This article leaves discussion of Servetus’ execution aside in order to clarify Calvin’s understanding of toleration in the light of his usage of the term tolerantia. A recurrent use of the phrase “toleration of the cross” (crucis tolerantia) emerges as a distinctly Calvinian version of the traditional imitatio Christi, combining a Stoic endurance of evils with an Augustinian understanding of the imperfections of the present life. Finally, the article discusses the degree to which Calvin’s reflection on toleration is intertwined with a language of virtue and the way in which it is able to bring light to contemporary discussions surrounding toleration.
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- John Calvin
- Protestant Reformation
- religious toleration