated practically from the Holy See, and
the first step was taken on the road that was to lead to national
apostasy. The next important measure was the disputation arranged by
the king to take place at Copenhagen in 1529. The very fact that at
this meeting no Danish ecclesiastic capable of defending the Catholic
faith was to be found, and that it was necessary to have recourse to
Germany for champions of orthodoxy, is in itself a sufficient
indication of the character of the bishops who then ruled in Denmark,
and of the state of learning amongst the Danish clergy of the period.
Eck and Cochlaeus were invited to come to Copenhagen, but as they had
sufficient work to engage their attention at home, the duty of
upholding Catholic doctrine devolved upon Stagefyr, a theologian of
Cologne.[1] He could not speak Danish, nor would the Lutheran party
consent to carry on the conference in Latin. Furthermore, he claimed
that the authority of the Fathers and the decrees of previous General
Councils should be recognised, but the Lutherans insisted that the
Bible was the only source from which Christians should receive their
doctrines. In these circumstances, since a disputation was impossible,
both parties agreed to submit a full statement of their views in
writing to the king and council, who, as might have been anticipated,
decided in favour of Lutheranism.

During the remainder of his reign, Frederick I. spared no pains to
secure the victory for the new teaching in his dominions. The nobles
were won over to the king's views by promises of a share in the
partition of ecclesiastical property, and those who wished to stand
well with the sovereign were not slow in having recourse to violence
as affording proof that their zeal for Lutheranism was sincere.
Consequently the Lutheran party found themselves in a majority in the
Diet of 1530, and were powerful enough to do as they pleased. In
accordance with the example set in Germany and Switzerland attacks
were begun on churches, pictures, and statues, but in many places the
people were not prepared for such changes, and bitter conflicts took
place between the rival parties. In the confusion that resulted the
supporters of the deposed king rose in arms against his successful
rival, and the country was subjected to the horrors of civil war.
Frederick I. found it necessary to abandon the violent propagation of
Lutheranism and to offer toleration to the Catholics.

On his death in 1533 the bishops of Denmark protested against the
succession of his son Christian III. (1533-51) who was a personal
friend of Luther, and who had already introduced Protestantism into
his own state of Holstein; but as the nobles, won over by promises of
a share in the spoliation of the Church, refused to make common cause
with the bishops, their protest was unheeded. Confident that he could
rely on the support of the nobles, the king gave secret instructions
to his officials that on a certain day named by him all the bishops of
Denmark should be arrested and lodged in prison. His orders were
carried out to the letter (1536), and so rejoiced was Luther by this
step that he hastened to send the king his warmest congratulations.
The bishops were offered release on condition that they should resign
their Sees and pledge themselves to offer no further opposition to the
religious change. To their shame be it said that only one of their
number, Ronnow, Bishop of Roskilde, refused to accept liberty on such
disgraceful terms, preferring to remain a prisoner until he was
released by death (1544). The priests who refused to accept the new
religion were driven from their parishes, and several monasteries and
convents were suppressed.

To complete the work of reform and to give the Church in Denmark a new
constitution Bugenhagen, a disciple of Luther, was invited to the
capital (1539). He began by crowning the king according to Lutheran
ritual, and by drawing up a form of ecclesiastical government that
placed full spiritual power in the hands of the civil ruler. As in
Germany, superintendents were appointed in room of the bishops who had
resigned. When the work of drawing up the new ecclesiastical
organisation had been finished it was submitted to and approved of by
the Diet held at Odensee in 1539. In another Diet held in 1546 the
Catholic Church in Denmark was completely overthrown, her possessions
were confiscated, her clergy were forbidden to remain in the country
under penalty of death, and all lay Catholics were declared incapable
of holding any office in the state or of transmitting their property
to their Catholic heirs. By those measures Catholicism was suppressed,
and victory was secured for the Lutheran party.

Norway, which was united with Denmark at this period, was forced into
submission to the new creed by the violence of the Danish kings, aided
as they were by the greedy nobles anxious to share in the plunder of
the Church. Similarly Iceland, which was subject to Denmark, was
separated from Rome, though at first the people offered the strongest
resistance to the reformers. The execution, however, of their bishop,
John Aresen, the example of Denmark and Norway, and the want of
capable religious leaders produced their effects, and in the end
Iceland was induced to accept the new religion (1551). For a
considerable time Catholicism retained its hold on a large percentage
of the people both in Norway and Iceland, but the severe measures
taken by the government to ensure the complete extirpation of the
Catholic hierarchy and priesthood led almost of necessity to the
triumph of Lutheranism.

By the Union of Kalmar (1397) Sweden, Norway, and Denmark were united
under the rule of the King of Denmark. The Union did not, however,
bring about peace. The people of Sweden disliked the rule of a
foreigner, and more than once they rose in rebellion against Denmark.
In the absence of a strong central authority the clergy and nobles
became the dominant factors in the state, especially as they took the
lead in the national agitations against King Erik and his successors.
As in most other countries at the time, the Church was exceedingly
wealthy, the bishoprics and abbacies being endowed very generously,
but unfortunately, as elsewhere, the progress of religion was not in
proportion to the worldly possessions of its ministers. Endowment had
destroyed the liberty of election so essential for good
administration, with the result that the bishops and other
ecclesiastical dignitaries were selected without much regard for their
qualifications as spiritual guides. Yet it must be said that in
general the administrators of the ecclesiastical property were not
hard task-masters when compared with their lay contemporaries, nor was
there anything like a strong popular feeling against the Church. Still
the immense wealth of the religious institutions, the prevalence of
abuses, and the failure of the clergy to instruct the people in the
real doctrines of their faith were a constant source of menace to the
Church in Sweden, and left it open to a crushing attack by a leader
who knew how to win the masses to his side by proclaiming himself the
champion of national independence and of religious reform.

In 1515 Sten Sture, the administrator of Sweden, supported by the
Bishop of Linkoping as leader of the popular party, made a gallant
attempt to rally his countrymen to shake off the Danish yoke.
Unfortunately for the success of his undertaking he soon found a
dangerous opponent in the person of Gustaf Trolle, Archbishop of
Upsala, the nominee and supporter of the King of Denmark. The
archbishop threw the whole weight of his influence into the scales of
Denmark, and partly owing to his opposition, partly owing to the want
of sufficient preparation the national uprising was crushed early in
1520. Christian II. was crowned King of Sweden by the Archbishop of
Upsala. He signified his elevation to the throne by a general massacre
of his opponents which lasted for two days, and during which many of
the best blood of Sweden were put to death (Nov. 1520). The archbishop
was rewarded for his services to Denmark by receiving an appointment
as region or administrator of Sweden. He and his party made loud boast
of their political victory, but had they been gifted with a little
prudence and zeal they would have found good reason to regret a
triumph that had been secured by committing the Church to the support
of a Danish tyrant against the wishes of the majority who favoured
national independence. Religion and patriotism were brought into
serious conflict, and, given only a capable leader who would know how
to conduct his campaign with skill, it was not difficult to foresee
the results of such a conflict.

As it happened, such a leader was at hand in the person of Gustaf
Eriksson, better known as Gustavus Vasa. His father had been put to
death in the massacre of Stockholm, and he himself when a youth had
been given as a hostage to the King of Denmark. He made his escape and
fled to Lubeck, where he was kindly received, and remained until an
opportunity arose for his return to Sweden. He placed himself
immediately at the head of the party willing to fight against Denmark,
called upon his countrymen to rally to his standard, and in a short
time succeeded in driving the Danish forces from Sweden. He was
proclaimed administrator of his country in 1521, and two years later a
national Diet assembled at Strengnas offered him the crown.

Such an offer was in exact accordance with his own wishes. But he had
no intention of becoming king of Sweden merely to remain a tool in the
hands of the spiritual and lay lords as the kings of Denmark had
remained. Determined in his own mind to make himself absolute ruler of
Sweden by crushing the bishops and barons, he recognised that Luther's
teaching, with which he was familiar owing to his stay at Lubeck, held
out good hopes for the success of such a project. The warm attachment
of the Bishop of Upsala for the Danish faction had weakened the
devotion of the people to the Church, and had prepared the way for the
change which Gustavus contemplated. Some of the Swedish ecclesiastics,
notably the brothers Olaf and Laurence Peterson, both students of
Wittenberg, the former a well-known preacher at Stockholm, the latter
a professor at Upsala, were strongly Lutheran in their tendencies, and
were ready to assist the king. Though in his letters to Rome and in
his public pronouncements Gustavus professed himself to be a sincere
son of the Church, anxious only to prevent at all costs the spread of
Lutheranism in his dominions, he was taking steps secretly to
encourage his Lutheran supporters and to rid himself of the bishops
and members of the religious orders from whom he feared serious
opposition. As was done elsewhere, he arranged for a public
disputation at which Olaf Peterson undertook to defend the main
principles advocated by Luther, but the results of the controversy
were not so satisfactory for his party as he had anticipated.

Gustavus now threw off the mask of hypocrisy, and came forward boldly
as the champion of the new religion. He removed those bishops who were
most outspoken in their opposition, banished the Dominicans who stood
loyal to Rome, and tried to force the clergy to accept the change.
Anxious to enrich his treasury by confiscating the wealth of the
Church he scattered broadcast Luther's pamphlet on the confiscation of
ecclesiastical property, and engaged the professors of the University
of Upsala to use their efforts to defend and popularise the views it
contained. A commission was appointed to make an inventory of the
goods of the bishops and religious institutions and to induce the
monasteries to make a voluntary surrender of their property. By means
of threats and promises the commissioners secured compliance with the
wishes of the king in some districts, though in others, as for example
in Upsala, the arrival of the commission led to scenes of the greatest
violence and commotion. More severe measures were necessary to overawe
the people, and Gustavus was not a man to hesitate at anything likely
to promote the success of his plans. Bishop Jakobson and some of the
clergy were arrested, and after having been treated with every species
of indignity were put to death (1527).

