Joriaen Simonsz (d. 1557)

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Burning of Jurriaen Simonsz, Clement Dircks, and Marie Joris, Haarlem, 1557.
Engraving by Jan Luiken in Martyrs' Mirror, v. 2, p. 179 of Dutch edition.
Source: Rijksmuseum.

Joriaen Simonsz, an Anabaptist martyr, was burned at the stake at Haarlem, Dutch province of North Holland, on 26 April 1557, together with Clement Dirksz. Mary Joris, who had been imprisoned with these two men, died in prison. Joriaen was a native of "Hallmen uyt Vrieslandt," which obviously means Hallum. According to Bibliographie, Joriaen was a weaver, but van Braght (Martyrs' Mirror) calls him a bookseller, which is more likely. For it is related that after Joriaen had been executed the officials also intended to burn his books. But this plan could not be carried out because the assembled crowd eagerly took possession of the books. Joriaen and Clement died faithfully as may be seen from two songs composed to celebrate their death: "Hoort vrienden al, hier in dit aertsche dal" (Hear all ye friends, here in this earthly dale), inserted in the Lietboecxken van den Offer des Heeren of 1563 and other Dutch hymnbooks, and "Hoert toe, gy Christen scharen" (Hear ye Christian hosts), found in the Nieu Liedenboeck of 1562. The oldest edition of the Dutch martyr book Het Offer des Heeren of 1562 contains a "testament" and three short letters and a song, composed by this martyr. The song begins "O Vaders, wilt ghy eenen schat, U kinderen nalaten" (O fathers, if you would leave a treasure to your children). Joriaen also composed at least two other songs, both found in Veelderhande Liedekens of 1566: "Hoort vrienden altesamen, ghy die daer vreest den Heer" (Hear ye friends all together, who fear the Lord) and "Hoort doch nu al te samen, die te Haerlem binnen woont" (Now hear ye all who live in Haarlem).


Dit Boec wort genoemt: Het Offer des Heeren, om het inhout van sommighe opgheofferde kinderen Godts . . . N.p., 1570: 257-267, 586-591. Available in full electronic text at:

Braght, Thieleman J. van. Het Bloedigh Tooneel of Martelaers Spiegel der Doops-gesinde 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: Part II, 178.

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: 563. Available online at:

Haeghen, Ferdinand van der., Thomas Arnold and R. Vanden Berghe. Bibliographie des Martyrologes Protestants Néerlandais. Receuils. The Hague: M. Nijhoff, 1890: v. II, 767.

Gorter's Doopsgezinde Lectuur II (1856): 336-350.

Wackernagel, Philipp. Lieder der niederlandischen Reformierten aus der Zeit der Verfolgung im 16. Jahrhundert. Frankfurt: Hender & Zimmer, 1867. Reprinted Nieuwkoop: B. de Graaf, 1965: 133.

Wolkan, Rudolf. Die Lieder der Wiedertäufer. Berlin, 1903. Reprinted Nieuwkoop : B. De Graaf, 1965: 63, 78.

Author(s) Nanne van der Zijpp
Date Published 1957

Cite This Article

MLA style

Zijpp, Nanne van der. "Joriaen Simonsz (d. 1557)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1957. Web. 17 Jan 2019.

APA style

Zijpp, Nanne van der. (1957). Joriaen Simonsz (d. 1557). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 17 January 2019, from


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 3, pp. 122-123. All rights reserved.

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