John Adams
The Origin of Liberty of Conscience And Calvin's Geneva
(Source, Charles F. Adams, ed., The Works of John Adams [1851] Vol. 6, p. 313-314) 

After Martin Luther had introduced into Germany the liberty of thinking in matters of religion, and erected the standard of reformation, John Calvin, a native of Noyon, in Picardie, of a vast genius, singular eloquence, various erudition, and polished taste, embraced the cause of reformation. In the books which he published, and in the discourses which he held in the several cities of France, he proposed one hundred and twenty-eight articles in opposition to the creed of the Roman Catholic church. These opinions were soon embraced with ardor, and maintained with obstinacy, by a great number of persons of all conditions. The asylum and the centre of this new sect was Geneva, a city situated on the lake ancienty called Lemanus, on the frontiers of Savoy, which had shaken off the yoke of its bishop and the Duke of Savoy, and erected itself into a republic, under the title of a free city, for the sake of liberty of conscience.

Let not Geneva be forgotten or despised. Religious liberty owes it much respect, Servetus notwithstanding. From this city proceeded printed books and men distinguished for their wit and eloquence, who spreading themselves in the neighboring provinces, there sowed in secret seeds of their doctrine. Almost all the cities and provinces of France began to be enlightened by it. It began to introduce itself into the kingdom under Francis I, in opposition to all the vigorous resolutions which he took to suppress it. Henry II ordained, with inexorable severity, the punishment of death against all who should be convicted of Calvinism...

Theodore Beza, a disciple of Calvin, celebrated for his eloquence and erudition, had already converted several persons of both sexes and of the first nobility of the kingdom. And it was no longer in the stables and cellars that the Calvinists held their assemblies and preached their sermons, but in the houses of gentlemen and in the palaces of the great.

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