The Persecution of Innocenece Essay

This essay has a total of 1502 words and 7 pages.

The Persecution of Innocenece



The Persecution of Innocence

This essay will examine in detail the wrong doings of society upon the Hutterite people.
It will also show how the Hutterian Brethren’s agricultural expertise has been beneficial
to the world. It will explain many accounts of torture and hardship endured by these
people. The Hutterian brotherhood has been wrongly persecuted because of their religion
and their way of life, for many years.

The first written account of the Anabaptist movement dates as far back as January 21,
1525. On this evening several young men attempted to baptize one another. They did this
upon confession of the faith. These young men had all planned to study classics at
University but they quickly turned to the Bible. The young men mentioned as founders of
Anabaptism were Conrad Grebel, Felix Manz, and Jorg Blaurock. All of these men were
well-respected scholars.1

The newfound Anabaptist movement seemed to spread rapidly throughout Switzerland, southern
Germany, Tirol, and Moravia. A German chronicler described the rapid growth in these
words, “Anabaptism spread so quickly that their teachings soon covered, as it were, the
land. They soon gained a large following and baptized many thousands, drawing to
themselves many sincere souls who had a zeal for god.” Because of this astounding
increase in the number of Anabaptists church and state officials resolved to extirpate the
Anabaptists. This is where all the death and torture began for these innocent people.2

Only eight days after the first Anabaptist baptismal service, there was a continual flow
of mandates issued against them. There were over two hundred edicts proclaimed against
the Anabaptists in the sixteenth century, one hundred of which were issued in the first
twenty years. Such officials as territorial rulers, bishops and the emperor issued the
mandates. The mandates were not only directed against the Anabaptists themselves but
against anyone who helped or aided them in any way.3

These mandates were a serious matter, penalties outlined in the mandates ranged from
expulsion to death. Some of the punishments described include burning holes in cheeks,
branding foreheads with the sign of the devil, cutting off the fingers or the tongue, and
stretching on the rack. The years to follow brought about a period of brutality and
suffering for the Anabaptists.4

In order to catch the Anabaptists or other parties guilty of aiding them, there were house
to house searches. People were questioned about being an Anabaptist, and also about
possible interactions with Anabaptists. The cruelest measures taken to seek out the
Anabaptists occurred in southern Germany. German soldiers were sent out after the
Anabaptists in large numbers, reaching up to one thousand. The soldiers were given orders
to exterminate the Anabaptists by any one of several means including fire, water, sword,
or hanging. The soldiers were to act immediately and without giving a trial. More brutal
actions were taken against the Anabaptist leaders in an attempt to deter them from
recruiting more people. For example a great preacher, Hans Hut was made to endure “alle
Qualen der Holle” (all the agonies of hell).5

There are many accounts of extreme brutality these people faced for many years.
This particular account is very brief and simplistic but it does get the point across.


Some were tortured terribly on the rack that they were torn apart and died. Some were
burned to ashes and powder as heretics. Some were roasted on beams, some torn with red
hot irons. Some were penned up in houses and all burned together. Some were hung on
trees, others executed with the sword, and chopped up in pieces. Many had gags put in
their mouths and their tongues tied so they could not speak and testify to their faith,
and were thus led to the stake. What they had confessed with the mouth they testified
with their blood. One group of women were cast into the water and then taken out again
and asked if they would recant. Seeing that they were steadfast, their executioners cast
them again into the water and drowned them. So terribly Satan raged through his children.
Many were promised great gifts and riches should they recant. Others were entreated to
utter just a single swear word, even a slight profanity, and they would be released. Many
were talked to in wonderful ways, often day and night. They were argued with, with great
Continues for 4 more pages >>




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