Thirty Years' War
The Thirty Years War from 1618 to 1648 was a conflict over hegemony in the Holy Roman Empire and in Europe that began as a religious war and ended as a territorial war . In this war the French-Habsburg antagonism erupted at the European level and the antagonism between the Emperor and the Catholic League on the one hand and the Protestant Union on the other at the imperial level . Together with their respective allies, the Habsburg powers carried Austria and SpainIn addition to their territorial as well as their dynastic conflicts of interest with France , the Netherlands , Denmark and Sweden, they predominantly took place on the soil of the Empire. As a result, a number of other conflicts were closely related to the Thirty Years War:
- the Eighty Years War (1568–1648) between the Netherlands and Spain,
- the Upper Austrian Peasants' War (1626)
- the Mantuan War of Succession (1628–1631) between France and Habsburg,
- the Franco-Spanish War (1635-1659)
- the war for supremacy in the Baltic Sea region ( Torstensson War ) (1643–1645) between Sweden and Denmark.
The fall of the window in Prague on May 23, 1618, with which the uprising of the Protestant Bohemian estates broke out openly, is considered to have triggered the war . The uprising was mainly directed against the new Bohemian King Ferdinand of Styria (who intended the re-Catholicization of all the countries of the Bohemian crown ), but also against the then Roman-German Emperor Matthias .
Altogether, in the 30 years from 1618 to 1648, four conflicts followed each other, which historians termed the Bohemian-Palatinate, Danish-Lower Saxon, Swedish and Swedish-French wars after the respective opponents of the emperor and the Habsburg powers. Two attempts to end the conflict (the Peace of Lübeck in 1629 and the Peace of Prague in 1635) failed because they did not take into account the interests of all those directly or indirectly involved. This only succeeded with the pan-European peace congress in Münster and Osnabrück (1641–1648). The Peace of Westphalia redefined the balance of power between the emperor and the imperial estates and became part of the constitutional order of the empire that was in force until 1806. In addition, he envisaged assignments of territory to France and Sweden and the withdrawal of the United Netherlands and the Swiss Confederation from the Reichsverband.
On October 24, 1648, the war ended, the campaigns and battles of which had mainly taken place in the area of the Holy Roman Empire. The acts of war and the famines and epidemics they caused had devastated and depopulated entire regions. In parts of southern Germany only a third of the population survived. After the economic and social devastation, some of the war-hit areas took more than a century to recover from the aftermath of the war. Since the war took place mainly in German-speaking areas, which are still part of Germany today, the experiences of the war, according to experts, led to an anchoring of a war trauma in the collective memory of the population.
History and causes
In the run-up to the Thirty Years' War, a diverse field of tension consisting of political, dynastic, denominational and domestic political contradictions had built up in Europe and the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation. The causes go back a long way.
Power relations in Europe
In the period before the Thirty Years' War there were three main areas of conflict: Western and northwestern Europe, Northern Italy and the Baltic region . The dynastic conflicts between the Austrian and Spanish Habsburgs and the French king as well as the Dutch striving for independence took place in western and northwestern Europe and in northern Italy, while in the Baltic Sea region Denmark and Sweden fought for supremacy as possible great powers.
The decisive factor in western and north-western Europe was the conflict between France and Spain , which in turn arose from the dynastic conflict between the Habsburgs and French kings. Spain was a major European power with possessions in southern Italy , the Po Valley and the Netherlands . For Spain, the scattered Spanish bases meant that there could hardly be a war in western and north-western Europe that did not affect Spanish interests. France, on the other hand, was confronted with Spanish countries in the south, north and south-east, which led to the French “encirclement complex”. Because of their many violent clashes, France and Spain rearmed their armies. In addition to the financial difficulties, Spain also had to fight the uprising in the Netherlands from 1566 , which, however, ended de facto in 1609 with the independence of the United Netherlands and an armistice limited to twelve years.
The conflict in Western Europe could have escalated into a major European war in the Jülich-Klevian succession dispute , when the Duke of Jülich-Kleve-Berg died and the heirs made their claims, including Elector Johann Sigismund of Brandenburg and Count Palatine Wolfgang Wilhelm von Neuburg . The war gained international significance through the intervention of Henry IV of France , who supported the princes of the Protestant Union and in return demanded their help in a war against Spain. The murder of Henry IV in 1610 ended the French involvement in the Lower Rhine for the time being.
In contrast, there were many small principalities in northern Italy. Some of the territories belonged to Spain, which had a stable power base there , including Milan . The only other powers of European rank were the Pope and the Republic of Venice , with the Curia in Rome being ruled by French, Spanish and imperial friendly cardinals, while Venice's interests lay more in the Mediterranean and on the Adriatic coast than in Italy. Hence, Spain and France were the most influential forces in northern Italy, where France sought to weaken Spanish power and gain supremacy in the region itself. Both powers tried to win over the local princes so that many rulers were simultaneously under the influence of French and Spanish emissaries. The Dukes of Savoy experienced this particularly clearly , as the duchy had a strategically important location: with the Alpine passes and fortresses of Savoy, the important supply route of the Spanish troops to the Netherlands could be controlled.
The Baltic Wars, also known as the Nordic Wars , had three main actors before and during the Thirty Years War: Poland , Sweden and Denmark . Poland and Sweden were ruled by two lines of the Wasa dynasty . Sigismund III. As king prevented the spread of Protestantism in Poland, which was therefore attributed to the allies of Habsburg during the Thirty Years War. As King of Poland, Sigismund was not only Prince of Lithuania in personal union, but also King of Sweden for a time. This changed in 1599 when some Swedish nobles revolted against Sigismund, deposed him as Swedish king and had his followers executed. What followed was, on the one hand, the establishment of the Lutheran faith in Sweden, and on the other, a series of Polish-Swedish wars . The first campaigns of the new Swedish king, Charles IX. , were unsuccessful at first and encouraged Sweden's rival Christian IV of Denmark to attack. At that time, Denmark with 1.5 million inhabitants was less populous than Sweden or Poland, but due to the possession of Norway, southern Sweden and large parts of the Swedish west coast, the Danish monarch had sole control over the Øresund and therefore posted high customs income. Charles IX von Sweden, however, founded Gothenburg in 1603 in the hope of being able to collect part of the customs income from the Oresund. When Christian IV began the Kalmark War in 1611 , Charles IX expected. hence the attack on Gothenburg, instead the Danish army marched surprisingly on Kalmar and took the city. Charles IX died in 1611. and his son Gustav II Adolf had to pay a high price for peace with Denmark: Kalmar, Northern Norway and Ösel fell to Denmark, plus war contributions of one million Reichsmarks. In order to be able to pay this sum, Gustav Adolf went into debt with the United Netherlands. These war debts weighed heavily on Sweden and weakened its foreign policy position. Denmark, on the other hand, had become a Baltic power through the war and Christian IV therefore considered himself a great general on the one hand and believed that he had enough money for further wars on the other.
After the first phase of the Reformation , which split Germany confessionally, the Catholic and Protestant rulers first tried to find a constitutional order that was acceptable to both sides and a balance of power between the denominations in the empire. In the Augsburg Religious Peace of September 25, 1555, they finally agreed on the Jus reformandi , the Reformation law (later summarized as cuius regio, eius religio , Latin for: whose territory, whose religion; "rule determines the creed"). As a result, the sovereigns had the right to determine the denomination of the resident population. At the same time, the Jus emigrandi , the right to emigrate, was introduced, which made it possible for people of another denomination to emigrate. The right of the free imperial cities to reformation remained unclear , because the Augsburg Religious Peace did not stipulate how they should change their confession. Since then, the Catholic and Lutheran creeds have been recognized as having equal rights, but not the Reformed creed .
The Reservatum ecclesiasticum ( Latin for: "spiritual reservation") was also included, which guaranteed that the properties of the Catholic Church from 1555 should remain Catholic. Should a Catholic bishop convert, he would lose his bishopric and a new bishop would be elected. This regulation also secured the majority in the electoral college , in which four Catholic and three Protestant electors faced each other. The ecclesiastical reservation was only tolerated by the Protestant princes because with the Declaratio Ferdinandea ( Latin for: "Ferdinandean declaration") it was assured that already Reformed cities and estates in ecclesiastical territories would not be forced to convert or to emigrate.
The conflict situation worsens and the political order in the Reich deteriorates
Although the regulations the Peace of Augsburg prevented for 60 years the outbreak of a major religious war , but there were disputes over its interpretation, and a confrontational attitude of a new generation of rulers was the political order in exacerbating the conflict situation and decay. However, due to the opposing parties' lack of military potential, the conflicts were largely non-violent for a long time.
One of the effects of the Augsburg Religious Peace was what is now known as “ denominationalization ”. The sovereigns tried to create religious uniformity and to shield the population from various religious influences. The Protestant princes feared a split in the Protestant movement, which might lose its protection through the Augsburg religious peace and used their position as emergency bishops to discipline the clergy and the population in the sense of their denomination ( social discipline ). As a result, there was bureaucratization and centralization, the territorial state was strengthened.
The peace in the empire came more and more into danger in the decades after the peace of religion in Augsburg, when the rulers, theologians and jurists who had experienced the Schmalkaldic War resigned and their successors in office advocated a more radical policy and the consequences of an escalation of the conflict did not noticed. This radicalization can be seen, among other things, in the handling of the “spiritual reservation”, because while Emperor Maximilian II still issued “feudal indulgences” to Protestant nobles with Catholic bishops (provisionally enfeoffed them so that they could remain politically active, although they were not correct due to a lack of papal confirmation Were bishops), his successor Rudolf II ended this practice. Consequently, the Protestant administrators without investiture and indults on were diets no longer entitled to vote.
This became problematic in 1588 when the Reichstag was supposed to form a visitation deputation. The visitation deputation was a court of appeal: violations of imperial law (such as the confiscation of goods of the Catholic Church by Protestant sovereigns) were tried before the imperial court. The appeal was negotiated before the Reich Chamber Court Deputation, or visitation deputation for short. This deputation was filled according to schedule, and in 1588 the Archbishop of Magdeburg should have been a member. Since the Lutheran administrator of Magdeburg, Joachim Friedrich von Brandenburg , was not entitled to vote in the Reichstag without indult, he could not participate in the visitation deputation, which was therefore not able to act. Rudolf II therefore postponed the formation of the deputation until the next year, but no agreement could be reached in 1589, or in the following years, which is why an important auditing institution no longer functioned.
Because of the increasing number of revision cases, including above all confiscation of monasteries by territorial lords, the competence of the visitation deputation was transferred to the imperial deputation in 1594 . When a Catholic majority emerged in the Reich Deputation in four revision cases in 1600 (monastery secularizations by the free imperial city of Strasbourg , the Margrave of Baden , the Count of Oettingen-Oettingen and the Imperial Knight von Hirschhorn), the Electoral Palatinate , Brandenburg and Braunschweig left the committee and paralyzed the Reichdeputation thereby. The failure of the auditing institutions weakened the Reich Chamber of Commerce; the princes preferred to negotiate their disputes before the Reichshofrat , which was thereby strengthened. Due to its counter-Reformation attitude, the strengthening of the Reichshofrat also meant a strengthening of the Catholic side in the empire.
