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The Protestant Reformation. Essential Question How did the Protestant Reformation impact the European continent and lead to conflicts within and against the Roman Catholic Church? SSWH9 The student will analyze change and continuity in the Renaissance and Reformation.

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The protestant reformation

The Protestant Reformation

Essential Question

How did the Protestant Reformation impact the European continent and lead to conflicts within and against the Roman Catholic Church?

SSWH9 The student will analyze change and continuity in the Renaissance and Reformation.

Analyze the impact of the Protestant Reformation; include the ideas of Martin Luther and John Calvin.

Describe the Counter Reformation at the Council of Trent and the role of the Jesuits.

Describe the English Reformation and the role of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I.

Setting the stage
Setting the Stage

  • Roman Catholic Church(10th Century)

    • Dominated religious life in Northern and Western Europe

    • Still, the church does NOT have universal approval, as over the centuries, people begin to criticize the practices of the church

      • Church leaders too interested in worldly pursuits (gaining wealth/political power)

      • Prompted by ONE MAN, the criticisms would lead to REBELLION!!

Causes of the reformation
Causes of the Reformation

Brainstorm: What are some of the aspects of the Church from the Middle Ages/Renaissance that could cause rebellion against the church?

Luther Starts

the Reformation

LIST FOUR PROBLEMS that existed in the Catholic Church during the time of Martin Luther that he

and others criticized and wished to reform:

Criticism of the catholic church
Criticism of the Catholic Church

  • Corrupt Leadership

    • Popes who ruled during the Renaissance patronized the arts, spent extravagantly on personal pleasure, and fought wars.

    • Many popes were too busy with worldly affairs to take care of the spiritual duties

      (Pope Alexander VI: admitted to fathering many children)

    • Many kings/princes challenged the pope’s authority

  • Issues in the Lower Clergy

    • Many priests were poorly educated - they could scarcely read,let alone TEACH people!!

    • Some broke priestly vows by marrying

    • Some drank to excess or gambled

  • Calls for reform met with harsh punishment

Martin luther
Martin Luther

  • Who was Martin Luther?

    • 1483-1546

    • A monk and a teacher of scripture at the University of Wittenberg

    • All he wanted to be was a good Christian, not lead a religious revolution

    • He wrote a document called the 95 Thesis which launched a movement against the Catholic Church

Martin luther1
Martin Luther

Luther went against the actions of a friar Johann Tetzel (who rebuilt St Paul’s Cathedral with money from indulgences)

INDULGENCES:a pardon that released a sinner from performing the penalty that a priest imposed for sins (buying their way into heaven!!)

95 THESES:formal statements attacking these “pardon-merchants”

Martin luther2
Martin Luther

  • October 31, 1517 - Luther posted these statements on the door of the castle church in Wittenberg and invited other scholars to debate him!

  • Luther’s Actions begin the REFORMATION (movement for religious reform, leading to the creation of churches NOT under the pope’s authority)

Luther s teachings three main ideas
Luther’s TeachingsThree Main Ideas

  • People could win salvation only by faith in God’s gift of forgiveness (the Church taught that faith and “good works” were needed for salvation)

  • All Church teachings should be clearly based on the words of the Bible (both the pope and Church traditions were false authorities)

  • All people with faith are equal (therefore, people did not need priests to interpret the Bible for them)

Luther Starts the Reformation


Luther attacks a monk named Tetzel for selling indulgences.

In 1517, Luther posts

his 95 Theses on the

church doors at


Luther’s words are printed and spread all over Germany and attract many followers.

Above: The church doors

At Luther’s church in Wittenberg. Other pics, Wittenberg, 2002.

PP Design of T. Loessin; Akins High School

Reaction to luther
Reaction to Luther

  • 1520 – Pope Leo X – excommunicated Martin Luther from the Catholic Church. (or cut him off from the Church and salvation)

  • 1521 – Holy Roman Emperor Charles V summoned Luther to the Diet of Worms to stand trial for heresy (going against the church). Luther was asked to denounce his beliefs, but Martin Luther refused.

Reaction to luther1
Reaction to Luther

  • Edict of Worms – Charles V declares Luther an Outlaw and a Heretic.

    • No one could feed or house Martin Luther within the Holy Roman Empire.

