FRANKFORT RESPITE: A temporary agreement between German Roman Catholics and Protestants, signed at Frankfort Apr. 19, 1539. After the diet at Schmalkalden (Feb., 1537), where the Protestant estates refused to attend a council summoned at Mantua, the Catholics and Protestants were more vehemently opposed to each other than ever. The Protestants were strong, and they threatened to become dangerous to the emperor if they formed an alliance with Francis I. of France. The outbreak of war seemed imminent. Under these circumstances Dr. Held, the imperial commissioner, found it necessary to unite the Catholic estates, and agreed with King Ferdinand to form a Catholic league of defense, after the model of the Schmalkald League. After difficult negotiations the so-called Nuremberg League was formed on June 10, 1538. The membership, however, was small, the ecclesiastical estates almost all keeping aloof, and the league did not attain any importance. The political situation compelled the emperor to seek the aid of the Protestants against the Turks, and against Duke William of Jülich-Cleve-Berg, who had made himself duke of Geldern and, since the death of his father, united four duchies under his power and tried to come in touch with the Schmalkald League. Moreover, the emperor was in financial straits. Therefore the archbishop of Lund was commissioned to negotiate with the Protestants, who since Feb. 14, 1539, had been assembled at Frankfort. They required nothing less than an unconditional peace for all time, including those who might still join the Augsburg Confession. The Catholics were not willing to concede so much; but finally the following agreement was arrived at. All adherents of the Augsburg Confession, not merely those included in the Peace of Nuremberg (see NUREMBERG, RELIGIOUS PEACE OF), should be granted a respite of six months. During that time no actions should be taken against them, and the ban which had been imposed upon Minden on Oct. 9, 1538, should be suspended. The Evangelicals bound themselves not to refuse aid against the Turks and not to deprive clerics of their revenues with the exception of what they needed for the support of their own parishes, schools, and hospitals. The respite should last eighteen months or till Aug. 1, 1540. Its importance is not great, but peace was at least secured for a short time for those who had been won over to the Evangelical cause since the Peace of Nuremberg; and still more important was the fact that there was no talk of a council; the agreement promised that a Christian union should be discussed at a diet to be held in Nuremberg, without the presence of papal legates. Thus the period of religious colloquies was inaugurated.