Because of the strengthening of the states, the confrontation policy of the new rulers, the paralysis of the Reich Chamber of Commerce as an instance of peaceful conflict resolution in the Reich and the strengthening of the Catholic princes by the Reichshofrat, hostile groups of princes were formed. As a result and in response to the battle of the cross and the flag in the city of Donauwörth , the Electoral Palatinate withdrew from the Reichstag. As a result, the Reichstag passed on the Turkish tax and the Reichstag, as the most important constitutional body, was inactive.
On May 14, 1608, the Protestant Union was founded under the leadership of the Electoral Palatinate , to which 29 imperial estates soon belonged. The Protestant princes viewed the Union primarily as a protective alliance that had become necessary because all imperial institutions such as the Imperial Court of Justice were blocked as a result of denominational differences and they no longer took the protection of peace in the empire for granted. The Protestant Union only became politically influential through its connection to France, because the Protestant princes wanted to gain respect from the Catholic princes through a military coalition with France. For its part, France tried to make the Union an ally in the fight against Spain. After the death of the French King Henry IV in 1610, a coalition with the Netherlands was sought, but the States General did not want to be drawn into internal imperial conflicts and left a defensive alliance concluded in 1613 for 12 years.
As a counterpart to the Protestant Union, Maximilian I of Bavaria founded the Catholic League on July 10, 1609 , which was supposed to secure Catholic power in the empire. The Catholic League was in the better position, but in contrast to the Protestant Union, there was no powerful leadership figure, rather the battles for hierarchy, especially between Maximilian I of Bavaria and the Elector of Mainz, repeatedly hampered the Catholic League.
Course of war
Outbreak of war
The actual trigger for the war was the class uprising in Bohemia of 1618. It has its roots in the dispute over the letter of majesty , which was issued in 1609 by Emperor Rudolf II and which had assured the Bohemian classes freedom of religion. His brother Matthias , who ruled from 1612, recognized the letter of majesty when he took office, but tried to reverse the concessions made to the Bohemian estates by his predecessor. When Matthias ordered the closure of the Protestant church in Braunau , forbade the practice of Protestant religion altogether, intervened in the administration of the cities and answered a protest note from the Bohemian estates in March 1618 with a ban on assembly by the Bohemian state parliament, they stormed along on May 23, 1618 The Bohemian Chancellery in Prague Castle armed swords and pistols . At the end of a heated discussion with the imperial deputies Jaroslav Borsita von Martinic and Wilhelm Slavata , these two and the office secretary Philipp Fabricius were thrown out of the window ( second Prague lintel ). This act should seem spontaneous, but was planned from the beginning. Although the three victims survived, the attack on the imperial representatives was also a symbolic attack on the emperor himself and therefore amounted to a declaration of war. The emperor's subsequent punitive action was thus deliberately provoked.
Bohemian-Palatinate War (1618–1623)
War in Bohemia
After the revolt, the Bohemian estates were in Prague, a thirty-member Board , which should secure the new power of the nobility. Its main duties were drafting a constitution, electing a new king and providing military defense against the emperor. The first skirmishes in South Bohemia began in the summer of 1618, while both sides sought allies and prepared for a major military strike. The Bohemian rebels were able to win over Frederick V of the Palatinate , the head of the Protestant Union and the Duke of Savoy Karl Emanuel I for themselves. The latter financed the army under Peter Ernst II von Mansfeld in support of Bohemia.
The German Habsburgs, on the other hand, hired the Count of Bucquoy , who set out on a march on Bohemia at the end of August. The campaign to Prague was stopped for the time being by Mansfeld's troops, who conquered Pilsen at the end of November . The imperial family had to retreat to Budweis .
At first it seemed that the uprising of the Bohemian estates would be successful. The Bohemian army under Heinrich Matthias von Thurn initially forced the Moravian estates to join the uprising, then penetrated the Austrian home lands of the Habsburgs and stood before Vienna on June 6, 1619 . But the Count of Bucquoy managed to beat Mansfeld near Sablat , so that the Directory in Prague had to call Thurn back to defend Bohemia. In the summer of 1619 the Bohemian Confederation was founded; the Bohemian assembly of estates deposed Ferdinand as King of Bohemia on August 19 and elected Frederick V of the Palatinate as the new king on August 24 . At the same time, Ferdinand traveled to Frankfurt am Main to vote , where the Electors unanimously elected him Roman-German Emperor on August 28th .
With the Treaty of Munich of October 8, 1619, Emperor Ferdinand II managed, with great concessions, to persuade the Bavarian Duke Maximilian I to enter the war, but Ferdinand came under pressure in October when Gabriel , Prince of Transylvania , who was allied with Bohemia Bethlen besieged Vienna. However, Bethlen soon withdrew again, fearing that an army recruited by the emperor in Poland could stab him in the back. The following year, the lack of support for the Protestant insurgents became apparent, as they were increasingly on the defensive. A meeting of all Protestant princes convened by Friedrich in Nuremberg in December 1619 was only attended by members of the Protestant Union, while in March 1620 the emperor was able to bind the Protestant princes loyal to the emperor to himself. Electoral Saxony was assured the Lausitz for his support . With the Ulm Treaty , the Catholic League and the Protestant Union concluded a non-aggression agreement , so that Friedrich could no longer expect any help. Therefore, in September, the League army was able to march into Bohemia via Upper Austria , while Saxon troops occupied Lusatia. Bethlen's soldiers could not stop the enemy either. On November 8, 1620, the Battle of the White Mountain broke out near Prague , in which the Bohemian estates were severely defeated by the generals Karl Bonaventura Count von Buquoy and Johann T'Serclaes von Tilly . Friedrich had to flee from Prague via Silesia and Brandenburg to The Hague and looked for allies in northern Germany. Silesia, on the other hand, broke away from the Bohemian Confederation. In January Emperor Ferdinand imposed the imperial ban on Frederick. Most recently, the Danish king Christian IV had invited the Protestant dukes of Lüneburg, Lauenburg and Braunschweig, the ambassadors from England, Holland, Sweden, Brandenburg and Pomerania as well as the expelled Winter King between January and March 1621 to the “Segeberger Convent” at the Holstein Siegesburg to decide joint measures against the Catholic Emperor. After unsuccessful deliberations, the Protestant Union finally dissolved itself in April 1621.
After the victory at Prague, the emperor held a criminal court in Bohemia: 27 people were subsequently charged with lese majesty and executed. In order to push back Protestantism in Bohemia, Ferdinand drove out 30,000 families and confiscated 650 aristocratic goods as reparations , which he distributed to his Catholic creditors to repay his debts.
War in the Electoral Palatinate
As early as the summer of 1620, the Spanish military leader Ambrosio Spinola , coming from Flanders , conquered the Palatinate on the left bank of the Rhine, but withdrew to Flanders again in the spring of 1621. A garrison of 11,000 soldiers remained in the Palatinate. The remaining Protestant military leaders Christian von Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel , known as the “great Halberstädter” , and Ernst von Mansfeld as well as the Margrave Georg Friedrich von Baden-Durlach moved to the Palatinate from different directions in the spring of 1622. In the Palatinate hereditary lands of the "Winter King", the Protestant troops initially won the battle of Mingolsheim (April 27, 1622). In the months that followed, however, they suffered heavy defeats because they outnumbered the loyalists, but failed to unite. The Baden troops were defeated in the Battle of Wimpfen (May 6, 1622), in the Battle of Höchst Christian von Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel was defeated by the League Army under Tilly. Christian von Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel then joined Ernst von Mansfeld in Dutch service, where the two armies withdrew. On the march they met a Spanish army, over which they were able to win a Pyrrhic victory in the battle of Fleurus (August 29, 1622) . From the summer of 1622 the Palatinate on the right bank of the Rhine was occupied by league troops and on February 23, 1623 Friedrich V lost the electoral dignity that was transferred to Maximilian of Bavaria. Christian von Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel suffered another devastating defeat at Stadtlohn and from then on his decimated troops were no longer a serious opponent for the Imperialists. The Upper Palatinate fell to Bavaria and was catholicized until 1628. Also in 1628 the electoral dignity of the Bavarian dukes became hereditary, as did the possession of the Upper Palatinate. In return, Maximilian Emperor Ferdinand waived the reimbursement of 13 million guilders for war costs. The territorial expansion of Bavaria and the transfer of a Protestant electoral dignity to a Catholic power changed the power structure in the empire profoundly and laid the foundation for the subsequent expansion of the war.
Start of the Eighty Years War
When the twelve-year armistice between the Netherlands and Spain expired in 1621, the Dutch War of Independence began again. Spain had used the peacetime to strengthen its military strength so that it could threaten the Netherlands with an army of 60,000 men. In June 1625, after almost a year of siege , the Dutch city of Breda was successfully forced to surrender, but a renewed financial shortage of the Spanish crown hampered further operations of the Flemish army and thus prevented the complete conquest of the Dutch republic.
Danish-Lower Saxon War (1623–1629)
After the Emperor's victory over the Protestant princes in the empire, France again pursued an anti-Habsburg policy from 1624. In addition, the French King Louis XIII. not only an alliance with Savoy and Venice , but also initiated an alliance of the Protestant rulers in Northern Europe against the Habsburg emperor. In 1625 the Hague Alliance was founded between England, the Netherlands and Denmark. The aim was to jointly maintain an army under the leadership of Christian IV of Denmark , with which northern Germany should be secured against the emperor. Christian IV promised that he would only need 30,000 soldiers, most of whom were to be paid for by the Lower Saxony Reichskreis , in which Christian, as Duke of Holstein, was a voting member. With this, he prevailed against the Swedish King Gustav II Adolf , who demanded 50,000 soldiers. Christian's main motivation for entering the war was to win Verden , Osnabrück and Halberstadt for his son.
Christian immediately recruited an army of 14,000 men and tried at the district council in Lüneburg in March 1625 to persuade the district estates to finance another 14,000 mercenaries and to elect him as district bishop . However, the estates did not want a war and therefore made it a condition that the new army only serve to defend the district and therefore not be allowed to leave the district area. The Danish king did not adhere to the regulation and occupied Verden and Nienburg cities that belonged to the Lower Rhine-Westphalian Empire .
In this threatened situation, the Bohemian nobleman Albrecht von Wallenstein offered the emperor to initially raise an army on his own account. In May and June 1625 the imperial councils discussed the offer. The main concern was to provoke a new war by raising an army. However, since the majority of the councilors considered an attack by Denmark to be likely and wanted to arm themselves against it, Wallenstein was made duke in the Moravian Nikolsburg in mid-June 1625 . In mid-July he received his patent for the first generalate and the order to raise an army of 24,000 men, which was reinforced by other regiments from other parts of the empire. By the end of the year Wallenstein's army had grown to 50,000 men. Wallenstein moved into his winter quarters in Magdeburg and Halberstadt and thus blocked shipping traffic on the Elbe , while the League army under Tilly camped further in eastern Westphalia and Hesse.
