THE PEACE OF WESTPHALIA.
By Dr A. W. WAKD.
Early efforts for peace . 395
Peace negotiations at Cologne and Hamburg . 396
The Ratisbon Diet and the Frankfort Deputationstag . 397
The Preliminaries of Hamburg .398
Opening of the Congress at Münster and Osnabrück . 399
The plenipotentiaries. Trautmansdorff . 400
German, Spanish, and Dutch plenipotentiaries . 401
French and Swedish plenipotentiaries. Mediators . 402
The "satisfaction" of Sweden .403-4
The "satisfaction" of France. Elsass . 405
The Austrian rights in Elsass .406
Elsass settlement.—General amnesty.—Brandenburg . 407
Brunswick-Lmieburg. Hesse-Cassel . 408
Bavaria and the Palatinate . 409
Religious grievances . 410
The religious settlement . 411
Provisions as to public worship and toleration . 412
Territorial rights . 413
Corporate equality in the Diet .414
Conclusion of the Peace. Papal protest . 415
Political and religious results of the Peace . 416
Economic and social effects of the Peace. Agriculture .417
Devastation and depopulation .418
The peasantry . 418
The Imperial towns. The Hansa . 419
The commercial towns of the interioi . 420
Decay of trade . *420
Decline of industry . 421
Moral effects of the War . 422
Social and religious downfall. Growth of superstition .423
Counteracting influences. Education . 424
Literature . 425
New alliances among the Estates of the Empire. 425
Brandenburg activity. Waldeck .426
Charles X and Frederick William . 427
Treaty of Königsherg. Battle of Warsaw . 428
Austro-Polish-Brandenhurg alliance . 429
Joint attack upon Sweden. Election of Leopold I .430
John Philip of Mainz and the Rheinbund . 431
The Rheinbund concluded. Suedo-Danish War . 432
The Peace of Oliva . 433
THE PEACE OF WESTPHALIA.
THE Peace which, whatever its shortcomings, achieved its purpose of putting an end to the Thirty Years' War was not made at once ; and such had been the multitude and the complexity of the interests involved, the frequency of the changes in the political situation brought about by the shifting fortunes of the War, and the growth of mutual mistrust on all sides, that the efforts of the peace-makers had seemed foredoomed to an endless succession of failures. The evil, however, wrought its own remedy ; and advantage was taken of one among many variations in the course of a seemingly interminable struggle to re-establish the European political fabric on bases which in the main endured for nearly a century and a half. Change itself-the transition from war to a peace which the nations could no longer see deferred-"reigned over change."
It has been seen in previous chapters how the project of securing to the distracted Empire the blessings of peace had fared since Wallenstein had in vain striven to be its arbiter, as his detested opponent Gustavus Adolphus had been the arbiter of war. In May, 1635, the Elector John George of Saxony, whose Imperialist sympathies had survived the Edict of Restitution and the sack of Magdeburg, as well as the battles of Breitenfeld and Liitzen, succeeded at last in bringing to pass the compact known as the Peace of Prague. Though it provided for the restoration of no Protestant Prince dispossessed since 1630, and for the retention in Protestant hands of no ecclesiastical property acquired since November, 1627 ; though it secured neither the exercise of the Protestant religion in the dominions of any Catholic Government, nor any rights whatever to the Calvinists-yet its acceptance by the Saxon Elector, and the belief that the Swedish Power would prove unable to maintain itself permanently in Germany, gradually drew over nearly the whole of the Protestant Governments in the Empire to an acceptance of its terms. But it could not liberate even John George's own dominions from hostile occupation ; and the War was destined almost to double its length before it came to an end.
