Ochino, Bernardino (1487-1567)

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Bernardino Ochino (1487-1567), a Protestant clergyman of Siena, Italy, early entered the Franciscan order and later the Capuchin, whose vicar general he became, and preached with superior success. In 1541 he became acquainted with Waldensian doctrines and in the following year he fled from Italy to Augsburg via Konstanz, Zürich, Geneva, where he stayed three years, and Basel. In Augsburg he was appointed pastor of the Italian congregation. After the defeat of the Schmalkaldian League he again had to flee. By way of Zürich and Basel his path went to London, whither Archbishop Cranmer called him in 1547. For six years he worked here with great blessing. When Edward VI died and Mary Stuart came to the throne, he fled. By way of Strasbourg and Basel he went to Geneva, arriving there on the day of the execution of Michael Servetus (27 October 1553), and won disfavor by expressing his disapproval of the execution. In 1555 he took charge of the newly created Protestant Italian congregation in Zürich. For ten years he served with unwavering faithfulness in addition to great literary activity. In 1563 the council expelled him from the city on the absolutely false charge that he had sponsored polygamy in his book, Die 30 Dialoge. This book was translated into Latin by Sébastian Castellion. Without a home, Bernardino Ochino wandered from country to country. When he was expelled from Kracow in Poland, he turned to Moravia, and at Austerlitz in a Hutterite house he died on 21 January 1567. His books Tragödie, Labyrinthe, and especially his Catechism show some noteworthy echoes of Anabaptist doctrine. Ochino, however, differs from the Mennonites in his antitrinitarianism. His unitarian views made him sincerely welcome among a group of antitrinitarian Italian scholars like Biandrata (Blandrata) and Gentile.


Herzog, J. J. and Albert Hauck, Realencyclopädie für Protestantische Theologie and Kirche. 24 v. 3. ed. Leipzig: J. H. Hinrichs, 1896-1913: v. XIV: 256 ff

Mennonitische Blätter (1893): 27, 47, 58.

Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. III, 290.

Author(s) Christian Neff
Date Published 1959

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MLA style

Neff, Christian. "Ochino, Bernardino (1487-1567)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1959. Web. 18 Nov 2019. https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Ochino,_Bernardino_(1487-1567)&oldid=144513.

APA style

Neff, Christian. (1959). Ochino, Bernardino (1487-1567). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 18 November 2019, from https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Ochino,_Bernardino_(1487-1567)&oldid=144513.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 4, p. 15-16. All rights reserved.

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