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The emperor had set all Germany aflame by
the restitution of benefices. In the Treaty of Prague
he first gave up the archbishopric of Magdeburg and
all the ecclesiastical possession to the elector of
Saxony, who was a Lutheran, excepting a pension,
which was to be paid to the elector of Brandenburg,
a Calvinist. The interest of the house of the elector
palatine, which had first given rise to this long war,
seemed to be the thing least regarded in this treaty.
The elector of Bavaria was obliged only to support
the widow of him who had been king of Bohemia,
and the palatine, his son, when he should submit to
the imperial authority.

The emperor, besides this, engages to restore to
such of the confederates of the Protestant league
as acceded to this treaty, all that he had taken from
them, and it was likewise stipulated that they should
restore all they had taken from the house of Aus-
tria; the latter indeed was very trifling, since the
emperor's dominions, Upper Austria excepted, had
not been in the least exposed in this war.

One branch of the house of Brunswick, the duke
of Mecklenburg, the house of Anhalt, that branch
of Saxony which is established at Gotha, Duke Ber-
nard of Saxe-Weimar's brother, besides several
imperial towns, signed this treaty. The others con-
tinue to negotiate, expecting great advantages.

The whole weight of the war, which had rested

Ferdinand II. 171

entirely upon Gustavus Adolphus, began in 1635
to fall upon the French, and this war, which had
been waged from the borders of the Baltic Sea to
the bottom of Suabia, was now brought into Alsace,
Lorraine, Franche-Comte,and the borders of France.
Louis XIII., who had paid only one million two hun-
dred thousand francs by way of subsidy to Gustavus
Adolphus, allowed four million to Bernard of Wei-
mar for the use of his troops, besides which the
French ministry gave up to this duke all their pre-
tensions upon Alsace, of which province they
promised to declare him landgrave upon a peace.

It must be owned that had not Cardinal Richelieu
been the man who made this treaty, it would appear
very strange. How could they give a young Ger-
man prince who might have children, a province
of such vast advantage to France, wherein she
already possessed several towns? It is very prob-
able that Cardinal Richelieu had no notion of keep-
ing Alsace, nor had he any hope of annexing Lor-
raine to France, over which she had no manner of
right, and which must have been surrendered upon
a peace. The conquest of Franche-Comte appeared
much more natural, and yet on that side they make
but feeble efforts. The hope of dividing the
Low Countries with the Dutch was the cardinal's
principal object, and he had this so much at heart
that, had his health and affairs permitted it, he was
resolved to have commanded there in person, yet in
this project he was principally disappointed, and

Annals of the Empire.

Alsace, which he had so freely bestowed upon Ber-
nard of Weimar, was after the cardinal's death
allotted to France. Thus do events often deceive
the foresight of the ablest politicians, unless they
had said it was the intention of the French minis-
try to keep Alsace under the name of the duke of
Weimar, as it had already an army under the com-
mand of this great captain.

1736 Italy at length takes part in this great
quarrel, but not as the imperial houses of Saxony
and Suabia had done, to defend its liberty against
the German arms. It was intended to dispute the
superiority of the Spanish branch of Austria gov-
erning in Italy, on the other side of the Alps, as it
had been formerly opposed on the banks of the
Rhine. The ministry of France had Savoy at that
time for itself, and had just driven the Spaniards
out of the Valtelline. These two great Austrian
bodies were thus attacked on all sides.

France alone sends five armies at once into the
field, it attacks or defends itself on the side of Pied-
mont, the Rhine, and the frontiers of Flanders
those of Franche-Comte, as well as those of Spain.
Francis I. had formerly made like efforts, and
France had never manifested before so many

In the midst of so many storms, such confusion
of powers as pressed it on every side, while the
elector of Saxony, after having brought the Swedes
into Germany, heads the imperial troops, and is

Ferdinand II. 273

defeated by General Banier in Westphalia, who
ravages Hesse, Saxony, and Westphalia, Ferdi-
nand, still entirely engrossed by politics, at last
causes his son, Ferdinand Ernest, to be declared
king of the Romans, in the Diet of Ratisbon, on
December 12; this prince is crowned on the 2Oth.
All the enemies of Austria exclaim against this
election as null and void. The elector of Trier, say
they who advance this, was a prisoner; Charles
Louis, son of Frederick the palatine, king of Bohe-
mia, is not restored as yet to the rights of his pal-
atinate. The electors of Mentz and Cologne are
the emperor's pensioners, all which, they say, is
against the Golden Bull. It is very certain that none
of these clauses were inserted in the Golden Bull,
and that the election of Ferdinand III. by a major-
ity of voices was as lawful as any other election of
a king of the Romans made during the life of an
emperor, the manner of which is not specified in the
Golden Bull.

