[87] Richelieu died in December 1642, followed by Louis XIII on 14 May 1643, leaving the five-year-old Louis XIV as king. The situation was complicated by Savoy, which saw an opportunity to gain territory; in March 1629, the French stormed Savoyard positions in the Pas de Suse, lifted the siege of Casale and captured the strategic fortress of Pinerolo. One may describe a feeling of sadness as being "blue" and cowardice as being "yellow," but did American revolutionaries refer to British soldiers as "redcoats?" Fighting did not end immediately, since demobilising over 200,000 soldiers was a complex business, and the last Swedish garrison did not leave Germany until 1654. [43], Spanish chief minister Olivares correctly interpreted this as an invitation to open negotiations, and in return for an Anglo-Spanish alliance offered to restore Frederick to his Rhineland possessions. Lack of a sense of 'shared community' resulted in atrocities such as the destruction of Magdeburg, in turn creating large numbers of refugees who were extremely susceptible to sickness and hunger. [32] Focused on retaking the Netherlands, the Spanish Habsburgs preferred to avoid antagonising Protestants elsewhere, and recognised the dangers associated with Ferdinand's fervent Catholicism, but accepted the lack of alternatives. The 30 Years’ War was a global war. Gustavus signed an alliance with Bogislaw XIV, Duke of Pomerania, securing his interests in Pomerania against the Catholic Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, another Baltic competitor linked to Ferdinand by family and religion. Also, can you list some basic cause and effects of the war? [131] The death toll may have improved living standards for the survivors; one study shows wages in Germany increased by 40% in real terms between 1603 and 1652. This battle was fought outside of Prague and ended the first phase of the 30 years war. The Empire remained a formidable power but could no longer subsidise Ferdinand, impacting his ability to continue the war. In an event known as the Second Defenestration of Prague, the two men and their secretary Philip Fabricius were thrown out of the castle windows, although all three survived. [80] Cutting the Spanish Road had forced Madrid to resupply their armies in Flanders by sea and in October 1639 a large Spanish convoy was destroyed at the Battle of the Downs. Ferdinand resisted signing until the last possible moment, doing so on 24 October only after a crushing French victory over Spain at Lens, and with Swedish troops on the verge of taking Prague. They included separation of the Spanish and Austrian Habsburgs, expansion of the French frontier into the Empire, and an end to Spanish military supremacy in Northern Europe. [111] The Dutch were also given a monopoly over trade conducted through the Scheldt estuary, confirming the commercial ascendancy of Amsterdam; Antwerp, capital of the Spanish Netherlands and previously the most important port in Northern Europe, would not recover until the late 19th century. [101], Northern Italy had been contested by France and the Habsburgs for centuries, since it was vital for control of South-West France, an area with a long history of opposition to the central authorities. [22], While Emperors were elected, since 1440 this had been a Habsburg, the largest single landowner within the Empire; their lands included the Archduchy of Austria, the Kingdom of Bohemia, and the Kingdom of Hungary, with over eight million subjects. It devastated most of Europe especially Germany and ended with the Treaty of Westphalia in 1648. Hoping to create a wider coalition against Ferdinand, the Dutch invited France, Sweden, Savoy, and the Republic of Venice to join, but it was overtaken by events. This article was most recently revised and updated by, https://www.britannica.com/event/Thirty-Years-War, Military History Encyclopedia on the Web - Thirty Years War, Thirty Years’ War - Children's Encyclopedia (Ages 8-11), Thirty Years’ War - Student Encyclopedia (Ages 11 and up), Europe, history of: The Thirty Years’ War, Gaspar de Guzmán y Pimental, count-duke de Olivares, Armand-Jean du Plessis, cardinal et duc de Richelieu, Henri de La Tour d'Auvergne, vicomte de Turenne. Partly a genuine desire to support his Protestant co-religionists, like Christian he also wanted to maximise his share of the Baltic trade that provided much of Sweden's income. Hiroo Onoda (Japanese: 小野田 寛郎, Hepburn: Onoda Hiroo, 19 March 1922 – 16 January 2014) was an Imperial Japanese Army intelligence officer who fought in World War II and was a Japanese holdout who did not surrender at the war's end in August 1945. [56], In May 1628, his deputy von Arnim besieged Stralsund, the only port with large enough shipbuilding facilities, but this