Busschaert, Hans Bouwens (16th century)
Hans Bouwens Busschaert (also called Hans de Weber) was born in Flanders or Brabant, and worked chiefly in Belgium. In 1555 Menno ordained him as a Mennonite elder. Menno later related this incident about him: One day a mayor in Flanders halted the coach in which he was traveling and asked for Busschaert. Busschaert then asked his fellow travelers whether Busschaert was in the coach, and they, not knowing him, answered negatively. Then he said to the mayor, "They say he is not here."
In the disputes between the Frisian and Flemish 1566-1568 Busschaert played a leading part. He joined the Flemish, and he and Jacob Pieters van der Meulen were their leaders. First he banned the bekommerde Mennisten, the followers of Paulus Bussemaker. In the dispute which arose in 1586 among the Flemish over the sale of a house and resulted in a division into Flemish and Young Flemish or Huiskoopers and Contra-Huiskoopers, he was one of the leaders in the former group. Finally in 1598 he became involved in a dispute with J. P. van der Meulen concerning a case of bankruptcy, in which each banned the other.
He enjoyed taking part in disputations with the Reformed. A disputation with Adriaen Jeroens in 1566 at Westersouburg (Zeeland) was broken up by the government, and the attendants were dispersed. He also played a part, though minor, in the great disputation at Emden in 1578, where Pieter van Keulen brilliantly saved the honor of the Mennonites. In 1570-1571 he baptized in the Antwerp congregation. In 1571 he was living in Cologne. He traveled much, proclaiming the Gospel and administering communion and baptism. Herman the carpenter, a martyr, stated in his trial that Busschaert had a red beard. -- Vos
Hans Busschaert (Bouwer, or de Wever), a co-elder with Menno Simons, was born at Dadisele (Dudzele) near Brugges, Flanders, Belgium. His special field of activity was Flanders, preaching and baptizing mostly at Gent. In 1566 he was one of the elders called to Harlingen, Dutch province of Friesland, to try to settle the dispute between Frisian and Flemish Mennonites. In 1567, when the separation of the two groups became final, he was in Emden, East Friesland, and took the side of Dirk Philips and the Flemish. In 1568 he was again present when another vain attempt was made to reconcile the parties. -- vdZ
Doopsgezinde Bijdragen (1868): 26; (1893): 12-79; (1908): 12, 14, 63.
Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe; Schneider, 1913-1967: v. I, 304.
Vos, Karel. Menno Simons, 1496-1561, zijn leven en werken en zijne reformatorische denkbeelden. Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1914: 145-147.
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Waterloo, Ontario, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 1, p. 485; v. 4, pp. 648-649. All rights reserved. For information on ordering the encyclopedia visit the Herald Press website.
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MLA style: Vos, Karel and Nanne van der Zijpp. "Busschaert, Hans Bouwens (16th century)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1959. Web. 18 May 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/B866.html.
APA style: Vos, Karel and Nanne van der Zijpp. (1959). Busschaert, Hans Bouwens (16th century). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 18 May 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/B866.html.