Manual The Windows of Westphalia

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Our website is currently being updated, please contact us either via telephone or email. The information on this page has been provided by the Authorised Partner and was deemed correct at the time of issue. The so-called Defenestration of Prague fenestration: Soon, armies for both sides were engaged in brutal warfare on multiple fronts, in present-day Austria and in the east in Transylvania, where Ottoman Empire soldiers fought alongside the Bohemians in exchange for yearly dues paid to the sultan against the Poles, who were on the side of the Habsburgs.

Even with help from soldiers from Scotland, however, the armies of Denmark-Norway fell to the forces of Ferdinand II, ceding much of northern Europe to the emperor. But in , Sweden, under the leadership of Gustavus Adolphus, took the side of the northern Protestants and joined the fight, with its army helping to push Catholic forces back and regain much of the lost territory lost by the Protestant Union. With the support of the Swedes, Protestant victories continued.

Defenestrations of Prague

However, when Gustavus Adolphus was killed in the Battle of Lutzen in , the Swedes lost some of their resolve. Using military assistance of Bohemian nobleman Albrecht von Wallenstein, who provided his army of an estimated 50, soldiers to Ferdinand II in exchange for the freedom to plunder any captured territory, began to respond and, by , the Swedes were vanquished.

The Treaty of Westphalia

With religious and political tensions in the latter regions remaining high, fighting continued. The French, though Catholic, were rivals of the Habsburgs and were unhappy with the provisions of the Peace of Prague. Thus, the French entered the conflict in However, at least initially, their armies were unable to make inroads against the forces of Ferdinand II, even after he died of old age in However, the French recovered, and fighting between the French-Protestant alliance and the forces of Spain and the Holy Roman Empire were at a stalemate for the next several years.

In , the Portuguese began to revolt against their Spanish rulers, thereby weakening their military efforts on behalf of the Holy Roman Empire. Two years later, the Swedes re-entered the fray, further weakening Habsburg forces. The next year, , was pivotal in the decades-long conflict.

Defenestrations of Prague - Wikipedia

That year, Denmark-Norway took up arms again, this time fighting on the side of the Habsburgs and the Holy Roman Empire. Over the ensuing years, the French army had several notable victories, but also suffered significant defeats, particularly at the Battle of Herbsthausen in Also in , the Swedes attacked Vienna, but were unable to capture the city from the Holy Roman Empire.

In , the Habsburg forces led by Octavio Piccolomini were able to repel the Swedes and the French from what is now Austria. Weakened by the fighting, for example, Spain lost its grip over Portugal and the Dutch republic.

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  6. The peace accords also granted increased autonomy to the former Holy Roman Empire states in German-speaking central Europe. Ultimately, though, historians believe the Peace of Westphalia laid the groundwork for the formation of the modern nation-state, establishing fixed boundaries for the countries involved in the fighting and effectively decreeing that residents of a state were subject to the laws of that state and not to those of any other institution, secular or religious. This radically altered the balance of power in Europe and resulted in reduced influence over political affairs for the Catholic Church, as well as other religious groups.

    What happened in the Thirty Years War?