With his ally Ernst von Mansfeld, Christian planned a campaign that was initially to be directed against Thuringia and then against southern Germany. Like the Bohemians and Friedrich von der Pfalz before, Christian waited in vain for significant support from other Protestant powers and in the summer of 1626 was confronted not only with the army of the League, but also with Wallenstein's army. On August 27, 1626, the Danes suffered a crushing defeat against Tilly in the Battle of Lutter am Barenberge , which cost them the support of their German allies.
Already on April 25, 1626, Wallenstein had defeated Christian's ally Ernst von Mansfeld in the battle of the Dessau Elbe bridge . Mansfeld then succeeded again in raising an army with which he dodged south. In Hungary he intended to combine his troops with those of Bethlen in order to subsequently attack Vienna. But Wallenstein pursued the mercenary leader and finally forced him to flee. Shortly afterwards, Mansfeld died near Sarajevo. In the summer of 1627, Wallenstein advanced into northern Germany and the Jutland peninsula in just a few weeks . Only the Danish islands remained unoccupied by the imperial because they did not have ships. In 1629 Denmark concluded the Treaty of Lübeck and withdrew from the war.
The Protestant cause in the empire seemed lost. Like Frederick of the Palatinate in 1623, the Dukes of Mecklenburg, allied with Denmark, were now declared deposed. The emperor transferred their sovereignty to Wallenstein in order to settle his debts with him. Also in 1629, Ferdinand II issued the edict of restitution , which provided for the restitution of all spiritual property confiscated from Protestant princes since 1555. The edict simultaneously marked the climax of imperial power in the empire and the turning point of the war, because it rekindled the resistance of the Protestants, which had already broken, and led them to allies who were ultimately no match for the emperor and league.
Swedish War (1630-1635)
The widely used designation of the relatively short phase of the war as the “Swedish War” chosen here is strictly speaking arbitrary. The Swedish War actually dragged on for about 20 years, counting from the arrival of the Swedes in 1630 until their departure in 1650. This long period was only briefly interrupted for the Swedes after the Battle of Nördlingen in 1634. when the position of the Swedes collapsed for a few months. There were also similar collapses in other warring parties - on the imperial side even several times - without changing the previous designations of the war phases.
After Denmark, a Baltic power, had left the Thirty Years' War, Gustav Adolf of Sweden saw the chance to assert his hegemonic claims in northeastern Europe. On July 6, 1630 he landed on Usedom with an army of 13,000 men and increased his troops to 40,000 men with recruiting. In lengthy negotiations with France, with the Treaty of Bärwalde concluded in January 1631, he secured a basis for financing the planned campaign. Further months with threats and with the conquest of Frankfurt an der Oder in April 1631 were necessary to induce Pomerania , Mecklenburg , Brandenburg and Saxony to sign alliances with Sweden. During this time, in May 1631, the city of Magdeburg , which had been besieged for months by the Catholic league troops under Tilly, was conquered. The city was largely destroyed by fires and was almost completely depopulated after more than 20,000 deaths. The event, known as the Magdeburg Wedding , was the greatest massacre of the Thirty Years War and, through hundreds of pamphlets and leaflets, became an effective tool of anti-Catholic propaganda for Protestants.
On September 17, 1631, the Swedish army under Gustav Adolf met the troops of the Catholic League under Tilly in the battle of Breitenfeld north of Leipzig . Tilly was defeated and could no longer stop the advance of the Swedes into southern Germany. He was wounded in the Battle of Rain am Lech (April 14/15, 1632) and retired to Ingolstadt , where he died on April 30 of a serious wound with the word "Regensburg" on his lips. The Swedes tried to take the heavily fortified Ingolstadt, but did not succeed despite the high losses. After the siege was broken off, a Swedish army group under Horn chased Bavarian troops on their way to Regensburg. Elector Maximilian had the city surprisingly occupied by force on April 27, 1632 and thus started the battle for Regensburg . A Swedish attack was expected, because the Protestant imperial city of Regensburg was considered a key fortress on the Danube, which was supposed to protect Vienna and thus Austria from the Swedish attack already feared by Tilly. Instead of attacking Regensburg, the main Swedish army under Gustav Adolf pursued the Bavarian Elector Maximilian, who fled from Ingolstadt to Munich and then on to Salzburg. In mid-May 1632, the hardly defended royal seat of Munich was taken by the Swedish army. By paying a high tribute of 300,000 thalers, the city was able to save itself from looting. While Gustav Adolf did not tolerate looting in the city of Munich, on his way to Munich and during his 10-day stay he had cleared the rural regions of Bavaria for systematic looting by his soldiers.
At the beginning of 1632, Emperor Ferdinand II had reappointed Wallenstein, who had been dismissed at the Regensburg Electoral Congress in 1630 , as commander-in-chief of the imperial troops, because after the great victory of the Swedes at Breitenfeld, it was to be expected that Swedish and allied Saxon troops would now be in Bohemia and Would threaten Bavaria. Wallenstein had quickly raised a new army in Bohemia, had moved with the army to Nuremberg and had set up a large, strongly fortified and well-supplied camp there . For Gustav Adolf's army in Munich in June 1632, this and the fickleness of his Saxon allies threatened the routes of retreat to the north. Gustav Adolf was forced to retreat from Munich to Nuremberg and put Wallenstein there to fight. However, in the battle of the Alte Veste west of Nuremberg near Zirndorf on September 3, 1632, Wallenstein succeeded in inflicting no defeat on the Swedish army, but so considerable losses that Gustav Adolf was forced to withdraw. When the Wallenstein Army withdrew to winter quarters in Saxony , Gustav Adolf was forced to stand by the allied Saxons. He pursued the withdrawing Wallenstein army, was able to catch up with it near Leipzig at Lützen, but the unexpected attack he had hoped for failed. The Battle of Lützen , which began late on the following day, November 16, 1632, because of the fog , initially went well for Gustav Adolf. That changed, however, when the cavalry troops, who had already been released into quarters by Wallenstein but then ordered back, arrived on the battlefield under Pappenheim , although Pappenheim was killed soon after their arrival. Gustav Adolf also lost his life in a confusing situation. After his death became known, Bernhard von Sachsen-Weimar took command of the initially shocked troops on the battlefield and ended the battle successfully for the Swedes.
The death of Gustav Adolf was a grave loss for the Protestants. The Swedish Chancellor Axel Oxenstierna took over the reign over Sweden and also the military command. In order to continue the fight, new army structures and new alliances were required. Oxenstierna concluded the Heilbronner Bund (1633–1634) with the Protestants of the Franconian , Swabian and Rhenish circles . The death of Gustav Adolf also led to considerable restructuring of the Swedish army units and to disputes between the military commanders, among whom Bernhard von Sachsen-Weimar was able to achieve a leading position as German imperial prince. He occupied Bamberg in February 1633 and had the intention of occupying the Upper Palatinate with his new "Frankish Army" and of conquering this key city in the battle for Regensburg in order to advance to Austria. Because the troops failed to pay their wages, the plans were delayed and Regensburg was not conquered and occupied until November 1633. Wallenstein had failed to prevent the conquest of Regensburg from Bohemia. This ultimately led to the Bavarian Elector Maximilian and especially Emperor Ferdinand II completely losing confidence in Wallenstein and finding ways to have Wallenstein murdered in Eger on February 25, 1634 .
After Wallenstein's death, the emperor's son, who later became emperor Ferdinand III. , the supreme command of the imperial army. In a joint operation with the Bavarian elector and the Bavarian-led army of the Catholic League under the command of Johann von Aldringen , he was able to recapture this city, which was occupied by the Swedes in November 1633, in July 1634 in the battle for Regensburg . The loss of Regensburg , which was almost prevented by a relief attack by two Swedish armies, which, however, lost a lot of time due to the excessive sacking of Landshut , was the beginning of further military failures for the Swedes. Both Swedish armies had to follow the imperial Bavarian armies that had already withdrawn to Württemberg in forced marches and reached Württemberg exhausted in the rain. There the Swedish generals Bernhard von Sachsen-Weimar and Gustaf Horn got into a dispute over the strategic question of how the city of Nördlingen , besieged by the enemy troops , could be liberated. In addition, a Spanish army under the Cardinal Infante managed to penetrate south-west Germany from the south and to unite with the imperial army in front of Nördlingen. There it came to the decisive battle in September 1634 , in which the Protestant Swedish troops under Horn and Bernhard von Sachsen-Weimar suffered a devastating defeat, which led to the end of this phase of the war.
After the heavy defeat of the Swedes in 1635, with the exception of the Calvinist Landgraviate of Hessen-Kassel, almost all Protestant imperial estates under the leadership of Electoral Saxony broke out of the alliance with Sweden and concluded the Prague Peace with Emperor Ferdinand II . In the peace treaty, the emperor had to allow the Protestants to suspend the edict of restitution of 1629 for forty years. The Bavarian Elector Maximilian I was also urged to join the alliance and consented, although he had to integrate his army of the Catholic League into the new Imperial Army. The aim of the imperial princes and the imperial army was to act together and with the support of Spain against France and Sweden as the enemies of the empire. With that the Thirty Years War finally ceased to be a war of denominations. In response to the Peace of Prague, the Protestant Swedes allied themselves with the Catholic French in the Treaty of Compiègne in 1635 in order to also curb the Spanish imperial power of the Habsburgs.
Swedish-French War (1635-1648)
The widely used description of the final phase of the war as the “Swedish-French War” reproduced here is slightly misleading. After the accession of Emperor Ferdinand III. in 1637, this phase of the war was marked to a large extent by fighting between the imperial-Habsburg and Swedish troops. But that was not the intention of the emperors, because his guiding principle was actually the cooperation with Spain and the common struggle against France, as the "source of all evil".
France enters the war
After the heavy defeat in the Battle of Nördlingen , the Swedes found themselves in a military crisis situation. Your negotiations with Protestant military leaders and with Saxons remained unsuccessful because the Swedish needs and demands were not accepted. Instead, the Saxon elector and the emperor concluded the peace in Prague in 1635 , which almost all of the Protestant imperial princes and imperial cities that had been allied with Sweden up to then joined. This strengthened the emperor and the Electorate of Saxony in the conviction that with the Prague peace treaty they had laid the basis for ending the conflict with Sweden.
This hope turned out to be an illusion, because now France, as the previous financial supporter of Sweden, had to fear that the war could end to the advantage of the Habsburg emperor. France, which had previously only been indirectly involved in the war through a proxy war, decided to become active with its own troops. First, on May 19, 1635, France declared war on Spain. In March 1635, Spanish troops conquered the city of Trier, which had been occupied by French troops since 1632 , and captured the Elector von Sötern . France's demanded release of the ally elector was refused, and the elector remained in custody until April 1645.
France declared war on the Habsburg Emperor in Vienna on September 18 and only shortly before a planned preventive attack by the emperor. The declaration of war had only indirect but serious consequences for the emperor. So far, French financial contributions to the Swedes and Spanish contributions to the emperor had roughly offset each other. Now, however, as an official participant in the war, Spain was faced with difficult challenges. This inevitably had a negative effect on the financial contributions from Spain to the emperor, while France was not additionally challenged financially.
