Zwingli, Huldrych biographical name
(born Jan. 1, 1484, Wildhaus in the Toggenburg, Sankt Gallen, Switz.died Oct. 11, 1531, near Kappel) Major reformer in the Protestant Reformation in Switzerland. Educated in Vienna and Basel, he was ordained a priest in 1506. An admirer of Erasmus, he began preaching reformist ideas in Zürich in 1518, shortly after Martin Luther made his break with the church in Rome, and became increasingly active in challenging the ritualism, decadence, and hierarchy of the Roman Catholic church. The main contentions of his 67 Articles (1523) were adopted by most priests in Zürich. As his movement spread, he rejected a number of the basic teachings of the church, declaring that Jesus alone is head of the church, that the mass is an affront to Christ, and that there is no biblical foundation for the intercession of the dead or for purgatory. He also rejected the notions of priestly celibacy, and his teachings on the sacrament of communion brought him into conflict with both Luther and the Catholic church. He was killed in a battle between Protestants and Catholics while serving as an army chaplain.
Zwingli, detail of an oil portrait by Hans Asper, 1531; in the Kunstmuseum Winterthur, Switz.—Courtesy of the Kunstmuseum Winterthur, Switz.; photograph, Schweizerisches Institut für Kunstwissenschaft
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