Schmid, Bastl (16th century)

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Bastl Schmid, also called Bastl (Wastl) Anfang, a Hutterite preacher in Moravia, was seized with two companions, Heinrich Schweitzer and Uhl Schuster, on a missionary journey through the canton of Bern, Switzerland, on 15 May 1585. In the first two weeks Bastl was questioned three times by the Reformed clergy. In the fourth week all three were tortured to make them reveal the names of those who had sheltered them. Bastl was threatened with hanging, and even had the noose around his neck. The authorities finally saw that all questioning and torture were futile, and returned them to prison. After 20 weeks in prison, when the council had made preparations for the execution and had given them their "final" meal, popular vote opposed the execution. The council therefore decided to release the prisoners. Heinrich and Uhl were beaten "with rods and burned through the ears with hot irons," and whipped to the border. Then Bastl was released without further penalty, even though he refused to vow never to return to Bern. The three Brethren safely reached the community in Moravia. (See also Wastl Anfang, which this article supplements.)


Beck, Josef. Die Geschichts-Bücher der Wiedertäufer in Oesterreich-Ungarn. Vienna, 1883; reprinted Nieuwkoop: De Graaf, 1967: 295.

Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. IV, 75.

Wolkan, Rudolf. Geschicht-Buch der Hutterischen Brüder. Macleod, AB, and Vienna, 1923.

Zieglschmid, A. J. F. Die älteste Chronik der Hutterischen Brüder: Ein Sprachdenkmal aus frühneuhochdeutscher Zeit. Ithaca: Cayuga Press, 1943: 544 ff.

Author(s) Samuel Geiser
Date Published 1959

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MLA style

Geiser, Samuel. "Schmid, Bastl (16th century)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1959. Web. 19 Feb 2020.,_Bastl_(16th_century)&oldid=144519.

APA style

Geiser, Samuel. (1959). Schmid, Bastl (16th century). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 19 February 2020, from,_Bastl_(16th_century)&oldid=144519.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 4, p. 462. All rights reserved.

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