(2,741 words)

1. Theology

1.1. Terminology and geographical spread

The term Calvinism was originally coined in a pejorative sense by J. Westphal, a Hamburg pastor and disciple of Luther. Besides the work and impact of the Geneva Reformer John Calvin (1509-1564), he extended it to include the influence of the Zürich Reformation movement led by Ulrich Zwingli (1484-1531) and his followers. Thus Calvinist can be used as a synonym of Reformed, for example in the legal language of the Empire after the Peace of W…

Cite this page
Koch, Ernst and Pfister, Ulrich, “Calvinism”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Executive editor of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy. Consulted online on 20 March 2018 <>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20160907

▲   Back to top   ▲