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Oswald Myconius

1488-1552. Swiss humanist, Reformed minister, and theologian. Born Oswald Geisshäusler at Lucerne, he studied at Basle where he became a humanist friend of Erasmus* (who gave him the name “Myconius”). He taught classics at the canons' school in Zurich from 1516 and was the decisive voice in the call of Ulrich Zwingli* to Zurich as people's priest in 1519. From 1520 to 1523 he taught in Lucerne and Einsiedeln, then returned to Zurich. He quietly but solidly supported Zwingli in the work of reform. Though neither ordained nor possessing an academic degree, when Oecolampadius* died in 1531 he moved to Basle, where in 1532 he became Antistes (chief pastor) and professor of NT at the university, two crucial posts he held until his death. Myconius wrote the first biography of Zwingli and is the principal author of the First Basle Confession of Faith (1534), a firm but broadminded Reformed theological statement. He followed Oecolampadius on the separation of church and state, and on discipline, and took a middle position between Zwingli and Luther on the Eucharist problem, believing the two positions could and should easily be reconciled.