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Charles Buck Theological Dictionary [1]

See Bohemian Brethren

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature [2]

a section of the Hussites, the other being known as the Calixtines. The Taborites were so called from the fortified city of Tabor, erected on a mountain, in the circle of Bechin, in Bohemia, which had been consecrated by the field-preaching of Huss. The gentle and pious mind of that martyr never could have anticipated, far less approved, the terrible revenge Which his Bohemian adherents took upon the emperor, the empire, and the clergy, in one of the most dreadful and bloody wars ever known. The Hussites commenced their vengeance after the death of king Wenceslaus, Aug. 16, 1419, by the destruction of the convents and churches, on which occasions many of the priests and monks were murdered. John Ziska, a Bohemian knight, formed a numerous, well-mounted, and disciplined army, which built Tabor, as above described, and rendered it an impregnable depot and place of defense. He was called Ziska of the Cup, because one great point for which the Hussites contended was the use of the cup by the laity in the sacrament. At his death, in 1424, the immense mass of people whom he had collected fell to pieces; but under Procopius, who succeeded Ziska as general, the Hussites again rallied, and gained decisive victories over the imperial armies in 1427 and 1431.. After this, as all parties were desirous of coming to terms of peace, the Council of Basle interposed, and a compromise was made; but hostilities again broke out in 1434, when the Taborites gained a complete victory. Owing, however, to the treachery of Sigismund, whom they had aided in ascending the throne, they were much weakened; and from this time they abstained from warfare, and maintained their disputes with the Catholics only in the deliberations of the diet and in theological controversial writings, by means of which their creed acquired a purity and completeness that made it similar in many respects to the Protestant confessions of the 16th century. Encroachments were gradually made on their religious freedom, and they continued to suffer until they gradually merged into the Bohemian Brethren (q.). See Bezezyia, in Ludwig, Reliq. MSS. 6:142, 186; Eneas Sylvius, Hist. Bohem. epist. 130.