    • Prince Frederick the Wise of Saxony hid Luther in his castle for a year.

    • 1522 – Luther returns to Wittenberg and saw that his teachings in practice -Lutheranism

Response to luther
Response to Luther

  • The Pope’s Threat

    • 1520 - Pope Leo X issued a decree threatening Luther with excommunication unless he took back his statements

    • Instead, his students at Wittenberg gathered around a bonfire and cheered as he threw the pope’s decree into the fire

    • Leo excommunicated Luther

Response to luther1
Response to Luther

  • The Emperor’s Opposition

    • Holy Roman Emperor Charles V (devout Catholic) called Luther to the town of Worms in 1521 to stand trial, where Luther refused to recant his teachings

    • Charles issued an imperial order (The Edict of Worms) that declared Luther a heretic, and that no one was to give him food or shelter; all Luther’s books were also burned

    • However, Prince Frederick the Wise of Saxony disobeys the emperor’s orders and gives Luther shelter and food (this is where Luther translates the New Testament into German)

Response to luther2
Response to Luther

  • Lutherans: a religious group who broke away from the Catholic Church completely to follow Luther’s ideas and teachings

  • The Peasant’s Revolt

    • 1524 - German peasants, excited by reformers’ talk of Christian freedom, demanded an end to serfdom

    • Bands of angry peasants went about the countryside raiding monasteries, pillaging, and burning

    • Luther horrified - wrote a pamphlet to the princes of Germany not to show rebels any mercy

    • Princes respond, crushing the rebellion by killing around 100,000 people

    • Many peasants rejected Luther's religious leadership

Luther Starts the Reformation;


2. In 1520, Luther

refuses to recant at

Worms and is


In 1521, he is declared

an outlaw and heretic.

The Pope realizes Luther is a threat to papal authority.

The H.R.E., is a devout Catholic, and also feels threatened by the uproar.

Luther is sheltered by the prince of Saxony where he translates Bible into German.

When he returns to Wittenberg, his followers have become a separate religious group – the Lutherans.

Charles V

Holy Roman Emperor



Prince of Saxony


protection to Luther

Martin Luther

Pope Leo X

Germany at war
Germany at War

  • Many northern German princes supported Lutheranism (some for selfish reasons)

    • Saw teachings as good excuse to seize Church property and assert independence from Charles V

  • 1529 - German princes who remained loyal to the pope agreed to join forces against Luther’s ideas

    • The princes who supported Luther signed a protest against the agreement

    • These protesting princes came to be known as PROTESTANTS!!

  • PROTESTANT:would eventually be applied to Christians who belonged to non-Catholic churches

Germany at war1
Germany at War

  • 1547 - Charles V defeats the Protestant princes, but is unable to force them back to the Catholic Church

    • Tired of war, he calls princes (both Catholic and Protestant) to assemble in the city of Augsburg

  • PEACE OF AUGSBURG: religious settlement in which each prince would decide the religion of his state

Luther Starts the Reformation


Excited by Luther’s talk about “religious freedom,” peasants revolt hoping for

social / economic freedom (an end to serfdom).

When the armies of German princes (at Luther’s request) brutally crush this revolt (killing thousands), previous supporters now turn against Luther.

The German

peasants revolt

in 1524.

Religious Wars begin between

Catholics and Protestants.

John calvin
John Calvin

  • Grew up to study law and philosophy at the University of Paris

  • 1530’s - was influenced by French followers of Luther

  • While Calvinism is seen to be strict and grim, Calvin taught that people should enjoy God’s gifts

    • it should not be “forbidden to laugh, or to enjoy food, or to add new possessions to old”

John calvin1
John Calvin

  • 1536 - published Institutes of the Christian Religion

    • Expressed ideas about God, salvation, and human nature

    • Summary of Protestant Theology (religious beliefs)

    • Believed men and women are sinful by nature

    • Humans cannot earn salvation, and God chooses a very few people to save

    • Idea of PREDESTINATION (God knowing since the beginning of time who will be saved…the “elect”)

  • CALVINISM: religion based on Calvin’s teachings

John calvin s ideal
John Calvin’s Ideal

Believed that the ideal government was a THEOCRACY (government controlled by religious leaders)

NOTE: Many Protestant churches today trace their roots to Calvin (though many have softened his strict teachings over the years)


