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Davidjorists, the followers of David Joris, must have been very numerous in the Netherlands. In 1539 a group of Davidjorist Anabaptists were put to death at Delft, where David Joris himself had lived and been an elder. In this town followers of David Joris were still found in 1544 and even in 1596 traces of Davidjorism existed here. Elsewhere Davidjorism was also spread widely. In 1587 it was said that in the province of Overijssel the followers of David Joris were rapidly increasing. They lasted until the seventeenth century.

Some martyrs, though included in van Braght's Martyrs' Mirror, were Davidjorists, for example, Anneken Jans, executed in 1539, and Maria and Ursula van Beckum, executed in 1544. In 1544 Jurriaen Ketel, an ardent disciple of David Joris, who had edited his books, was put to death at Deventer. It seems that the Davidjorists were very active during this time, for in many records mention is made of their activity. In those records they are often called Davidjorists or Batenburgers, as for example the notorious Münsterite leader Cornelis Appelman. The identification of Davidjorists with Batenburgers is, however, wrong. Davidjorists, like David Joris himself, were averse to violence; the Batenburgers were not. The principles of the Davidjorists were the same as those of their leader; they were not loyal to the strict principles of Christian discipleship, which often resulted in suffering and martyrdom, and avoided "the oppression and affliction because of the Word of the Lord." As Menno Simons summarizes, they tolerated dissembling with the world in order to live safely. The accusation that they were as a group libertines and guilty of sexual immorality has not been proved, though some Davidjorists confessed to horrible debauches, and though there are a few cases of conjugal disloyalty among the Davidjorists.


Brandt, Gerhard. Historie der Reformatie in en ontrent de Nederlanden. 1677: 134.

Doopsgezinde Bijdragen (1911): 40. 

Hoop Scheffer, Jacob Gijsbert de. Inventaris der Archiefstukken berustende bij de Vereenigde Doopsgezinde Gemeente to Amsterdam, 2 vols. Amsterdam: Uitgegeven en ten geschenke aangeboden door den Kerkeraad dier Gemeente, 1883-1884: I, Nos. 264-65, 267, 271, 277, 310, 443.

Kühler, Wilhelmus Johannes. Geschiedenis der Nederlandsche Doopsgezinden in de Zestiende Eeuw. Haarlem: H.D. Tjeenk Willink, 1932: I, 219-229.

Pijper, Fredrick. Nederlandsch archief voor kerkgeschiedenis. 's-Gravenhage: Martinus Nijhoff, 1908-1910. 1903: II, 272.

Visscher, H. and L. A. van Langeraad. Biographisch Woordenboek von Protestantsche Godgeleerden in Nederland.  The Hague, 1903-: I, 310 f.

Author(s) Nanne van der Zijpp
Date Published 1956

Cite This Article

MLA style

Zijpp, Nanne van der. "Davidjorists." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1956. Web. 30 May 2023. https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Davidjorists&oldid=129539.

APA style

Zijpp, Nanne van der. (1956). Davidjorists. Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 30 May 2023, from https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Davidjorists&oldid=129539.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 2, p. 19. All rights reserved.

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