Thus, the endeavours made in the last two years of Ferdinand II's
Before his death in February, 1637, Ferdinand II had fallen back on the familiar conception that peace could only be obtained from France by detaching Sweden from her. With this end in view, rather than that of a general pacification, his agents had entered into negotiations at Hamburg with the Swedish ambassador to the free city, the versatile and unscrupulous John Adler Salvius, with whom we shall meet again at Osnabrück. He was playing a double part, inasmuch as the Swedish Government was really intent upon the renewal of its alliance with France, which in the following year (February, 1638) Salvius actually consummated. A conference which early in 1638 the feeble Government of Charles I in the interests of his Palatine nephew sought, with some support from France, to bring about at Brussels proved utterly abortive. The Hamburg negotiations languidly continued, being on the Imperial side chiefly conducted by an active diplomatist, Baron Kurtz (Count von Valley); but the restored self-confidence of the Swedes would not tolerate the mediation of Christian IV, whose services Ferdinand II had invited, and the Danish King was entirely alienated from Sweden by her alliance with France. Brandenburg and Luxemburg's attempts at mediation
The Emperor Ferdinand III-who, like his father before him, sought so long as it was possible to reach success by half-measures-had in vain attempted a settlement by and for the Empire alone. His propositions at the Diet of Ratisbon in 1640 aimed at expanding the Peace of Prague into a settlement for the Empire at large, on the basis of an amnesty. There is no reason for doubting the pacific intentions manifested by Ferdinand III, ever since in 1635 he had in his capacity of probable successor approved Pope Urban's proposal of a peace congress. But, though the action of the son was not dominated in the same measure as that of the father by religious considerations, Ferdinand III was at Ratisbon still unable to realise under what conditions alone peace could be contemplated-not to say concluded. The indispensable preliminary condition of a pacific solution acceptable throughout the Empire was that the proposed amnesty should be a complete one. But even now Ferdinand III refused to include in it those Protestant Estates who were still in alliance with foreign Powers, or to entertain the notion that the Protestants as well as the Catholics should return to their obligations to the Empire on a basis of rights of territorial possession extending beyond that adopted in the Peace of Prague. He was unable to perceive that the Protestant opposition in the Empire refused to be coerced now as it had after the Smalcaldic War, and that even a united Empire would no longer be able to control the European political situation.
The Diet of Ratisbon, while steadily keeping in view the assembling of a general peace congress, resolved that certain questions concerning the internal affairs of the Empire, and more especially the Imperial administration of justice, should be in the usual way referred to a Deputationstag; Such a supplementary assembly actually met in 1642 at Frankfort, where for some three years it carried on its inanimate proceedings. But, though the Emperor had intended to charge it with so much of the business of the peace negotiations as concerned the Empire only, and thus to keep the several German Governments out of the general peace congress, he had, as we shall see, to abandon this policy ; and in April, 1645, the Frankfort Deputationstag broke up.
Some years before this, the scheme of a General Congress had at last matured. On the one hand, it had come to be recognised, even at Vienna, that, when the terms of a final pacific settlement came to be actually discussed, the real difficulties to be overcome would lie in the conditions of the " satisfaction " to be granted to France and to Sweden respectively at the cost of the Empire. On the other hand, a serious obstacle would arise if the Emperor, continuing to regard his interests as identical with those of Spain, were to insist on the conclusion of peace between himself and his adversaries being made dependent on a simultaneous settlement between Spain and France ; although there could be no reason against advantage being taken of the opportunity for negotiating a separate peace between Spain and the United Provinces (still technically included in the Empire), which to Spain was becoming more and more necessary.
Though the peace negotiations at Hamburg had not entirely collapsed like those at Cologne, it had at length become obvious that business would proceed more rapidly, and a successful issue seem less remote, if the separate negotiations with France and Sweden respectively were carried on in two localities between which communication was easy. Hence the felicitous proposal, brought forward by d'A vaux in the latter part of 1641, that for Cologne and Hamburg should be substituted Münster and Osnabrück, two Westphalian towns which are not more than thirty miles distant from each other. The proposal was after some hesitation accepted by Sweden, and then by the Emperor, upon whom it was urged by the Ratisbon Diet. Lützow, d'Avaux, and Salvius hereupon succeeded in negotiating at Hamburg the Preliminary Treaty, which was concluded on December 25,1641, and is to be regarded as the first step actually taken towards the final Peace. It provided for the opening on March 25, 1642, of peace conferences at Münster and Osnabrück ; the two assemblies to be regarded as forming a single congress, and both towns to be declared neutral territory. Inasmuch as the Peace was technically to be concluded between the Emperor and his allies on the one hand, and the Kings of France and Sweden and their allies on the other, safe-conducts were to be made out on behalf of the Emperor to the allies or adherents of France or Sweden respectively. With France the Emperor would treat at Münster under the mediation of the Pope and the Seigniory of Venice, with Sweden at Osnabrück under that of Christian IV of Denmark. The Preliminary Treaty was ratified by Louis XIII on February 26, 1642 ; but the Emperor delayed his ratification till July 22; nor were the difficulties besetting the assembling of the Congress even then at an end. Before the Imperial ratification Lützow had made one more futile attempt to detach the Swedish from the French Government ; and about the same time Maximilian of Bavaria, utterly sceptical as to the assembling of a general peace congress, was seeking to induce the Electors of Cologne and Mainz to join with him in a separate negotiation with France-a scheme which
But though the Imperial plenipotentiaries made their appearance in both places with praiseworthy punctuality, such was not the case with most of their colleagues ; and the French ambassadors did not reach Münster till April, 1644, having on their way concluded an offensive alliance with the States General against Spain. This alliance, however, failed to prevent the ultimate conclusion of a separate peace between these two Powers; just as the Emperor's promise that he would not make peace with France till Spain should also have concluded peace with that Power was to be ignored in the settlement between France and himself at Münster. The course of the negotiations between Spain and the United Provinces, and their result, will be related in a later chapter ; in the Peace of Westphalia proper these Powers were included only as allies of two of the belligerents respectively, the Emperor and France ; the " Burgundian Circle " of the Empire being treated as in the hands of Spain.
