Cassander, George

, a learned popish divine of conciliatory principles, was born in 1515, in the isle of Cadsand, near Bruges, whence he took his name. He was deeply skilled in the languages, polite literature, civil law, and divinity; and taught the belles lettres at Ghent, Bruges, and other places with great reputation. He afterwards directed almost his sole attention to theological studies, and retiring to Cologne, prosecuted his favourite idea of forming an union and reconciliation between the Roman catholics and protestants. With this view he published without his name in 1562, a small work, entitled “De Officio Viri pii, &c.” which favouring the Roman catholic church, on the general ground of authority, engaged him in a controversy with Calvin, who thought that it was written by Baudouin, a celebrated lawyer; and although the true author was discovered, the controversy went on. The sentiments of Cassander, however, appeared in so favourable a light to the German princes, that they fixed upon him as a mediator in the religious disputes. Under this character he composed his famous piece entitled “Consultatio Cassandri,” in which he discusses the several articles of the Augsburg confession, stating their difference from the doctrines of the catholic church, and the concessions that might be safely made with respect to them. This work, which was written with great liberality, was much applauded by those who were desirous of a coalition, but who were soon convinced that every attempt of this kind was nugatory. Cassander died in 1566. M. De Thou represents him as modest, void of arrogance and acrimony; and he was as ardent in his wishes for a religious union, and made as many | concessions for the accomplishment of this object, as could be expected from a person who continued in the catholic communion. Others, his contemporaries, speak highly of him, but many of his works were censured or condemned by the council of Trent. His works were first printed separately, and afterwards collected in a folio volume, Paris, 1616. Dupin bestows a prolix, but interesting article on Cassander. 1


Moreri. —Dupin, Freheri Theatrum. Blount’s Censura. —Saxii Onomasticon.