In this year, 1527, a national Diet was held at Vesteras principally
for the discussion of the religious difficulties that had arisen. Both
parties, the supporters of the old and of the new, mustered their
forces for a final conflict. Gustavus took the side of the so-called
reformers, and proposed the measures which he maintained were required
both in the interests of religion and of the public weal. The Catholic
party were slightly in the majority and refused to assent to these
proposals. Gustavus, though disappointed at the result, did not
despair. He announced to the Diet that in view of its refusal to agree
to his terms he could undertake no longer the government and defence
of the country. A measure such as this, calculated to lead to anarchy
and possibly to a new subjugation of the country by Denmark, was
regarded by both sides as a national disaster, and secured for the
king the support of the waverers. The masses of the people were
alarmed lest their opposition might lead to the restoration of Danish
tyranny, while the support of the nobles was secured by the
publication of a decree authorising them to resume possession of all
property handed over by their ancestors to religious institutions for
the last eighty years. The remainder of the possessions of the Church
were appropriated for the royal treasury. The king now issued a
proclamation in favour of the new religion, insisted on the adoption
of a liturgy in the vulgar tongue, and abolished clerical celibacy. At
the National Assembly of Orebro (1529) the Catholic religion was
abolished in favour of Lutheranism, and two years later Laurence
Peterson was appointed first Lutheran Archbishop of Upsala.

Though the Lutheran teaching had been accepted, great care was taken
not to shock the people by any violent change. Episcopal government of
the Church was retained; most of the Catholic ritual in regard to the
sacraments and the Mass was adopted in the new liturgy, and even in
some cases the pictures and statues were not removed from the
churches. But the revolution that Gustavus had most at heart was fully
accomplished. The authority of the Pope had been overthrown, and in
his place the king had been accepted as the head of the Swedish
Church. Nor did the Lutheran bishops find themselves in the enjoyment
of greater liberty and respect as a result of their treason to the
Church. Gustavus warned them that they must not carry themselves like
lords, and if they would attempt to wield the sword he would know how
to deal with them in a summary manner. Resenting such dictation and
tyranny they began to attack Gustavus in their sermons and to organise
plots for the overthrow of his government. The conspiracy was
discovered (1540). Olaf and Laurence Peterson, the two prominent
leaders of the reforming party, were condemned to death, but were
reprieved on the payment of a large fine. Laurence was, however,
removed from his position as Archbishop of Upsala. In the Diet of
Vesteras in 1544 the crown of Sweden was declared to be hereditary,
and was vested in the family and heirs of Gustavus. Thus the well-
considered policy of Gustavus was crowned with success. By means of
the Lutheran revolt he had changed the whole constitution of the
country, had made himself absolute master of Sweden, and had secured
the succession to the throne for his own family.

But he had not broken the power of his opponents so completely as to
bring peace to his country, nor, if credence be given to the
proclamations in which he bewailed the increase of evil under the plea
of evangelical freedom, did the reformed religion tend to the
elevation of public morals. On his death in 1560 he was succeeded by
his son Erik XIV. (1560-9). Hardly had the new king been proclaimed
than the principle of private judgment introduced by the reformers
began to produce its natural results. Calvinism, which was so opposed
to Lutheranism both in doctrine and in church government, found its
way into Sweden, and attracted the favourable notice of the king.
Regardless for the time being of the Catholic Church, which to all
appearances was dead in Sweden, the two parties, Lutherans and
Calvinists, struggled for supremacy. Erik was won over to the side of
the Calvinists, and measures were taken to overcome the Lutherans by
force, but the king had neither the capacity nor the energy of his
father. The plan miscarried; the Calvinists were defeated (1568), and
Erik was deposed and imprisoned.

His younger brother John succeeded to the throne under the title John
III. He was a man of considerable ability, and was by no means
satisfied with the new religion. His marriage with Catharine, sister
of Sigismund, King of Poland, herself a devoted Catholic, who
stipulated for liberty to practice her religion, helped to make him
more favourable to a Catholic revival. He set himself to study the
Scriptures and writings of the Holy Fathers under the guidance of
Catharine's chaplains, and convinced himself that he should return to
the Catholic Church and endeavour to rescue his country from the
condition of heresy into which it had fallen. He allowed the monks and
nuns who were still in Sweden to form communities again, and
endeavoured to win over the clergy by a series of ordinances couched
in a Catholic tone which he issued for their guidance. In 1571 he
induced the Archbishop of Upsala to publish a number of regulations
known as the /Agenda/, which both in ritual and doctrine indicated a
return to Rome, and he employed some Jesuit missionaries to explain
the misrepresentations of Catholic doctrine indulged in by the
Lutheran and Calvinist leaders. His greatest difficulty in bringing
about a reunion was the presence of Lutheran bishops, but fortunately
for him many of them were old men whose places were soon vacant by
death, to whose Sees he appointed those upon whom he could rely for
support. When he thought the time was ripe he summoned a National
Synod in 1574, where he delivered an address deploring the sad
condition to which religious dissensions had reduced the country. He
pointed out that such a state of affairs had been brought about by the
Reformation and could be remedied only by a return to the Church. The
address received from the clergy a much more favourable reception than
he had anticipated. As the Archbishopric of Upsala was vacant, he
secured the election of an archbishop, who have his adhesion to
seventeen articles of faith wholly satisfactory to Catholics, and who
allowed himself to be consecrated according to the Catholic ritual. He
promised also to use his influence to secure the adhesion of the other
bishops. In 1576 the king issued a new liturgy, /The Red Book of
Sweden/, which was adopted by the Diet in 1577, and accepted by a
large body of the clergy. Its principal was the king's brother, Karl,
Duke of Suthermanland, who for political reasons had constituted
himself head of the Lutheran party, and who refused to agree with the
Roman tendencies of the king on the ground that they were opposed to
the last wishes of Gustavus and to the laws of Sweden. A disputation
was arranged to take place at Upsala, where the Belgian Jesuit,
Laurence Nicolai, vindicated triumphantly against his Lutheran
opponents the Catholic teaching on the Church and the Mass. Copies of
the celebrated catechism of the Blessed Peter Canisius were circulated
throughout Sweden, and made an excellent impression on the people.

Encouraged by these hopeful signs, the king despatched an embassy to
Rome to arrange for the reconciliation of Sweden to the Church. The
royal commissioners were instructed to request, that owing to the
peculiar circumstances of the country, permission should be given for
Communion under both kinds, for the celebration of the Mass in the
Swedish language, and for the abrogation of the law of celibacy at
least in regard to the clergy who were already married. Gregory XIII.,
deeply moved by the king's offer of a reunion, sent the Jesuit,
Anthony Possevin, as his legate to discuss the terms. John set an
example himself by abjuring publicly his errors and by announcing his
submission to the Church (1578).

A commission was appointed at Rome to discuss the concessions which
the king demanded, and unfortunately the decision was regarded in
Sweden as unfavourable. A warm controversy, fomented and encouraged by
the enemies of reunion, broke out between the opponents and supporters
of the new liturgy. Duke Karl, who had now become the hope of the
Lutheran party, did everything he could to stir up strife, while at
the same time Rome refused to accept the terms proposed by the king.
Indignant at what he considered the unreasonable attitude of the Roman
authorities, John began to lose his enthusiasm for his religious
policy, and after the death of his wife who was unwavering in her
devotion to her religion, there was no longer much hope that Sweden
was to be won from heresy (1584). The king married another who was
strongly Lutheran in her sympathies, and who used her influence over
him to secure the expulsion of the Jesuits. Though John III. took no
further steps to bring about reunion he could not be induced to
withdraw the liturgy, the use of which he insisted upon till his death
in 1592.

His son Sigismund III. should have succeeded. He was an ardent
Catholic as his mother had been, but as he had been elected King of
Poland (1586) he was absent from Sweden when the throne became vacant
by the death of his father. Duke Karl and his friends did not fail to
take advantage of his absence. When the Synod met the senators
demanded that Sigismund should accept the Augsburg Confession as a
condition for his election to the throne. To this Sigismund sent the
only reply that a good Catholic and an honest man could send, namely,
a blunt refusal. His uncle, Duke Karl, the acting regent of Sweden,
took steps to seduce the Swedish people from their allegiance to their
lawful king, and to prepare the way for his own accession. He
proclaimed himself the protector of Lutheranism and endeavoured to win
over the bishops to his side. In a national Assembly held at Upsala
(The "Upsala-mote" 1593) after a very violent address from the regent
against the Catholic Church, the bishops confessed that they had
blundered in accepting the liturgy of John III., and the Assembly
declared itself strongly in favour of the Augsburg Confession.

When, therefore, Sigismund returned to claim the throne he found that
Lutheranism was entrenched safely once more, and that even the most
moderate of the bishops appointed by his father must be reckoned with
as opponents. The clergy united with Duke Karl in stirring up the
people against him. In these conditions he was forced to abandon his
projects of reform, and to entrust his uncle with the administration
of Sweden when he himself was obliged to return to Poland. While
Sigismund was engaged in Poland, the regent conducted a most skilful
campaign, nominally on behalf of Protestantism, but in reality to
secure the deposition of Sigismund and his own election to the throne.
In the Diet of Suderkoping (1595) Sigismund was condemned for having
bestowed appointments on Catholics and for having tolerated the
Catholic religion in his kingdom of Sweden, and it was ordered that
all who professed the doctrines of Rome should abandon their errors
within six months under pain of expulsion from the country. The
Archbishop of Upsala made a visitation of the churches, during which
he ordered that all those who absented themselves from the Lutheran
service should be flogged in his presence, that the pictures, statues,
and reliquaries should be destroyed, and that the liturgy introduced
by John III. should be abolished. The greatest violence was used
towards the supporters of King Sigismund, most of whom were either
Catholic or at least favourably inclined towards Catholicism.

