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date: 11 April 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter analyzes Reformation events in the Swiss Confederation as local manifestations of pan-European movements of religious change. After setting the early emergence of strong evangelical and radical movements for reform in the political and cultural context of the Confederation—a distinctive polity within the Holy Roman Empire—the article traces a trajectory from early reform movements triggered by Ulrich Zwingli’s preaching through a period of political and social settlements from the 1530s to 1560s. The specific settlements reached in Switzerland, notably the Second Religious Peace of Kappel (1531) in turn required the region’s inhabitants to re-imagine their social, cultural and political lives for a world with multiple rival Christian confessions.

Keywords: Switzerland, Zwingli, Anabaptist, Kappel, bi-confessional, parity, confessional cultures

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