1637 Ferdinand II. dies on February 15, aged
59, after a reign of eighteen years, which had been
perplexed with foreign and intestine wars, against
which he never fought but in his cabinet. He was
unfortunate, because in his successes he had imag-
ined it necessary to be bloody, and he had afterward
felt great changes of fortune. Germany was still
more unfortunate that her master; ravaged by her
natives, by the Swedes, and by the French, pining

under poverty and famine, and plunged in barbar-
Vol. 3318

274 Annals of the Empire.

ity, the certain consequences of a war so long and
so unhappy.



Ferdinand III. mounted the throne of Germany
at a time when the harassed people began to hope
for some repose, but they flattered themselves in
vain. A congress had been called at Cologne and
also at Hamburg, to give, at least to che public, the
appearances of the approaching arrangement. But
peace was not the object of either Cardinal Rich-
elieu's or the Austrian council's intention; each
party still hoped for advantages which might enable
them to prescribe laws.

This long and dreadful war, founded upon so
many different interests, is then protracted because
it was already begun. Saxony was wasted by the
Swedish general, Banier, and the country about the
Rhine by Duke .Bernard of Weimar. The Span-
iards, having taken the island of St. Margaret,
had entered Languedoc, and in the Low Countries
penetrated even into the Pontoise. Viscount
Turenne had already distinguished himself in the
Low Countries against the cardinal infant. The
object of so many devastations was no longer the
same as when these troubles began. They had
been kindled by the Protestant and Catholic league,
and on the elector palatine's account, but their pur-
pose now was to uphold the superiority of which

Ferdinand III.


France endeavored to deprive the house of Austria,
while the design of the Swedes was to preserve part
of their conquests in Germany. With these different
views they treated, and were in arms.

1638 Duke Bernard of Weimar began to be
as dangerous an enemy to Ferdinand III. as Gus-
tavus Adolphus had been to his father. He gave
him battle twice in fifteen days near Rheinfelden,
one of the four forest towns of which he made
himself master, and at the second battle he entirely
destroyed the army of John von Werth, a celebrated
imperial general, whom he took prisoner, with many
of his general officers. John von Werth is sent to
Paris. Weimar besieges Breisach ; he gains a third
battle, assisted by Marshal de Guebriant and Vis-
count Turenne, against General Goeuts. He gains
a fourth against Charles IV., duke of Lorraine, who,
like Weimar, had no estate but his army. After
having won four victories in less than four months,
on December 18 he takes the fortress of Breisach,
which had hitherto been looked upon as the key of

Charles Louis, count palatine, who had reassem-
bled some troops, and who burned with impatience
to re-establish himself by his sword, is not so happy
in Westphalia, where the Imperialists destroy his
feeble army. But the Swedes under General Banier
make new conquests in Pomerania. The first year
of this reign is hardly remarkable for anything but

276 Annals of the Empire.

1639 The good fortune of the house of Aus-
tria delivers it from Bernard of Weimar, as it had
already done from Gustavus Adolphus. He is cut
off by sickness on July 18, being only thirty-five
years old. The inheritance he left behind him was
his army and his conquests. This army, in truth,
was secretly paid by France, but it belonged to
Weimar. It had sworn fidelity to no other. There
was a necessity to negotiate with it, to preserve it
in the French service, and keep it from the Swedish.

Marshal Guebriant purchases the fidelity of these
troops, and Louis XIII. is thus master of Weimar's
army, of Alsace, Briesgau, and the neighboring

Money and negotiations do everything for him.
He disposes entirely of Hesse, a province that fur-
nishes good soldiers. The celebrated Amelia, dow-
ager of the landgrave of Hanau, the heroine of her
time, keeps on foot, with the help of some French
subsidies, an army of ten thousand men in that des-
olated country which she had restored, enjoying
at the same time that reputation which all the vir-
tues of the sex bestow, together with the glory of
being chief of a very powerful party.