Before France entered the war, the French army had 72 regiments of infantry . In the year the war began, the number increased to 135 regiments, reached 174 regiments in 1636 and culminated in 1647 in a number of 202 regiments. After an army reform in 1635, each line regiment numbered 1,060 men. In 1635 the French infantry numbered about 130,000 men, in 1636 there were about 155,000 men and in 1647 about 100,000 men. At the start of the war, the French army was considered to be in poor condition and was composed of soldiers who were inexperienced in relation to the imperial and Swedish soldiers who had been battle-tested in the war.
Stabilization of Sweden
In the interplay between France and Sweden, operational boundaries were made on the theater of war in the Holy Roman Empire. France took over the southern Germany operational zone that had been abandoned by Sweden . This also included the takeover of fortified places and entrenchments on the Upper Rhine from the Swedes. The Swedes withdrew completely to northern Germany on the coast of the Baltic Sea, to Mecklenburg and the Elbe region. The supplies coming from Sweden by ship across the Baltic Sea were secured there. From there, Saxony and Bohemia could be threatened, because Brandenburg was a militarily weak enemy.
Since Sweden no longer supported Bernhard von Sachsen-Weimar , he took up his own alliance negotiations with Richelieu. In October 1635 an alliance and cooperation agreement was concluded. The former Swedish Southern Army under the command of Bernhard von Sachsen-Weimar was placed under the French High Command and the commanding officer was assured territory in Alsace . Bernhard von Weimar was guaranteed four million French pounds annually as a disposition budget to pay officers and men and to pay for equipment, quarters, horses, ammunition and food. The southern army had a strength of 18,000 men, made up of former mercenaries from the Swedish army (so-called St. Bernard or Weimaraner ) and French mercenaries. The political leadership under Axel Oxenstierna withdrew to Magdeburg from June 6 to September 19, 1635, and the military commander-in-chief Johan Banér also moved the last Swedish army on German soil to Magdeburg. The contractual basis for this was the Treaty of Wismar concluded in March 1636 on the basis of the Treaty of Compiègne . After that, Sweden was to relocate the war over Brandenburg and Saxony to the Habsburg hereditary lands in Bohemia and Moravia, and France was to seize the territory of the Austrian Habsburgs on the Rhine.
When French troops tried to conquer the southern Spanish Netherlands in May 1635 and the southern Rhineland in September 1635, the project failed and an imperial army under Matthias Gallas was able to push the allied armies of France and Bernhard von Sachsen-Weimar to Metz . Bernhard von Sachsen-Weimar was able to hold the positions on the Upper Rhine . After the dissolution of the Heilbronn Confederation , the Saxon Army formally opened war against its former ally Sweden in October 1635 and blocked Magdeburg from November 1635 . The Swedish soldiers became restless and generals also suspected peace negotiations over their heads. After the heavy defeat of the Swedes near Nördlingen , a mutiny in the Swedish army threatened and in August 1635 the Swedish Chancellor Oxenstierna was detained by mutinous groups. He secretly evaded the troops' grasp in September because he feared for his life. In October 1635 the successes of the Swedes under Banér in the battle of Dömitz and then at Kyritz against a Brandenburg army put an end to the danger of a Swedish collapse.
The Swedes are now doing everything they can to expand their power base, which has shrunk in Pomerania and Mecklenburg . This was possible because the Imperialists initially concentrated on France and left the expulsion of the Swedes from the imperial territory to Electoral Saxony. In the summer of 1636 imperial and Bavarian troops crossed the Middle Rhine westward. Together with Spanish troops from the Spanish Netherlands, who crossed the Somme from the north , an attack on Paris was planned. Riots broke out in Paris after the attackers captured the French border fortress of Corbie, just 100 km north, in August 1636. In the collaboration of Richelieu and King Louis XIII. a popular army was formed, which succeeded in averting the threat to Paris. The border fortress of Corbie was recaptured after a siege by the people's army in November 1636. At the same time, the Swedes succeeded in the battle of Wittstock in a victory against an imperial-Electoral Saxon army. This turned out to be so comprehensive that the Imperial Bavarian troops had to break off their attack on France and return to the territory of the Reich.
After the win at Wittstock, the situation for Sweden had improved significantly. Kurbrandenburg was again under Swedish control and the Brandenburg elector had to flee to Königsberg in Prussia . In the following year 1637 the Swedes tried to take under Banér also Saxons. The siege of Leipzig initially failed, and after Saxon troops had forced Banér to retreat to Pomerania, the Swedish offensive stalled. The war was now on the spot again and the number of operations decreased. The degree of devastation, however, had risen sharply, because entire regions were already deserted.
Fall of power of the Habsburgs
The direct involvement in the war had so far not been very successful for the French, who were just able to avert a catastrophe in the Année de Corbie in 1636 and had lost their bridgeheads on the Rhine ( Philippsburg and Ehrenbreitstein ) to the imperial by 1637, which had once been left by the Elector of Trier . Only the relief in the fight against the Spaniards through Dutch successes such as the conquest of Breda in 1637 and the advances of Bernhard von Sachsen-Weimar on the Upper Rhine successfully brought France back into the war. Bernhard's army turned from 1637 to the areas north of the border with Switzerland near Basel, the Sundgau and the Breisgau . There his army inflicted several defeats on the imperial troops. This made the Rhine in the south-west of the empire a major theater of war. In January 1638 the Weimar army opened a winter campaign on the left bank of the Rhine and took the forest towns of Säckingen and Laufenburg . Then the army besieged the strategically important city of Rheinfelden and after a first failure on February 28, defeated an imperial army in the battle of Rheinfelden in a second attempt on March 3 . After taking over the city of Freiburg in April 1638, the Weimar army began the siege of Breisach in May 1638 . The strongly defended imperial fortress of Breisach had to surrender in December 1638 despite two attempts at relief by the imperial Bavarian armies. A campaign planned for 1639 did not take place because Bernhard von Sachsen-Weimar died unexpectedly on July 18, 1639.
In the spring of 1638, Richelieu feared that the Swedish Commander-in-Chief Axel Oxenstierna would increasingly want a separate peace and therefore pushed for the Hamburg Treaty to be passed . In the treaty, Sweden and France again committed themselves to operations against the emperor and to forbid a separate peace with the emperor.
Another 14,000 Swedish soldiers reached northern Germany. A new major offensive by Sweden began, while the imperial forces had temporarily concentrated on relieving Breisach. In 1639 the imperial Saxon army was defeated near Chemnitz, which enabled Banér to advance into Bohemia up to the walls of Prague. The emperor died in 1637. His successor Ferdinand III. pressed for a compromise, but the peace of Prague was already history by then. All other peace initiatives such as that of Pope Urban VIII ( Cologne Peace Congress ) or the Hamburg Congress of 1638 had failed. France itself did not want to make peace before restituting the Palatinate , Hesse-Kassel, Braunschweig-Lüneburg and other Protestant imperial estates and receiving war reparations. Ultimately also represented Ferdinand III. the interests of the old church relations, but tried more to reach a consensus among the empires. In 1640 he convened the Regensburg Reichstag and thereby set a trend-setting signal on the long road to peace. In 1640 Swedish troops operated together with the now French former army of Bernhard, called the Weimaraner ; together they advanced to Regensburg in January 1641 . However, the Allies could not blow up the Reichstag, which was meeting there, because the ice of the frozen Danube broke in time and Bavarian cavalry arrived to protect the city.
Militarily there was still a stalemate around 1640. From then on, the Reichstag met almost permanently and gave back its forum to the estates opposition. The dominance of the monarchical system was broken. Since France and Sweden dictated the war, imperial estates and emperors could not determine an imperial peace.
The enemies of Habsburg in the empire attentively registered how the overwhelming power of the imperial military melted away. Amalie Elisabeth von Hessen-Kassel broke off negotiations to join the Peace of Prague and in the late summer of 1639 concluded an alliance with France. The Guelph Dukes of Wolfenbüttel and Lüneburg , who were included in the Peace of Prague , entered into an alliance with Sweden. In the summer of 1641 the war between Brandenburg and Sweden ended and the Prague peace system, which had already been badly damaged, finally collapsed.
The Royal French Army in southern Germany and French subsidy payments had meant that the Swedish phase of weakness after 1634 was overcome. The military leader in Central Europe from 1638 to 1641 was the strategically very successful Johan Banér . After 1638 he permanently pushed the imperial family back into the hereditary lands. Almost every year the Swedish army carried out campaigns there, each time posing a great threat to the Imperialists. After Banér's strike at the gates of Regensburg, he had to flee from superior imperial and Bavarian troops under Piccolomini and was able to save his army with heavy losses to Saxony, where he arrived terminally ill in Halberstadt. His early death led to disintegration phenomena in the Swedish army, which temporarily prevented further offensive operations. After 1641 Lennart Torstensson took command of the Swedish troops, followed by Karl Gustav Wrangel in 1645 . The superiority of their leaders over the imperial commanders-in-chief such as Archduke Leopold Wilhelm or Matthias Gallas is often cited as one of the reasons for the Swedish war successes . Gallas was in command of the Imperial Army for half of the war. Overall, the Austrians suffered in this period of war from the lack of capable and suitable military commanders.
In 1642 Moravia was the target of the Swedish campaign. The Swedes conquered Olomouc . Swedish horsemen reached the suburbs of Vienna. Imperial troops maneuvered against the Swedish army and eventually pushed them back into Saxony. The Swedes under Torstensson then besieged Leipzig, and the imperial forces presented him in the Second Battle of Breitenfeld . It ended in a debacle almost as bad for the Austrians as the famous first battle of Breitenfeld.
Fighting in the west, Torstensson War, beginning of peace negotiations
From 1643 the warring parties - the Reich, France and Sweden - negotiated a possible peace in Münster and Osnabrück. The negotiations, always accompanied by further struggles to gain advantages, continued for another five years.
The worsening crisis in Spain after the uprisings on the Iberian Peninsula in 1640 and the lost battle of Rocroi against France in 1643 also affected the situation in the empire. Madrid no longer saw itself in a position to financially support the Vienna Hofburg and was largely militarily tied to the Iberian Peninsula. From then on, Vienna could no longer count on Spanish rescue operations if it got into a military emergency in the empire, as happened in 1619, 1620 and 1634. After the death of Bernhard von Weimar, the French did not succeed in advancing on the right bank of the Rhine. Only the enormous losses of the Spanish Flanders Army at Rocroi made an invasion of the Spaniards into northern France unlikely. This allowed France to operate with larger contingents on the Rhine front. But here Bavaria stood in their way. The Bavarian Army was able to hold its own against the Royal French Army in southern Germany. They had better provisions than the imperial ones and with the Lorraine Franz von Mercy and the equestrian general Johann von Werth they had very capable military leaders. Together with Lorraine and Spanish troops and an imperial corps under Melchior von Hatzfeldt , they managed to almost completely destroy a Franco-Weimaran army in the battle of Tuttlingen . In the meantime France also showed signs of war weariness. There were unrest there due to the increased tax burden caused by the war. A peace party developed in the closer circle of power in France. Before his death, Richelieu had become an unpopular person because of his war policies. The successor to the French Prime Minister was Jules Mazarin . The French King Louis XIII. died shortly after Richelieu. The Bavarian Imperial Army succeeded in retaking Freiburg in 1644 and inflicting heavy losses on the French under General Turenne in the Battle of Lorettoberg . In return, Condé occupied several cities on the Rhine, including Speyer, Philippsburg, Worms and Mainz.