brought Sweden into the war. [45], At a meeting of the Imperial Diet in February 1623, Ferdinand forced through provisions transferring Frederick's titles, lands, and electoral vote to Maximilian. By the time he died in 1631, over 900 people from all levels of society had been executed. Gustavus Adolphus despatched several thousand Scots and Swedish troops under Alexander Leslie to Stralsund, who was appointed governor. When was the 30 years war fought? The principal battlefield for all these intermittent conflicts was the towns and principalities of Germany, which suffered severely. It is commonly referred to as the last of the religious wars. The armies of both sides plundered as they marched, leaving cities, towns, villages, and farms ravaged. [143], By laying the foundations of the modern nation state, Westphalia changed the relationship of subjects and their rulers. [21], Managing these issues was complicated by the fragmented nature of the Empire, a patchwork of nearly 1,800 separate entities in Germany, the Low Countries, Northern Italy, and areas like Alsace, now part of modern France. [89] The French also had to rebuild their army in Germany after it was shattered by an Imperial-Bavarian force led by Franz von Mercy at Tuttlingen in November. This new assault on 'German liberties' ensured continuing opposition and undermined his previous success. Sweden had control of the Baltic. [79], Pressure grew on Spanish minister Olivares to make peace, especially after attempts to hire Polish auxiliaries proved unsuccessful. It was a series of battles fought over most of Europe, although the … In Lorraine, the Three Bishoprics of Metz, Toul and Verdun, occupied by France since 1552, were formally ceded, as were the cities of the Décapole in Alsace, with the exception of Strasbourg and Mulhouse. [99] Outnumbered by a Franco-Swedish army under Wrangel and Turenne, they were defeated at Zusmarshausen in May 1648, while von Holzappel was killed. It also provided opportunities for external opponents of the Habsburgs, including the Ottoman Empire and Savoy. [133] The collapse of local government created landless peasants, who banded together to protect themselves from the soldiers of both sides, and led to widespread rebellions in Upper Austria, Bavaria and Brandenburg. During 1629, another 274 suspected witches were killed in the Bishopric of Eichstätt, plus another 50 in the adjacent Duchy of Palatinate-Neuburg. A specially designed Malefizhaus, or 'crime house', was erected containing a torture chamber, whose walls were adorned with Bible verses, where the accused were interrogated. [42], The strategic importance of the Palatinate and its proximity to the Spanish Road drew in external powers; in August 1620, the Spanish occupied the Lower Palatinate. The Thirty year war was fought between Catholics and Protestants in Central Europe between 1618 and 1648. By 1623, Spanish-Imperial forces had defeated Frederick, who was stripped of his possessions and exiled. [37] Gabriel Bethlen, Calvinist Prince of Transylvania, invaded Hungary with Ottoman support, although the Habsburgs persuaded them to avoid direct involvement, helped by the outbreak of hostilities with Poland in 1620, followed by the 1623 to 1639 war with Persia. Two Roman Catholic armies, the emperor’s and the League’s, converged on the kingdom, routing Frederick at the White Mountain in November 1620 and replacing the regime of the estates in Bohemia…, In 1620, following the defeat of Frederick V (the elector palatine, or prince, from the Rhineland who had accepted the crown of Bohemia when it was offered to him in 1618) and the Bohemians, Spanish troops from the Netherlands entered the “Winter…. [54], Many of Christian's German allies, such as Hesse-Kassel and Saxony, had little interest in replacing Imperial domination for Danish, while few of the subsidies agreed in the Treaty of the Hague were ever paid. The Thirty Years' War was one of the bloodiest events in European history — deadlier than the Black Death and World War II, ... but most of the battles were fought … Swedish intervention in the Thirty Years' War, La vida y hechos de Estebanillo González, hombre de buen humor, compuesta por él mismo, Hans Jakob Christoffel von Grimmelshausen, "German 'witch' declared innocent after 385 years", "The Battle of Wittstock 1636: Conflicting Reports on a Swedish Victory in Germany", "The face of war: Trauma analysis of a mass grave from the Battle of Lützen (1632)", "The Socio-Economic Relations of Warfare and the Military Mortality Crises of the Thirty Years' War", "Real Wages and the Origins of Modern Economic Growth in Germany, 16th to 19th Centuries", "The Long-term Impact of the Thirty Years War: What Grain Price Data Reveal", "The Origins of the Thirty Years