Servetus, Michael (1553)

The book that was meant to be burned with its author.
Michael Servetus, Christanismi Restitutio [The Restoration of Christianity]. Vienna Allobrogum, 1553. The Spanish theologian Michael Servetus (1511-1533) was a radical thinker who defied orthodox doctrine on the Trinity and on baptism. In this book he dismissed the idea of predestination as held by leading reformer John Calvin, whom he enraged further in a series of letters. Servetus unwisely paid a visit to Calvin at Geneva, who promptly had him seized and condemned to death. He was burned alive at the stake with what was believed to be the last copy of this book chained to his leg. This is one of only three surviving copies, and appears to be the very one which Servetus had sent to Calvin. The first few pages were torn out by Calvin in fury and have been replaced by manuscript. This copy was presented in 1695 by Alexander Cunningham in memory of his late pupil Lord George Douglas of Queensberry.
Servetus, Michael

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