Enraged by a decree that no edict of the king should have any binding
force unless confirmed by the Swedish Diet, and driven to desperation
by the tyranny and oppression of the regent, some of Sigismund's
followers raised the standard on behalf of their king, and Sigismund
returned to Sweden with an army of five thousand men. He found himself
opposed by the forces of the regent against whom he was at first
successful, but in his treatment of his uncle and his rebel followers
he showed himself far too forgiving. In return for his kindness,
having strengthened themselves by a large army they forced him to
submit to the decision of a national Assembly to be held at Jonkoping
(1599). At this meeting Duke Karl accused the king of endeavouring to
plunge Sweden once more into the errors from which it had been rescued
by the reformers. In May of the same year a resolution was passed
declaring that the king had forfeited the allegiance of his subjects
unless he yielded to their demands, and more especially unless he
handed over his son and heir to be reared by the regent as a
Protestant. Many of his supporters, including nine members of the
Council of State, were put to death. Finally in 1604 Sigismund was
formally deposed, and the crown was bestowed on his uncle, Duke Karl,
who became king under the title of Charles IX. Protestantism had
triumphed at last in Sweden, but even its strongest supporters would
hardly like to maintain that the issue was decided on religious
grounds, or that the means adopted by Charles IX. to secure the
victory were worthy of the apostle of a new religion.

[1] A Franciscan. He was the author of the /Confutatio Lutheranismi
Danici/, edited and published 1902.



(a) In Switzerland.

/Calvini Joannis, Opera quae supersunt/ in the /Corp.
Reformatorum/, vols. xxix.-lxxxvii. Doumergue, /Jean Calvin, les
hommes et les choses de son temps/, 1900-5. Kampschulte, /Johann
Calvin, seine Kirche und sein staat in Genf/, 1899. Fleury,
/Histoire de l'Eglise de Geneve/, 3 vols., 1880. Mignet,
/Etablissement de la reforme religieuse et constition du
calvinisme a Geneve/, 1877. Choisy, /La theocratie a Geneve au
temps de Calvin/, 1897. /Cambridge Mod. History/, ii., chap. xi.
(Bibliography, 769-83). For complete bibliography, see /Diction.
Theologique/ (art. Calvin).

John Calvin, from whom the heresy takes its name, was born at Noyon in
Picardy in 1509. In accordance with the wishes of his father he
studied philosophy and theology at the University of Paris, where he
was supported mainly from the fruits of the ecclesiastical benefices
to which he had been appointed to enable him to pursue his studies.
Later on he began to waver about his career in life, and without
abandoning entirely his hopes of becoming an ecclesiastic he turned
his attention to law in the Universities of Orleans and Bourges. In
French intellectual circles of this period a certain spirit of unrest
and a contempt for old views and old methods might be detected. The
Renaissance ideas, so widespread on the other side of the Alps, had
made their way into France, where they found favour with some of the
university professors, and created a feeling of distrust and suspicion
in the minds of those to whom Scholasticism was the highest ideal.
Margaret of Navarre, sister of the king, showed herself the generous
patron and defender of the new movement, and secured for it the
sympathy and to some extent the support of Francis I. A few of the
friends of the Renaissance in France were not slow to adopt the
religious ideas of Luther, though not all who were suspected of heresy
by the extreme champions of Scholasticism had any intention of joining
in a movement directed against the defined doctrines or constitution
of the Catholic Church.

As a student at Bourges, Calvin was brought into close relations with
Melchior Wolmar, a German Humanist, who was strongly Lutheran in his
tendencies, and through whom he became enamoured of Luther's teaching
on Justification. On his return to Paris he was soon remarkable as a
strong partisan of the advanced section of the university, and by his
ability and determination he did much to win over the Renaissance
party to the religious teaching that had become so widespread in
Germany. As a result of an address delivered by Nicholas Cop, rector
of the university, and of several acts of violence perpetrated in the
capital by the friends of heresy Francis I. was roused to take action.
Calvin, fearing death or imprisonment, made his escape from Paris to
Basle (1534). Here he published his first and greatest theological
treatise, /Christianae Religionis Institutio/, which he dedicated to
the King of France (1536). The work was divided into four sections,
namely, God the Creator, God the Redeemer, Grace, and the External
Means for Salvation. Both in its style and in its arguments drawn from
the Scriptures, the Fathers, and the theologians of the Middle Ages,
it was far superior, at least for educated readers, to the best that
had been produced by Luther and even to the /Loci Communes/ of

He arrived at Basle at a time when a crisis had arisen in the
political and religious development of Geneva. For a long period the
House of Savoy was seeking for an opportunity to annex the territory
of Vaud extending along the Lake of Geneva, and the episcopal cities
of Geneva and Lausanne. Berne, too, had aspirations of a similar kind.
The authorities of Berne, having adopted the Zwinglian doctrine,
thought that in it they had a means at their hand to detach Geneva and
Lausanne from any sympathy with Savoy and to secure these territories
for themselves. They despatched preachers to Geneva, where there were
already two political factions, one advocating a closer alliance with
Savoy, another clamouring for a union with Berne. The supporters of
Berne rallied round William Farel and the Zwinglian ministers, while
the friends of Savoy undertook to champion the old religion. The whole
struggle was at bottom political rather than religious, but the
triumph of the republican adherents of Berne meant victory for the
reforming party in Geneva. The Duke of Savoy issued a declaration of
war against the rebels to whom the Canton of Berne had pledged support
(1534). As a result the forces of Savoy were driven out of Geneva and
the Vaud, a close union was formed between Geneva and Berne, and every
effort was made to spread the new religion in the city and among the
Vaudois. A Zwinglian university was established at Lausanne, which
exercised a great influence in propagating the new doctrine, and which
had the honour of counting among its students Theodore Beza[1] the
most gifted and learned assistant of Calvin.

But though the Vaudois had been won over, Geneva was by no means
secured for the reformers. Farel and his followers, finding themselves
involved in serious difficulties, appealed to Calvin to help them in
completing the work they had begun. In 1536 Calvin accepted this
invitation, and took up his residence at Geneva. Gifted with great
powers as an organiser and administrator he soon restored order in the
city, and won over the people to his doctrines. Himself a man of very
strict notions, in whose eyes all even the most harmless amusements
appeared sinful or dangerous, he was determined that his followers
must accept his views. Under his rule Geneva, formerly so gay, became
like a city of death, where all citizens went about as if in mourning.
Such an unnatural condition of affairs could not be permanent. The
people soon grew tired of their dictator and of his methods; the
authorities of Berne were roused to hostility by his refusal to accept
their doctrinal programme or their model religious organisation; the
Synod of Lausanne declared against him for a similar reason, and in
1538 he and his principal supporters were driven from the city.
Cardinal Sadoleto took occasion to address a stirring appeal to Geneva
to return to the old faith, but his appeal fell upon deaf ears.

Calvin retired at first to Strassburg, and later he took charge of a
parish in France. During the interval he devoted himself to a closer
study of the disputed religious questions, and wrote much in favour of
the Reformation. It was at this time (1540) that he married the widow
of one of the Anabaptist leaders. Meanwhile Geneva was torn by
disputes between two factions, the Libertines as they were called, who
were opposed to Calvin, and the Guillermins, who clamoured for his
return. The latter body gained ground rapidly, and a decree was issued
recalling Calvin to Geneva (October 1540). Knowing well that his
presence was necessary to restore peace to the city he refused to
return unless the conditions imposed by him should be accepted. In the
end he went back to Geneva practically as its religious and political
dictator (1541).

The form of government introduced was theocratic. Calvin was
recognised as the spiritual and temporal ruler of the city. He was
assisted in the work of government by the Consistory, which was
composed of six clerics and twelve laymen. The latter was the worst
form of inquisition court, taking cognisance of the smallest
infractions of the rules laid down for the conduct of the citizens,
and punishing them by the severest form of punishment. Any want of
respect for the Consistory or opposition to its authority was treated
as a rebellion against God. Calvin formulated a very severe code of
rules for the guidance of the people not merely in their duties as
citizens and as members of his religious organisation, but also in
their social intercourse with one another. Even the privacy of family
life was not sacred in his eyes. All kinds of amusements, theatres,
dances, cards, &c., were banned as ungodly, as were also extravagance
of dress and anything savouring of frivolity. Nobody was allowed to
sell wine or beer except a limited number of merchants licensed to do
so by the Consistory.

Nor were these mere empty regulations designed only to keep religion
before the eyes of the people without any intention of enforcing them.
The preachers were invested with extraordinary powers, and were
commissioned to make house to house visitations, to inquire about
violations of the rules. In their reports to the Congregation and to
the Consistory they noted even the most minute transgressions. Not
content with this Calvin had his spies in all parts of the city, who
reported to him what people were saying about his methods and his
government. The punishment meted out by the courts were of a very
severe and brutal kind. No torture that could be inflicted was deemed
too much for any one bold enough to criticise the Consistory or the

It was natural that such methods should be highly distasteful to those
of the citizens of Geneva who were not religious fanatics. A strong
party tried to resist him. They accused him of being much more
tyrannical than the Pope, but Calvin denounced such opponents as
libertines, heretics, and atheists. He handed them over to the devil
at least in so far as his ecclesiastical censures were effective,[2]
threatened the severest spiritual punishment against their aiders and
abettors, and when all such means of reproof failed he had recourse to
the secular arm.

