Pietro Martire Vermigli
Copyright The Columbia University PressThe Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. The Columbia University Press
Vermigli, Pietro Martire
Pietro Martire Vermigli (pyĕ´trō märtē´rā vārmē´lyē), 1500–1562, Italian Protestant reformer, also known as Peter Martyr. He joined the Augustinian canons and in that order received high honors as a scholar and preacher. At Naples he was influenced by Juan de Valdés and, accused of heresy, was forbidden to preach for some time. In 1541 he was appointed prior at Lucca, where he became the center of a group known as the Lucchese Reformers. Vermigli began to publicize Protestant views in such doctrinal matters as the interpretation of the Eucharist solely as a spiritual remembrance. Threatened with arrest, he fled to Pisa, to Switzerland, and then to Strasbourg. At the invitation of Archbishop Cranmer, he went to England, where he was professor at Oxford from 1547 until the restoration of Roman Catholicism by Mary I in 1553. While there he had some influence on episcopal changes and was consulted about the revision of the Book of Common Prayer. Vermigli returned to Strasbourg as professor; he then went to Zürich, where he was professor of theology from 1556 until his death. He was a Protestant representative at the unsuccessful attempt at Catholic-Protestant reconciliation at the Colloquy of Poissy (1561). Vermigli's works were widely read and were influential in developing a Protestant theology.