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The Thirty Years War.docx

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Anthony Cantor

The Thirty Years War Hussites A. von Wallenstein (1583-1634) Gustavus Adolphus (d. 1632) Westphalia (1648) Richelieu -restructuring of borders of Europe; shifting political balance of power towards France & away from Habsburg territories (Spain, etc.) -kings & princes saw warfare as being in best interest, but didn’t benefit their people -concept of peace treaty & idea of collective security -rise of Lutheranism resulted in a century of fighting between Protestants & Roman Catholics, really to try & work out political & economic structures, that used religion as a symbolic reason -Decree of Augsberg (~) was meant to solve problems -broke out @ fringes of Europe in 1618 in Bohema, would draw in almost every state in European continent -spark: religious in nature, but had political implications -1609: Rudolph II, Holy Roman Emperor & King of Bohemia, had promised toleration to Hussites (proto- Protestants) of Bohemia (attached to Habsburg crown, consequence of clever marriage alliances) -dynastic accident: 1617, succeeded to Habsburg Empire: Rudolph’s cousin, Ferdinand (Roman Catholic zealot) -Bohemians rebelled b/c they were largely Protestant & didn’t want to give up their religion, as Ferdinand had said -Kings of Bohemia were elected (not inherited), so b/c of this electing tradition, the people said they wouldn’t elect Ferdinand to be King, but: Frederick of Apalatimate (~) -Frederick became King of Bohemia, Habsburgs couldn’t accept this b/c they thought it could happen in their other territories (so Ferdinand invaded Bohemia) negotiations didn’t go well: Czechs through imperial ambassadors out of a window many European states sent support to Bohemians (ex. Dutch didn’t want Habsburgs to have power, sent support) Habsburgs were in too great of a position (Catholic kings throughout Europe supported them). Result was battle. -1620: 2 forces met & Protestants were badly defeated & Habsburgs confiscated their property Frederick of Apalatimate was driven into exile, his wife, Elizabeth Stuart, became the Winter Queen (travelled from court to court) Habsburgs were in charge of Bohemia again, Catholic nobles elected Ferdinand to be their King, but he was intent on destroying Protestantism in all his lands, brought in Jesuits, priests & missionaries to convert the common people & suppressed those who had supported the Bohemians (by end of 1620, Ferdinand was fully in charge, Protestantism had been destroyed) Habsburg power was virtually unchallenged, but not from outside empire (a victory was accomplished by famous mercenary: Albert von Wallenstein) Wallenstein born into Bohemian nobility, brilliant careerist & opportunist & was able to bring a powerful private army that became instrument of Habsburgs against Danes (Ferdinand then saw Wallenstein arranging this army from all over Europe who were loyal only to Wallenstein, army was to be paid by wtv. they could takeno diff. between soldier/peasant, you suffered equallydangerous for Europe: “total war” was new model) Wallenstein was a v. good general, Ferdinand eventually claimed power over all protestant powers in Germany, in 1629: issued Edict of Restitution: all Roman Catholic property taken since 1552 would have to be returned to Church, Ferdinand was trying to turn clock back -what saved Protestantism in Germany: Princes of Germany demanded in 1630 that Ferdinand get rid of Wallenstein b/c they didn’t like him & feared his army (unless he did this, they would refuse to elect Ferdinand’s son) Wallenstein was fired but simply took army & let them go -other Kings of Europe (Protestants & Catholics) became afraid of centralization in Holy Roman Empire, were alarmed that if Ferdinand succeeded in uniting empire into dynastic territorial state, he would rule largest & most powerful state on continent only solution was to stop Ferdinand -France was v. frightened, led by chief minister of Louis XIII, Cardinal Richelieu: fearing that France would be attacked, decided he’d use proxy war to keep emperor out of trouble, gave subsidies to Sweden to fight -1631: King of Sweden was Gustavus Adolphus (Lutheran fanatic, v. good general) created first modern national army by using his people as soldiers & by giving them most modern military equipment & also a unity by infecting them w/ his own religious commitment Ferdinand panicked when he heard of this, realized fighting Adolphus would be v. difficult, saw best hope of victory in Wallenstein & went back to him & re-commissioned to be general of Habsburg army & his private army was brought back (Wallenstein knew this would happen) 1632: Wallenstein met Adolphus’s army in a great battle, in battle Wallenstein didn’t exercise usual authority, Adolphus was killed & Swedes were defeated, but Wallenstein didn’t follow up victory Adolphus’ left a daughter
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