Jan Hus: A Forerunner to Martin Luther?

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Jan Hus: A Forerunner to Martin Luther?

<p>In the early 15th century, Hus rose to international prominence due to his preaching at the Bethlehem Chapel in Prague. Influenced by the controversial teachings of English theologian John Wyclif,

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In the early 15th century, Hus rose to international prominence due to his preaching at the Bethlehem Chapel in Prague. Influenced by the controversial teachings of English theologian John Wyclif, Hus attracted the ire of the Roman Catholic Church for his denunciations of the moral laxity of the clergy, and his criticism of practices such as simony (buying positions in the Church) and indulgences (selling certificates of forgiveness of sins). But who was the real Jan Hus? Was he really a forerunner to Luther? Or was he a Czech nationalist, a social revolutionary, and a martyr for freedom of speech?


SUGGESTED READING

  • Fudge, Thomas A., Jan Hus: Religious Reform and Social Revolution in Bohemia, International Library of Historical Studies, Book 73 (London, England & New York, NY, USA: I. B. Tauris, 2010).


COURSE OUTLINE

  • Introduction of Christianity to Moravia in the 9th century AD.
  • Social, political, and theological milieu of the early 15th century AD.
  • Career and teaching of Jan Hus.
  • Council of Constance (1414-1418): purpose and outcome.
  • Reasons for the trial and condemnation of Hus for heresy.
  • Was Hus justly condemned? Who is the real Jan Hus?


PLANNED LEARNING OUTCOMES
By the end of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Understand Hus’s teaching and the reasons for his trial and condemnation.
  2. Appreciate the extent to which Hus has been misrepresented by many interpreters.
  3. Comprehend the importance of Hus for the development of European democracy.