Calvin and the Early Reformation 


Those who have a passing knowledge of John Calvin’s theology and reforms in Geneva in the sixteenth century may picture the confident and mature theologian and preacher without appreciating the various events, people, and circumstances that shaped the man. Before there was Protestantism’s first and eminent systematic theologian, there was the French youth, the law student and humanist, the Protestant convert and homeless exile, the reluctant reformer and anguished city leader. Snapshots of the young Calvin create a collage that give a bigger picture to the grey-bearded Protestant reformer. Eleven scholars of early-modern history have joined in this volume to depict the people, movements, politics, education, sympathizers, nemeses, and controversies from which Calvin immerged in his young adulthood.

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Brian C. Brewer, Ph.D. (2003), Drew University, is Professor of Christian Theology at the George W. Truett Theological Seminary, Baylor University, where he teaches historical theology of the Reformation. He is the author of Martin Luther and the Seven Sacraments: A Contemporary Protestant Reappraisal (Baker, 2017) and A Pledge of Love: The Anabaptist Sacramental Theology of Balthasar Hubmaier (Paternoster, 2012).

David M. Whitford, Ph.D. (1999), Boston University, is Professor of Reformation Studies at Baylor University. A senior editor of The Sixteenth Century Journal, he is the author of A Reformation Life (Praeger, 2015) and The Curse of Ham in the Early Modern Era (Ashgate, 2009), and editor of Martin Luther in Context (Cambridge, 2018).
“This splendid volume is a compact, compelling and highly useful resource for understanding Calvin and the early Reformation.”
Donald K. McKim, in: The Journal of Ecclesiastical History, Vol. 72, No. 1 (2021), pp. 170–172.


1 Calvin and the Early Reformation
David M. Whitford

2 Calvin, Erasmus and Humanist Theology
Greta Grace Kroeker

3 The Intellectual, Political, and Legal Milieu in France during the Life of John Calvin
James K. Farge

4 Sixteenth-Century French Legal Education and Calvin’s Legal Education
Christoph Strohm

5 The Meaux Group and John Calvin
Jonathan A. Reid

6 The Sounds and Silence of the Early Reformation in Geneva in Jeanne de Jussie’s Short Chronicle
Carrie F. Klaus

7 Calvin, Farel, Roussel, and the French “Nicodemites”
Michael W. Bruening

8 ‘Those Satanic Anabaptists’: Calvin, Soul Sleep and the Search for an Anabaptist Nemesis
Brian C. Brewer

9 Confessions, Conscience, and Coercion in the Early Calvin
John L. Thompson

10 John Calvin and the First Eucharistic Controversy
Amy Nelson Burnett

11 Calvin on the Early Reformation
Barbara Pitkin

Students and historians of Early Modern History and Reformation Studies; theologians with interest in early Protestant and Reformed theology. Keywords: Calvin, Paris, Francis I, Reformed history, Reformed theology, Humanism, Exile, Calvinism, France, Strasbourg, Geneva.
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