Rejecting the Trinity

Rejecting the eternal Sonship of Christ

Rejecting infant Baptism

Endorsing Astrology

John calvin2
John Calvin

John Calvin's theology was in most respects similar to Luther's. Both reformers gave primary importance to the authority of the Bible and to the idea of predestination. This portrait of John Calvin is attributed to the German artist Hans Holbein the Younger (ca. 1497-1543). It was painted around 1538, when the 29-year-old reformer was at the beginning of his career in Geneva, where he stayed to participate in the reform of the city, and then remained for the rest of his life. (H. Henry Meeter Center for Calvin Studies, Calvin College and Calvin Theological Semnary)

Calvinist worship
Calvinist worship

This painting, the Temple of Lyons,  was attributed to Jean Perrissin (ca. 1565). The temple was constructed in 1564 on land near the town hall and paid for by the Protestant community of Lyons. This picture of a simple Calvinist service was probably brought to Geneva by a refugee, for the temple disappeared after the revocation of the Edict of Nantes. Although Calvin's followers believed in equality and elected officials administered the church, here men and women are segregated. Beside the pulpit an hourglass hangs to time the preacher's sermon.

Pierre virer preaching before calvin
Pierre Virer preaching before Calvin

Another great reformer, the Swiss Pierre Viret (1511-71) exercised his ministry at Orbe, Payerne, and Lausanne before taking refuge in Geneva. In this Limoges enamel plaque, Viret preaches before Calvin and others on the fourth petition of the Lord's Prayer, "Give us this day our daily bread." (Louvre/R.M.N./Art Resource, NY)

Legacy of john calvin
Legacy of John Calvin

John Knox

  • Admiring visitor of Calvin’s Geneva (Scottish preacher)

  • Created a Scottish theocracy where each community church was governed by a group of laymen called elders or presbyters

  • PRESBYTERIANSfollowers of Knox

Legacy of john calvin1
Legacy of John Calvin

  • Huguenots: Calvin’s followers in France

    • Hatred between French Catholics and Huguenots would frequently lead to violence

    • Most violent clash (August 24, 1572) - Catholic feast of St. Bartholomew’s Day

      • Catholics began hunting for Huguenots and murdering them

      • Massacred spread to other cities and lasted six months (almost 12,000 Huguenots believed to be killed)

Other protestant reformers
Other Protestant Reformers

  • Ulrich Zwingli

    • Swiss priest

    • Strongly influenced by Christian humanism

  • City Council in Zurich supported Zwingli’s Reformation:

    • Stated that the Bible was the sole authority

    • Condemned corruption of Roman Catholic Church

    • relics and images removed from churches

    • Traditional mass was replaced by scripture readings, prayer, and sermons

    • Music was eliminated from church services

    • clerical celibacy and pope’s authority abolished.

  • 1531 war erupted between the Swiss Protestant regions and Swill Catholic regions.

    • Zwingli killed on battlefield

Ulrich zwingli

Ulrich Zwingli

& The Swiss Reformation

Other protestant reformers1
Other Protestant Reformers

As Christians interpret the Bible for themselves, new Protestant groups form over differences in beliefs

  • Anabaptists: “baptize again”

    • Baptized only those who were old enough to decide to be Christian on their own

    • Those baptized as children would need to be baptized again as adults

    • Church and state should be separate (they refused to fight in wars)

    • Shared their possessions with one another

    • Refused to swear oaths and bear arms

  • Anabaptists were persecuted by both Catholics and Protestants, but survived and became forerunners of the Mennonites and the Amish (influenced Quakers and Baptists - split from the Anglican Church)

England becomes protestant
England Becomes Protestant

  • King Henry VIII: In the Beginning…

    • In 1521, Henry VIII writes an attack on Luther’s ideas, leading the pope to give Henry the title “Defender of the Faith”

  • Political Need:Henry VIII needed a male heir in order to prevent a civil war that took place when his own father had taken over the throne

Henry VIII becomes king of England in 1509

King henry viii wants a son
King Henry VIII Wants a SON!!