During the year 1644 the ambassadors continued to arrive, and the beginnings of a great international concourse stirred the quaint cloisters of the Rathhaus in the ancient cathedral city of Münster, and the more scattered streets and lanes of Osnabrück. In accordance with the tendencies of an age delivered over to formalities in Church and State, in council and in camp, the beginnings of the discussions between the plenipoten-Jaries were occupied with questions of precedence and procedure, before they so much as approached the problems which the issue of these discussions was to decide. The Congress did not actually get to work till the spring or early summer of 1645, by which time all the immediate (and a few of the mediate) Estates of the Empire had received their summons to attend, so that 26 of the votes at the Diet were represented at Münster, and 40 at Osnabrück. On June 1 the French and the Swedish plenipotentiaries at the two places of meeting brought forward their propositions of peace-the former in their own language, the Swedes in Latin. The general progress of business at the Congress may be summed up as follows. The propositions of the two Crowns were received, answered, debated, and settled during a period extending from the above-mentioned date (June 1, 1645) to that of the signature of the Treaty of Peace (October 24, 1648) ; but the discussions of these propositions by the Estates of the Empire lasted only from October, 1645, to April, 1646. On the other hand, the deliberations on the religious
To the Emperor's chief plenipotentiary, Count Maximilian von Trautmansdorff, the work which the Congress actually achieved was pre-eminently indebted. His firm and self-sacrificing resolve to carry to a successful issue the task which proved to be the final task of his life, rather than any great subtlety in dealing with affairs or irresistible personal charm, enabled him to compass his end. Like Eggenberg, to whose group or party in the Court and Government at Vienna Trautmansdorff had attached himself, he was early in life converted from Protestantism. After supporting Wallenstein he had at last counselled the arrest of the Dictator ; but he continued to cherish some of the great would-be pacificator's designs. After taking over from Eggenberg the direction of Ferdinand II's counsels, he had helped to bring about the Peace of Prague ; and under Ferdinand III, whose entire confidence he commanded, his consistent efforts for peace were as unacceptable to the Spanish party as his loyalty to the House of Austria was vexatious to Bavaria. Trautmansdorff did not make his appearance at Münster before December, 1645 ; but from this date onwards till his withdrawal in July, 1647, more than a year before the signing of the Peace, he was not only, in Oxenstierna's phrase, the soul of the Imperial embassy, but succeeded in contributing more than any of his fellow-plenipotentiaries to the work of peace. His success was due to a remarkable flexibility in the conduct of business ; but he was always careful of the dynastic interests of the House of Austria, and cannot be acquitted of having sacrificed to these the security of the Empire at large on its western border. His efforts were supported at Münster by Isaac Volmar, an astute lawyer and experienced official, and by the personal graces of Count, afterwards Prince, John Lewis of Nassau-Hadcmar ; and at Osnabrück by a pair of ministers who in much the same way balanced each other.
Each of the Electors-Spiritual and Temporal-was individually represented at the Congress; but the Bishop of Osnabrück (Count Francis William von Wartenberg, also Bishop of Bremen and Verden, and afterwards Bishop of Ratisbon and Cardinal), who had received powers from the Elector of Cologne and certain other ecclesiastical dignitaries, was finally named representative of the entire Electoral College. An illegitimate scion of the Bavarian House, and a pupil of the Jesuits, he had rigorously carried out in his diocese the
Edict of Restitution, and was in the Congress the chosen champion of German Catholic interests-for the policy of the Bavarian Elector was distracted between Catholic sympathies and a growing desire to lean upon France. Among the plenipotentiaries of the Protestant Electors and Princes on the other hand, the foremost was Count John von Sayn-Wittgenstein, the trusted ambassador of Frederick William of Brandenburg. He had served in arms under Landgrave William of Hesse-Cassel, if not under Gustavus Adolphus himself, and had been a member of the consïliumformatum of the Heilbronn Alliance. Familiar with Swedish as well as with French politics, he was able to promote with skill and vigour the interests of Brandenburg, which may be said already at this Congress to have borne itself as the leading Protestant German State. Many of the other Estates of the Empire were represented by diplomatists of proved experience, some of whom were also celebrated publicists, and, as in the case of the Benedictine Adam Adami, afterwards Bishop Suffragan of Hildesheim and the historian of the Congress, exercised a powerful personal influence upon its deliberations. In the discussions among the German Estates Adami and the Bishop of Osnabrück frequently commanded a majority of the entire Catholic vote ; more moderate members of the party being as a rule found at Osnabrück, and the more extreme at Münster, while Jesuit agents eagerly watched and reported on their action. Among the plenipotentiaries of the Protestant Princes mention should be made of the learned Brunswicker Jacob Lampadius, and the Württemberger John Conrad Varnbüler, a worthy pupil of Gustavus Adolphus' faithful counsellor Jacob Löffler. The chief advocate of the interests of the Swiss Confederation was John Rudolf Wetstein, Burgomaster of Basel, so influential a personage that he was known by the sobriquet of " King of the Swiss."
