John Knox (1514-1572) was a Scottish religious reformer who took the lead in reforming the Church in Scotland along Calvinist lines. He is widely regarded as the father of the Protestant Reformation in Scotland and of the Church of Scotland. He was engaged in literary work, for example his long and elaborate treatise on predestination. His works also include The First Blast of the Trumpet Against the Monstrous Regiment of Women, published anonymously in 1558, in which he unleashed a torrent of vitriol against female rulers. The reason women were not fit to rule, according to him, was that they were ‘idolatresses’ who set reason aside and ruled by their emotions. This view of female psychology made Knox not only offensive to Queen Mary but dangerous. It fed his political theory, that it was legitimate for the people to overthrow and even execute female rulers because of precedents in the Bible.This content is for members only.