Sebastian Castellio, a well-known preacher and Scriptural scholar, was
punished because he could not agree with Calvin's teaching on
predestination, as was also the physician Bolsec; Ameaux one of the
members of the Council was put to death because he denounced the
tyranny of Calvin and of the Consistory; Gentilis was condemned to
execution for differing with Calvin's teaching on the Trinity, and was
compelled to make a most abject public retraction before he could
obtain a reprieve. Several of the citizens were punished with long
imprisonment for dancing even on the occasion of a wedding, as
happened in the case of Le Fevre, whose son-in-law was obliged to flee
to France because he resented warmly such methods of promoting
religion. In Geneva and in the adjoining territory all Catholic
practices were put down by violence, and the peasants were allowed no
choice in their religious views. Possibly, however, the most glaring
example of Calvin's tyranny and high-handed methods was his treatment
of Michael Servetus, a Spaniard who had written against the Trinity.
He was on a journey through the territory of Geneva and was doing
nothing to spread his doctrines nor acting in any way likely to bring
him under the ire of Calvin. The latter having heard of his presence
there had him arrested, tried, and condemned to death. To justify such
harshness he published a pamphlet in which he advocated death as the
only proper remedy for heresy. Theodore Beza wrote strongly in support
of this opinion of his master's, as did also Melanchthon who, though
differing from Calvin on so many points, hastened to forward his
warmest congratulations on the execution of Servetus.[3]

Calvin's acts of cruelty were not the result of violent outbursts of
temper. By nature cold and immovable, he did not allow himself to be
hurried to extremes either by anger or by passion. How he succeeded in
maintaining his position for so many years in Geneva is intelligible
only to those who understand the strength of the religious fanaticism
that he was able to arouse amongst his followers, the terror which his
spiritual and temporal punishments inspired among his opponents, his
own wonderful capacity for organisation and administration, the
activity of his ministers and spies, and the almost perfect system of
repression that he adopted in his two-fold character of religious and
political dictator.

To strengthen his position and to provide for the continuance of his
system he established an academy at Geneva (1558) principally for the
study of theology and philosophy. It was attended by crowds of
scholars from Switzerland, France, Germany, the Netherlands, England,
and Scotland. By means of the academy, Calvinism was spread throughout
Switzerland notwithstanding the opposition of the Zwinglian preachers,
and Calvin's system of ecclesiastical organisation became the model
aimed at by his disciples in most countries of Europe, notably France,
the Netherlands, and Scotland. The Zurich school, at the head of which
stood Bullinger, did not yield ground to the new teaching without a
severe struggle, and Calvin found himself obliged to come to terms
with them in the /Consensus Tigurninus/ (1549). In his desire to
secure the religious unity of Switzerland he had no difficulty in
abandoning or minimising his own doctrine in the hope of overcoming or
winning over his opponents. After a life of tireless energy his health
began to fail in 1561, and three years later he passed away (1564).

Calvin was a man of morose and gloomy temperament, severe even to
harshness with his followers, and utterly devoid of human sympathy.
Not so however his disciple and assistant Theodore Beza. The latter
was born in Burgundy in 1519, and after completing his classical
studies at Orleans he drifted to Paris, where he plunged into all the
pleasures and dissipations of the capital, and where at first he was
remarkable more for his love songs than for his theology. He devoted
himself to the study of law, and in 1539 he took his licentiate at
Paris. Having become attached to the opinions of the Swiss Reformers
he left Paris and settled at Geneva, where he fell completely under
the influence of Calvin, but not even Calvin's temperament and system
could change his naturally gay and sympathetic disposition. For this
reason he became a general favourite, and did much to win the good-
will of those who felt themselves rebelled by the harshness of the
dictator. Beza was, besides, a man of very superior ability, and had
been especially well equipped in Hebrew and in the classics. He was
master of a striking style whether he wrote in French or in Latin,
eloquent beyond most of his contemporaries, and in every way capable
of making a good impression not merely on the ordinary citizen but on
the more educated classes. His writings in defence of Calvin's system
and his translations of the Scriptures gave him a great reputation
throughout Europe, and gained for him a commanding position in Geneva,
where he died in 1605.

Calvin's system was modelled to a great extent on the doctrines of
Luther and Zwingli, but it was coloured largely by his own harsh and
morose disposition. For the distinguishing feature of his system,
namely, absolute predestination, he was dependent largely upon the
works of Wycliffe. Like Luther, he began with the assumption that the
condition of man before the Fall was entirely natural, and that
consequently by the Fall he was deprived of something that was
essential to his nature and without which human nature was completely
corrupted. Man was no longer free, and every act of his was sinful.
His want of freedom was the result of the play of external forces
directed and arranged by God, rather than of any internal necessity by
which he was forced to sin. God is, according to Calvin, the author of
sin, in the sense that he created a certain number of men to work evil
through them in order that He might have an opportunity of displaying
the divine attribute of mercy. Hence the motive of God in bringing
about evil is different from the motive of the sinner, and therefore
though the sinner is blameworthy God is nowise responsible for his

Adam sinned because it was decreed by God that he should fall in order
that the divine mercy should be manifested to the world. For the same
reason God did not intend that all should be equally good or that all
should be saved. He created some men that they might sin and that
their punishment might afford an example of God's justice, while He
made others that they might be saved to show His overwhelming mercy.
The former are condemned to hell by an irreversible decree, the
others, the elect, are predestined absolutely to glory. The elect are
assured of justification through the merits of Christ, and once
justified they are always justified, for justification cannot be lost.
Faith such as that advocated by Luther was the means of acquiring
justification, but, mindful of his other doctrine that even the best
of men's works are sinful, Calvin took care to explain that justifying
faith was only the instrument by which a man laid hold of the merits
of Christ. It was like a vessel which, though containing some
priceless treasure, was in itself worthless.

As might be expected, Calvin refused to admit that the sacraments were
endowed with any objective power of conferring Grace. In the case of
their reception by the elect, however, he held that they were the
means of strengthening the faith by which justification is acquired,
but for those predestined to damnation they were mere signs without
any spiritual effect. In regard to the Eucharist, while he rejected
the Catholic view of Transubtantiation, he maintained against the
Lutherans that Impanation or Companation was equally absurd. Nor did
he agree with Zwingli that the Eucharist is a mere sign of Christ's
love for men. According to him Christ is really present, in the sense
that though the bread and wine remain unchanged, the predestined
receive with the Eucharistic elements a heavenly food that proceeds
from the body of Christ in Heaven.

Like Luther he contended that the true Church of Christ is invisible,
consisting in his view only of the predestined, but, realising the
necessity for authority and organisation, he was driven to hold that
the invisible Church manifested itself through a visible religious
society. Unlike Luther, however, he was unwilling to subordinate the
Church to the civil power, believing as he did that it was a society
complete in itself and entirely independent of temporal sovereigns.
Each Calvinistic community should be to a great extent a self-
governing republic, all of them bound together into one body by the
religious synods, to which the individual communities should elect
representatives. The churches were to be ruled by pastors, elders, and
deacons. Candidates for the sacred ministry were to receive the
confirmation of their vocation by a call from some Calvinistic church
body, and were to be ordained by the imposition of the hands of the
presbyters or elders. For Calvin as for Luther the Holy Scriptures
were the sole rule of faith to be adopted by both the preachers and
the synods. The special illumination of the Holy Ghost was sufficient
to guard individuals from being deceived either in determining what
books are inspired, or what is the precise meaning which God wished to
convey in any particular book or passage.[4]

[1] Baird, /Theodore Beza, Counsellor of the French Reform/, 1900.

[2] Galli, /Die Lutheran, und Calvinist, Kirchenstrafen im
Reformationszeitalter/, 1878.

[3] Rouquette, /L'Inquisition protestante. Les victimes de Calvin/,
1906. Galiffe, /Quelques pages d'histoire exacte sur les proces
intentes a Geneve/, 1862. Paulus, /Luther und Gewissensfreiheit/,
1905. Id., /Melanchthon und Gewissensfreiheit/ (/Katholik/, i.,
546 sqq.).

[4] Schwane, /Dogmengeschichte der neuerenzeit/. Cunningham, /The
Reformers and the Theology of the Reformation/, 1862.

(b) Calvinism in France.

Lavisse, /Histoire de France/ (vols v.-vi.), 1904-5. De Meaux,
/Les luttes religieuses en France au XVIe siecle/, 1879. Imbart de
la Tour, /Les origines de la Reforme/, vols. i.-ii., 1904-9.
Hauser, /Etudes sur la Reforme francaise/, 1909. Capefigue,
/Histoire de la reforme, de la ligue et du regne de Henri IV./, 4
vols., 1834. Maimbourg, /Histoire du Calvinisme/, 1682. Soldan,
/Geschichte des Protestantismus in Frankreich bis zum Tode Karls
ix./, 2 Bde, 1855. Baird, /History of the Rise of the Huguenots in
France/, 2 vols., 1879. See also bibliography, chap. iii. (a).

Many causes combined to favour the introduction of the reformed
doctrines into France. Owing to the anti-papal attitude adopted by the
French theologians during the Great Western Schism, there was still
lurking in many circles a strong feeling against the Holy See and in
favour of a national Church, over which the Pope should retain merely
a supremacy of honour. Besides, the influence of the old sects, the
Albigenses and the Waldenses, had not disappeared entirely, and the
principles of the French mystics favoured the theory of religious
individualism, that lay behind the whole teaching of the reformers.
The Renaissance, too, was a power in France, more especially in Paris,
where it could boast of powerful patrons such as Margaret of Navarre,
sister of Francis I. and wife of the King of Navarre, the king's
mistress, his favourite minister Du Bellay, and the latter's brother,
the Bishop of Paris. Not all the French Humanists, however, were
equally dangerous. A few of them were undoubtedly favourable to
Luther's views, while many others, infuriated by the charges of
unorthodoxy levelled against them, were inclined to look with
complacency on whatever was condemned by their Scholastic opponents.
The proximity of Strassburg, where Lutheran and Zwinglian doctrines
found support, and the close relations existing between the Paris
University and German scholars helped to disseminate among Frenchmen
the writings of Erasmus, Luther, and Melanchthon and with them the new
religious views.

