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Leaving Basel out of view, in Bern, Glarus, Schaffhausen, Appenzell and partly even in Solothurn, the confidence in the Five Cantons was not so strong as among the deputies of these states at the Diet, and when they brought home a report of the proceedings in Baden, a very decided feeling was manifested among the councils and people. Our attention must now be directed chiefly to Basel and Bern.
In spite of every entreaty, to protect at least the Zurichan frontier, the army of Bern retreated to Bremgarten." "Why do you hesitate to follow?" said the ensign Hugi of Solothurn. "You shut your eyes on your own necessities, as your fathers before you in the old Zurich war.
A committee, appointed by them and armed with full authority, succeeded in restoring quiet. The introduction of the Reformation into the whole canton followed these events. In Glarus also, Schaffhausen, Appenzel and Graubuenden the new party gained strength every day. Even Solothurn no longer stood firm in the old faith, especially since Berchthold Haller had been called thither as a preacher.
From this it came about that from the year when Basel entered the Swiss Confederation, in 1501, Gerster was almost as much at home in the "City of Ambassadors" as in his own, and the Dean or Probst of the Solothurn Cathedral the "Cathedral of St. Ursus and St. Victor" became not only his spiritual director, but one of his most intimate friends.
The Great Councils of Bern, Solothurn and especially Basel durst no longer venture to enforce the general enactments against the married clergy, for the maintenance of rules of fasting and for the preservation of purgatory among the doctrines of faith, whilst on the other side, wherever they still had firm footing, the priesthood opposed all the articles, which would set limits to their greediness and love of power.
This reply was also made, when the Council of Bern, in contrast with the sluggish leaders of her army, referred the mediators, sent from Solothurn, Appenzell and Neunburg, to Zurich with the declaration that without her consent their could be no talk of peace: "It shall never be forgotten, but told to our children and children's children."
They refused the Council there permission to examine the acts of the Religious Conference at Baden before their publication, and on the 13th of July, 1526, resolved, in connection with Freiburg and Solothurn, to keep the oath of confederation as little with Basel as with Zurich and St. Gall.
Schwyz, Uri, Unterwalden, and Zug were, on the other hand, to form but one canton. Rapinat, a bold bad man, Rewbel's brother-in-law, who was at that time absolute in Switzerland, seized everything that had escaped the pillage of the soldiery in Berne and Zurich, sacked Solothurn, Lucerne, Freiburg, etc., and hunted out the hidden treasures of the confederation, which he sent to France.
In southwestern Germany, the archbishopric of Freiburg in the Breisgau with the bishoprics of Rotenburg on the Neckar, Limburg on the Lahn, Mayence, and Fulda arose. In Switzerland there remained four bishoprics, Freiburg in the Uechtland, Solothurn, Coire, and St. Gall; in Alsace, Strasburg and Colmar.
The Five Cantons, already standing in hostile attitude toward Zurich and Bern, sought to persuade Glarus, Freiburg and Solothurn to a closer, special union "for the maintenance of the old, true Christian faith, the holy seven sacraments and particularly the office and sacrifice of the mass, with all good Christian rules, benedictions and usages, as handed down from our forefathers, nothing excepted" for the suppression of every innovation in the Common Territories, and armed succor, if either there or on their own soil an attack is made on that faith, whose support and defence should be the highest duty, higher even than the preservation of the Confederacy.