John Calvin and the Birth of Evangelicalism in the 16th Century

John Calvin was a leader of the Swiss protestant reformation and a pastor of the Evangelical Church of Geneva. Introduction John Calvin (July 10, 1509 – May 27, 1564) was a prominent Christian theologian during the Protestant Reformation and is the namesake of the system of Christian theology called Calvinism. Jean Chauvin (or Cauvin) was[…]

The Beginning of the Reformation in the 16th Century

This movement led to the start of many new Christian churches that broke away from the Catholic Church. Introduction The Reformation began in the early 1500s and lasted into the 1600s. Until then, all Christians in western Europe were Catholics. But even before the Reformation, the Church’s religious and moral authority was starting to weaken.[…]

The Spread and Impact of the Reformation in 16th-Century Europe

The many divisions among Christians led to a series of wars and persecutions. Introduction As Protestantism spread, it branched out in several directions. By the start of the 1600s, there were already many different Christian churches in Europe. Each Protestant denomination had its own beliefs and practices. But all Protestants had much in common. They[…]

The Emergence and Growth of Protestant Calvinism in the 16th and 17th Centuries

Calvinism is known for some notable experiments in Christian theocracy. Introduction Calvinism is a system of Christian theology advanced by John Calvin, a Protestant Reformer in the sixteenth century, and further developed by his followers, associates and admirers. The term also refers to the doctrines and practices of the Reformed churches, of which Calvin was[…]

British Protestants in Catholic Rome during the Grand Tours

The British elite in the 17th century to the 19th century were known to take Grand Tours to visit and learn more about continental Europe. By Sarah Yenesel Introduction In a world where there was no computers, telephones, or quick modes of transportation, it was much more difficult to travel. Only the wealthy could afford[…]

The English Reformation: Tradition and Change

Originally published by Newberry Digital Collections for the Classroom, 09.26.2017, Newberry Library, republished with permission for educational, non-commercial purposes. Introduction The English Reformation was part of a European-wide phenomenon to reform the church which began in 1517 when legend has it that the German monk and theologian Martin Luther nailed 95 theses (propositions for discussion)[…]

Religious Change and Print Culture in the Reformation

The period of the Reformation (roughly 1500-1700) witnessed an unprecedented wave of changes in religion, thought, society, and politics throughout the world. Originally published by Newberry Digital Collections for the Classroom, 09.11.2017, Newberry Library, republished with permission for educational, non-commercial purposes. Introduction When Martin Luther circulated ninety-five theses criticizing various practices of the Roman church[…]

Five of the Most Violent Moments of the Reformation

During the seismic religious changes of the 16th and 17th centuries, atrocities were committed and martyrs were made. It has been 500 years since what is seen as the “start” of the Reformation, when the German monk Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the door of a church in Wittenberg, challenging practices in the[…]