Against the success of the Reformation in France was the fact that the
people, Latin rather than Teuton in their sympathies, were thoroughly
devoted to their religion and to the Holy See, that the bishops though
nominated by the king according to the Concordat of 1516, were more
zealous than their German brethren, that in the main Paris University,
then the great centre of intellectual life in France, was thoroughly
Catholic, and that the queen-mother, the chancellor of state, the
leading ministers both lay and ecclesiastic, and the parliamentary
authorities could be relied upon to offer Lutheranism their strongest
opposition. Nor, however much Francis I. might be inclined to
vacillate in the hope of securing the help of the German Protestant
princes in his struggle with the empire, had he any desire to see his
kingdom convulsed by the religious strife raging on the other side of
the Rhine.

In 1521 the Parliament of Paris with the approval of the king forbade
the publication of writings dealing with the new religious views.
Luther's books were condemned, and the Paris University drew up a list
of erroneous propositions extracted from the works of the German
theologians (1523). At the request of the queen-mother the theological
faculty of Paris formulated a plan for preventing the spread of the
German errors in France, the main points of which were that heretical
books should be forbidden, that the bishops should be exhorted to seek
out such works in their dioceses and have them destroyed, and that the
Sorbonne should have a free hand in maintaining religious unity. Yet
in spite of these precautions a Lutheran community was formed at Meaux
in the vicinity of Paris, and in the South of France, where the
Waldensian party was still strong, Lutheran teaching found many
supporters. In some places various attempts were made to imitate the
tactics adopted so successfully at Wittenberg and Berne to bring about
by force the discontinuance of Catholic worship. But these attempts
failed, owing mainly to the independent attitude of the local
parliaments and to the energy of the bishops, who removed one of the
most dangerous weapons wielded by the heretics by insisting on a
thorough reform of the clergy.

But though Francis I. had been moved to take action against the
sectaries, and though Calvin and other leaders were obliged to leave
France, the reforming party, relying on the influence of patrons like
Margaret of Navarre[1] and on the Humanist section at the university
and at the newly established College de France, felt confident of
ultimate success. They realised that the king was most anxious to
arrive at an understanding with the Protestant princes of Germany
against Charles V., and that therefore it was unlikely that he would
indulge in a violent persecution of their co-religionists at home.
They knew, too, that Francis I. had set his heart on securing complete
control of the Church in his own dominions, as was evident by the hard
bargain which he drove with Leo X. in the Corcordat of 1516,[2] and
they were not without hope that Luther's teaching on the spiritual
supremacy of the civil rulers might prove an irresistible bait to a
man of such a temperament. Negotiations were opened with Francis I. by
some of the German reformers, who offered to accept most of the
Catholic doctrines together with episcopal government if only the king
would support their cause (1534). As it was impossible to arrange for
a conference, the Lutheran party submitted a summary of their views
embodied in twelve articles to the judgment of the Sorbonne. In reply
to this communication the doctors of the Sorbonne, instead of wasting
their energies in the discussion of particular tenets, invited the
Germans to state explicitly whether or not they accepted the authority
of the Church and the writings of the Fathers. Such an attitude put an
end to all hopes of common action between the French and German
theologians, but at the same time Francis I. was not willing, for
political reasons, to break with Protestantism. The publication,
however, of a particularly offensive pamphlet against Catholicism,
printed in Switzerland and scattered broadcast throughout France,
served as a warning to the king that his own country was on the brink
of being plunged into the civil strife which Protestantism had
fomented in Germany, and that if he wanted to preserve national unity
and peace the time for decisive action had arrived. Many of the
leading reformers were arrested and some of them were put to death,
while others were banished from France (1535).

From this time the Lutherans began to lose hope of securing the active
co-operation of Francis I., but the friendly political relations
between the king and the German Protestant princes, together with the
close proximity of Strassburg, Geneva, and Berne, from which preachers
and pamphlets made their way into France, helped to strengthen the
heretical party in the country despite the efforts of the
ecclesiastical and lay authorities. In the South many of the Waldenses
in Dauphiny and Provence went over formally to the side of the
Calvinists. In places where they possessed considerable strength they
indulged in violent attacks on the clergy, for which reason severe
measures of repression were adopted by the local administrators and by
the king. As in Switzerland, so too in France Calvinism proved to be
the most attractive of the new religious systems. Calvinistic
communities were formed at Paris, Rouen, Lyons and Orleans, all of
which looked to Geneva for direction. The name given to the French
followers of Calvin was Huguenots.

Henry II. (1547-59), who succeeded on the death of Francis I. had no
difficulty in allying himself with the German Protestants, and in
despatching an army to assist Maurice of Saxony in his rebellion
against the Emperor, while at the same time taking every precaution
against the spread of heresy at home. He established a new inquisition
department presided over by a Dominican for the detection and
punishment of the Huguenots, and pledged the civil power to carry out
its decisions. In this attitude he was supported strongly by the
University of Paris, which merited the heartiest congratulations of
Julius III. by its striking defence of Catholic doctrines, especially
the necessity of obedience to the Holy See. Yet notwithstanding all
measures taken against them the Huguenots continued to increase in
numbers. The Bishop of Navarre went over to their side, as did a
certain number of the clergy, and the attitude of some of the others
was uncertain. So strong did the Huguenot party find itself in France
that a Synod representing the different reformed communities was held
in Paris in 1559, at which the doctrine and ecclesiastical
organisation introduced by Calvin into Switzerland were formally
adopted. The accession of Elizabeth to the throne in England, and the
hopes entertained in France of detaching that country from Spain made
the French government less anxious to adopt severe measures against
the Protestants. After the Peace of Cateau Cambresis (1559), when
Henry determined to make a great effort to extirpate Calvinism, he was
prevented by death.

Francis II. who lived only one year (1559-60) succeeded, and he was
followed by Charles IX. (1560-74). The latter of these was a mere
child, and during the minority the government of the country was in
the hands of Catharine de' Medici, his mother, who became regent of
France. At the court two parties struggled for supremacy, the family
of Guise which stood for Catholicism, and the Bourbons who favoured
Calvinism. The regent, not being a woman of very decided religious
convictions or tendencies, set herself to play off one party against
the other so as to increase her own power, and in this way a splendid
opportunity was given to the Calvinists to pursue their religious
campaign. Several of the more powerful people in the kingdom favoured
their schemes solely out of hatred to the Duke of Guise[3] and with
the hope of lessening his power. Amongst the prominent Calvinist
leaders at this period were Antoine de Bourbon,[4] King of Navarre,
and his brother Louis Prince de Conde, the Constable de Montmorency
and Admiral Coligny,[5] the recognised head and ablest leader of the
Huguenot party.

Taking advantage of the bitter feeling aroused amongst their followers
by the execution of some of their number, the Huguenots formed a
conspiracy (Tumult of Amboise 1560) to seize the young king, to
overthrow the Duke of Guise, and to set up in his place the Prince de
Conde. The Calvinist theologians, having been consulted about the
lawfulness of such an enterprise, declared that the conspirators might
proceed without fear of sinning so long as a prince of the royal
family was amongst their leaders. The plot was discovered, however,
before their plans were matured, and several of those who took part in
it were put to death. Instead of weakening, it served only to
strengthen the family of Guise. Francis, Duke of Guise, was appointed
a lieutenant-general of France with the title of saviour of his
country, while his brother, the Cardinal of Lorraine, became chief
inquisitor and one of the papal legates appointed for the reform of
abuses in France. The King of Navarre, to whom Pius IV. addressed a
personal appeal, confessed his unfaltering loyalty to the Catholic
religion, although at the same time he was doing much to spread
Calvinism in his own dominions and throughout the South of France.

Though the royal edict against the Calvinists, published in 1560, was
severe, yet little was done to enforce its terms except against those
who had recourse to arms. The Prince de Conde organised a new
conspiracy and attempted to secure Lyons. He was arrested, tried, and
condemned to death, but before the sentence could be carried out
Francis II. passed away.

A new grouping of parties now took place. The regent, Catharine de'
Medici, alarmed at the growing influence of the Guise faction, threw
the whole weight of her influence into the scales in favour of the
Prince de Conde and of the Huguenots. A royal edict was issued
suspending all prosecutions against heretics and ordering the release
of all prisoners detained on account of their religion (1561). The
regent wrote to the Pope praising the religious fervour of the
Calvinists, and calling upon him to suppress several Catholic
practices to which the heretics had taken exception. She professed
herself anxious for a national council to settle the religious
differences, and failing this she insisted upon a religious
disputation at Poissy. The disputation ("Colloquy" of Poissy) took
place (1561) in presence of the young king, his mother, and a large
number of cardinals, bishops, and ministers of state. The Catholics
were represented by the Cardinal of Lorraine, the Jesuit General
Lainez, and other distinguished clergy, while the Calvinists sent a
large number of their ablest leaders, conspicuous amongst whom were
Theodore Beza and Francois de Morel. The principal doctrines in
dispute, notably the authority of the Church and the Eucharist, were
discussed at length without result. Then a small committee, composed
of five theologians representing each side, was appointed, but without
any better success. In the end, as no agreement could be secured, the
conference was dismissed.

Owing to the close alliance between the regent and the Prince de Conde
the former issued a new edict, in which she allowed the Calvinists
free exercise of their religion outside the cities provided that they
assembled unarmed, commanded them to restore the goods and churches
they had seized, and forbade them to have recourse to violence or to
conspiracies to promote their views (1562). Encouraged by these
concessions, the Calvinists especially in the South of France
attempted to force their religion on the people. They attacked
churches, profaned the Blessed Sacrament, murdered several priests and
laymen, and obliged the peasants to listen to their preachers. Feeling
between the two parties was extremely bitter, and the Catholics were
especially incensed that a small minority should be allowed to have
their own way regardless of the opinions of the vast body of the
French people.

