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Magisterialgaze 2.jpg


post-classical Latin magisterialis (6th century.; attested in British sources in senses ‘of a master’, etc., and also in special use in alchemy in 13th century in sense ‘of superior quality



  1. Of or pertaining to a master or magistrate, or one in authority
  2. Having the manner of a magister; official; commanding; authoritative.
  3. Pertaining to, produced by, or of the nature of, magistery.


The Magisterial Reformation is a phrase that "draws attention to the manner in which the Lutheran and Calvinist reformers related to secular authorities, such as princes, magistrates, or city councils", i.e. "the magistracy".[1] While the Radical Reformation rejected any secular authority over the Church, the Magisterial Reformation argued for the interdependence of the church and secular authorities, i.e. "The magistrate had a right to authority within the church, just as the church could rely on the authority of the magistrate to enforce discipline, suppress heresy, or maintain order."[2]


  1. McGrath, Alistair. 1998. Historical Theology, An Introduction to the History of Christian Thought. Blackwell Publishers: Oxford. p. 159.
  2. McGrath, op.cit. p. 159