Iconoclasms in Narva, Viljandi and Uus-Pärnu

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November 1525

Since autumn 1525 up to the next spring the iconoclasms were held also in three other Estonian cities. These had been taken place already earlier in some Latvian cities such as Volmari and Võnnu.
On 1 November 1525 the iconoclasm took place though in Viljandi: the people pushed into the stronghold church, drove the priest off the pulpit and broke the furniture.

The catholic services in Viljandi stopped for some time, but as the commander there was then a gentle catholic Rupert de Grave, he soon established the old religious arrangement at least on the territory of the stronghold.

Only at the beginning of 1560 when Viljandi went to the hands of the former grandmaster Wilhelm Fürstenberg the reformation was carried out: the Franciscan cloister was liquidated and the holding of catholic services ended.
The plunder of city churches also took place at the same time in Narva, also the Dominicans were driven off the city.
The beginning of the reformation in Uus-Pärnu was cautious and slow: in March 1525 the city took the control over the church properties, but the catholic services continued. On 15 March 1526 the iconoclasm took finally place in Pärnu which was fast silenced by the commander and town council. It seems that thereafter most of the town council and maybe also commander went over to the side of the supporters of the new religion. In Pärnu two religions were friendly existing: even in the middle of 1530s some members of the town council were publicly catholic.


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