Péter Pázmány (1570-1637)

Péter Pázmány 1
Pázmány: Isteni igazságra vezérlo kalauz 2
He was the Archbishop of Esztergom, a politician, a theologist, a religious writer, the greatest figure of Hungarian recatholisation. He was born into a Transylvanian Protestant family, from 1583 he studied at the Jesuit college of Kolozsvár, he became a Catholic then joined the Jesuit order. He continued his studies in Poland, later the order sent him to Rome. He was educated in the Cellegio Romano from 1593 to 1597. From 1660 he was a teacher of philosophy in Graz, and in 1607 he returned to Hungary. Along with Archbishop Ferenc Forgách he joined the strugggles of the Counter-reformation, but he did not agree with Forgách's military methods. When in 1616 he was elected the Archbishop of Esztergom, he was also appointed chancellor. In the possession of power and influence he chose the method of conviction instead of the method of violence, and he managed to convert several Protestant families, including noblemen, to the Catholic religion. His policy could be characterised by sobriety, he did not consider the interests of religion more important than those of the country. He had very good connections with Transylvanian principal Gyögy Rákóczy I, whom he occasionally gave political support. In 1623 he founded a seminary institute in Vienna (Pázmáneum), in 1635 he bought the foundations of the university of Nagyszombat - this was the predecessor of the today's Eötvös Loránd University. He wrote influential theological works and polemical essays, and also works of piety to please catholic ladies. His popular Prayer book (Graz, 1606) included Bálint Balassi's poem, and in Tamás Kempis's translation of Following Christ (Vienna, 1624) he set the basic principles of modern translation of literary works.