Jerome of Prague

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Jerome of Prague,

c.1370–1416, Bohemian religious reformer. During his studies at Prague and at Oxford, Jerome was influenced by the doctrinal views of John WyclifWyclif, Wycliffe, Wickliffe, or Wiclif, John
, c.1328–1384, English religious reformer. A Yorkshireman by birth, Wyclif studied and taught theology and philosophy at Oxford.
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. He continued to study and travel widely abroad, in constant conflict with the authorities. In 1407 he returned to Prague, where he joined forces with John HussHuss, John
, Czech Jan Hus , 1369?–1415, Czech religious reformer. Early Life

Of peasant origin, he was born in Husinec, Bohemia (from which his name is derived). He studied theology at the Univ. of Prague, was ordained a priest c.
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 in advocating Bohemian control of the Univ. of Prague and in opposing the papal bulls against Lancelot of Naples. When Huss was summoned before the Council of Constance (see Constance, Council ofConstance, Council of,
1414–18, council of the Roman Catholic Church, some of its sessions being reckoned as the 16th ecumenical council. It was summoned to end the Great Schism (see Schism, Great), in which three men were claiming to be pope—Gregory XII (since
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), Jerome went there to defend him in 1415. Arrested while attempting to escape from the hostile churchmen, Jerome was brought back and imprisoned. After the burning of Huss, Jerome recanted his defenses of Huss and Wyclif, but his sincerity was doubted and he was not released. In 1416 he withdrew his recantation and was burned as a heretic.

Jerome of Prague


Born circa 1380; died May 30, 1416, in Constance. Czech reformer, scholar, orator, friend and associate of Jan Hus.

Jerome was educated at the University of Prague. In 1399 he was at Oxford, where he became an advocate of Wycliffe’s teaching. In 1405–06, Jerome delivered lectures at the universities of Paris, Heidelberg, and Cologne. In 1407 he returned to Prague. In his sermons and disputes, Jerome was harshly critical of abuses by the Catholic clergy, and he called for action to be taken against the monks and prelates. He fought against German dominance in Bohemia. In 1412, together with Jan Hus, Jerome spoke out against the sale of indulgences. In 1412–13 he journeyed through Poland, Lithuania, and the western regions of the Russian state and in 1414 returned to Prague. Upon learning of Hus’ arrest, he traveled to Constance, but he was captured and thrown into prison. Under pressure from an ecclesiastical council, Jerome recanted his own views. However, at the council’s public session he rejected this recantation and declared himself to be an adherent of Hus. Condemned to be burned at the stake as a heretic, Jerome died courageously.


Ozolin, L.I. Iz istorii gusitskogo revoliutsionnogo dvizheniia. Saratov, 1962.


References in periodicals archive ?
The articles devoted to the final theme focus on issues of philosophical realism at Prague, especially the problem of universals, the influence of Wycliffe upon both John Hus and Jerome of Prague, and listings of sources from Prague library collections relating to these matters.
Among the many contributions they make derive from Smahel's prosopographical approach to institutional and intellectual issues at the university, his attention to Jerome of Prague, who has been traditionally overshadowed by attention to Hus, his careful and detailed description of sources, and his important finding list of works that remain to be studied--especially those that bear on the nature of philosophical realism at the university in this period.