War and the Structure of European Politics", http://www.mdsz.thulb.uni-jena.de/sz/index.php, Project "Peace of Westphalia" (among others with Essay Volumes of the 26th Exhibition of the Council of Europe "1648: War and Peace in Europe", 1998/99), BBC Radio4 documentary – The Invention of Germany: The Thirty Years' War and Magdeburg, – Sovereignty, International Relations, and the Westphalian Myth, "The Thirty Years' War – how was peace achieved? The emperor's prerogatives had never been clearly defined; a ruler who knew how to exploit his considerable informal powers of patronage could enjoy a great deal of authority, but a weak monarch could easily be reduced to a mere figurehead. Despite these setbacks, the Habsburg lands suffered less from the war than many others and became a far more coherent bloc with the absorption of Bohemia, and restoration of Catholicism throughout their territories. The Thirty Years' War is sometimes also called The European Civil War. [142], The Peace reconfirmed "German liberties", ending Habsburg attempts to convert the Holy Roman Empire into an absolutist state similar to Spain. [84] The Swedes captured Leipzig in December, giving them a significant new base in Germany, and although they failed to take Freiberg in February 1643,[85] the Saxon army was reduced to a few garrisons. [52] In early 1626, Cardinal Richelieu, main architect of the alliance, faced a new Huguenot rebellion at home and in the March Treaty of Monzón, France withdrew from Northern Italy, re-opening the Spanish Road. The chief agents of the Counter-Reformation were similarly split, the Jesuits generally backing Austria, the Capuchins France. [107], In 1580, Philip II of Spain became ruler of the Portuguese Empire, and the 1602 to 1663 Dutch–Portuguese War began as an offshoot of the Dutch fight for independence from Spain. [58], With Austrian resources stretched by the outbreak of the War of the Mantuan Succession, Wallenstein persuaded Ferdinand to agree relatively lenient terms in the June 1629 Treaty of Lübeck. Ferdinand II. [110], The Peace of Münster was the first to be signed on 30 January 1648; it was part of the Westphalia settlement because the Dutch Republic was still technically part of the Spanish Netherlands and thus Imperial territory. [129], Although some towns may have over-stated their losses to avoid taxes, individual records confirm serious declines; from 1620 to 1650, the population of Munich fell from 22,000 to 17,000, that of Augsburg from 48,000 to 21,000. [47], With Saxony dominating the Upper Saxon Circle and Brandenburg the Lower, both kreis had remained neutral during the campaigns in Bohemia and the Palatinate. Until the mid-20th century, it was seen as predominantly a German civil war and part of the European wars of religion. Brandenburg-Prussia received Farther Pomerania, and the bishoprics of Magdeburg, Halberstadt, Kammin, and Minden. [60], Made over-confident by success, in March 1629 Ferdinand passed an Edict of Restitution, which required all lands taken from the Catholic church after 1555 to be returned. The Thirty Years’ War was fought in the period between 1618 and 1648. Possession of these fortresses gave France effective control of Piedmont, protected the Alpine passes into Southern France, and allowed them to threaten Milan at will. [141] A scathing condemnation of the trials, Cautio Criminalis, was written by professor and poet Friedrich Spee, himself a Jesuit and former "witch confessor". [90], Three weeks after Rocroi, Ferdinand invited Sweden and France to attend peace negotiations in the Westphalian towns of Münster and Osnabrück, but talks were delayed when Christian of Denmark blockaded Hamburg and increased toll payments in the Baltic. In all these areas, war, famine and disease inflicted severe losses on local populations. Corrections? Please refer to the appropriate style manual or other sources if you have any questions. In fact, almost all of the powerful countries in Europe were involved in the war. A brief treatment of the Thirty Years’ War follows. The ancient notion of a Roman Catholic empire of Europe, headed spiritually by a pope and temporally by an emperor, was permanently abandoned, and the essential structure of modern Europe as a community of sovereign states was established. [50], Ferdinand had paid Wallenstein for his support against Frederick with estates confiscated from the Bohemian rebels, and now contracted with him to conquer the north on a similar basis. By weakening the Habsburgs while increasing the status of France and Sweden, it led to a new balance of power on the continent. Their attribution by some to supernatural causes led to a series of Witch-hunts, beginning in Franconia in 1626 and quickly spreading to other parts of Germany, which