« Blandina, Saint Blandrata, Georgius Blasphemy »

Blandrata, Georgius

BLANDRATA, GEORGIUS: Italian Unitarian; b. about 1515 at Saluzzo (17 miles n.w. of Coni), Piedmont; d. after 1585. He migrated to Poland, where he became physician to Sigismund I, then went to Transylvania and served the widow of Jan Zapolya in a like capacity. Having returned to Italy, he went to Pavia, and became an object of suspicion on account of his radical utterances on theology, but escaped the Inquisition by going to Geneva. There he debated with Martinenghi, the preacher of the Italian congregation, also with Calvin, especially concerning the doctrine of the Trinity, which he regarded as endangering the doctrine of the unity of God. He regarded speculation on the relation of the three persons as unnecessary (F. Trechsel, Protestantische Antitrinitarier, 4 parts, Bern, 1841–42, ii, 467; CR, xvii, 2871). Calvin replied in his Responsum ad quæstiones G. Blandratæ (Geneva, 1559). As some members of the congregation sided with Blandrata, Calvin had a confession signed which condemned the antitrinitarian doctrine. Blandrata went to Zurich, then again to Poland, where he was received by Prince Radziwill and took part in several synods (cf. H. Dalton, Lasciana, Berlin, 1898, iv), but Calvin's repeated warnings against him, stigmatizing him as "a foul pest," prevented any lasting activity. In 1563 Blandrata went again to Transylvania and openly professed Unitarianism, being assisted by Prince Stephen Bathori, afterward king of Poland. Faustus Socinus accused Blandrata of having separated from his coreligionists out of avarice; at any rate, tired of the conflict, he ceased to take part in public affairs.

K. Benrath.

Bibliography: Many of the letters of Blandrata are printed in CR, vols. xvii–xxi. Sources for a biography are: C. Sandius, Bibliotheca antitrinitariorum, Freistadt, 1684; S. Libienski, Historia reformationis Polonicæ, ib. 1685. Consult V. Malacarne, Commentario delle opere e della vicendi di G. Biandrata, Padua, 1814; O. Fock, Der Socinianismus, Kiel, 1847; and J. H. Allen, Historical Sketch of the Unitarian Movement, New York, 1894.

« Blandina, Saint Blandrata, Georgius Blasphemy »
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