In these circumstances it required very little to lead to serious
conflict. At Vassy some soldiers accompanying the Duke of Guise
quarrelled with a party of Calvinists, whose psalm-singing was
disturbing the Mass at which the Duke was assisting. The latter,
hearing the noise, hastened out to restore peace, and was struck with
a stone. His followers, incensed at this outrage, drew their swords
and killed a large number of the Calvinists. This incident, referred
to generally as the massacre of Vassy, led to a new civil war (1562).
The Calvinists hastened to take up arms, and the Prince de Conde was
assured of English assistance. A large army attacked Toulouse, but
after a struggle lasting four days the Calvinists were defeated and
driven off with severe loss. In Normandy and other centres where they
were strong they carried on the war with unheard of cruelty; but as
they were in a hopeless minority and as the English failed to give
them the necessary assistance they lost many of their strongholds, and
finally suffered a terrible defeat at Dreux where the Prince de Conde
was taken prisoner (Dec. 1562). Coligny escaped to Orleans, which city
was besieged by the Duke of Guise, who was murdered during the siege
by one of the followers of Coligny.[6] Before his execution the
prisoner accused Coligny and Beza as being accessories to his crime,
but it is only fair to say that Coligny denied under oath the truth of
this statement.

Though the Catholics were victorious the awful struggle had cost them
dearly. Their ablest leader the Duke of Guise had fallen, as had also
Antoine de Bourbon, King of Navarre, who had been converted from
Calvinism; many of their churches and most valuable shrines were
destroyed; and to make matters worse they recognised that the struggle
had been fought in vain, as the regent proclaimed a general amnesty
and concluded a peace with the Huguenots (Peace of Amboise, 1563),
whereby Calvinist nobles and their followers were allowed free
exercise of their religion with certain restrictions.

Neither side was satisfied with these terms. Coligny and the Prince de
Conde were annoyed furthermore by the fact that the regent broke off
her close relations with them, and began to lean towards the Catholic
side and toward an alliance with Spain. After raising large sums of
money and arming their forces for a new effort they determined to
seize the king and his court at Monceau, but the Constable de
Montmorency with six thousand trusty Swiss soldiers hastened to the
king's defence, and brought him safely from the midst of his enemies
(1567). This attempt together with the terrible slaughter of Catholics
at Nimes (29 Sept.)[7] led to the outbreak of the second civil war.
The Catholic forces were successful at St. Denis though they lost one
of their ablest generals, the Constable de Montmorency, and were
deprived of the fruits of their victory by the intervention of the
Elector of the Palatinate. Owing to the mediation of the latter a new
treaty was made in 1568, but as the Huguenots continued to seek
alliances with England, Germany, and the Netherlands, Charles IX.
recalled the concessions he had made, and forbade the exercise of
Calvinist worship under penalty of death.

Thereupon the third civil war broke out (1569). The Huguenots received
assistance from England, the Netherlands, and Germany, while the
Catholics were supported by Spain and the Pope. The war was carried on
with relentless cruelty on both sides. In the battle of Jarnac the
Huguenot forces were defeated, and the Prince de Conde was slain
(1569). The struggle was however continued by Coligny supported by
Henry King of Navarre and the young de Conde. By wonderful exertions
Coligny put a new army into the field only however to suffer another
terrible defeat at Montcontour, where the Huguenots were almost
annihilated. It seemed that the long struggle was to end at last and
that peace was to be restored to France. But unfortunately at this
juncture some of his courtiers succeeded in convincing Charles IX.
that his brother, the Duke of Anjou, who with the young Duke of Guise
was mainly responsible for the Catholic victories, might use his
recognised military ability and his influence with the people to make
himself king of France. Alarmed by the prospect of such a contingency
Charles IX., already jealous of his brother's triumphs, turned against
the Catholic party and concluded the Peace of St. Germain-en-Laye with
the Huguenots (1570).

According to the terms of this Peace the Huguenots were allowed free
exercise of their religion in France with the sole exception of the
capital. They were not to be excluded from any office of the state,
and four of the strongest fortresses of the country, La Rochelle,
Montauban, Cognac, and La Charite were to be delivered to them for
their protection and as a guarantee of good faith. The whole policy of
Charles IX. underwent a complete change. Obsessed with the idea that
the Catholic party, led by the Duke of Anjou, was becoming too
powerful to be trusted, he turned to Coligny and the Calvinists, broke
off the alliance concluded with Spain the previous year, and sought to
bring over France to the side of England and of the rebel subjects of
Spain in the Netherlands. Coligny was invited to court, where he soon
became the most trusted and influential councillor of the king. He
endeavoured to embitter the mind of Charles IX. against his mother,
against the Duke of Anjou and the family of Guise. No effort was
spared by him to bring France into the closest relations with England
and the Netherlands against Spain, and as a sign of the reconciliation
that had been effected between the court and the Huguenots a marriage
was arranged between Henry, the Calvinist King of Navarre and Margaret
of Valois, the sister of Charles IX.

The Catholics were highly indignant at this sudden change of policy.
Mindful of the misfortunes brought upon their country by the Huguenots
and of the losses and cruelties they had suffered at the hands of this
implacable minority, they resented the domination of Coligny, whom
they regarded as their most dangerous enemy, and they were embittered
by the thought that the victories they had won at so much cost had
resulted only in their own downfall and in the triumph of their worst
enemies. Catharine de' Medici, the queen-mother, felt more acutely
than the rest the influence of Coligny. She believed that he was using
his power to alienate the young king from herself, and to win him from
the policy she had advocated. She was only waiting an opportunity to
wreak her vengeance on Coligny and the whole Huguenot party, knowing
well as she did that she could count upon the popular feeling of the
nation to support her.

The opportunity came on the occasion of the marriage between the King
of Navarre and Margaret of Valois. The leading Calvinists anxious to
take part in the ceremony flocked to Paris, where they and their
followers paraded the streets armed to the teeth and with the air of
conquerors. Catharine de' Medici took steps to secure the murder of
Coligny on the 22nd August, 1572, but the attempt failed. Such a step
served, however, to embitter feelings on both sides, and to arouse the
queen-mother to make one final effort for the destruction of her
Huguenot opponents. In an audience with the king she represented to
him that the Calvinists were plotting to take his life, and that the
only way to secure himself against them was to anticipate them. In
view of the previous history of the party and the suspicious
temperament of the king, it required little to convince him of the
truth of this allegation, and at last he signed an order that on a
certain pre-arranged signal having been given the soldiers should let
loose on the Huguenots. On the night preceding the feast of St.
Bartholomew (23-24 Aug.) the bells of the church of St. Germain-en-
Laye were rung, and the troops sallied forth to carry out their
instructions. Rumours of a Huguenot plot had been spread through the
city. The people were alarmed, and the general body of the citizens
took up arms to support the soldiers. In the melee that followed over
a thousand Calvinists including Coligny were put to death. The
movement spread through the provinces where about the same number
suffered as in the capital, though many of the Catholic clergy, as for
example, the Bishop of Lisieux, exerted themselves to put an end to
the butchery.

This event is known in history as the massacre of St. Bartholomew. The
massacre was in no sense a premeditated affair. It was a sudden
outburst of popular indignation brought about by the machinations of
the queen-mother, and was neither encouraged nor approved by the
bishops of the Catholic Church. The king presented himself before the
Parliament of Paris on the day following the massacre, and declared
that he alone was responsible for what had happened. He explained that
a plot had been formed against his life and that he had taken the only
measures that it was possible for him to take. This was the account of
the affair that was forwarded to the French diplomatic representatives
abroad, and which they gave at all courts to which they were
accredited. Gregory XIII., acting on the report of the French
ambassador, ordered that a /Te Deum/ should be sung in thanksgiving
for the safety of the king and royal family, and not, as has been so
often alleged, as a sign of rejoicing for the murder of the
Calvinists. On the contrary he was deeply pained when he learned the
true state of affairs. The massacre of St. Bartholomew was indeed
unjustifiable, but it was done neither to promote religion nor at the
instigation of the Church. It was merely political in its object as
far as the king and the queen-mother were concerned, and it was a
sudden popular outburst in so far as the citizens of Paris or the
people of the country took part in it. In judging the responsibility
and blame for what took place nobody can put out of mind the terrible
excesses, of which the Huguenots had been guilty during their long
struggle against their own countrymen. The German Lutherans, who
looked upon the slaughter as a judgment from Heaven on the Calvinist
heretics, were rejoiced at their execution.[8]

The Huguenots flew to arms to avenge their brethren who had fallen,
and the fourth civil war began. The Duke of Anjou laid siege to their
strongest fortress, La Rochelle, but failed to take it, and on his
election as King of Poland (1573) a treaty was concluded according to
which the Huguenots were allowed free exercise of their religion. A
large number of French politicians were at last growing tired of a
struggle which was costing their country so dearly, and were anxious
to conclude peace even though it were necessary to yield to the
demands of the Huguenots. At the head of this party stood some of the
most powerful nobles of France including the Duc d'Alencon, and when
on the death of Charles IX. the Duke of Anjou succeeded as Henry III.
(1575-89) his sympathies were entirely with the party of the moderates
as against the extremists of both sides. By the terms of the Peace of
Beaulieu (1576) the Huguenots were assured of complete freedom except
in Paris and at the French Court, and of full civil rights, and as a
guarantee of good faith they were continued in possession of their

Indignant at such concessions the Catholic party formed the League[9]
with the young Duke of Guise at its head. Henry III., finding that it
was impossible to oppose this combination with any hope of success,
determined to control it by becoming himself its leader. The
concessions made to the Huguenots were recalled (1577), and the fifth
civil war broke out. This was brought to an end by the Peace of
Poitiers (1577). The Huguenot party, under the King of Navarre and the
young Prince de Conde, continued to make headway against the League,
and sought to strengthen themselves by an alliance with England and
the Netherlands.