At the end of 1643, after a renewed penetration into Moravia, the Swedish military surprisingly withdrew to attack Denmark in the Torstensson War. The imperial responded with their own offensive to support the Danes as far as Jutland , which was unsuccessful. The imperial march back from Holstein turned into a catastrophe. Blocked by the Swedish army of Torstensson in Bernburg in autumn 1644 , many soldiers deserted. After Gallas was able to break through to Magdeburg with the remaining troops, he was trapped there. After an outbreak with heavy losses, Gallas' troop made their way to Bohemia. A newly formed army under Hatzfeldt's command opposed the Swedes who had invaded Bohemia on March 6, 1645 in the battle of Jankau , only to be crushed. The remaining imperial troops then withdrew to Prague to protect the Bohemian capital from further attacks by the Swedes. However, the Swedes decided to advance towards Vienna with their 28,000-strong army. In July 1645 Rákóczi led his troops to Moravia to support Torstensson in the siege of Brno . Ferdinand III. recognized the danger of a joint military advance by Torstensson and Rákóczi against Vienna. On December 13, 1645 between Emperor Ferdinand III. and Prince Georg I. Rákóczi of Transylvania signed the Peace of Linz . With Saxony, however, an ally of the emperor had previously signed the Kötzschenbroda armistice with the Swedes and had left the war. After the defense of the Swedish advance on the Danube and the successful defense of Brno, the Swedes had to withdraw from Lower Austria, where they still maintained Korneuburg until mid-1646 , and were also pushed back from Bohemia.
In the west Turenne had invaded Württemberg in the spring of 1645 and was defeated by Mercy's army on May 5th near Mergentheim-Herbsthausen . In August 1645, however, with the lost battle of Alerheim, a decisive turn against Bavaria followed, which lost Mercy and many soldiers. The French also suffered heavy losses and initially had to retreat across the Rhine, but in the summer of 1646 an allied armies of the French and Swedes operating in unity succeeded in invading Bavaria. These took their quarters in Upper Swabia in winter . Elector Maximilian therefore distanced himself from the emperor and in March 1647 concluded the Ulm armistice with France, Sweden and Hesse-Kassel . But just half a year later, Bavaria rejoined the imperial family.
The fighting continued on German soil without any major shifts in forces or a military decision. In May 1648 there was the last major battle between the French-Swedish and the Imperial-Bavarian armies near Augsburg . The Imperial Bavarian troops lost their entourage and their commander Peter Melander von Holzappel in a battle of retreat , but were able to withdraw to Augsburg in good order. Weakened by losses and desertions, the allies had to give up the line of defense on the Lech and withdraw as far as the Inn . This enabled a further devastation of spa Bavaria. At the same time, the Habsburgs were in dire straits. A small Swedish army invaded Bohemia, where in July 1648 it took the Lesser Town in a flash and then besieged the old and new towns together with advancing reinforcements. In the meantime, under the orders of the recalled Piccolomini, the imperial and Bavarians slowly pushed the opposing armies out of Bavaria and achieved a smaller victory in the battle of Dachau . In the south of Bohemia, the imperial relief troops gathered for the besieged Prague. A decisive battle over the fate of the city, in which the conflict had started 30 years earlier, was not to come. Until the conclusion of the “Peace of Westphalia”, with which Europe was reorganized territorially among the warring powers, the Swedes did not succeed in conquering. They only broke off the siege at the beginning of November 1648, shortly before the arrival of the imperial relief army, which had already brought with them the news of the peace treaty.
Peace of Westphalia and the consequences of war
As part of the Hamburg preliminaries , it was finally agreed at the end of 1641 to hold a general peace congress in the cities of Münster (for the Catholics) and Osnabrück (for the Protestant side). Previously, Cologne and later Lübeck and Hamburg had been considered as congress locations. After the chief negotiator, Count Maximilian von Trauttmansdorff, left Münster in the summer of 1647 after his failed attempt at arbitration, Reichshofrat Isaak Volmar and the imperial ambassador, Count (later Prince) Johann Ludwig von Nassau-Hadamar, finally brought the peace negotiations to a successful conclusion.
In the Peace of Westphalia, in addition to the Catholic and Lutheran denominations , the Reformed denomination was recognized as having equal rights in the empire. Parity was decreed in four denominationally mixed imperial cities , for example in Augsburg and Biberach . Extensive regulations concerned the religious issues. In doing so, solutions were found that were partly pragmatic and partly also curious. For example, an alternating government of Protestant bishops (from the House of Braunschweig-Lüneburg) and Catholic bishops was created for the bishopric of Osnabrück . The prince-bishopric of Lübeck was retained as the only Protestant prince-bishopric with a seat and vote in the Reichstag in order to provide the Gottorf family with a secondary education . Special regulations were made for the Catholic monasteries in the extinct dioceses of Halberstadt and Magdeburg , which fell to Brandenburg from 1680 .
The new great power Sweden received in 1648 at the expense of Brandenburg Western Pomerania including Stettin with the entire mouth of the Oder, the city of Wismar and its new monastery and the Archdiocese of Bremen and the Diocese of Verden as an imperial fief. Denmark, which claimed the so-called Elbe duchies , was ignored.
Otherwise there was comparatively little change in the empire: the power system between the emperor and the imperial estates was rebalanced without significantly shifting weight compared to the situation before the war. Reich policy was not de-denominationalized, only the way the denominations were dealt with anew. France, on the other hand, became the most powerful country in Western Europe. The peace treaties also granted the Swiss Confederation independence from the jurisdiction of the Imperial Courts (Art. VI IPO = § 61 IPM) and thus de facto recognized its state independence, which, however, is only the de jure determination of a de facto since the end of the Swabian War of 1499 was established fact. With the recognition of the independence of the States General, a development that had begun a century before and was de facto completed a long time ago was ratified. With the Burgundian Treaty , the Spanish Netherlands had already been partially dissolved from the Imperial Union in 1548, the northern part had finally declared itself independent in 1581 .
Questions that remained unanswered, particularly on the issue of troop withdrawal, were resolved in the following months at the peace enforcement congress in Nuremberg. The transfer of soldiers to civilian life was problematic in many places. Some previous mercenaries formed gangs who marauded through the country, while others were used as guards to ward off those gangs. A certain advantage of the failed agreement between France and Spain was that the soldiers were able to find employment in the ongoing war in both countries. Venetian advertisements for the war for Crete against the Ottomans also offered many mercenaries an opportunity to continue their military service.
Parts of the Holy Roman Empire had been badly devastated. The extent of the decline in the total population in the Reich area from around 16 million previously is not precisely known. The estimates range from 20 to 45%. According to a widespread statement, around 40% of the German rural population fell victim to the war and epidemics. In cities, the loss is estimated to be less than 33%. The distribution of the population decline was very different: The losses were greatest where the armies passed through or camped. In the areas of Mecklenburg, Pomerania, the Palatinate and parts of Thuringia and Württemberg that were particularly hard hit by the chaos of war, losses of well over 50% and in some places up to more than 70% of the population occurred. The north-west and south-east of the empire, on the other hand, were hardly affected by depopulation due to the war.
The city of Hamburg was one of the winners of the conflict . The goal of gaining recognition of their imperial status was not achieved, but they were able to concentrate large parts of trade with Central Germany on themselves and develop into one of Europe's leading trading and financial centers. For the large Upper German trading metropolises, the war once again accelerated the downturn at the end of the 16th century. By contrast, the residential cities, which were able to direct large consumption flows in their direction, profited from their decline.
Little attention has been paid to the fact that with the independence of the Netherlands and the loss of important coastal regions and Baltic Sea ports to Sweden, practically all major river estuaries were under foreign influence. The German states had only a few accesses to the high seas and were thus partially excluded from overseas trade. The possibilities of the empire to profit from the resurgent sea trade were thereby limited. The economic aftermath of the Thirty Years War such as B. for colonization , which subsequently led to large territorial gains in other European countries, are controversial in research. In any case, Bremen and Hamburg, the most important German port cities, continued to have free access to the North Sea and world trade. Imperial colonial projects such as the Brandenburg-African Compagnie from Pillau and later from Emden , on the other hand, did not have long-term success due to their poor financial base.
France, England, Sweden and the Netherlands were able to develop into nation states after the Thirty Years' War . The flourishing trade in these countries was accompanied by an upswing in the liberal bourgeoisie. What is disputed is what historical and social consequences this had for the Reich and later Germany.
Financing the war
At the beginning of the 17th century, the early modern states of Europe had neither financial nor administrative structures that would have been efficient enough to support standing armies of the size required by the Thirty Years' War. The financing of the huge mercenary armies therefore plunged all warring parties into constant financial difficulties, especially the German princes, whose territories were soon largely bled out due to the length and intensity of the conflict (see also Kipper and Wipper times ).
The supposed solution was described by the slogan " War feeds war ". The armies collected taxes and contributions in the form of money and payments in kind from the areas they had traversed. That means: The country in which the fighting was taking place or which was being occupied had to pay for the war costs. The generals took care to strain the areas of opposing parties as much as possible. The longer the war lasted, the more this practice grew into arbitrary looting, with all the side effects of robbery and murder. Wallenstein is credited with saying that a large army is easier to finance than a small one, as it can exert greater pressure on the civilian population.
Troops with semi-regular salaries, such as the Wallensteins or Gustav Adolfs, were more disciplined in collecting money and materials - at least in the first years of the war - than the free mercenary troops, who sometimes joined one party or the other depending on the war situation. They included mercenaries from almost every country in Europe.
The war in collective memory and in literature
The historian Friedrich Oertel wrote in 1947 about the effects of the Thirty Years War on the German national character: “German characteristics, however, remain the lack of feeling for the 'liberalitas' of people who are sovereign from within and the lack of feeling for 'dignitas'. The aftermath of the Thirty Years' War still weighs tragically on the history of our people and has stopped the process of maturation. When will the shadows finally disappear, will the omitted be made up? "
The Thirty Years' War left many traces in art and everyday life, as in the nursery rhyme Maikäfer flies : Bet, children, bet, / Tomorrow comes the Swede, / Tomorrow comes the ox star , / He will teach the children to pray. / Bet, children, bet. According to Bazon Brock, the cockchafer song is symbolic of a collective defeat of the Germans and stuck in the cultural memory.
In his picaresque novel Der adventurliche Simplicissimus , published in 1669, Hans Jakob Christoffel von Grimmelshausen (1625–1676) described the turmoil and atrocities of war and thus created the first important novel in German literature . The mercenary and later mayor of Görzke , Peter Hagendorf , left an eyewitness report in his chronicle.
The experience of never-ending war, hunger, disease and general destruction created a poetry of hitherto unknown urgency, in which the certainty of death and transience was combined with a baroque lust for life. Andreas Gryphius wrote the sonnet " Tears of the Fatherland Anno 1636", which is still one of the most cited anti-war poems today. It begins with the verses:
- We are now whole, more than completely devastated!
- The cheeky crowd, the raging trumpet
- The sword fat with blood, the thundering cardoon,
- Has consumed all sweat and industry and supplies.
