Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

Get access

(748 words)

The term déchristianisation (German Dechristianisierung) emerged in the late 18th century in the context of religious and political debates on the French Revolution (1789). It came into use there as a slogan denoting the initially spontaneous violence of groups of petite bourgeoisie against the Roman Catholic Church and its clergy, the sacking of church property, and the pillaging of churches, other ecclesiastical buildings, and art treasures (Iconoclasm). Supporters of the Revolution also used the term to describe both the break with church tradition, su…

Cite this page
Graf, Friedrich Wilhelm, “Dechristianization”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 03 February 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_018187>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20170626

▲   Back to top   ▲