Georg Grünwald, of Kitzbühel, Austria, was an Anabaptist martyr. The Hutterian chronicles relate: "In 1530 Brother Georg Grünwald, a cobbler, a servant of the Lord Jesus, very zealous in God, was captured at Kufstein on the Inn for the sake of divine truth, sentenced to death, and burned at the stake. . . . This Grünwald wrote the hymn that is known in almost all countries, 'Kommt her zu mir, spricht Gottes Sohn.'" The only other information we have about him is in connection with the Anabaptists in Kitzbühel, where the Anabaptists found a strong following in the absence of the feudal lords. Kitzbühel was at that time a benefice of the archbishopric of Salzburg. When secular and church authorities began to interfere, they found plenty of work. On 5 May 1528, 200 Anabaptists were investigated. The severest penalties struck the impenitent, and many of them moved away, many leaving their families behind. Among these was Grünwald, who had been made preacher. In September 1529 he was at Lackstatt in Bavaria. The authorities of Rattenstein and Kufstein seized Grünwald, and executed him. He thus, as several old manuscripts say, witnessed with his blood that which he had preached with his mouth. The above-mentioned song, together with the oldest melodies, is found in Böhme's Altdeutsches Liederbuch (1677, No. 636) and Wackernagel's Das Deutsche Kirchenlied III, 128 and 1252, with all the versions of the poem as found in hymnals of the Lutherans and the Reformed; it is also found in many Anabaptist manuscripts.
Beck, Josef. Die Geschichts-Bücher der Wiedertäufer in Oesterreich-Ungarn. Vienna, 1883; reprinted Nieuwkoop: De Graaf, 1967.
Braght, Thieleman J. van. Het Bloedigh Tooneel of Martelaers Spiegel der Doopsgesinde of Weereloose Christenen, Die om 't getuygenis van Jesus haren Salighmaker geleden hebben ende gedood zijn van Christi tijd of tot desen tijd toe. Den Tweeden Druk. Amsterdam: Hieronymus Sweerts, …, 1685: II, 31.
Braght, Thieleman J. van. The Bloody Theatre or Martyrs' Mirror of the Defenseless Christians Who Baptized Only upon Confession of Faith and Who Suffered and Died for the Testimony of Jesus Their Saviour . . . to the Year A.D. 1660. Scottdale, PA: Herald Press, 1951: 438. Available online at:.
Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe; Schneider, 1913-1967: II, 195 f.
Loserth, Johann. Der Anabaptismus in Tirol. Vienna: F. Tempsky, 1892: 48.
Monatsschrift für Gottesdienst und kirchliche Kunst 6 (1912): 197 and Archiv für Reformationsgeschichte 9 (1911-12): 368.
Wolkan, Rudolf. Geschicht-Buch der Hutterischen Brüder. Macleod, AB, and Vienna, 1923: 48.
Wolkan, Rudolf. Die Lieder der Wiedertäufer. Berlin, 1903. Reprinted Nieuwkoop: B. De Graaf, 1965: 17, 94.
Zieglschmid, A. J. F. Die älteste Chronik der Hutterischen Brüder: Ein Sprachdenkmal aus frühneuhochdeutscher Zeit. Ithaca: Cayuga Press, 1943: 67.
Cite This Article
Loserth, Johann. "Grünwald, Georg (d. 1530)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1956. Web. 13 Mar 2014. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Gr%C3%BCnwald,_Georg_(d._1530)&oldid=81524.
Loserth, Johann. (1956). Grünwald, Georg (d. 1530). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 13 March 2014, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Gr%C3%BCnwald,_Georg_(d._1530)&oldid=81524.
Herald Press website.
©1996-2014 by the Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. All rights reserved.