The Hussites.

by Daniel Russ on December 8, 2018

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The Hussite movement began in the Bohemia, western Czechoslovakia – spread quickly at the hands or shall we say at the mouth of Jan Hus. It spread from Moravia to Hungary and no further. It was a blip in history if not an interesting one. The reason why this movement was important was that it midwifed the Protestant Reformation.

Much of its defeat was military in nature. Hussites fought well. Hussite Jan Ziska fought successfully against a number of Crusading forces unleased on Hus supporters by the Pope himself. They fought in the Hussite Wars from 1420 to 1434. Jan Ziska had never led anyone into battle, but with as few 25,000 men he defeated armies much larger. He also innovated and armed many of his soldiers with hand cannons, precursors to the handgun. Ziska also pioneered the use of a laager- war wagons curated to form a chain of wagons into a defensive line. These were effective against more wealthy leaders who had large aureate cavalry formations. What is now Czech Republic remained Hussite for 200 years. When Catholic Rome grew to power again, they crushed the Hussites.

Hus believed that when a Pope or a Bishop took up the sword and fought on the battlefield, they had no authority to assert a war. Hus preach that a true follower of the scripture would pray for their enemies and bless those that curse him. Followers of Hus denounced the Roman Catholic Church and burnt the Papal bulls. The Church, they believed, had surrendered authority to power grabbing, not the love of Jesus. They considered the current Catholic power regime to be fraudulent, to be adulterers and followers of Simon Magnus, who in the Apostles promoted the notion that one could pay Jesus’ followers to promote Jesus’ agenda.

Hus was a strong advocate for the Czechs and he was influenced by John Wycliff, the critic of the Catholic Church that acted much the same way the current US Congress acts: licentious reprobates who line their pockets and grab power. Wycliff’s followers grew quite radical, rejecting any addition to Biblical history that wasn’t explicitly stated in scripture. For example, the veneration of the saints, anointing the sick and indulgences.

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