The Emperor's ally the King of Spain had, in addition to a pompous grandee, Gasparo de Bracamonte (afterwards Viceroy of Naples), and a learned ecclesiastic, Joseph de Bergaigne (Bishop of Hertogenbosch, and from 1645 Archbishop of Cambrai), commissioned two capable diplomatists, Count Guzman of Penaranda and a famous man of letters, Antoine Brun (Bruins). To their labours was mainly due the actual conclusion of peace between Spain and the United Provinces, without the intervention of France. Each of the United Provinces was individually represented at Munster; Holland and Zeeland respectively sending Adrian Pauw, Lord of Heemsteede, and John van Knuyt. The latter of these, as an adherent of the Prince of Orange, was at the outset supposed to have no desire for peace ; but Frederick Henry modified his views before his death in 1647, and the States General, under the influence of the bold diplomacy of Francisco de Sousa, the Portuguese ambassador at the Hague, took up a stand which forced Spain into a settlement. At Münster the diplomatic agents of the
The French plenipotentiaries at Munster were Abel Servien, Marquis de Sablé, and Claude de Mesmes, Count d'Avaux. The share taken in the Hamburg negotiations by d'Avaux, who had succeeded Charnacé as the chief agent of the policy of Richelieu in the Empire, has been already noted. He was a strong Catholic, and as such enjoyed the particular goodwill of Maximilian of Bavaria. Some jealousy prevailed between him and his colleague, who, though his inferior in knowledge of affairs, surpassed him in certain other diplomatic qualities and, since Mazarin had taken the helm, was better supported from home. The inconveniences caused by this estrangement, together with the wish to give éclat to the French embassy, induced the Queen Regent in 1645 to furnish it with a figure-head in the person of Henry of Orleans, Duke of Longueville ; and in 1647 Servien was detached on a special mission to the Hague. But Mazarin kept up an understanding with him, and on his return to Munster the Duke quitted the city before the actual conclusion of the Peace. D'Avaux himself was recalled just before the signing of the Treaty.
The Swedish plenipotentiaries at Osnabrück were also, though in a less marked degree than their French colleagues at Münster, on unfriendly terms with one another. Count John Oxenstierna, the eldest son of the Chancellor, had served in the German War under his relative Field-Marshal Horn, and had gained some knowledge of the chief European States by travel. But he was not his father's equal in intelligence, or able to fall into line with the statecraft of John Adler Salvius, whose experience of affairs extended back to the Prussian War of Gustavus Adolphus, and who was favoured by the young Queen Christina, jealous of the Oxenstierna influence ever since, in December, 1644, she had taken the government into her own hands.
It remains to note that, of the Mediating Powers, Pope Urban VIII, and after his death in 1644 his successor, Innocent X, was represented in the Peace negotiations by Fabio Chigi, formerly Papal Nuncio at Cologne and afterwards Cardinal and Secretary of State under Pope Innocent X, whom he in his turn succeeded as Pope Alexander VII. With Chigi, who was perhaps better qualified for his labours at Münster than for the greater task that awaited him, was appointed Alvisi Contarini, a member of one of the most illustrious of Venetian families, whose diplomatic services to the Republic had already extended over nearly two decades. On the whole they acted in harmony with one another ; and the falling off of the Venetian's French sympathies synchronised with the change in the policy of the Vatican on the death of Urban. The ambassadors of King Christian IV, who acted as mediator at Osnabrück, Justus Hog and Gregers Krabbe, both of them members of the Rigsraad, had been instructed by their sovereign to indulge in a lavish expenditure;
As already observed, the question of the success or failure of the negotiations at Münster and Osnabrück really turned on the "satisfaction" of the Swedish and of the French Crown. Though, in his first answer to the original Swedish peace propositions the Emperor had stated that he was unprepared to proffer any satisfaction to either Power, inasmuch as both rather owed satisfaction to him, he declared himself willing to assent to a money payment by the Estates of the Empire to Sweden. In reply, that Power appealed to the fact that Gustavus Adolphus had been induced against his own wish to enter into the war, and that the enormous and irreparable sacrifices entailed by it upon Sweden included that of the King's own precious life. When at last the Swedish plenipotentiaries were brought to formulate their demands, these included the permanent cession to the Swedish Crown of Silesia, the whole of Pomerania, with Mecklenburg, Wismar, and the island of Poel, the archbishopric of Bremen, the bishopric of Verden, and certain other ecclesiastical lands, with a compensation to the officers and soldiers of the Swedish army.
