Jan Vervest (d. 1558)
Jan Vervest (or van der Veste), an Anabaptist martyr, died in prison at Bruges, Belgium on 24 August 1558. He was a native of Ghent, where he apparently made contacts with the Anabaptists in 1551. In this year because of persecution he fled with his family to the Netherlands, living at Amsterdam and Dordrecht. Being a rhetorician, he had no opportunity to earn his living in the Netherlands. So he returned to Ghent, where he was baptized by Gillis van Aken in 1553. When a new persecution arose Jan and his family moved to Bruges. Here he regularly attended the meetings of the congregation; during one of these meetings he was apprehended together with his wife Livine Verwee and two other Mennonites, Jacob de Swarte and Hans van den Broucke. He refused to recant, even though he became dangerously ill, and died in prison. His wife also died in prison (September 1558). They had eight children. The oldest of them, a son of 18, Lievin, who had broken with the Catholic Church, was persuaded by the inquisitor to return penitently to the Church. The second, Hansken, a son of 15, refused to become a Catholic. He succeeded in escaping from the Gravensteen prison. Even little Betken of 13 was tried and forced to give particulars about the life and friends of her parents.
Verheyden, A. L. E. Het Brugsche Martyrologium (12 October 1527-7 Augustus 1573). Brussels, : 42, No. 25.
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Waterloo, Ontario, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 3, p. 84. All rights reserved. For information on ordering the encyclopedia visit the Herald Press website.
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MLA style: van der Zijpp, Nanne. "Jan Vervest (d. 1558)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1957. Web. 20 June 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/jan_vervest_d._1558.
APA style: van der Zijpp, Nanne. (1957). Jan Vervest (d. 1558). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 20 June 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/jan_vervest_d._1558.