Martin Rinckart , celebrated as a folk hero and savior in need, wrote “ Now thank all God ” and the Leipzig contemporary witness Gregor Ritzsch wrote “I saw the Swedes with eyes; I must have liked it ”.
In the 18th century, Friedrich Schiller dealt with the war as a historian and playwright . In 1792 he published a "History of the Thirty Years War". Seven years later he completed his three-part drama Wallenstein .
As time passed, writers increasingly saw the great conflict of the 17th century as a metaphor for the horrors of war itself. Ricarda Huch's historical episode novel The Great War in Germany from the beginning of the 20th century is an example of this. The best-known example from the middle of the 20th century is Bertolt Brecht's play " Mother Courage and Her Children ", which is set in the Thirty Years' War, but makes it clear that the brutalization and destruction of people through violence is possible anywhere and at any time .
The Term "Thirty Years War"
After the Second World War , various concepts and approaches in historical studies led to the concept of the “Thirty Years War” being fundamentally questioned. In 1947 the historian Sigfrid Heinrich Steinberg opposed its use for the first time in an article for the English journal History . Later, in 1966, in The Thirty Years War and the Conflict for European Hegemony 1600–1660, he came to the conclusion that the term was merely a “product of retrospective imagination”. Accordingly, "neither Pufendorf nor any other contemporary used the expression 'Thirty Years War'."
At first only a few other historians turned against this statement. In the end, however, the German historian Konrad Repgen disproved Steinberg's thesis, initially in a few articles and later in an extensive essay. Using numerous sources, he proved that the term “Thirty Years War” had already arisen around the time of the Peace of Westphalia. The contemporary witnesses would have stated its duration in years from the beginning of the war; the humanistic scholars were also inspired by the example of ancient writers. Repgen attributed the name to the need of contemporaries to express the completely new experience that the war had represented for them. This interpretation has been largely adopted by other historians.
Johannes Burkhardt nevertheless pointed out that the term, although contemporary, could nonetheless have denoted a construct, since the Thirty Years' War was in reality a multitude of parallel and successive wars. He attributed the name to the fact that the "war compression" had reached such proportions that it was almost impossible for contemporaries to differentiate between the individual conflicts. This assumption was supported by a 1999 study by Geoffrey Mortimer of contemporary diaries. To this day, other historians have followed Steinberg's tradition of viewing the “Thirty Years War” as an afterthought by German historians.
Reception in museums
In Vienna Museum of Military History of the Thirty Years' War is dedicated to a large area. All kinds of armaments are on display this time, such as muskets , matchlock - wheel lock - and flintlock muskets . Figurines of imperial pikemen , musketeers , cuirassiers and arquebusiers show the protective weapons and equipment of the time. Numerous armor , cutting , stabbing and thrusting weapons complete the area of the Thirty Years War. The work and fate of the generals like Albrecht von Wallenstein is also illustrated. A special exhibit is Wallenstein's handwriting to his Field Marshal Gottfried Heinrich zu Pappenheim on November 15, 1632, which was written on the eve of the Battle of Lützen and which still shows extensive traces of blood from Pappenheim to this day, and Wallenstein's letter is still with him the next day carried when he was fatally wounded in battle. The so-called “Piccolomini series” by the Flemish battle painter Pieter Snayers is particularly impressive . These are twelve large-format battle paintings that were created between 1639 and 1651 and show Octavio Piccolomini's campaigns in Lorraine and France in the last years of the Thirty Years War.
In Wittstock an der Dosse , in the tower of the Old Bishop's Castle, the Museum of the Thirty Years' War has been located since 1998 , which documents the causes, the course, the immediate results and consequences as well as the aftermath of the war. In Rothenburg ob der Tauber , in the so-called “historical vault with state dungeon”, you can see a small exhibition about the overall situation of the city during the war, including weapons, artillery, military equipment and military equipment of the time.
The upper floor of the Zirndorf Municipal Museum is dedicated to the history of Zirndorf during the Thirty Years' War. In 1632, near the Alte Veste , where Commander-in-Chief Albrecht von Wallenstein had set up a camp, there was a warlike encounter with Gustav II Adolf of Sweden . Dioramas and models as well as contemporary descriptions of camp life, the fate of the soldiers and the civilian population illustrate this chapter of the Franconian war history.
The Hessian State Archives in Marburg keep a large number of cards related to the Thirty Years' War in the “Wilhelmshöher War Cards” collection. The maps document theaters of war and war events. They also provide insights into the changes in the landscape, cities, streets and paths, etc. The individual maps are fully accessible and can be viewed online as digital copies. The Stausebach chronicle of the Caspar Prize is also kept there, which describes the course of the war in Hesse from his peasant perspective. The Mainz historian Josef Johannes Schmid brought out a collection of sources in 2009.
- Timeline for the Thirty Years War
- List of envoys to the Peace of Westphalia
- Little ice age
- Second Thirty Years War
- The forgotten valley (GB / USA 1971). Director: James Clavell .
- Christoffel von Grimmelshausen's adventurous simplicity (ZDF, D 1975). Director: Fritz Umgelter .
- The Iron Age - Loving and Killing in the Thirty Years War (ZDF, Arte; D 2018). Directed by Philippe Bérenger, Yury Winterberg. Six-part television documentary.
- The Souls in Fire (TV film, Germany 2014). Director: Urs Egger.
- Gustav Adolfs Page (D / AUT 1960). Director: Rolf Hansen .
- Wallenstein (ZDF, D 1978). Director: Franz Peter Wirth. Four-part television film based on the biography of Golo Mann .
- The Thirty Years War (1/2) - Diaries of Survival (Documentation Terra X, ZDF, 2018) by Ingo Helm and Volker Schmidt-Sondermann
- The Thirty Years War (2/2) - Devastation and Reconciliation (Documentation Terra X, ZDF, 2018) by Ingo Helm and Volker Schmidt-Sondermann
- Johannes Arndt : The Thirty Years War 1618–1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, ISBN 978-3-15-018642-8 .
- Günter Barudio : The German War 1618–1648. Fischer, Frankfurt am Main 1985, ISBN 3-10-004206-9 .
- Friedemann Needy : Pocket Lexicon Thirty Years War. Piper, Munich 1998, ISBN 3-492-22668-X .
- Johannes Burkhardt: The Thirty Years War. Suhrkamp, Frankfurt am Main 1992, ISBN 3-518-11542-1 .
- Axel Gotthard : The Thirty Years War. An introduction. (= UTB. 4555). Böhlau Verlag, Cologne / Weimar / Vienna 2016, ISBN 978-3-8252-4555-9 .
- Christoph Kampmann: Europe and the Reich in the Thirty Years War. Kohlhammer, Stuttgart 2008, ISBN 978-3-17-018550-0 .
- Hans Medick : The Thirty Years War - Evidence of Life with Violence. Wallstein Publishing House. Goettingen. 2018. ISBN 978-3-8353-3248-5 .
- Peter Milger: Against Country and People - The Thirty Years War, causes, course and consequences, told on the basis of partly unpublished pictures, eyewitness reports and documents. Orbis-Verlag, Munich 2001, ISBN 3-572-01270-8 .
- Herfried Münkler : The Thirty Years War. European catastrophe, German trauma 1618–1648. Rowohlt Berlin, Berlin 2017, ISBN 978-3-87134-813-6 .
- Christian Pantle: The Thirty Years War. When Germany was on fire. About robbery, murder and looting and humanity in war. Propylaen Ullstein Buchverlage GmbH, Berlin 2017, ISBN 978-3-549-07443-5 .
- Geoffrey Parker : The Thirty Years War. Translated from English by Udo Rennert. Campus, Frankfurt am Main 1991, ISBN 3-593-34419-X .
- Moriz Ritter : German History in the Age of the Counter Reformation and the Thirty Years War (1555-1648). Third volume: History of the Thirty Years War. Scientific Book Society, Darmstadt 1974, ISBN 3-534-01162-7 . (Unchanged reprint of the first edition, Stuttgart / Berlin 1908. Digitized in the Internet Archive )
- Georg Schmidt : The Thirty Years War. 6th edition. Beck, Munich 2003, ISBN 3-406-49034-4 .
- Georg Schmidt: The Horsemen of the Apocalypse - History of the Thirty Years War. CH Beck, Munich 2018, ISBN 978-3-406-71836-6 .
- Gerhard Schormann : The Thirty Years War. 3. Edition. Small Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, ISBN 3-525-33506-7 .
- Cicely Veronica Wedgwood : The Thirty Years War. Paul List Verlag, Munich 1967. (New edition, Nikol, Hamburg 2011, ISBN 978-3-86820-125-3 ).
- Peter H. Wilson : The Thirty Years War - A European Tragedy. Translated from the English by Thomas Bertram, Tobias Gabel and Michael Haupt. Theiss, Darmstadt 2017, ISBN 978-3-8062-3628-6 .
- Heinz Duchhardt : The way to the catastrophe of the Thirty Years War. The crisis decade 1608–1618. Piper, Munich 2017, ISBN 978-3-492-05749-3 .
- Hans Sturmberger: Uprising in Bohemia. The beginning of the Thirty Years War. Oldenbourg, Munich 1959.
- NM Sutherland: The Origins of the Thirty Years War and the Structure of European Politics. In: English Historical Review. 107, 1992, pp. 587-625. (Sutherland criticizes the partially one-dimensional view of the Thirty Years' War as primarily a German war)
- Klaus Bussmann, Heinz Schilling (Ed.): 1648 - War and Peace in Europe. Catalog volume and two text volumes. Münster 1998, ISBN 3-88789-127-9 . (Documentation of the Council of Europe exhibition on the 350th anniversary of the Peace of Westphalia in Münster and Osnabrück)
- Fritz Dickmann : The Peace of Westphalia. Aschendorff, Münster 1965.
- Heinz Duchhardt (ed.): The Westphalian Peace. Diplomacy, political turning point, cultural environment, history of reception. Oldenbourg, Munich 1998, ISBN 3-486-56328-9 .
- Ernst Höfer: The End of the Thirty Years War. Strategy and image of war. Böhlau, Cologne / Weimar / Vienna 1997, ISBN 3-412-04297-8 .
- Konrad Repgen (Ed.): War and Politics 1618–1648. European problems and perspectives (= writings of the Historisches Kolleg . Volume 8). Oldenbourg, Munich 1988, ISBN 3-486-53761-X ( digitized ).
- Karl Heldmann : Letters of princes and generals from the time of the Thirty Years' War. Published from the archive of Hans Georg von Arnim with historical introductions. Goettingen 1913.
- Lothar Höbelt : From Nördlingen to Jankau. Imperial strategy and warfare 1634–1645. (= Writings of the Army History Museum . 22). Vienna 2016, ISBN 978-3-902551-73-3 .
- Bernhard Kroener, Ralf Pröve (Ed.): War and Peace. Military and Society in the Early Modern Era. Schöningh, Paderborn 1996, ISBN 3-506-74825-4 .
- Michael Weise: Cruel victims? Croatian mercenaries and their different roles in the Thirty Years War. In: Philipp Batelka, Michael Weise, Stephanie Zehnle (eds.): Between perpetrators and victims. Violent relationships and violent communities. Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen 2017, ISBN 978-3-525-30099-2 , pp. 127–148.
