Reformation or Reformatio: The Case of Muscovite Russia

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Title: Reformation or Reformatio: The Case of Muscovite Russia
Creators: Howlett, Jana R
Keywords: Early Protestantism in Eastern Europe
Lurʹe, I︠A︡. S. (I︠A︡kov Solomonovich), 1921-1996
Klibanov, A. I. (Aleksandr Ilʹich)
Issue Date: 1987-08
Publisher: William R. Veder, Vakgroep Slavistiek, Katholieke Universiteit, Postbus 9103, 6500 HD Nijmegen (Holland)
Citation: Polata Knigopisnaia: an Information Bulletin Devoted to the Study of Early Slavic Books, Texts and Literatures, v16 (August 1987), 141-151
Abstract: The history of early European Protestantism is inseparable from the history of the Catholic Church. The movement "reformatio" or reform within the existing framework, preceded the Reformation when Protestant churches finally split away from the church of Rome. In the lands controlled by the grand princes of Moscow anti-Catholicism ‒ and later anti-Protestantism ‒ was part of the official ideology of both church and state. Yet, judging from histories of Russian thought in this period, the Reformation did not pass Russia by. According to a theory first argued in the works of la. S. Lur'e and expanded by A. I. Klibanov, outbreaks of heresy in Russia's major cities between the fourteenth and sixteenth centuries were not sporadic, but links in a continuous chain of “opposition to the church and therefore the whole of the ruling class.” This was Russia’s own Reformation movement, which expressed the discontent of Russia's poorer gentry and nascent bourgeoisie and found expression in ideas parallel to, though independent of, Reformation thought in the West. The view that Russia had a Reformation movement was and remains influential though it has been the subject of debate. This paper aims to contribute to this debate by reconsidering some of the arguments. Polata 16:141.
Description: Paper presented at a colloquium on Early Protestantism in Eastern Europe initially conceived by Anne Pennington for the Medieval Study Group.
ISSN: 0165-1862
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