John III, Duke of Jülich, Cleve, and Berg 1511-1539, (Johann III von Jülich-Kleve-Berg), born 10 November 1490, died 6 February 1539, was a vacillating prince, who especially in the regulation of religious matters was led by his advisers. In 1529 he gave the delegates from his cities strict orders to carry out the imperial mandate, which commanded that all "Luthryanen" who ventured to baptize anew should be "without hesitation punished, burned, beheaded, or drowned" (Rembert). In 1533 he had a church inspection (Cornelius) made, which was to pay particular attention to the sects, inquiring into the residence and activities of "corner preachers," time, place, and organization of their meetings, and the nature of their books. The results revealed that there were Anabaptists in many places, and strict measures were undertaken to combat them. On 14 March 1534 John issued an edict against the Anabaptists, ordering that "the leaders and inciters be brought to suitable punishment; . . . those who persist in their error be executed with fire, and those who recant, with the sword; but those simple ones who have been misled and will take upon themselves penitence and public confession shall receive grace" (Monatshefte).
Cornelius, C.A. Geschichte des Münsterischen Aufruhrs I. Leipzig, 1855: 216-248.
Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. II, 428.
Monatshefte fur rheinische Kirchengeschichte (1917): 161 ff.
Redlich, Otto R. Julich-Bergische Kirchenpolitik am Ausgange des Mittelalters und in der Reformationszeit, 2 vols. Publikationen der Gesellschaft für rheinische Geschichtskunde XXVIII. Bonn, 1907-1911.
Rembert, Karl. Die "Wiedertäufer" im Herzogtum Jülich. Berlin: R. Gaertners Verlagsbuchhandlung, 1899: 19.
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Neff, Christian. "John III, Duke of Jülich, Cleve and Berg (1490-1539)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1957. Web. 20 Apr 2014. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=John_III,_Duke_of_J%C3%BClich,_Cleve_and_Berg_(1490-1539)&oldid=102088.
Neff, Christian. (1957). John III, Duke of Jülich, Cleve and Berg (1490-1539). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 20 April 2014, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=John_III,_Duke_of_J%C3%BClich,_Cleve_and_Berg_(1490-1539)&oldid=102088.
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