Holland indeed, in this quarrel of the emperor,
had remained neutral, but then she caused a consid-
erable diversion by employing Spain and the Low

Banier was successful in all his battles. After

Ferdinand III. 277

making sure of Pomerania, he had secured Thu-
ringia and Saxony.

But the principal object of so many troubles,
which had been the re-establishment of the house
of the palatine, seemed to be most neglected, and by
a singular fatality thL prince was thrown into prison
by the French themselves, who had so long appeared
willing to place him in the electoral chair.

The count palatine, at the death of the Duke
of Weimar, had conceived a noble, and indeed a
very reasonable design, that of re-entering upon his
estates with Weimar's army, which he would have
purchased with the money of England. He goes
in reality to London, where he gets money, and
returns by France, but Cardinal Richelieu, who was
willing to protect him yet did not care to see him
independent, causes him to be arrested ; nor is he
set at liberty until Breisach and Weimar's troops are
secured to France, which then gives him a mainte-
nance the prince is forced to accept.

1640 The progress of the French and Swedes
continues. The duke de Longueville and Marshal
Guebriant join General Banier. This army is still
increased by the troops of Hesse and Liineburg.

They march toward Vienna without General
Piccolomini, but in a wary, skilful, and deliberate
manner. Otherwise it would have been very diffi-
cult for so numerous an army to advance in sight
of the enemy in a country that had been so long

278 Annals of the Empire.

devastated, and where the soldiers, as well as the
people, were in want of everything.

The end of the year 1640 is yet very fatal to the
house of Austria. Catalonia revolts, and gives itself
up to France. Portugal, which ever since the time
of Philip II. had been a province of impoverished
Spain, shakes off the Austrian yoke, and soon erects
herself into a separate and flourishing kingdom.

Ferdinand then begins seriously to treat for peace,
yet at the same time demands of the Diet of Ratis-
bon an army of ninety thousand men to carry on
the war.

1641 While the emperor is at the Diet of Rat-
isbon, General Banier is very near seizing upon him
and all his deputies. He marches his army over the
Danube, which was frozen, and had he not been
surprised by a thaw, he would have taken Ferdinand
in Ratisbon.

The same fortune which had taken off Gustavus
and Weimar in the midst of their conquests, at
length delivers the Imperialists from the famous
General Banier. He sickens and dies on May 20,
at Halberstadt, being forty years old, and at that
time more formidable than ever. None of the Swed-
ish generals had any long career.

They negotiate still. Cardinal Richelieu could
have made peace, but he did not choose to. He knew
very well what advantages France was to reap, and
it was his intention to make himself necessary, dur-
ing the life, and after the death of Louis XIII.,

Ferdinand III. 279

whose end he foresaw approaching, but his forecast
could not teach him that he was to die first. He
concluded a new treaty of an offensive alliance with
Christina, queen of Sweden, for preliminaries of
that peace with which they soothed an oppressed
people. He augments the Swedish subsidy with an
addition of two hundred thousand livres.

Count Torstenson now succeeds General Banier in
the Swedish army, which was in reality an army of
Germans. Almost all the Swedes who had fought
under Gustavus and Banier were dead ; and under
the name of Swedes, the Germans fight against
their country. Torstenson, bred under Gustavus,
shows himself worthy of so great a master. Marshal
Guebriant and he again defeat the Imperialists near

Austria, notwithstanding so many victories, is
not yet subdued. The emperor still holds out. Ger-
many, from the Main, even to the Baltic Sea, is laid
waste. The war is not carried into Austria. They
had not sufficient forces. These victories, so much
boasted of, were not entirely decisive. They could
not at once go through so many different enter-
prises and powerfully attack one side without weak-
ening another.

1642 Frederick William, the new elector of
Brandenburg, treats with France and Sweden, in
hope, it is said, of obtaining the duchy of Jagern-
dorf in Silesia a duchy formerly given by Ferdi-
nand I. to a prince of the house of Brandenburg,

280 Annals of the Empire.

who had been his governor, since confiscated by
Ferdinand II. after the victory of Prague, and the
misfortunes of the palatine. The elector of Bran-
denburg hopes to re-enter that territory of which
his great uncle had been deprived.

The duke of Lorraine also implores the assistance
of France to restore him to his dominions, which
she does, keeping only some fortified towns. This
is another support taken from the emperor.

