John Huss

Martyrdom

At the invitation of Holy Roman Emperor Sigismund, who granted him a safe-conduct, Huss presented himself in 1414 at the Council of Constance to justify his views. The council refused to recognize his safe-conduct, and Huss was imprisoned and tried as a heretic. His friend Jerome of Prague was also seized and put on trial. Huss denied some of the beliefs attributed to him; others he refused to modify unless convinced of their error. The council condemned his writings and sentenced him to be burned at the stake, where he died heroically. By his death he became a national hero. He was declared a martyr by the Univ. of Prague, and the modern Czech Protestant church claims to continue his tradition.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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