- Julia Zunckel: Arms deals in the Thirty Years War. Entrepreneurial forces, military goods and market strategies in trade between Genoa, Amsterdam and Hamburg (= writings on economic and social history. Volume 49). Duncker & Humblot, Berlin 1997, ISBN 3-428-08807-7 .
Economic and social history
- Jörg-Peter Findeisen: The Thirty Years War. An epoch in images of life. Styria, Graz / Vienna / Cologne 1998, ISBN 3-222-12643-7 .
- Benigna von Krusenstjern , Hans Medick (ed.): Between everyday life and catastrophe. The Thirty Years War up close. Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen 2001, ISBN 3-525-35463-0 .
- Markus Meumann, Dirk Niefanger (ed.): A scene of bitter fear. Perception and representation of violence in the 17th century. Wallstein, Göttingen 1997, ISBN 3-89244-234-7 .
- Christian Pantle: The Thirty Years War. When Germany was on fire . Propylaeen, Munich 2017, ISBN 978-3-549-07443-5 .
- Klaus Bussmann , Heinz Schilling : 1648 - War and Peace in Europe. Catalog volume and two text volumes. Münster / Osnabrück 1998, ISBN 3-88789-127-9 . (Documentation of the Council of Europe exhibition on the 350th anniversary of the Peace of Westphalia in Münster and Osnabrück)
- Herbert Langer : Hortus Bellicus. The Thirty-Year War. A cultural story. Edition Leipzig 1978, Prisma, Gütersloh 1982, ISBN 3-570-02991-3 .
- Volker Meid : The Thirty Years War in German Baroque Literature. Reclam, Ditzingen 2017, ISBN 978-3-15-011145-1 .
Local and regional history
- Dieter Arzberger: The Thirty Years War in the Fichtel Mountains. Verlag Gisela Arzberger, Selb 2014, ISBN 978-3-927313-70-5 . (Part 1 text part, part 2 map part)
- Matthias Asche , Marco Kollenberg, Antje Zeiger: Half of Europe in Brandenburg. The Thirty Years War and its Consequences. Lukas Verlag, Berlin 2020, ISBN 978-3-86732-323-9 .
- Matthias Asche: New settlers in the devastated country - Coping with the aftermath of the war, migration management and denominational politics in the light of the reconstruction of the country - The Mark Brandenburg after the wars of the 17th century. Aschendorff Verlag, Münster 2006, ISBN 3-402-00417-8 .
- Martin Bötzinger: Life and suffering during the Thirty Years War in Thuringia and Franconia (1618–1648) - An eyewitness report. Rockstuhl Verlag, Bad Langensalza 2001, ISBN 3-929000-39-3 .
- Wilhelm A. Eckhardt, Helmut Klingelhöfer: Farm life in the age of the Thirty Years War. The Stausebacher Chronicle of the Caspar Price 1636–1667. (= Contributions to Hessian history. Volume 13). Trautvetter & Fischer Nachf., Marburg an der Lahn 1998, ISBN 3-87822-110-X .
- Peter Engerisser: From Kronach to Nördlingen - The Thirty Years War in Franconia, Swabia and the Upper Palatinate 1631–1635. Heinz Späthling Verlag, Weißenstadt 2004, ISBN 3-926621-32-X . (with more than 120 short biographies)
- Peter Engerisser, Pavel Hrnčiřík: Nördlingen 1634. The battle of Nördlingen - turning point of the Thirty Years' War. Heinz Späthling Verlag, Weißenstadt 2009, ISBN 978-3-926621-78-8 . (with the prehistory 1632–1634: conquest and loss of Regensburg; history of the troops, battle constellations)
- Jan N. Lorenzen: 1631 - The destruction of Magdeburg. In: ders: The great battles. Myths, people, fates. Campus Verlag, Frankfurt am Main 2006, ISBN 3-593-38122-2 , pp. 55-100.
- Hans Pehle: The Rhine crossing of the Swedish king Gustav II Adolf. Forum Verlag, Riedstadt 2005, ISBN 3-937316-15-9 .
- Manuel Raschke: The Lower Saxon-Danish War 1625–1629. In: Eva S. Fiebig and Jan Schlürmann (eds.): Handbook on North Elbian military history. Armies and wars in Schleswig, Holstein, Lauenburg, Eutin and Lübeck 1623–1863 / 67. Husum 2010, pp. 289-308.
- Bernd Roeck : As if the world is about to break. A city in the age of the Thirty Years War. Beck, Munich 1991, ISBN 3-406-35500-5 .
- Axel Stolch, Jörg Wöllper: The Swedes on the Breitwang. A contribution to the history of the city of Bopfingen and the battle of Nördlingen in 1634. F. Steinmeier, Nördlingen 2009, ISBN 978-3-936363-47-0 .
- Gunnar Teske: Citizens, Peasants and Envoys. The Thirty Years War and the Peace of Westphalia in Westphalia. 2nd edition, Ardey-Verlag, Münster 1998, ISBN 3-87023-085-1 .
- Wolfgang Wüst: Nuremberg, Nördlingen and Dinkelsbühl in the Thirty Years' War in the Swedish alliance 1630–1635. In: Communications from the Association for the History of the City of Nuremberg. 102 (2015), , pp. 191-208.
- Wolfgang Wüst (Ed.): The Thirty Years War in Swabia and its historic neighboring regions: 1618 - 1648 - 2018. Results of an interdisciplinary conference in Augsburg from March 1 to 3, 2018 (Journal of the Historisches Verein für Schwaben 111) Augsburg 2018, ISBN 978-3-95786-179-5 .
- Dieter Albrecht : Maximilian I of Bavaria 1573–1651. Oldenbourg, Munich 1998, ISBN 3-486-56334-3 .
- Günter Barudio: Gustav Adolf the Great. A political biography. Fischer, Frankfurt am Main 1985, ISBN 3-596-24358-0 .
- Robert Bireley: Ferdinand II, Counter-Reformation Emperor, 1578-1637. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 2014, ISBN 978-1-107-06715-8 .
- Heinrich Bücheler: From Pappenheim to Piccolomini. Six characters from Wallenstein's camp. Thorbecke, Sigmaringen 1994, ISBN 3-7995-4240-X .
- Jörg-Peter Findeisen : Gustav II Adolf of Sweden. The conqueror from the north. Edition Katz, Gernsbach 2005, ISBN 3-938047-08-9 .
- Jörg P. Findeisen: Axel Oxenstierna. Architect of the Swedish great power era and winner of the Thirty Years War . Casimir Katz Verlag, Gernsbach 2007, ISBN 978-3-938047-24-8 .
- Johann Franzl: Ferdinand II. 1578–1637. Emperor in the conflict of time. Styria, Graz / Vienna / Cologne 1978, ISBN 3-222-11119-7 .
- Mark Hengerer: Ferdinand III. 1608-1657. A biography. Böhlau, Vienna 2012, ISBN 978-3-205-77765-6 ( Open Access ).
- Lothar Höbelt : Ferdinand III. 1608-1657. Reluctant Emperor of Peace. Ares-Verlag, Graz 2008, ISBN 978-3-902475-56-5 .
- Marcus Junkelmann : Maximilian I of Bavaria. The Iron Elector (= Small Bavarian Biographies). Verlag Friedrich Pustet, Regensburg 2017, ISBN 978-3-7917-2935-0 .
- Marcus Junkelmann: Tilly. The Catholic General (= Small Bavarian Biographies). Verlag Friedrich Pustet, Regensburg 2011, ISBN 978-3791723549 .
- Walter Krüssmann: Ernst von Mansfeld (1580–1626); Count's son, mercenary leader, war entrepreneur against Habsburg in the Thirty Years War. (= Historical Research . Volume 94). Duncker & Humblot, Berlin 2010, ISBN 978-3-428-13321-5 . (previously Phil. Diss. Cologne 2007)
- Golo Mann : Wallenstein. Fischer, Frankfurt am Main 1971, ISBN 3-10-047903-3 . (Narrative biography of the imperial general)
- Ilja Mieck : Wallenstein 1634. Murder or Execution? In: Alexander Demandt (Ed.): The assassination in history. Böhlau, Cologne et al. 1996, ISBN 3-412-16795-9 , pp. 143-164.
- Geoff Mortimer: Wallenstein. Enigmatic genius of the Thirty Years War. Translated from the English by Geoff Mortimer and Claus Cartellieri. Primus Verlag, Darmstadt 2012, ISBN 978-3-86312-304-8 .
- Robert Rebitsch : Wallenstein. Biography of a power man. Böhlau, Vienna a. a. 2010, ISBN 978-3-205-78583-5 .
- Barbara Stadler: Pappenheim and the time of the Thirty Years War. Gemsberg, Winterthur 1991, ISBN 3-85701-091-6 . (Dissertation University of Zurich 1990)
- Central German testimonies from the time of the Thirty Years War (MDSZ)
- Thirty Years War Museum
- The actors of the Thirty Years' War
- Information, texts, sources and much more in the project "1648 - Westphalian Peace"
- Cf. Berthold Seewald: The most famous picture of the Thirty Years' War is to be reinterpreted. In: The world . November 26, 2018, accessed March 5, 2020.
- Cf. for example Georg Schmidt: Die Reiter der Apocalypse. History of the Thirty Years War. Munich 2018, p. 672 ff.
- See Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618–1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 16.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 18 f.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 20 f.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 22.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 23 f.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648 . Reclam non-fiction book, Stuttgart 2009, p. 26 f.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 28.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 29.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648 . Reclam non-fiction book, Stuttgart 2009, p. 31 f.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years War. 3. Edition. Small Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 13.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years War. 3. Edition. Kleine Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 14; Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618–1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 31.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648 . Reclam non-fiction book, Stuttgart 2009, p. 44.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 33.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648 . Reclam non-fiction book, Stuttgart 2009, p. 37.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years War. 3. Edition. Kleine Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 12; Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618–1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, pp. 35, 39.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years War. 3. Edition. Small Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 12.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 41 f.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 42.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 43.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years War. 3. Edition. Small Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 15.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 51.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 54.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 55 f.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 57.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648. Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, p. 60.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618–1648 . Reclam non-fiction book, Stuttgart 2009, p. 62.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years' War. 3. Edition. Small Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 25.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648 . Reclam non-fiction book, Stuttgart 2009, p. 63.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years' War. 3. Edition. Small Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 26.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years War. 3. Edition. Small Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 27.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years War. 3. Edition. Small Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 28.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years War. 3. Edition. Small Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 29.
- Volker Press : Wars and crises. Germany 1600–1715 (= New German History . Volume 5). Beck, Munich 1991, ISBN 3-406-30817-1 , p. 197.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years War. 3. Edition. Small Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 30.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years' War. 3. Edition. Small Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 31.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618–1648 . Reclam non-fiction book, Stuttgart 2009, p. 72.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years War. 3. Edition. Small Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 32.
- Jaroslav Goll: The Convent of Segeberg (1621), publishing house of the k. bohem. Society of Sciences, Prague 1875.
