Michael Servetus


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physician and anti-Trinitarian writer. In 1531 he published a treatise attacking the current formulation of the doctrine of the Trinity; it shocked his Protestant friends. After studying medicine, in 1542 he was appointed physician to the Abp. of Vienne. He entered into correspondence with J. Calvin in 1546, sending him the manuscript of his main work, Christianismi Restitutio, which was to appear anonymously in 1553. In this he not only rejected the traditional doctrine of the Trinity but developed unorthodox views on the Incarnation. With Calvin's collaboration, Servetus' authorship was denounced to the Inquisition. He was imprisoned but escaped to Geneva; here he was arrested and burnt as a heretic nearby. This event gave rise to heated controversy among Protestants as to whether heretics should be condemned to death.

Subjects: Early Modern History (1500 to 1700) — Religion.

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