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Francis Lambert

1486-1530. Reformer of Hesse. Born at Avignon of noble parents, he entered the Franciscan Order and became a noted preacher. Influenced by Luther's writings from 1520 and by Zwingli from 1522, he left the order and traveled under an alias to Wittenberg to study the Reformation in its original setting. Here he received a state pension and translated Protestant works into French and Italian. After a short and troubled stay in Metz and Strasbourg he was called to Hesse by the Landgrave Philip* in 1526. Though distrusted by the Lutherans as a Frenchman and a supporter of Zwingli's sacramentalism, he took a leading part in the promotion of the Reformation in Hesse, and from 1527 was professor of exegesis at the new University of Marburg. He wrote a number of commentaries on the Prophets, the Writings, and the Apocalypse, and some controversial pamphlets, notably an attack on Erasmus.