Bohemian Brethren

From BiblePortal Wikipedia

Charles Buck Theological Dictionary [1]

A sect of Christian reformers which sprung up in Bohemia in the year 1467. They treated the pope and cardinals as antichrist, and the church of Rome as the whore spoken of in the Revelations. They rejected the sacraments of the Romish church, and chose laymen for their ministers. They held the Scriptures to be the only rule of faith, and rejected the popish ceremonies in the celebration of the mass; nor did they make use of any other prayer than the Lord's prayer. They consecrated leavened bread. They allowed no adoration but of Jesus Christ in the communion. The rebaptized all such as joined themselves to their congregation. They abhorred the worship of saints and images, prayers for the dead, celibacies, vows, and fasts; and kept none of the festivals but Christmas, Easter, and Whitsuntide. In 1503 they were accused by the Catholics to king Ladislaus II., who published an edict against them, forbidding them to hold any meetings, either privately or publicly. When Luther declared himself against the church of Rome, the Bohemian brethren endeavoured to join his party. At first, that reformer showed a great aversion to them; but, the Bohemians sending their deputies to him in 1535, with a full account of their doctrines, he acknowledged that they were a society of Christians whose doctrine came nearest to the purity of the Gospel. This sect published another confession of faith in 1535, in which they renounced anabaptism, which they at first practiced: upon which a union was concluded with the Lutherans, and afterwards with the Zuinglians, whose opinions from thenceforth they continued to follow.

Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary [2]

a sect of heretics, according to the church of Rome; but, in truth, a race of early reformers, who preceded Luther. At first they were charged with so many heresies, that the great reformer was shy of them; but, upon receiving from themselves an account of their tenets, in 1522, he readily acknowledged them as brethren, and received them into communion. Some time after this, they were driven by persecution from their native country, and entered into communion with the Swiss church, as reformed by Zuinglius; and from thence sprang the church of the United Brethren.

The Nuttall Encyclopedia [3]

A fraternity of an extreme sect of the Hussites, organised as United Brethren in 1455; broken up in the Thirty Years' War, met in secret, and were invited, under the name of Moravians or Herrnhuters, by Count Zinzendorf to settle on his estate.