- Illustration by Frans Hogenberg from 1621: True Abcontrafactur which forms the 21st of June of this 1621 year, the execution of ettliche Behmische Herr ... ( digitized ).
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648 . Reclam non-fiction book, Stuttgart 2009, p. 70 f.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years War. 3. Edition. Small Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 33 f.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648 . Reclam non-fiction book, Stuttgart 2009, p. 77.
- See Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years' War 1618–1648 . Reclam Sachbuch, Stuttgart 2009, pp. 81–84.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years War. 3. Edition. Small Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 35.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648 . Reclam non-fiction book, Stuttgart 2009, p. 85.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648 . Reclam non-fiction book, Stuttgart 2009, p. 87.
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years War. 3. Edition. Small Vandenhoeck series, Göttingen 2004, p. 37.
- Johannes Arndt: The Thirty Years War 1618-1648 . Reclam non-fiction book, Stuttgart 2009, p. 88.
- E. Ladewig Petersen: The Danish Intermezzo. In: Geoffrey Parker (Ed.): The Thirty Years' War. 2nd Edition. Routledge, London / New York 1997, pp. 67, 68.
- Lothar Höbelt: From Nördlingen to Jankau. Imperial strategy and warfare 1634-1645 . In: Republic of Austria, Federal Minister for National Defense (Hrsg.): Writings of the Heeresgeschichtliches Museum Wien . tape 22 . Heeresgeschichtliches Museum, Vienna 2016, ISBN 978-3-902551-73-3 , p. 14 .
- CV Wedgwood: The 30 Years War . Paul List Verlag, Munich 1967, p. 278.
- Wolfgang Hahn: Ratisbona Politica II. Studies on the political history of the imperial city of Regensburg in the 17th century up to the beginning of the everlasting Reichstag. In: Negotiations of the historical association Regensburg. Volume 126, 1986, p. 25.
- Christian Pantle: The Thirty Years' War. When Germany was on fire . Propylaen Ullstein Buchverlage GmbH, Berlin 2017, ISBN 978-3-549-07443-5 , p. 128 ff .
- Peter Engerisser, Pavel Hrnčiřík: Nördlingen 1634. 2009, pp. 60, 177.
- Peter Engerisser: A hitherto unknown view of the siege of Regensburg in 1634. In: Negotiations of the Historical Association Regensburg. Volume 148, 2008, , pp. 55-83.
- Peter Engerisser, Pavel Hrncirik: Nördlingen 1634. Turning point of the Thirty Years War . Späthling, Weißenstadt 2009, ISBN 978-3-926621-78-8 .
- Lothar Höbelt: From Nördlingen to Jankau. Imperial strategy and warfare 1634-1645 . In: Republic of Austria, Federal Minister for National Defense (Hrsg.): Writings of the Heeresgeschichtliches Museum Wien . tape 22 . Heeresgeschichtliches Museum, Vienna 2016, ISBN 978-3-902551-73-3 , p. 439 .
- Archbishop of Trier and Elector Philipp Christoph von Sötern is arrested in 1635
- Lothar Höbelt: From Nördlingen to Jankau. Imperial strategy and warfare 1634-1645 . In: Republic of Austria, Federal Minister for National Defense (Hrsg.): Writings of the Heeresgeschichtliches Museum Wien . tape 22 . Heeresgeschichtliches Museum, Vienna 2016, ISBN 978-3-902551-73-3 , p. 9 f .
- Stéphane Thion: French Armies of the Thirty Years' War, LRT Editions, 2013, p. 80.
- Axel Gotthard: The Thirty Years War: An Introduction, Volume 4555 by Utb für Wissenschaft, UTB, 2016, p. 274
- Wolfgang Hug: Little story of Baden, Theiss, 2006, p. 74
- Otto von Guericke: A Life for the Old City of Magdeburg, Springer-Verlag, 2013, p. 81
- Georg Schmidt: The Thirty Years' War, Beck'sche Reihe, CH Beck, 2006, p. 64
- Bernhard von Poten : Concise dictionary of the total military sciences: First volume: Aa bis Berg, p. 374
- Axel Gotthard: The Thirty Years War: An Introduction, Volume 4555 by Utb für Wissenschaft, UTB, 2016, p. 275
- Lothar Höbelt: From Nördlingen to Jankau. Imperial strategy and warfare 1634-1645 . In: Republic of Austria, Federal Minister for National Defense (Hrsg.): Writings of the Heeresgeschichtliches Museum Wien . tape 22 . Heeresgeschichtliches Museum, Vienna 2016, ISBN 978-3-902551-73-3 , p. 166-168 .
- Axel Gotthard: The Thirty Years War: An Introduction, Volume 4555 by Utb für Wissenschaft, UTB, 2016, p. 279
- Wolfgang Hug: Little story of Baden, Theiss, 2006, p. 74
- Lothar Höbelt: From Nördlingen to Jankau. Imperial strategy and warfare 1634-1645 . In: Republic of Austria, Federal Minister for National Defense (Hrsg.): Writings of the Heeresgeschichtliches Museum Wien . tape 22 . Heeresgeschichtliches Museum, Vienna 2016, ISBN 978-3-902551-73-3 , p. 219-227 .
- Georg Schmidt: The Thirty Years War, Beck'sche Reihe, CH Beck, 2006, p. 65
- Lothar Höbelt: From Nördlingen to Jankau. Imperial strategy and warfare 1634-1645 . In: Republic of Austria, Federal Minister for National Defense (Hrsg.): Writings of the Heeresgeschichtliches Museum Wien . tape 22 . Heeresgeschichtliches Museum, Vienna 2016, ISBN 978-3-902551-73-3 , p. 269-271 .
- Georg Schmidt: The Thirty Years War, Beck'sche Reihe, CH Beck, 2006, p. 66
- Axel Gotthard: The Thirty Years War: An Introduction, Volume 4555 by Utb für Wissenschaft, UTB, 2016, p. 275
- Georg Schmidt: The Thirty Years War, Beck'sche Reihe, CH Beck, 2006, p. 67
- Lothar Höbelt: From Nördlingen to Jankau. Imperial strategy and warfare 1634-1645 . In: Republic of Austria, Federal Minister for National Defense (Hrsg.): Writings of the Heeresgeschichtliches Museum Wien . tape 22 . Heeresgeschichtliches Museum, Vienna 2016, ISBN 978-3-902551-73-3 , p. 272-278 .
- Axel Gotthard: The Thirty Years War: An Introduction, Volume 4555 by Utb für Wissenschaft, UTB, 2016, p. 283
- Axel Gotthard: The Thirty Years War: An Introduction, Volume 4555 by Utb für Wissenschaft, UTB, 2016, p. 284
- Axel Gotthard: The Thirty Years War: An Introduction, Volume 4555 by Utb für Wissenschaft, UTB, 2016, p. 281
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years' War, Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1985, p. 58
- Axel Gotthard: The Thirty Years War: An Introduction, Volume 4555 by Utb für Wissenschaft, UTB, 2016, p. 283
- Wolfgang Hug: Little story of Baden, Theiss, 2006, p. 75
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years' War, Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1985, p. 57
- Axel Gotthard: The Thirty Years War: An Introduction, Volume 4555 by Utb für Wissenschaft, UTB, 2016, p. 286
- Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years' War, Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1985, p. 59
- “Not only the soldier's life ends, but also life with the free moral concepts of the war years.” Kai Naumann in the archive news of the Baden-Württemberg State Archives, No. 57, September 2018, p. 28.
- Georg Schmidt: The Horsemen of the Apocalypse - History of the Thirty Years War . CH Beck, Munich 2018, pp. 617–619.
- Ulrich Christian Pallach (Ed.): Hunger - Sources for an everyday problem in Europe and the Third World, 17th to 20th century. dtv dokumente, Munich 1986, p. 25.
- Georg Schmidt: The Thirty Years War. Beck, Munich 2010, ISBN 978-3-406-60664-9 , p. 91f; Gerhard Schormann: The Thirty Years War. Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen 1985, ISBN 3-525-33506-7 , p. 119 f.
- Georg Schmidt: The Horsemen of the Apocalypse - History of the Thirty Years' War . CH Beck, Munich 2018, pp. 631–632.
- Georg Schmidt: The Thirty Years War. Beck, Munich 2010, ISBN 978-3-406-60664-9 .
- Friedrich Oertel, letter to Thomas Mann v. February 16, 1947, in: Paul E. Hübinger: Thomas Mann, the University of Bonn and contemporary history. Munich 1974, p. 598 f.
- Lotta Wieden: Old children's song. Fly maybeetle! In: FAZ. April 12, 2014. Retrieved May 23, 2017 .
- Ricarda Huch : The great war in Germany . Volumes 1–3, Leipzig 1912–1914 (New edition: The Thirty Years War. Leipzig 1929).
- SH Steinberg: The Thirty Years War - A new Interpretation. In: History. Volume 32 (1947), pp. 89-102.
- SH Steinberg: The Thirty Years War and the struggle for supremacy in Europe 1600–1660. Göttingen 1967, p. 5 f.
- SH Steinberg: The Thirty Years War and the struggle for supremacy in Europe 1600–1660. Göttingen 1967, p. 113.
- E.g. Francis L. Carsten: A Note on the Term Thirty Years War. In: History. Volume 43, 1958, p. 91 f.
- Konrad Repgen: On the historiography of the Thirty Years War. In: ders. (Ed.): War and Politics 1618–1648 - European Problems and Perspectives. Munich 1988, pp. 1-84.
- Johannes Burkhardt: The Thirty Years War. Frankfurt am Main 1992, p. 18 f.
- Geoffrey Mortimer: Perceptions of the Thirty Years War in Eyewitness Personal Accounts (University of Oxford, Dr. Phil. Thesis), summarized in: Geoffrey Mortimer: Did Contemporaries Recognize a Thirty Years War? In: The English Historical Review. Volume 116, No. 465, February 2001, pp. 124-136.
- For example NM Sutherland: The Origins of the Thirty Years War and the Structure of European Politics. In: Ante. 57, 1992, pp. 587-625.
- a transcription of the letter is available on Wikisource: Wallenstein request for help to Pappenheim 1632.
- Manfried Rauchsteiner, Manfred Litscher: The Heeresgeschichtliche Museum in Vienna. Styria, Graz / Vienna 2000, ISBN 3-222-12834-0 , pp. 10-15.
- Wilhelmshoeher war maps (1594-1875) HStAM inventory WHC. In: Archive Information System Hessen (Arcinsys Hessen), accessed on July 5, 2011.
- z. B. “Representation of the positions of the Swedish-Electoral Saxon Army and the Army of the Emperor and the League under Count Tilly before the Battle of Breitenfeld, near Leipzig, 1631” , accessed on March 12, 2016.
- Wilhelm A. Eckhardt, Helmut Klingelhöfer: Peasant Life in the Age of the Thirty Years War. The Stausebacher Chronicle of the Caspar Price 1636–1667. (= Contributions to Hessian history. Volume 13). Marburg 1998, ISBN 3-87822-110-X .
- Josef Johannes Schmid (ed.): Sources on the history of the Thirty Years War. Between the Peace of Prague and the Peace of Westphalia- Darmstadt 2009, ISBN 978-3-534-04824-3 .