The question of the succession to the French throne became serious for
both parties. Henry III. was childless, and on the death of the heir-
apparent, his brother the Duke of Anjou (Alencon, 1584), the
succession devolved apparently on Henry King of Navarre, but as he was
a Calvinist the Catholics were unwilling to recognise him. The League
declared Cardinal de Bourbon son of the Duke of Vendome as the lawful
heir to the French throne, though many of its out and out supporters
were in favour of the Duke of Guise. An attempt was made to get the
approval of the Pope for the League and its policy, but both George
XIII. and Sixtus V. were not inclined to support its pretensions. At
the earnest request of Spain the latter, however, issued a
constitution in 1585, by which he declared that Henry of Navarre and
the Prince de Conde, as notorious heretics excommunicated by the
Church, had forfeited all claim to the throne of France. Henry of
Navarre lodged a solemn protest in Rome, and he appealed to the
Parliament of Paris, which refused to approve of the publication of
the papal document. Both sides had recourse once more to arms, and the
Huguenots under the leadership of Henry of Navarre were victorious in
the battle of Coutras (1587). The League however continued the
struggle, captured some of the principal cities such as Lyons,
Orleans, and Bourges, while Henry III. favoured both parties in turn.
Overawed by the successful exploits of the Duke of Guise he pledged
himself to put down the Huguenots, and the French people were called
upon by royal proclamation to swear that they would never accept a
heretic as their king (1588).

But in his heart Henry III. favoured the cause of the King of Navarre,
if for no other reason because he wished to escape from the
dictatorship of the Duke of Guise. In 1588 he procured the murder of
the two greatest leaders of the League, Henry Duke of Guise and his
brother Louis the Cardinal-archbishop of Lyons. This outrage drew upon
him the wrath of the League and of the great body of the French
Catholics. Charles de Lorraine, brother of the murdered Duke of Guise,
put himself at the head of the king's enemies. Sixtus V. issued a
strong condemnation of the murder of the cardinal-archbishop, and the
Sorbonne declared that the nation no longer owed any allegiance to the
king. The war was renewed vigorously on both sides, the League being
supported by Philip II. of Spain and its opponents by Protestant
troops from Germany and Switzerland. While the combined forces of
Henry III. and of the King of Navarre were besieging Paris, Henry III.
was assassinated (1589).

Thereupon Henry of Navarre had himself proclaimed King of France under
the title of Henry IV., but the League refused to recognise his claims
and put forward instead the aged Cardinal de Bourbon, then a prisoner
in the hands of the King of Navarre. The Cardinal also was proclaimed
king (Charles X.). Spain, too, refused to acknowledge Henry IV., and
assisted the League with both money and soldiers. The Popes, Sixtus V.
Gregory VIX. and Clement VIII. adopted an attitude of great reserve.
While they were not inclined to support the demands of the League in
their entirety they were unshaken in their reserve to acknowledge no
heretic as king of France. Henry IV., though supported by many of the
moderate Catholics (/Les Politiques/), began to recognise that as a
Calvinist he could never hope for peaceful possession of the French
throne. He determined, therefore, to yield to the entreaties of his
most powerful supporters and to make his submission to the Catholic
Church. In July 1593 he read a public recantation in the Church of St.
Denis, and was absolved conditionally from the censures he had
incurred. The following year he made his formal entrance into Paris,
where he was welcomed by the people, and acknowledged as lawful king
of France by the Sorbonne. Having pledged himself to accept the
decrees of the Council of Trent, to abide by the terms of the
Concordat of 1516, and to rear his heir and successor as a Catholic he
was reconciled to the Holy See. The League dissolved itself in a short
time, and so far as Catholics were concerned peace was restored to

The Huguenots, Henry IV.'s former co-religionists, were deeply pained
at the step taken by their leader, and they insisted that their
demands must be satisfied. Henry IV., more anxious for the unity and
welfare of France than for the triumph of either religious party,
determined to put an end to the civil strife by the publication of the
Edict of Nantes (1598). The principal articles of the Edict were that
the Calvinists should enjoy freedom of worship throughout the greater
part of the kingdom, that they should be eligible for all positions of
honour and trust in the state, that they should have for their own use
the Universities of Montauban, Montpelier, Sedan, and Samur, that the
funds for the upkeep of these universities and for the maintenance of
their religion should be supplied by the state, and that for a period
of eight years they should have possession of some of the principal
fortresses. On their side they engaged to break off all alliances with
foreigners, to allow Catholic worship to be restored in the places
where it had been suppressed, to observe the marriage laws of the
Catholic Church, and to abstain from anything that might be regarded
as a violation of Catholic holidays. Such concessions were regarded
with great disfavour by the Pope, the clergy, and the vast majority of
the French people as being opposed to the entire national tradition of
France, and it required all the efforts of the king to secure for them
the approval of the Paris Parliament (1599). Similarly the Calvinists
were not content with what had been conceded to them, nor were they
willing to abide by the terms of the Edict of Nantes in so far as to
allow the establishment of Catholic worship in the places which were
under their control. Their public attacks on the Blessed Eucharist and
on the Pope were very irritating to their countrymen, but Henry IV.,
who was a good king deeply interested especially in the welfare of the
lower classes, continued to keep the peace between both parties. His
sympathies were, however, with the Protestants of Germany, and he was
actually on his way to take part in a war against the Emperor when he
was assassinated (1610).

He was succeeded by his son Louis XIII. (1610-43) who was then a boy
of nine years. His mother Mary de' Medici, who acted as regent
approved the terms of the Edict of Nantes, but the Huguenots relying
on the weakness of the government refused to carry out those portions
of the Edict favourable to Catholics, and made demands for greater
privileges. They rose in rebellion several times especially in the
South, entered into alliance with every rebel noble who took up arms
against the king, and acted generally as if they formed a state within
a state. Cardinal Richelieu who was for years the actual ruler of
France (1624-42),[10] inspired solely by political motives, determined
to put an end to a condition of affairs that was highly dangerous to
the strength and national unity of the kingdom. He saw that it was
impossible for France to extend her power so long as there existed at
home a well-organised body of citizens prepared to enter into
treasonable relations with foreign enemies, and to turn to their own
advantage their country's difficulties. His opportunity came when the
Huguenots having concluded an alliance with England rose in rebellion
(1627). He laid siege to their strongest fortress, La Rochelle, drove
back the fleet which England sent to their assistance, and compelled
the city to surrender (1628). By this strong measure he put an end to
the power of the Huguenots in France and secured peace and unity for
the country, while at the same time he treated the conquered with
comparative mildness, confirming the Edict of Nantes (Edict of Nimes,
1629), proclaiming a general amnesty, and restoring the leaders of the
rebellion to the property and positions they had forfeited.

During the reign of Louis XIV. (1643-1715) the whole tendency of the
government was dangerous to the Huguenots. Louis XIV. was determined
to make himself absolute ruler of France, and, therefore, he could
regard only with the highest disfavour the presence in his territories
of a well-organised privileged party like the Huguenots. An
opportunity of carrying out his designs came in 1659, when with the
approval of the Synod of Montpazier they attempted to negotiate an
alliance with England. They were punished with great severity,
forbidden to preach in any place without express permission, to attack
Catholic doctrines publicly, or to intermarry with Catholics. Converts
from Calvinism were encouraged by promises of special concessions.
Owing to the disfavour of the king and the energetic action of the
clergy and bishops, whose education and culture at that time stood
exceedingly high, large numbers of the Huguenots returned to the
Church so that in some places, as for example in Normandy, where once
they could boast of considerable influence, the sect became almost

The severity of the measures taken by Louis XIV. led to new
rebellions, which were suppressed with great severity. Finally in 1685
a royal proclamation appeared announcing the revocation of all the
privileges granted to the Huguenots and more particularly all those
contained in the Edict of Nantes (1685). The churches which they had
built recently were to be destroyed, their religious assembles were
forbidden, and their clergy were offered their choice between
submission to the Church or exile. The prime minister Louvois sent
soldiers to enforce this proclamation, and the unfortunate Huguenots
were treated with great harshness and cruelty. Many of them, unwilling
to change their religion and unable to endure their hard lot at home,
left the country and sought refuge in England, Germany, Denmark, and
Holland. The revocation of the Edict of Nantes was not due to the
religious zeal of Louis XIV. or of his ministers. Indeed at the very
time that Louis XIV. was engaged in dragooning the Huguenots into the
Catholic Church he was in bitter conflict with the Pope, and was
committed to a policy that seemed destined to end in national schism.
Some of the French bishops, notably Fenelon, disapproved of this
attempt at conversion by violence, and Pope Innocent XI., having no
representative in Paris at the time, instructed his nuncio at London
to induce James II. of England to bring pressure to bear on Louis XIV.
to favour the Huguenots.[11] Several times during the reign of Louis
the Calvinists rose in arms to defend their religion but without
effect. After his death the decrees against them were not enforced
with much severity, but it was only in 1787 that a measure of almost
complete political equality was granted to them by Louis XVI.

[1] Lefranc, /Les idees religieuses de Marguerite de Navarre/, 1898.

[2] Thomas, /Le Concordat de 1516/, 3 vols., 1910.

[3] Forneron, /Les Ducs de Guise/, 1877.

[4] De Ruble, /Antoine de Bourbon/, 2 vols., 1881-2.

[5] Marcks, /Gaspard von Coligny/, 1892. Delaborde, /Gaspard de
Coligny/, 3 vols., 1879-83.

[6] De Ruble, /L'assassinat de Francois de Lorraine/, 1898.

[7] Rouquette, /L'inquisition protestante, Les Saint-Barthelemy
calvinistes/, 1906.

[8] On the massacre of St. Bartholomew, cf. De la Ferriere, /La St.
Barthelemy/, 1892. Fauriel, /Essai sur les evenements qui ont
precede et amene la St. Barthelemy/, 1838. Bordier, /La St.
Barthelemy et la critique moderne/, 1879. Hanoteaux, /Etudes
historiques sur le XVIe et le XVIIe siecle en France/, 1886.
Vacandard, /Etudes de critique et d'histoire religieuse/, 1905.
Id., /Les papes et la St. Barthelemy/ (/Rev. du Cler. Francais/,

[9] Richard, /La papaute et la ligue francaise/, 1901. De Chalambert,
/Histoire de la Ligue sous Henri III. et Henri IV./, 1898. De
l'Epinois, /La Ligue et les papes/, 1886.

