BLAURER (BLARER, BLAARER), AMBROSIUS: German Reformer; b. at Constance Apr. 12, 1492; d. at Winterthur (12 miles n.e. of Zurich), Switzerland, Dec. 6,1564. He studied at Tübingen, where he became acquainted with Melanchthon; about 1510 he entered the monastery at Alpirsbach, and continued his studies at Tübingen till 1513. Through study of the Bible and of Luther's writings, to the reading of which he was led by his brother Thomas, who while studying at Wittenberg had become intimate with Luther and Melanchthon, he embraced the principles of the Reformation, which he tried to introduce into the monastery. Being opposed by the abbot, he went to Constance July 5, 1522, and at the instance of the council of the city began to preach in 1525. He became the leader of the Reformation there. From 1528, Blaurer labored for the Reformation outside of his native city. He was present at the colloquy in Bern (Jan. 6, 1528), was at Memmingen Nov., 1528-Feb., 1529, and presided over the convention of the friends of the Reformation in Upper Germany which met in Memmingen Feb. 27-Mar. 1, 1531. From May to July, 1531, he was at Ulm with Œcolampadius and Butzer, afterward at Geislingen, and (Sept. 1531-July, 1532) at Esslingen. He everywhere displayed ability in organization. In July, 1532, his native city recalled him, and in 1533 he married a former nun.
In 1534 he was called by Duke Ulrich, together with the Lutheran Erhard Schnepf, to further the cause of the Reformation in the duchy of Württemberg. The two men came to an agreement, Aug. 2, 1534, concerning the doctrine of the Lord's Supper paving thereby the way for the coming union of the German Evangelical Church. To Blaurer was assigned the south of Württemberg with residence at Tübingen. He encountered there certain difficulties: (1) the agreement with Schwenckfeld, 1535; (2) the reformation at the University of Tübingen, which Brent had undertaken; (3) the image-question, which Blaurer solved by removing all of them from the churches, but the "idol-diet" at Urach left the decision to the duke. At Schmalkald Blaurer refused in Feb., 1537, to sign the articles of Luther, but approved those of Melanchthon. Court intrigues brought about Blaurer's dismissal in June, 1538. Not till 1556 did Duke Christopher compensate him for his four years' services. He was at Augsburg June 27-Dec. 6, 1539, where he earnestly labored against the luxury of the rich, pleaded for benevolence to the poor, and for the cause of morality. He went to Kempten and labored there (Dec., 1539, to the end of Jan., 1540) for the peace of the Church, and also at Isny, 1544-55.
By the Interim, Constance lost its independence. The Spaniards took the city Aug. 6, 1548, and made it an Austrian town, speedily crushing the Reformation. Blaurer left there Aug. 28, and preached in Biel (1551-59), Leutmerken, and finally at Winterthur, where he died. He declined calls to Bern, Augsburg, Memmingen, and the Palatinate, and influenced large circles by his correspondence. His twenty-two hymns give evidence of poetical power and fervor.
Bibliography: D. C. Pfister, Denkwürdigkeiten der württembergischen und schwäbischen Reformationsgeschichte, part 1, Tübingen, 1817; T. Keim, Ambr. Blarer der schwäbische Reformator, Stuttgart, 1860; T. Pressel, Ambrosias Blaurer's Leben und Schriften, ib. 1861; Leben und ausgewählte Schriften der Väter der reformierten Kirche, vol. xiv, Elberfeld, 1861; E. Schneider, Württembergische Reformationsgeschichte, Stuttgart, 1887; E. Issel, Die Reformation in Konstanz, Freiburg, 1898; F. Roth, Augsburgs Reformationsgeschichte, vols. i, ii, Munich, 1901, 1904; Zwingliana, 1900, no. 2, p. 163, 1902, no. 2, p. 317.