Goldschmidt, Heinrich (d. 1529)

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In spite of the severity of the persecution to which the Anabaptists were subjected in the late 1520s, the movement continued its remarkable growth, as Luther once said, "through the glow of the living and the courage of those dying in fire and water," so that the populace and even the executioners marveled. The zeal of the  Anabaptists was quite strong in the district of Sterzing (formerly Austria, now Italy), where citizens, peasants, and squires were baptized, and the prisons were never empty. Here on 1 February 1528 a number of Anabaptists were pardoned upon recanting, having first been placed on the whipping post and beaten with rods. In addition they had to repeat their recantation on three successive Sundays before the assembled congregation in the church, and to pay the costs of their trial. Heinrich Goldschmidt was one of the Sterzing prisoners, but none of the sources give any further information about him. It is assumed, however, that he was an important person, for he was excluded from the pardon mentioned above, "to make some distinction in the treatment of persons" (Innsbruck Statthaltereiarchiv, Causa Domini II, p. 163 f.). He is probably identical with the Goldschmidt mentioned in a letter written by the Innsbruck government 7 December 1527, to the Landrichter at Freundberg, "This Goldschmidt recently came to Schwaz and escaped from there with others. The spring of 1529 (Goldschmidt died on 6 April) brought him the bloody rose his heart longed for."


Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. II, 134.

Loserth, Johann. Der Anabaptismus in Tirol. Vienna: F. Tempsky, 1892: II, 51.

Author(s) Johann Loserth
Date Published 1956

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Loserth, Johann. "Goldschmidt, Heinrich (d. 1529)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1956. Web. 4 Jul 2020.,_Heinrich_(d._1529)&oldid=145266.

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Loserth, Johann. (1956). Goldschmidt, Heinrich (d. 1529). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 4 July 2020, from,_Heinrich_(d._1529)&oldid=145266.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 3, pp. 538-539. All rights reserved.

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