George van Parris

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

George van Parris (died 1551) was a Dutch Arian, who was burnt at the stake in London by his fellow Protestants.[1]

George van Parris was a member of the Stranger's Church congregation, and his excommunication and subsequent burning were done with the agreement of the pastor of the congregation, John Lasco. Sponsor of the congregation, King Edward VI, in his diary records "A certain Arian, of the strangers, a Dutchman, being excommunicated by the congregation, was, after long disputation, condemned to the fire."


He was said to have been born in Flanders; but is also described by Robert Wallace as of "Mentz" in the Grand Duchy of Hesse. He was a surgeon, and the law of 1531 enabled foreign surgeons in England to enjoy a larger liberty of opinion than native surgeons enjoyed. He became naturalised 29 October 1550, and was a member for a time of the Dutch Church in Austin Friars, London.[2]

After the death of Joan Bocher, who had denied the humanity of Christ, moves were taken against the spread of unitarian opinions. A commission was issued on 18 January 1551, and Van Parris, having been arrested, was formally examined on 6 April. The Dutch church excommunicated him, and on 7 April he was condemned. His judges included Thomas Cranmer, Nicholas Ridley, and Miles Coverdale; and his offence was the denial of the divinity of Christ. Edward VI, in his Journal; Van Parris knew little or no English, and Coverdale acted as his interpreter. A man of upright life, efforts were made to secure a pardon for him. He was, however, burnt, on 25 April 1551, in Smithfield.[2]


  1. ^ Andrew Pettegree, 'Parris, George van (d. 1551)', first published 2004, 615 words George van Parris complete biography Oxford DNB subscription
  2. ^ a b  "Parris, George van". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900. 

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain"Parris, George van". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900.