The territories forming part of the Empire Sweden did not desire to sever from it, but to hold as Imperial fiefs, the Swedish sovereign thus becoming an Estate of the Empire and entering into the obligations towards it implied by this relation. But although, as has been seen, the Swedes at the end of the War still held a considerable number of places in the Empire, including part of Bohemia, they obviously had no intention of insisting upon the demand of Silesia. Pomerania, on the other hand, they had long resolved to annex, with or without the consent of Brandenburg. The Elector George William had steadily refused to yield on this head to Gustavus Adolphus, when at the height of his power; but by his acceptance of the Peace of Prague
Finally, a settlement was made as to the claims preferred by the Swedish Crown on behalf of the officers and soldiers in its service during the War. Though the Imperial plenipotentiaries had maintained that every Power ought to deal with its own soldiery, Queen Christina insisted most strongly on the "satisfaction of her militia"; and, after a demand of twenty million dollars had at first been put forward, a contribution of five millions for this purpose was imposed upon seven of the Circles of the Empire.
France, like Sweden, was slow in formulating her terms of "satisfaction." When they were at last presented, the recognition of her sovereignty over the three bishoprics of Metz, Toul, and Verdun, of which she had been in actual possession for all but a century, was granted without much ado. The sovereignty of the King of France over
Pinerolo was likewise recognised, the provisions of the Treaty of Cherasco between France and Savoy (1631) remaining practically unaltered ; but Savoy retained its existing territorial rights and limits. Duke Charles of Lorraine was left out of the Congress, and out of the Treaty.
The claims of France upon Elsass were not so easily settled. The French Government had repeatedly declared that it made war upon the House of Austria, and not upon the Empire ; and it was clear from the outset that the House of Austria would have to defray the main cost of the French "satisfaction." This view of the case, which commended itself to Bavaria and the Spiritual Electors hardly less than to the Protestant Princes, throughout governed the diplomatic action of France in this matter ; and she began by simply demanding the cession to her of the Austrian possessions and rights in Elsass. But when the French Government and its agents, with Servien at their head, entered into these far-reaching negotiations, they were quite uninformed as to the actual extent and character of these rights, and as to the relations to the Empire of the component parts of Elsass. Moreover, unhappily for the integrity of that Empire and for the future peace of Europe, it did not suit the purposes of the House of Austria-desirous of averting any French designs upon other territories in its possession-to dispel the ignorance of the French negotiators.
As a matter of fact, although so late as the middle of the seventeenth century Elsass had lost neither its unity of race, nor a certain cohesion of life and culture, its two historic divisions of Upper and Lower (southern and northern) Elsass had followed quite distinct lines of political growth. Of the two landgravates into which the ancient duchy had been administratively divided, that of Upper Elsass had, from the days of its landgrave the great Emperor Rudolf I, fallen more and more under the control of the House of Habsburg, to which nearly four-fifths of the land were now feudally subject. In Lower Elsass, on the other hand, the Austrian rights were virtually restricted to those of the Landvogt, who since the reign of Ferdinand I exercised a certain administrative authority in a district comprising, besides some forty villages in Lower Elsass, the so-called "ten free Imperial towns of Elsass" in both its divisions (Hagenau, Colmar, Schlettstadt, etc.). The nobility of Lower Elsass retained their independence, and its Diets their activity, while the dignity of "landgrave" had here become merely titular (with a domain or two attached to it) and, so far back as the fourteenth century, had been acquired by purchase by the Bishop of Strassburg. The see had no other formal connexion with Lower Elsass ; nor was there any tie of the kind between the latter and the free city of Strassburg, which, like the see, was immediate to the Empire.