Ferdinand III. still holds out, notwithstanding
all these losses, nor is he abandoned by either Sax-
ony or Bavaria. The hereditary provinces furnish
him with soldiers. Torstenson again defeats the
imperial troops in Silesia, commanded by the arch-
duke Leopold, by the duke of Saxe-Lauenburg,
and Piccolomini, but this victory is attended with no
consequences. He repasses the Elbe, enters Sax-
ony, and lays siege to Leipsic. He gains another
signal victory in that country, where the Swedes
had always conquered. Leopold is beaten on the
plains of Breitenfelt, on November 2. Torstenson
enters Leipsic on December 15. All this indeed is
melancholy for Saxony and the provinces of Ger-
many, but they had never penetrated to its centre,
nor to the emperor, who supports himself after more
than twenty defeats.

Cardinal Richelieu dies on December 4; a death
that gives some hopes to the house of Austria.

1643 The Swedes, in the course of this war,
had often entered Bohemia, Silesia, and Moravia,

Ferdinand III. 281

and quitted them to throw themselves into the east-
ern provinces. Torstenson would have entered
Bohemia, but, notwithstanding his victories, could
never gain his point.

They continued to negotiate still slowly at Ham-
burg, while the war was pursued briskly. Louis
XIII. dies on May 14. The emperor is farther than
ever from a general peace. He flattered himself
he would be able to withdraw the Swedes from the
French alliance during the troubles of a minority,
but it happens during the minority of Louis XIV.
though very perplexed, as it had under that of
Christina, that the war is continued at the expense of

The emperor's party is at length strengthened by
the duke of Lorraine, who joins him after the death
of Louis XIII.

The death of Marshal Guebriant, who is killed
at the siege of Rottweil, is yet another advantage
for Ferdinand. This is the fourth great general
who perished in the progress of his victories against
the Imperialists. It was the emperor's good fortune
also that General Mercy should defeat Marshal
Rantzau, Guebriant's successor, at Reutlingen, in

These vicissitudes of war retard the conferences
about a peace, at Munster and at Osnabrtick, where
the congress at last is settled. A war between Den-
mark and Sweden, on account of some Danish ships
taken by the latter, gives Ferdinand III. time to

282 Annals of the Empire.

breathe. This accident might have given the supe-
riority to the emperor, who shows what were his
resources, by marching a small part of his army,
with Gallas at its head, to the assistance of Den-
mark. But this diversion serves only to ruin Hoi-
stein, the stage of this transitory war, and one of
the most desolated provinces of Germany. Europe
was the more surprised at hostilities between Sweden
and Denmark, because Denmark had offered itself
as mediator of the general peace, but was now
excluded, and Rome and Venice have at length the
sole mediation of this peace, which is yet very

The first step taken by Count d'Avaux, one pf
the plenipotentiaries of this peace at Miinster, threw
the greatest obstacle in the way of it. He writes to
the princes and states of the empire assembled at
Ratisbon, to engage them to support their prerog-
atives, and to share with the emperor and the elec-
tors the right of peace and war, a right that had been
always contested between the electors and other
imperial states. At the diet, these states insisted
upon their right of being admitted to the confer-
ences as contracting parties. In this they had got
the start of the French ministers, who in their let-
ters used some disrespectful terms toward Ferdi-
nand. This occasions the emperor and the electors
at once to fall off, and gives them room to complain,
and to throw the reproach of continuing the troubles
of Europe upon France.

Ferdinand III. 283

Happily for the plenipotentiaries of France, they
receive news about that time of a most memorable
victory gained over the Spanish-Austrian army at
Rocroi, by the duke d'Enghien, afterward the
great Conde, who in this battle destroys the cele-
brated Castilian and Walloon infantry, whose rep-
utation had been so very great. Plenipotentiaries,
backed by such victories, might write in. any terms.

1644 The emperor might still flatter himself
that Denmark would declare in his favor, but of
this resource he is deprived. Cardinal Mazarin,
Richelieu's successor, is assiduous in reconciling
Denmark to Sweden. Nor is this all ; Denmark
also engages itself not to assist any of the enemies
of France.

