Blandrata, Giorgio

views updated


Physician, lay leader in the anti-Trinitarian Minor Church of Poland and of the Unitarian Church of Transylvania; b. Saluzzo (Piedmont) 1515; d. Gyulafehérvár c. 1588 or 1590. Blandrata (Biandrata) studied in Pavia and became court physician abroad. Returning to Italy, he came under the theological influence of the equivocally anti-Trinitarian jurisconsult Matteo Gribaldi and fled from the Inquisition in 1556, becoming an elder in the Italian Reformed Congregation of Geneva. After coming into conflict with Calvin on the doctrine of the Trinity, he left for Zurich (1558), going on to Poland to become an influential elder and formulator of doctrine and church law in the synods of the Minor Church.

From 1563 he was physician to the king of Transylvania, John Sigismund, whom, with the Reformed court preacher Franz dÁvid, he won over to anti-Trinitarianism. When Dávid moved on to the still more extreme position of not praying to Christ (nonadorantism), Blandrata urged Faustus Socinus to come to his aid, lest the nascent Unitarian Church in Transylvania, by further innovations, imperil its status as one of the four recognized religions of the religiously and ethnically pluralistic realm. Blandrata, under Stephen bÁthory, lost interest in the Unitarian Church and associated with the Jesuits of the court, but he died a Unitarian.

Bibliography: i. rÉvÉsz, Magyar református egyhaztorténet, v. 1 (15201608) (Debrecen 1938); abr. Eng. tr. g. a. f. knight, History of the Hungarian Church (Washington 1956). e. m. wilbur, A History of Unitarianism, 2 v. (Cambridge, Mass. 194552).

[g. h. williams]

About this article

Blandrata, Giorgio

Updated About content Print Article