were often exploited for political purposes. The range of confessions in Germany, 1650, as a result of the Thirty Years' War. [126], The modern consensus is the population of the Holy Roman Empire declined from 18-20 million in 1600 to 11–13 million in 1650, and did not regain pre-war levels until 1750. In all these areas, war, famine and disease inflicted severe losses on local populations. During the Thirty Years War the opponents were, on the one hand, the House of Austria: the Habsburg Holy Roman Emperors Ferdinand II and Ferdinand III together with their Spanish cousin Philip IV. These are the 400th anniversary of the start of the Thirty Years’ War, and the 370th anniversary of the … [106], Throughout the 1630s, attempts to increase taxes to pay for the costs of the war in the Netherlands led to protests throughout Spanish territories; in 1640, these erupted into open revolts in Portugal and Catalonia, supported by Richelieu as part of his 'war by diversion'. Ferdinand paid Wallenstein by letting him confiscate estates, extort ransoms from towns, and allowing his men to plunder the lands they passed through, regardless of whether they belonged to allies or opponents. [134], Contemporaries spoke of a 'frenzy of despair' as people sought to make sense of the turmoil and hardship unleashed by the war. We are often told that ‘total war’ is a sad product of the modern, industrial age. For the outbreak of the war the deepening crisis of the Holy Roman Empire was of crucial importance. This seemed confirmed when Tilly's Catholic League army occupied Halberstadt in early 1625. Thirty Years’ War, (1618–48), in European history, a series of wars fought by various nations for various reasons, including religious, dynastic, territorial, and commercial rivalries. In 1651, Spain recaptured Barcelona, ending the revolt. [44] Since Frederick demanded full restitution of his lands and titles, which was incompatible with the Treaty of Munich, hopes of reaching a negotiated peace quickly evaporated. In 1938, C. V. Wedgwood argued it formed part of a wider European conflict, whose underlying cause was the ongoing contest between Austro-Spanish Habsburgs and French Bourbons. [24], These tensions gradually undermined Augsburg, and paralysed institutions like the Imperial diet designed to resolve them peacefully. - Politics were more important in determining the outcome of the war. [104], Between 1629 and 1631, plague exacerbated by troop movements killed 60,000 in Milan and 46,000 in Venice, with proportionate losses elsewhere. This view is widely accepted by modern historians, although debate continues over the extent to which it was a European rather than German conflict, and the accuracy of the title 'Thirty Years'. The Eighty Years' War (Dutch: Tachtigjarige Oorlog; Spanish: Guerra de los Ochenta Años) or Dutch War of Independence (1568–1648) was a revolt of the Seventeen Provinces of what are today the Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxembourg against Philip II of Spain, the sovereign of the Habsburg Netherlands.After the initial stages, Philip II deployed his armies and regained … Ágnes Várkonyi: Age of the Reforms, Magyar Könyvklub publisher, 1999. sfn error: no target: CITEREFWilson1976 (, sfn error: no target: CITEREFClodfelter2017 (. Although the battle was far from decisive, the rebels were demoralised by lack of pay, shortages of supplies, and disease, while the countryside had been devastated by Imperial troops. The Dutch truce had proved so harmful to Spain that few observers thought the king would renew it without major concessions. [64] The 1632 to 1634 Smolensk War is considered a separate but related part of the Thirty Years' War. [98] In September, he ordered his army under Bronckhorst-Gronsfeld to link up with the Imperial commander von Holzappel. Combined with Ferdinand's support for the Catholic Counter-Reformation, this appeared to threaten other Protestant rulers within the Empire. [62] With French resources tied up in Italy, he helped negotiate the September 1629 Truce of Altmark between Sweden and Poland, freeing Gustavus Adolphus to enter the war. [108], This was accompanied by a struggle for control in the East Indies and Africa, increasing Portuguese resentment against the Spanish, who were perceived as prioritising their own colonies. It was one of the longest and most destructive conflicts in European history. At Prague in 1635, Ferdinand made peace with his German opponents by accepting their autonomy. [91] This severely impacted the Dutch and Swedish economies and in December 1643 the Swedes began the Torstenson War by invading Jutland, with the Dutch providing naval support. In the October 1619 Treaty of Munich, Ferdinand agreed to transfer the Palatinate's electoral vote