Catherine of Aragon

  • Had a daughter Mary - but no woman had successfully claimed the English throne

  • 1527: Henry VIII convinced Catherine would have no more children, and thus wanted to divorce her and marry a younger woman

  • ANNUL: setting aside the marriage as long as proof could be found it was never legal in the first place

The reformation parliament
The Reformation Parliament

  • 1527: Henry VIII asks Pope Clement VII for annulment of marriage to Catherine of Aragon, but the pope refused

    • The pope did not wish to offend Catherine’s powerful nephew, the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V

    • Henry VIII solved the problem himself - in 1529, he called parliament into session to pass a set of laws that ended the pope’s power in England

  • This Parliament was called the REFORMATION PARLIAMENT!!

The 1534 act of supremacy
The 1534 Act of Supremacy

  • Passed by Parliament, calling on people to take an oath recognizing King Henry VIII as the head of the Church of England…NOT the POPE!

  • Treasons Act 1534 was passed along with the Act of Supremacy, making it high treason, punishable by death, to refuse to acknowledge the King as the head of the Church of England (i.e. Sir Thomas More)

    By the way…Henry VIII was excommunicated from the Catholic Church…in case you’re wondering…

Holbein portrait of henry viii
Holbein, portrait of Henry VIII

This portrait of Henry VIII, painted by Hans Holbein the Younger in 1540, is the best known of all of Henry's portraits. Although the king is painted half-length, Holbein has successfully captured Henry's regal bearing, finely detailed dress, the impact of his 6′2" frame, and his imperturbable, aloof expression.

The story of henry s wives
The Story of Henry’s Wives…

  • Anne Boleyn (Second Wife)

  • One living daughter - Elizabeth - and had several false pregnancies and miscarriages, one of a male child at 15 weeks

  • Her inability to bear Henry a male heir was seen as betrayal, and she was eventually imprisoned in the Tower of London, then beheaded on the morning of May 19, 1536 at 8:00am

  • Jane Seymour (Third Wife)

  • The only Queen to bear a living male heir - Edward VI - but difficulties caused her to die in childbirth

  • Henry VIII considered Jane his “true wife” and would be buried beside her at his death in on January 28. 1547

The story of henry s wives1
The Story of Henry’s Wives…

  • Anne of Cleaves (4th Wife)

  • When Henry wished to marry again to secure his succession, Anne Cleves was suggested

  • Holbein the Younger was told to paint her portrait, which with complimentary descriptions given by courtiers, led to Henry’s agreement to marry her

  • When she arrived, Henry found her unattractive, and never consummated the marriage, leading to an annulment of the marriage

  • Catherine Howard (5th Wife)

  • Married Henry VIII on July 28, 1540

  • Was said to have had an affair with a courtier she had been informally engaged to even before Henry

  • When found out, she was executed on February 13, 1542 (she was between the ages of 17 and 22 at the time of her death)

The story of henry s wives2
The Story of Henry’s Wives…

  • Catherine Parr (6th Wife)

  • Wealthy widow Henry VIII married in 1543

  • Helped reconcile Henry with his first two daughters, the Princess Mary and the Lady Elizabeth

  • 1544, an Act of Parliament put the daughters back in the line of succession after Edward, Prince of Wales

So as the saying goes…

"King Henry the Eighth, to six wives he was wedded: One died, one survived, two divorced, two beheaded.”

Misleading: Henry never divorced from any of his wives (his marriages to them were annulled…and four marriages ended in annulments!)

Henry viii on death bed
Henry VIII on death-bed

In this allegorical painting by an unknown artist, Henry VIII, on his deathbed, points to his heir, Edward, who is surrounded by Protestant worthies, as the wave of the future. The pope collapses, monks flee, and through the window iconoclasts knock down statues, symbolizing terror and superstition. Since the new order lacked broad popular support, propagandistic paintings like this  were meant to sway public opinion. (Reproduced by courtesy of the Trustees, National Portrait Gallery, London)

Consequences of henry s changes
Consequences of Henry’s Changes

  • Edward VI - became king at 9 years old

    • Being too young to rule, was guided by adult advisors (devout Protestants that introduced Protestant reforms to the English Church)

    • Reigned for 6 years before he died (constantly sick)

  • Mary - daughter of Catherine of Aragon

    • Took the throne in 1553

    • Catholic - returned the English Church to the pope

    • Had many Protestants executed (thus, known as “Bloody Mary”)

    • Died in 1558

Queen elizabeth i
Queen Elizabeth I

Restored Protestantism

  • 1559 - Parliament follows her wishes and set up the Church of England, or ANGLICAN CHURCH, with Elizabeth as the head