Both the negotiations and the war are equally
unhappy for the Austrians. The duke d'Enghien,
who had beaten the Spaniards the preceding year,
gives battle three times in four days, between August
5 and 9, in the neighborhood of Freiburg, to Gen-
eral Mercy, and beats him each time, whereby he
makes himself master of the whole country from
Mentz to Landau, of which Mercy had been before

Cardinal Mazarin and the chancellor Oxenstiern,
in order the better to command the negotiations,
raise up a new enemy to Ferdinand in the person of
Ragotzky, who had been sovereign of Transylvania
ever since 1626. They procure for him the protec-
tion of the pope. Ragotzky wants neither pretexts

284 Annals of the Empire.

nor reasons for his conduct. The Protestants of
Hungary persecuted, the privileges of the people
despised, and the violation of ancient treaties,
form Ragotzky's manifesto, while the money of
France supplies him with arms.

In the meantime the Imperialists are pushed hard
by Torstenson in Franconia. General Gallas flies
everywhere before him, and before Count Konigs-
mark, who trod already in the steps of the greatest
Swedish captains.

1645 Ferdinand and the archduke Leopold,
his relative, were at Prague when the victorious
Torstenson enters Bohemia, and obliges them to fly
to Vienna. At Tabor, Torstenson comes up with
the imperial army, which was commanded by Gen-
eral Goeuts and John von Werth, who was redeemed
out of prison. Gceuts was killed, and John von
Werth flies. In short, the rout is complete. The
conqueror marches to, and besieges Briinn ; nay,
even threatens Vienna.

In this long train of disasters, something always
fell out to preserve the emperor. The siege of
Briinn had been protracted, and instead of the French
marching toward the Danube to join the Swedes,
as they were to have done in case they had con-
quered, Viscount Turenne is beaten, on the begin-
ning of his journey, by General Mercy, at Mariendal,
and retires to Hesse.

The great Conde marches against Mercy, and
has the glory of repairing Turenne's defeat by a

Ferdinand III. 285

most signal victory on the very same plains of Nord-
lingen, where the Swedes had been before beaten
after the death of Gustavus. Turenne contributes
even more than Conde to the success of this bloody
battle, which is the less decisive the more destruc-
tive it is. The emperor suddenly withdraws his
troops from Hungary, and treats with Ragotzky,
to prevent the French from marching through
Bavaria to Vienna, while the Swedes threaten to
approach it through Moravia.

In all probability, while the French and Swedish
arms are attended with such mighty prosperity, some
rooted vice still prevented their reaping the advan-
tage of such success. The mutual fear which each
of these allies had of the other's obtaining the superi-
ority, the failure of money, and the want of recruits,
all set bounds to their progress.

After the famous battle of Nordlingen it was
scarcely to be expected that the Austrians and
Bavarians should suddenly recover the territories
lost by that battle, and that they should pursue even
the victorious army of Conde to the Neckar, where
he himself was not, but where Turenne remained.
Such vicissitudes are frequent in this war.

In the meantime the emperor, tired with such
continual shocks, began to think seriously of peace.
He at length gives the elector of Trier his liberty,
whose imprisonment had given France a pretext for
declaring war ; but the French arms re-establish this
elector in his capital. Turenne drives out the

286 Annals of the Empire.

imperial garrison, and the elector of Trier allies
himself to France as his benefactor. The elector
palatine might have had the same obligations; but
France as yet had done nothing decisive for him.

That which principally contributed to the em-
peror's safety was, that Saxony and Bavaria had
almost always borne the burden of the war; but
the elector of Saxony, being at length much weak-
ened, enters into treaty with the Swedes. Ferdinand
had not done more for him than for Bavaria. The
Turks threaten Hungary. All has thereby been
lost. The fear of the Ottoman arms makes him
impatient to satisfy Ragotzky. He acknowledges
that prince sovereign of Transylvania, a prince of
the empire, and restores to him all that he had given
to his predecessor, Bethlen-Gabor. Thus by every
treaty is the emperor a loser ; and he hastens the con-
clusion of the Treaty of Westphalia, whereby he is
to lose still more.

1646 Pope Innocent X. was the first mediator
of this peace, whereby the Catholics were to be con-
siderable losers ; the republic of Venice was the
second. Cardinal Chigi, afterward pope by the
name of Alexander VII., was the pope's minister
in Miinster, and Contarini acted there for Venice.
Each interested power made propositions according
to its hopes or fears ; but victories form treaties.

During these first negotiations, Marshal Turenne,
by an unexpected and bold march, joins the Swedish
army upon the Neckar in sight of the archduke Leo-

Ferdinand III. 287

pold. He advances as far as Munich, and increases
the fears of Austria. Another Swedish body
marches to ravage Silesia ; but all these expeditions
are no more than incursions. If the war had been

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