Yet, when in 1645 Mazarin instructed the French plenipotentiaries to demand, in addition to the fortresses of Breisach and Philippsburg, " Upper and Lower Elsass " (the Sundgau being treated as part of the
In these terms the Emperor acquiesced, secretly instructing Traut-mansdorff to this effect in March, 1646 ; and though some further haggling followed on both sides, a settlement on the subject was now to all intents and purposes assured. The Austrian proposals brought forward in April, and substantially agreed to in the Preliminary Treaty signed in September following, were embodied in the final instrument of peace. Breisach-to which Bernard of Weimar had so tenaciously clung-was made over to France. But as to the cession of the " land-gravate of Upper and Lower Elsass," or of the " landgravate of both Elsasses" (for both terms had been in use) which, together with the Landvogtel over the ten towns and their dependencies, was to pass in full sovereignty to France, certain ominous obscurities remained. In the first place, while the King of France undertook to respect the liberties and the immediacy to the Empire, not only of the Bishops of Strassburg and Basel, but also of all the other immediate Estates in both Upper and Lower Elsass, including the ten free towns, he did so on condition (Ita tarnen) that the rights of his sovereignty should not suffer from this reservation. The clause gave rise to much alarm at the time, and was afterwards deliberately misinterpreted; but its chief purpose was, beyond all reasonable doubt, simply to secure to the Crown of France the measure of rights which the House of Austria had formerly possessed in Elsass. In the second place, the expression landgravmtus inferioris Âlsatiœ implied a measure of rights which the House of Austria could not transfer, because, as has been seen, it had never possessed them. No " landgravate of Elsass "-a term first imported by Austria into the negotiations-had ever existed ; and the " landgravate of Lower Elsass " implied a title to which Austria had not a shadow of a claim. Thus in Lower Elsass Austria had nothing to surrender beyond the Hagenau Landvogtei, which in no wise involved the surrender of the ten free Imperial towns, though these were in certain respects subject to her authority. For the misleading phraseology, by which, as conferring upon France rights in Lower Elsass that Austria had never possessed, Louis XIV afterwards sought to justify his notorious "Reunions," Austria, and not France, was in the first instance responsible.
The attempts of the Estates of the Empire at Munster and Osnabrück, and of the Estates in Elsass itself, to get rid of the ominous Ita tarnen clause were skilfully eluded by Servien, who professed himself quite ready to accept the alternative suggestion that France should hold both
Upper and Lower Elsass as fiefs of the Empire. But the Emperor, who had no desire for such a vassal, would not hear of this solution. Nothing was gained by the agitation except that the city of Strassburg was expressly named among the Estates to be left untouched in their liberties, though Servien declared that there had never been any intention of including it in the French "satisfaction." Neither with regard to Elsass at large, nor most certainly with regard to Strassburg, is there any evidence that either Servien or the French Government had at this time deliberately formed any ulterior design.
An article of the Treaty obliged the King of France to maintain Catholic worship in Elsass wherever it had been carried on under the Austrian Government, and to restore its exercise where it had been interrupted in the course of the War. A compensation of three million livres was granted by France to Archduke Ferdinand Charles, who had held the position of Governor of the "Anterior" Austrian possessions; and a part of his debts was taken over by her. Though France had not insisted on the cession of Philippsburg, she was allowed the right of maintaining a garrison in the fortress, while the town was left to the Bishop of Speier.
The Peace provided for a general and unlimited amnesty in the Empire which was to go back to the Bohemian troubles-i.e. to the year 1618-and to extend to all Princes and other Estates, immediate or mediate, and their subjects, possessions, and public and private rights. But the particular changes and settlements in the Empire expressly mentioned in the Treaties were held to override any general provision ; and on this head the exceptions were in part of very great significance.
Foremost among the Princes of the Empire whose interests had been impaired by the Swedish "satisfaction" stood the Elector of Brandenburg. Regarding the sees of Brandenburg and Havelberg, together with that of Camin (a dependency of Eastern Pomerania) as permanently appropriated by his House, he now demanded certain Silesian principalities, without any serious expectation of inducing the House of Austria to hand them over to him, together with the secularisation, in favour of his dynasty, of the archbishopric of Magdeburg, and the bishoprics of Halberstadt, Hildesheim, Osnabrück, and Minden. His vigorous diplomacy actually secured to him the first and the last named of these bishoprics, and the archbishopric of Magdeburg, as hereditary possessions. Magdeburg was, however, not to pass to his House as an hereditary duchy until the determination of Prince Augustus of Saxony's life tenure. The much-vexed administrator Prince Christian William was granted an increase of the pecuniary consideration allowed to him in the Peace of Prague.
The Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, in compensation for the transfer of the lucrative port of Wismar, obtained possession of the sees of
Schwerin and Ratzeburg ; certain actual or contingent equivalents being granted to his kinsman of the Güstrow branch.