to Bavaria and allow him to annex the Upper Palatinate. By 1618, Europe was drifting into the generalized crisis that became the Thirty Years’ War. Confident of victory, Ferdinand now passed the Edict of Restitution, which sought to reverse Catholic property losses confirmed by Augsburg. When the Eighty Years War restarted in April 1621, the Dutch provided Frederick military support to regain his lands, along with a mercenary army under Mansfeld paid for with English subsidies. [68] Payments amounted to 400,000 Reichstaler, or one million livres per year, plus an additional 120,000 Reichstalers for 1630. Overall, the struggle was between the Holy Roman Empire, which was Roman Catholic and Habsburg, and a network of Protestant towns and principalities that relied on the chief anti-Catholic powers of Sweden and the United Netherlands, which had at last thrown off the yoke of Spain after a struggle lasting 80 years. In return, Ferdinand made concessions to Spain in Northern Italy and Alsace, and agreed to support their offensive against the Dutch. However, the rebels soon found the new French administration differed little from the old, turning the war into a three-sided contest between the Franco-Catalan elite, the rural peasantry, and the Spanish. James responded to this attack on his son-in-law by sending naval forces to threaten Spanish possessions in the Americas and the Mediterranean, and announced he would declare war if Spinola had not withdrawn his troops by spring 1621. [123], Based on local records, military action accounted for less than 3% of civilian deaths; the major causes were starvation (12%), bubonic plague (64%), typhus (4%), and dysentery (5%). Take advantage of our Presidents' Day bonus! [38], On 19 August, the Bohemian Estates rescinded Ferdinand's 1617 election as king, and on 26th, formally offered the crown to Frederick instead; two days later, Ferdinand was elected Emperor, making war inevitable if Frederick accepted. In 1625 King Christian IV of Denmark saw an opportunity to gain valuable territory in Germany to balance his earlier loss of Baltic provinces to Sweden. A parallel struggle involved the rivalry of France with the Habsburgs of the empire and with the Habsburgs of Spain, who had been attempting to construct a cordon of anti-French alliances. The crisis had a constitutional and political as well as a religious dimension. [111], Externally, the treaties formally acknowledged the independence of the Dutch Republic and the Swiss Confederacy, effectively autonomous since 1499. He did so with support from the Catholic League, despite strong opposition from Protestant members, as well as the Spanish. While Spain remained the dominant power in Italy, its reliance on long exterior lines of communication was a potential weakness, especially the Spanish Road; this overland route allowed them to move recruits and supplies from Naples and Lombardy to their army in Flanders. This was very much Rudolf II's (ruled 15… Here, in the heartland of Europe, three denominations vied for dominance: Roman Catholicism, Lutheranism, and Calvinism. For full treatment, see Europe, history of: The Thirty Years’ War. Thirty Years War , THE.—The Thirty Years War (1618-48), though preeminently a German war, was also of great importance for the history of the whole of Europe, not only because nearly all the countries of Western Europe took part in it, but also on account of its connection with the other great European wars of the same era and on account of its final results. It was one of the longest and most destructive conflicts in European history, resulting in millions of casualties. In fact, almost all of the powerful countries in Europe were involved in the war. Ferdinand won after a five-year struggle. -The Thirty Years’ War was fought because of religious conflict between the Protestants and Catholics. Attempts by Maximilian of Bavaria and John George of Saxony to broker a negotiated solution ended when Matthias died in March 1619, since it convinced many the Habsburgs were fatally damaged. Frederick fled Bohemia and the revolt collapsed. He was supported by Spain, for whom it provided an opportunity to open another front against the Dutch. They ranged in size and importance from the seven Prince-electors who voted for the Holy Roman Emperor, down to Prince-bishoprics and City-states, such as Hamburg. Before restarting hostilities, Ambrosio Spinola, commander in the Spanish Netherlands, had first to secure the Spanish Road, an overland route connecting Habsburg possessions in Italy to Flanders. The Swedes rejected a proposal that Christian of Denmark act as mediator, with Papal Legate Fabio Chigi and the Venetian Republic appointed instead. The Thirty Years’ War was a European continental war that