ProtestantReformationReviewTitle.gif (14491 bytes)

Main Themes:

1.  Why do the ideas of the Protestant reformers reflect the ideas of the Christian humanists?
2.  What were the basic tenants of each of the major Protestant faiths? How did these faiths differ
     with Catholicism?
3.  Why was there a stronger reformation in Germany and England than in the rest of Europe?
4.  What were the long-term political and social effects of the Reformation on Europe?

I. The Reformation was the outgrowth of past ideas:



RABELAIS --> condemned various forms of corruption within the Church;  priests no longer models of virtue;   celibacy vow disregarded;  condemned simony. LUTHER --> condemned corruption in the Church;  believed priests should practice what they preached.

SIR THOMAS MORE --> expressed idea of communal living;  no class distinctions;  no unemployment;  no competition;  everyone living and working together;  defied
Henry VIII; Catholic martyr.

JOHN CALVIN --> people already predestined for salvation;  success on earth determined place in heaven;  hard work and no leisure time were signs of success.

ERASMUS --> believed true religion was a matter of inward sincerity and pious devotion rather than an outward symbol of ceremony and ritual;  Scriptures are the guide to life;  wanted only moral reforms, not ritualistic.

LUTHER --> the Bible was a way of life;  did not believe in pompous Church ceremonies;  clergy not important;  everyone is their own priest;   one should be able to talk to God directly.

II. Causes of the Reformation:
        A. dissatisfaction with wealth of Church; poor people believing bishops were of the wealthy
            oppressive class.
                -- much financial abuse in Church --> simony, benefices; 30% of land in Eur. under
                   Church control.
        B. corruption in Church leadership (ex. Alexander VI, Rodrigo Borgia)
        C. decline in papal influence --> nationalistic churches springing up.
                -- "Babylonian Captivity"
                -- Great Schism
                -- Henry VIII of England's defiance of papal power.
                -- conciliarism
        D. Martin Luther's 95 Theses.
        E. the middle class wished to run their religious affairs as they handled their new businesses.
                -- they found Church bureaucracies still too medieval and rigid (view on usury, e.g.)
                -- Calvinist church came largely from these ideas (
Max Weber's thesis -- "Protestant
                   Work Ethic")
        F. Great Peasant Revolt of 1520.

III. The Reformation worked in Northern Europe because:
        A. monarchies resented the Church for not paying any taxes to the nation, but collecting taxes
            from citizens belonging to the Church and sending the money to Rome.
        B. Luther appealed to nationalistic feelings in the German states
                -- he denounced the Pope for involvement in politics as well as religion.
                -- he backed the nobility in the Peasant Revolt.
        C. The upper class saw an opportunity to confiscate church property.
        D. Printing press in Germany spread Luther's ideas.
                -- Bibles were made accessible to the populous in the vernacular.
                -- individual interpretation of Sacred Scriptures.

IV. The Reformation did NOT work in Italy because?:
        A. The Pope was in Rome and was Italian (use of Spanish Inquisition).
        B. The Catholic Church was a source of wealth for Italy.
        C. The Italian Renaissance made Italy prosperous. (money in art--a large part was
        D. Italian universities made the questioning of theological principles unheard of.
        E. Germany was the home of Luther and of many new, more theologically "liberal" universities.

V. Lutheranism:
        A. Salvation by faith alone.
        B. No need for sacraments (except Baptism, Eucharist, & Confirmation) or good works.
        C. Only true authority is the Bible.
        D. Each person must deal with God directly -- each person is his/her own priest.
        E. Consubstantiation.
        F. No difference between the laity and the clergy.
        G. Kept bishops for administrative purposes.
        H. Refusal to recognize the authority of the Pope.
         I. Married clergy.
        J. Religious services in the vernacular.
        K. The Church is subordinate to and the agent of civil authority.

VI. Calvinism:
        A. Pessimistic about man; optimistic about God.
        B. Predestination ("the elect").
        C. Strict interpretation of the Bible. (literal)
        D. Rejected Papal authority.
        E. Scorned pleasures as the idle activities which allowed the devil to influence one's actions;
            no smoking, drinking, gambling, blaspheming, dancing, music in religious services.
        F. Only "sacraments" were Baptism and the Eucharist (were only a symbol of God's presence).
        G. Consubstantiation.
        H. Church elders administered to the congregation (presbyters).
         I. Too much leisure time leads to sin.
        J. Puritans in England; Huguenots in France; Presbyterians in Scotland.

VII. Anglicanism:
        A. Henry VIII of England resented the church for not granting him a divorce of Catherine of Aragon.
                -- he wanted church lands and property to add to his treasury.
        B. the monarch of England now became the head of the Anglican Church as well.
        C. Book of Common Prayer (Edward VI)
        D. one had to be Anglican to hold a government job until the late 19c.

VIII. Social Significance of the Reformation:
        A. Basic and lasting changes in education and the image and role of women.
        B. It implemented the educational ideas of humanism. (study original sources in the original

IX. After Effects of the Reformation:
        A. Catholic "Counter"-Reformation
Council of Trent --> internal reforms and a clear listing of Church doctrines.
                -- a conservative response to the spread of Protestantism.
                -- "Men are to be changed by religion, not change it!."
                -- reformed many of the previous abuses in the Church.
                -- the Inquisition was resurrected (esp. strong in Spain --> expulsion of the Moors {Moriscos}
                   back to North Africa and the Jews {Maranos} to Italy and the Middle East).
                -- new reform orders (Theatines, Capuchins, Ursulines, Modern Devotion, Oratorians).
                -- mysticism movement (St. Theresa of Avila, St. John of the Cross).
                -- The Index of Forbidden Books.
        B. Religious Wars of the late 16c & Thirty Years' War (1618-1648)
                -- SEE TREATIES PAGE for Peace of Augsburg (1555), Edict of Nantes (1598), and
                   Treaty of Westphalia (1648).



95 Thesis
cujus regio, ejus religio
"Bloody Mary"
"Virgin Queen"
Act of Supremacy
John Knox
Protestant Union
Catholic League