The interests of another north-German House had been prejudiced by these arrangements and the absorption by Sweden of the archbishopric of Bremen. This was the House of Brunswick-Lüneburg, which under Duke George, up to his death in 1641, had played so prominent a part in the latter part of the War. But the Brunswick-Lüneburg Dukes, who had in 1642 at Goslar prematurely concluded a separate peace in their own interests, were now obliged to give up Hildesheim to its Catholic Bishop, the Elector of Cologne, and to see Minden transferred to Brandenburg. Of the three sees on which the Princes of the ambitious House of Brunswick had set their hopes, only a moiety of one was assigned to them. For it was settled that at Osnabrück the present Catholic Bishop should be succeeded by the Brunswick-Lüneburg Duke Ernest Augustus, and that after him the see should be alternately held by a Catholic and a Protestant, in the latter case preferentially by a Brunswick-Lüneburg Prince. By another abnormal arrangement the Bishop, Chapter, and Estates of Osnabrück were made liable for the payment of 80,000 dollars to the former occupant of the territory, Count Gustaf Gustafsson, of Vasaborg, an illegitimate son of the great King. On the other hand, a still outstanding claim of the heirs of Tilly upon the principality of Calenberg (Hanover) was now quashed.
The Dowager Landgravine Amalia Elizabeth of Hesse-Cassel had in the face of difficulties innumerable maintained so close a connexion with both the Swedish and the French Government that their military commanders and diplomatists alike never lost sight of her interests and pretensions. Special mention accordingly was made of them in the first peace propositions of both Powers. Her claims were judiciously spread over a large and varied extent of territory ; but in the end Hesse-Cassel acquired the secularised Prince-abbacy of Hersfeld, which had long been under its control, together with other lands and the large sum of 600,000 dollars for the payment of its soldiery, to be contributed by divers spiritual potentates. The compact between Cassel and Darmstadt securing to the former part of the long-disputed Marburg succession was also confirmed in the Peace; so that the "great Landgravine"-a Princess whose extraordinary sagacity and determination deserve enduring remembrance-was now entitled to sing her Nunc Dimlttls. She died in 1651.
The Peace of Westphalia failed to effect any final settlement of the Jülich-Cleves-Berg question, which had so nearly antedated by a decade the outbreak of the Great War. A pious hope was expressed that the "interessati" who, besides the "possessing" Princes, were Brandenburg and Neuburg, the Elector of Saxony and the Duke of Zweibrücken, would soon come to terms ; but this hope was not fulfilled till 1666, when, by the Treaty of Cleres, Brandenburg was awarded the permanent
Both the Baden-Durlach line, which had been deprived of its territories after the battle of Wimpfen (1622) and the House of Württemberg, of whose domains Ferdinand II had in his last years distributed a large part among his ministers and commanders, had been excluded from the amnesty granted at the Peace of Prague and were now reinstated. This was mainly the work of Varnbüler, who thus signally contributed to the preservation of Protestantism in south-western Germany. Several other Estates of the Empire, which had likewise been excluded from the Prague amnesty, and others which had not been so excluded, endeavoured to secure similar recoveries ; and in the end a stop had to be put upon these transactions, which threatened indefinitely to postpone the conclusion of peace. The Elector of Trier, thanks to French support, re-entered into all the rights and possessions which he had forfeited, and
While the loose connexion between the United Provinces and the Empire was allowed to lapse in silence in view of the recognition by Spain of the independence of what still formed part of the Burgundian Circle, the independence of the Helvetic Confederation of the Thirteen Cantons was explicitly recognised in the Treaties of both Osnabrück and Münster.
It remains to summarise the efforts made in the Peace of Westphalia to deal with the religious and political difficulties, for the most part so repeatedly and persistently brought forward as " grievances " at the Diet and other meetings of Estates of the Empire, that had long distracted and disturbed its life, and had materially contributed to bring about the War. The gravest of these difficulties dated back in their origin to the Reformation ; nor could any settlement of them be reached unless they were regarded as radical and treated accordingly. The peace propositions of the Swedish plenipotentiaries demanded that all mutual grievances between the Catholic and Protestant Estates should be entirely uprooted (funditus exstirpentur). As representing a Catholic Power, the French plenipotentiaries were precluded from professing the same purpose ; and thus it was only at Osnabrück that the religious grievances were discussed, and the principle of their being ultimately met by a reunion of the religions was once more asserted. The endeavours of the Imperial plenipotentiaries to refer the religious grievances to the Diet broke down, and to the exertions of Sweden, whose services to the preservation of Protestantism did not come to an end with the career of Gustavus Adolphus, are to be ascribed such results as were on this head reached in the Peace of Westphalia.
