Movement begins in Germany under the leadership of Thomas
Müntzer. Prior to being called Anabaptists in Germany, they were
briefly known as Catabaptists, referring to the Swiss
Anabaptists by Zwingli and Oecolampadius in their Latin
writings. It did not, however, succeed in displacing
"Anabaptist," which became the standard term. It is an original
Greek word translated into Latin, not found in German or
Felix Mantz was a
native of Zurich, and had received a liberal education. Having
early adopted the principles of the Reformation, he became an
intimate friend of Zuingli (Zwingli) and other Swiss Reformers.
He began to doubt the scriptural authority of infant-baptism,
and of the Church constitution which then existed at Zurich, and
he suffered imprisonment in consequence. After this he preached
in the fields and woods, whither the people flocked in crowds to
hear him, and there he baptized those who professed faith.
returned to Ratisbon, and continued there a year, propagating
the principles of the Reformation. When he resumed his residence
at Waldshut, he formed an acquaintance with the Swiss reformers,
particularly Zuingli and Ecolampadius, and enjoyed frequent
opportunities of intercourse with them.
broke with Zwingli.
led by Thomas Müntzer.
AnaBaptist's bible meetings and antipaedobaptist views were
condemended by Zwingli and the Zurich city council. In defiance,
on the 25 January, the Radicals formed the first congregation of
believers through baptism (by pouring
Felix Mantz was drowned at Zurich for violating the magistrate's
order against re-baptizing. As he came down from the Wellenberg to
the fish market,” says Bullinger, “and was led through the shambles
to the boat, he praised God that he was about to die for His truth.
Jacob Falk and Heine Reyman were drowned for violating the Zurich's
magistrate's order against re-baptizing.
Balthazar Hubmeyer was arrested, probably at Brunn, where he was
teacher off the church, at the command of King Ferdinand, and sent
to Vienna. After some days he was thrown into the dungeons of the
castle of Gritsenstein. After having been sentenced to death, He
steadfastly went to the scaffold, and on the 10th of March, from the
midst of burning flames and embers, his spirit ascended to that
region where those that have come out of great tribulation suffer
and weep no more.
Anneken of Friburg, a Christian woman, was drowned, and her body was
afterwards burnt for violating the Zurich's magistrate's order
Louis Hetzer, another Baptist minister, was beheaded at Constance,
on the 4th of February. He also had been on intimate terms with
Zwingli, Ecolampadius, and their associates, and was highly esteemed
by them till he became a Baptist.
The persecution was so fierce in Germany and Switzerland, that there
seemed to be no safety but in emigration. Many thousands of
Baptists, inhabitants of the Tyrol, Switzerland, Austria, Styria,
and Bavaria, emigrated under the leadership of Jacob Hutter, and
settled in Moravia.
Ferdinand, King of Bohemia, ordered the expulsion of the Baptists in
Moravia, and sent a military force to carry the order into effect.
Their property was seized, and all the indulgence they could obtain
was liberty to carry away their movables. They withdrew into the
forests, and there lived as they could, worshipped God, and
possessed their souls in patience. Hutter exhorted and comforted
them. Be ye thankful unto God,” he said, that ye are counted worthy
to suffer persecutions and cruel exile for His name.
King Edward issues a commission to Archbishop "to search after all
Baptists", and under that condition the celebrated Joan of Kent, who
was a Baptist, was burnt on May 2nd. Several others shared the same
fate (Baptist Children's Magazine and Youth's Missionary Repository,
Vol. III, p.102, 1853).
In the seventeenth year of Elizabeth's reign, a congregation of them
(Baptists) was found without (outside) Aldgate, London, of whom some
were banished, twenty-seven were imprisoned, and two were burnt to
death in Smithfield. John Fox, the celebrated author of Book of
Martyrs, penned a most eloquent letter to the Queen on their behalf;
but in vain (Baptist Children's Magazine and Youth's Missionary
Repository, Vol. III, p.103, 1853).
A royal proclamation was issued, in which it was ordained that all
Baptists, and other heretics, should leave the land; but they seemed
to gather fortitude, for some formed themselves into separate
societies (Baptist Children's Magazine and Youth's Missionary
Repository, Vol. III, p.104, 1853).