[10] Caillet, /L'Administration en France sous le ministere du
cardinal de Richelieu/, 2 vols., 1863.

[11] Gerin, /Le Pape, Innocent XI. et la Revocation de l'Edit de
Nantes/ (/Rev. des Quest. Historiques/, xxiv.).

(c) Calvinism in the Netherlands.

Cramer-Piper, /Bibliotheca Reformatoria Neerlandica/, 1903-11.
Juste, /Histoire de la revolution des Pays Bas sous Philippe II./,
2 vols., 1863-7. De Lettenhove, /Les Huguenots et les Gueux/, 6
vols., 1882-5. Gossart, /La domination espagnole dans les Pays Bas
a la fin du regne de Philippe II./, 1906. Holzwarth, /Der Abfall
der Niederlanden/, 2 Bde, 1865-72.

The Netherlands formed part of the vast territories ruled over by
Charles V. For many reasons it was not to be wondered at that the
people should sympathise with the great religious revolt in Germany.
They were allied closely with the Germans by blood and language. Like
them, too, they looked upon Spain and upon the Spaniards with feelings
of distrust. Again, as in other parts of the world, so too in the
Netherlands the wealth of the Church had led to grave abuses as well
as to a loss of respect for ecclesiastical authority, the latter of
which was fostered in the minds of some by the spirit of mysticism
that flourished in the land of St. Thomas a Kempis.

Yet, notwithstanding these favourable circumstances, the Reformation
made little progress in the Netherlands during the reign of Charles V.
He was a man who understood the people and who respected their rights
and privileges. He visited the country frequently, was always ready to
listen to their demands, and he took care not to offend their national
instincts by a display of Spanish troops or Spanish officials.
Besides, having a freer hand to deal with the new religious movement
in the Netherlands than he had in Germany, he was determined to
preserve his hereditary dominions from the dimensions and civil strife
that had done so much to weaken the empire. He insisted on the
proclamation and execution of the decree of the Diet of Worms against
Luther, forbade the spread of heretical writings, introduced the
Inquisition, and punished with great severity those who were found
guilty of attempting to tamper with the faith of the people. But
despite his efforts the trouble that had broken out in the
neighbouring countries, France and Germany, could not fail to find an
echo in the Netherlands, and the views of Calvin and Luther found some

In 1555 Charles retired and was succeeded by his son Philip II. (1555-
98). The new ruler unlike his father made no effort to win the
affections of his subjects in the Netherlands, or to attach them to
himself by bonds of loyalty. On the contrary he came amongst them only
too seldom, and after 1559 he never set foot in the country. He showed
himself careless about their commercial interests, regardless of their
constitutional rights and privileges, and indifferent to their
national prepossessions. Instead of relying on the native officials
and nobles to carry on the administration of the kingdom, he sought to
strengthen his own power by appointing Spaniards to offices of trust
and by sending Spanish troops to suppress all symptoms of discontent.
He set aside the Grand Council which by custom had the rights of a
parliament, and without consultation with the authorities in the
Netherlands he decided upon a new ecclesiastical division of the
country. Hitherto there were only four bishops, whose Sees were
subject to foreign metropolitans. Philip decided that the time had
come when the number of bishoprics should be increased, and the
jurisdiction of foreign metropolitans should be abolished. The main
reason that influenced him to adopt this decision was the fact that,
as matters stood, a complete and far-reaching scheme of reform could
not be put into operation. In conjunction with Pope Paul IV. he
arranged (1559) that the Spanish Netherlands should be placed under
the three newly-erected archiepiscopal Sees of Utrecht, Cambrai, and
Mechlin, and that suitable provision should be made for the
maintenance of the new bishops out of the possessions of the
monasteries and of the ecclesiastical institutions as well as from the
contributions of the laity.

Many of the nobles were already tired of the Spanish rule, and were
not unwilling to look favourably on the religious struggle as a means
of securing independence. They objected to several unconstitutional
acts of which the government of Philip II. had been guilty. They
disliked Cardinal de Granvelle, the prime minister in the Netherlands,
and insisted on his recall. They objected to the introduction of the
Inquisition, and they protested against the new diocesan division as
unnecessary, burdensome to the country, and an infringement of the
rights and privileges of certain individuals. The clergy and people,
whose positions were affected by the new arrangement, supported them
strongly in their opposition to this measure. The leaders of this
movement were the Count of Egmont and William of Orange,[1] the latter
of whom was a clever politician of boundless ambitions, who was not
without hope that a rebellion against Spain might be the means of
securing supreme power in the Netherlands. His brother, the Prince of
Nassau, had adopted Calvinism, and William himself was not troubled
with any particularly strong religious convictions. By his marriage
with the daughter of Maurice of Saxony he sought to assure himself of
the support of the German Protestant princes, while at the same time
he was intimately connected with the Huguenots of France, and was on
terms of the closest friendship with Counts Egmont and Horn, both of
them, though for different reasons, hostile to Philip II. For William
and for many of his abettors religion was but a secondary issue,
provided only that by means of a religious revolution the power of
Spain could be overthrown. Cardinal Granvelle, the minister of the
Duchess of Parma,[2] who was then regent of the country, was a strong
man and a dangerous opponent, for whose removal the party of William
of Orange strove with all their might. They succeeded at last in 1564,
but despite all their efforts they could not prevent the publication
of the decrees of the Council of Trent. They met together in the
following year (1565) and formed the union known as the Compromise of
Breda, nominally for the preservation of their constitutional rights
but in reality to promote a political and religious rebellion. Many
earnest Catholics unaware of the motives that inspired the leaders of
this movement lent them their support. Having strengthened themselves
by negotiations with some of the Protestant princes of Germany, the
revolutionary party presented themselves before Margaret of Parma at
Brussels to demand redress (1566). During the course of the interview
Count de Berlaymont referred to them as a crowd of "gueux" or beggars,
and this was the name they adopted to designate their party (/Les

Though they professed themselves willing to maintain the Catholic
religion the friends of William of Orange had strong leanings towards
Protestantism. Calvinist preachers flocked in from France; Calvinist
communities began to be formed; and in districts where the party found
itself powerful enough to do so, attacks were made on Catholic
churches and Catholic worship. These outrages served to indicate the
real tendency of the movement, and to drive into the opposite camp
many Catholics who had joined the party merely to secure redress of
political grievances. The Duchess of Parma, having failed to put an
end to the disturbances by friendly negotiations, determined to employ
force against the rebels. She was completely successful. William of
Orange fled to Germany, and Counts Egmont and Horn surrendered
themselves to the mercy of the king (1567). Had Philip II. known how
to take advantage of this victory he might have put an end to
Calvinism in the Netherlands, for as yet the vast majority of the
inhabitants were at heart loyal to the Catholic church.

But instead of coming to make a personal appeal for the allegiance of
his subjects and of trying to win over the malcontents by a policy of
moderation Philip II., more concerned for the suppression of heresy
than for the maintenance of Spanish rule, sent the Duke of Alva[3]
(1567-72) with an army of ten thousand men to punish the offenders and
to wipe out all traces of Calvinism. Alva was a soldier who had
distinguished himself on many a field against the Turks and against
France. His character is sufficiently indicated by the title "the iron
duke" given him by those who knew him best. He had no faith in
diplomacy or concession. For him martial law was the only means of
reducing rebels to subjection. The Duchess of Parma, unwilling to
share the responsibility of government with such an associate,
petitioned for her recall, and the Duke of Alva was appointed regent
of the Netherlands. Two leaders of the rebellion, Counts Egmont and
Horn, were tried and put to death (1568), as were also many of their
followers. The goods of the rebels were confiscated, soldiers were
quartered on the districts which were supposed to be sympathetic with
the movement, and martial law became the order of the day. But the
cruel measures adopted by the Duke of Alva did not put an end to the
rebellion in the Netherlands. On the contrary, the contempt shown by
him for the constitution of the country and the rights of individual
citizens, the excessive taxation, and the license given to the
soldiers in their treatment of civilians served only to embitter the
issue and to drive even moderate men into the path of rebellion.
William of Orange, backed by his brother, Louis of Nassau, made
descents upon the country, while vessels manned by their supporters
set themselves to do as much harm as possible to Spanish trade. With
the aid of England they managed to capture the city and port of Briel
(1572). Several of the northern states threw off the yoke of Spain and
acknowledged William of Orange as their ruler, so that in a short time
the Provinces of Holland and Zeeland were practically lost to Philip
II. William of Orange tried to obscure the religious nature of the
campaign by proclaiming religious freedom, but his followers could not
be restrained. The Catholic churches were attacked, the clergy were
expelled, and in 1572 nineteen priests were martyred for the faith at
Gorcum. Holland and Zeeland went over completely to Calvinism, nor
were the southern provinces, which were still Catholic, contented with
the rule of Alva. Driven to desperation by his taxation and
unconstitutional policy they formed a league with the followers of
William of Orange to put an end to Spanish rule in the Netherlands.
Philip II. began to realise that he had been unfortunate in his
selection of a governor. A deputation that was sent from the
insurgents was received kindly, and Alva's resignation of his office
was accepted.

In his place Don Louis Requesens was sent as governor of the
Netherlands (1573-5). Though inferior to Alva in military skill he was
much superior to him in the arts of diplomacy and conciliation. He
withdrew promptly the financial decrees that had caused such general
discontent, yielded to most of the demands made by the people, and
offered a general amnesty to those who would return to their
allegiance. It required all the skill of William of Orange to prevent
the submission of his adherents. Disappointed by the removal of the
grievances that had provoked a national uprising, he was forced to
have recourse more and more to the religious issues in order to

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