  • Decided to establish a state church that moderate Catholics and moderate Protestants might both accept

  • Brought a level of religious peace to England

Queen Elizabeth I

“The Most Dread Sovereign Lady”

Queen elizabeth i1

Religion still remained a problem

Protestants wanted further reforms

Catholics tried to overthrow her and replace her with her cousin, Catholic Mary Queen of Scots

Also faced threats from Philip II, the Catholic King of Spain

Money Problems

Late 1500’s - England begins to think about an American colony to build a new source of income

Would strengthen England economically, but did not enrich Elizabeth directly - led to to bitter arguments with Parliament

Queen Elizabeth I

England and the church


England and the Church

In 1528, King Henry VIII asked the pope to annul, or cancel, his marriage.

The pope refused Henry’s request.

Henry took the Church from the pope’s control and created the Church of England.

Protestant King Edward VI brought Protestant reforms to England.

Queen Mary wanted to restore Catholicism to England. She had English Protestants burned at the stake.

Queen Elizabeth forged a compromise between

Protestants and Catholics.

England becomes Protestant

Henry’s Six Wives :

Daughter will be “Bloody” Mary I



Catherine of Aragon



Daughter Elizabeth I



Anne Boleyn



Son Edward VI



King Henry VIII of England


He broke England’s ties to the Roman Catholic Church for political and personal reasons, not religious ones like Luther.

Henry needed a male heir and his Catholic Spanish Queen

Catherine of Aragon

was not able to produce one.

Jane Seymour



Anne of Cleves



Kathryn Howard



Kathrine Parr



England becomes Protestant -


English Parliament approves the Act of Supremacy in 1534.

Henry VIII needed to annul his marriage to Catherine so he could remarry in order to get a male heir.

The Pope would not allow.

So Henry calls Parliament into session and passes the Act of Supremacy.

Henry closes all English monasteries; seizes their lands and other Catholic holdings in England;

thereby increasing his royal power, as well as his own personal wealth.

The Act of Supremacy made the ruler of England the official head of the Church of England – no longer the Catholic Pope.

Today, the Act of Supremacy remains in effect –

Queen Elizabeth II of England is officially the head

of the Anglican Church.

PP Design of T. Loessin; Akins High School

England becomes Protestant -


Parliament establishes the Anglican Church

in 1559.

Henry’s daughter Mary had tried to restore Catholicism in England after her father’s break with the Pope.

Elizabeth I restores Protestantism and asks Parliament to create a national Church of England.

The Anglican church becomes the only legal church in England and people were required to attend. Elizabeth tried to create a church that both moderate Catholics and Protestants could accept.

After everything her father went through trying to get a male heir –

even executing her own mother – it is ironic then that his daughter Elizabeth would turn out to be one of the most politically skilled

and well-remembered monarchs in England’s history.

She was a master at diplomacy with other European powers

and at achieving compromises in her own kingdom

in order to maintain peace among squabbling religious groups.

Elizabeth I

The “Virgin” Queen

Ruled England for 45 years!

PP Design of T. Loessin; Akins High School

England becomes Protestant


Philip II of Spain had been married to

Mary I of England. A loyal Catholic,

The Spanish Armada

tries to invade England.

Elizabeth I

gives a

rallying speech

to British

troops instilling confidence in her ability to rule as a woman.

Bad weather and English “fire ships” destroy the

Spanish Armada.

The “Protestant” Wind ?

he did not think Elizabeth was a legitimate heir to the English throne.

He also believes Elizabeth is condoning her English navy’s piracy of his Spanish galleys.

When England sides with the Dutch against Philip’s rule in the Netherlands

and Elizabeth has her cousin Mary (Queen of Scots) executed for treason, Philip decides to invade England.

PP Design of T. Loessin; Akins High School

The Legacy of the Reformation

  • What were some effects of the

  • Reformation?

  • Religion no longer unites Europe.

  • Church power declines; while the

  • power of kings increased –

  • paving the way for unified

  • nation-states.

  • More people questioned the

  • teachings of the Church they had

  • always simply been indoctrinated

  • into and began to pursue instead

  • their own independent thinking,

  • scientific study and other

  • intellectual interests.