took place from 1618-1648 (thirty years!). The Palatinate was clearly lost; in March, James instructed Vere to surrender Frankenthal, while Tilly's victory over Christian of Brunswick at Stadtlohn in August completed military operations. The Peace of Westphalia consisted of three separate agreements; the Peace of Münster between Spain and the Dutch Republic, the treaty of Osnabrück between the Empire and Sweden, plus the treaty of Münster between the Empire and France. Though it was primarily centered in Germany, several other countries became involved in the conflict, including France, Spain, and Sweden. Christian IV of Denmark was also Duke of Holstein, and it was in this capacity he joined the war in 1625. The Thirty Years' War (German: Dreißigjähriger Krieg, pronounced [ˈdʁaɪ̯sɪçˌjɛːʁɪɡɐ kʁiːk] (listen)) was a conflict fought in modern Germany and Central Europe from 1618 to 1648. The French candidate, Charles I Gonzaga, was confirmed as Duke of Mantua; although Richelieu's representative, Cardinal Mazarin, agreed to evacuate Pinerolo, it was later secretly returned under an agreement with Victor Amadeus I, Duke of Savoy. [65], Expectations of widespread support proved unrealistic; by the end of 1630, the only new Swedish ally was Magdeburg, which was besieged by Tilly. - The main terms of the Treaty of Westphalia in 1648 were that it took back the Peace of Augsburg. Over a four-year period, the parties (Holy Roman Emperor, France and Sweden) were actively negotiating at Osnabrück and Münster in Westphalia. Test how "green" your knowledge of warfare is in this quiz. [69] He won major victories at Breitenfeld in September 1631, then Rain in April 1632, where Tilly was killed. This meant each of the 224 member states was either Lutheran, the most usual form of Protestantism, or Catholic, based on the choice made by their ruler. They offered the Crown to the Protestant Frederick V of the Palatinate, who accepted, but most German princes refused to support him, and by early 1620 the Bohemian Revolt had been suppressed. The high mortality rate compared to the Wars of the Three Kingdoms in Britain may partly be due to the reliance of all sides on foreign mercenaries, often unpaid and required to live off the land. It is considered to be one of the most devastating wars in Europe. Along with the number of civilian casualties, the Thirty Years’ War was also one of the longest and most … [66] Despite the devastation inflicted on their territories by Imperial soldiers, both Saxony and Brandenburg had their own ambitions in Pomerania, which clashed with those of Gustavus; previous experience also showed inviting external powers into the Empire was easier than getting them to leave. [34], Thurn established a new government, and the conflict expanded into Silesia and the Habsburg heartlands of Lower and Upper Austria, where much of the nobility was also Protestant. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. While Denmark kept Schleswig and Holstein until 1864, this effectively ended its reign as the predominant Nordic state. The combination destabilised large parts of the Empire. [138] Mainz and Trier also witnessed the mass killing of suspected witches, as did Cologne, where Ferdinand of Bavaria presided over a particularly infamous series of witchcraft trials, including that of Katharina Henot, who was executed in 1627. [17], The war consisted of two main phases, the first being a primarily internal conflict between Emperor Ferdinand II and his opponents within the Holy Roman Empire, with external powers playing a supportive role. [25], As a result, when the Imperial Diet opened in February 1608, the Protestants demanded formal confirmation of the Augsburg settlement, which was especially significant for Calvinists like Frederick IV, Elector Palatine who had not been included. Although opposition to this act united all German princes regardless of religion, Maximilian of Bavaria was compromised by his acquisition of the Palatinate; while Protestants wanted Frederick restored and the position returned to that of 1618, the Catholic League argued only for pre-1627. Thirty Years’ War, (1618–48), in European history, a series of wars fought by various nations for various reasons, including religious, dynastic, territorial, and commercial rivalries. [86], While he accepted military victory was no longer possible, Ferdinand hoped to restrict peace negotiations to members of the Empire, excluding France and Sweden. Most of the fighting took place in the Holy Roman Empire, although the war grew to include European powers outside of the Empire.What began as a local, religious conflict became more and more continental and political with each expanding phase of the war. 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