Sulzer, Simon

Sulzer, Simon an avowed adherent and advocate of the Lutheran view of the Lord's supper in Switzerland during the period of the Reformation. He was born Sept. 22, 1508-the illegitimate child of a provost of Interlachen. After previous vicissitudes, he was recommended by Berthold Haller (q.v.) to the Council of Berne, and was thus enabled to pursue his studies at the expense of the public treasury, which he did at Basle and Strasburg. He subsequently became a teacher of ancient languages, and was employed in establishing schools throughout the canton of Berne. When Haller died he was deputed to Strasburg to negotiate the call of a successor. He took zealous part with the Strasburg theologians in their attempts at-mediation, and even (in 1538) visited Saxony and had an interview with Luther. Having been won over to the position of Luther, Sulzer steadily persevered in defending the Lutheran view of the sacrament; at first in Berne, as professor of dialectics and rhetoric and subsequently of theology, as well as in the pulpit; and afterwards, beginning in 1548, at Basle, where he became pastor of St. Peter's, and in 1552 professor of Hebrew. In 1553 he became the successor of Myconius in the cathedral, and chief pastor of Basle, and with these dignities he united in 1554 a professorship of theology. In 1563 he acquired the theological doctorate; and he filled, in addition, the position of, superintendent of Roten under the margrave Charles of Baden.

Sulzer entertained the bold project of inducing the Church of Basle to subscribe to the Form of Concord, and to refuse the acceptance of the second Helvetic Confession of 1566. SEE HELVETIC CONFESSION. He succeeded in causing the omission of explanatory notes from future publications of the first Helvetic Confession (of 1534), and in limiting its influence. Sulzer's views on the sacrament are given in the confession which he instigated the burgomaster of Brinn to issue in 1578 (see Hagenbach, Gesch. dersten Basler Confession). He was also successful in persuading the authorities to permit the use of the organ in the churches and on holidays, and the ringing of the so-called "pope's bell" (a gift from Felix V). He died June 22, 1585. The archives of the Church of Basle and Sulzer's family papers fell into the hands of his heirs, and were partially lost. His successor, J. J. Grynaeus, promoted the Reformed theology, but Sulzer's arrangements with regard to organ and bell still continue in force.

See Herzog, Athen. Raur. p. 26, where a catalogue of Sulzer's writings may be found; Hundeshagen, Conflikte des Zwinglianismus, Lutherthums u. Calvinismus (Berne, 1842), p. 105 sq.; Kirchhofer, Berth. Haller (Basle, 1827), Hagenbach, Die theolog. Schule Basel's, etc. (1860); Tholuck, in Gesch. d. akadem. Lebens im 17ten Jahrh. p. 321 sq. —Herzog, Real- Encyklop. s.v.

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