The Treaty of Passau (1552) and the Religious Peace of Augsburg (1555) were acknowledged as fundamental laws of the Empire, but were here broadened in their application by the important provision, that among the " adherents of the Augsburg Confession " should be held to be included those who proposed the "Reformed" (Calvinist) form of faith. The Elector of Saxony, consistent to the last, protested against this article. So far, however, was it from implying any general religious tolerance, that the same Treaty of Osnabrück expressly directed that no other religion except those expressly mentioned should be allowed in the Empire-a declaration not of course intended to prevent any particular Government from granting such protection as it might think fit to individual adherents of other forms of religion.
Sweden had originally proposed that, in view of the manifold grievances on both the Catholic and the Protestant side, the state of possession which had existed in the year 1618 should be restored and made perpetual in the case of ecclesiastical foundations and property ot all kinds, and in that of all other disputed matters admitting of being
Exclusively, then, of those ecclesiastical foundations - chiefly secularised sees - specific dispositions as to which formed part of the satisfactions or compensations - all immediate foundations and estates, whether archbishoprics, bishoprics, abbacies, convents or other, were to remain in the undisturbed possession of whichever of the religions had held them on January 1, 162e, until by God's grace the religious disunion should have an end. If the occupant of such a foundation changed his religion, his occupancy would ipso facto cease. In Cathedral Chapters, if at that . date they had been composed partly of Catholic, partly of Protestant members, the same proportion was to be permanently maintained. Thus the knot of the old problem - the question of the validity of the reser-vatum eccleslasticum - had been suddenly cut ; but practically, so far as the great debatable land of the west and south-west was concerned, the decision was wholly in favour of the Catholics. A final stop was put upon the spread of Protestantism in the Empire by means of conversions in high places. The same rule of date applied to mediate spiritual foundations - mainly convents ; no religious Order was to be admitted into a convent hitherto held by another, except in the case of its having become extinct in loco ; and even then no Order founded since the Reformation was to be introduced - a stipulation palpably directed against the Jesuits.
Of deeper interest to us, because of its connexion with the principle of tolerance which in this generation was only beginning to dawn upon a few minds, was the problem of the public and private exercise of their religion by subjects who professed a form of faith different from that of their territorial sovereign. The declaration in the Peace of equality between Catholics and Protestants was restricted by the addition " in so far as is in accordance with the constitution and laws of the Empire, and with the Peace itself"; and it had to be reconciled with the right of determining the religion of his territory (thejw* reformandi) granted by the Religious Peace of Augsburg to every territorial lord or immediate estate, while to subjects who dissented there remained the alternative of emigration.
The Lutherans and the Reformed, whom the Catholics left to settle their own practice on this head, agreed that, without prejudice to liberty
For Catholics and Protestants living under rulers of the opposite faith, the conditions of public and private religious worship, of the constitution of consistories, and of the patronage and tenure ot churches, convents, hospitals, etc., which had obtained at the most favourable date in the year 1624, were to be accepted as decisive, and to be maintained semper et ubique (till the day of religious reunion). A single exception was made, in the case of the see of Hildesheim, where a settlement less advantageous to the Protestants than the state of things in 1624 was adopted. In places in this diocese possessed of only a single church, " simultaneous " Catholic and Protestant worship (i.e. worship at different hours of the same day) was allowed-an odd compromise largely resorted to elsewhere, though with very doubtful legal warrant.
Subjects who in 1627 had been debarred from the free exercise of a religion other than that of their ruler were by the Peace granted the right of conducting private worship, and of educating their children at home or abroad, in conformity with their own faith ; they were not to suffer in any civil capacity nor to be denied religious burial, but were to be at liberty to emigrate, selling their estates or leaving them to be managed by others. Some ambiguity, however, attaches to the stipulations of the Peace on this head. One passage provides for the patient toleration of subjects not of the ruler's religion ; but another seems to imply that, exceptions apart, the ruler may oblige such subjects to emigrate, though without forcibly abducting them or fixing their destination.
An important and perfectly distinct exception to these last provisions was however made in the case of the subjects of the House of Austria. The Emperor Ferdinand II had steadily refused to yield to the demand pressed upon him in the negotiations for the Peace of Prague that the adherents of the Confession of Augsburg in his dominions should be allowed the free exercise of their religion wherever they had enjoyed it in 1612 ; and a similar non possumus was opposed by Ferdinand III to the proposals made at Osnabrück, where the years 1618 and 1624 were successively named. (The earlier of these was to have included the Bohemian troubles.) He insisted on his jus reformandi ; and Traut-mansdorff repeatedly declared that his master would sooner lose throne and life than assent to such a demand. Certain concessions were granted in the cases of the three Silesian duchies of Brieg, Liegnitz, and
Miinsterberg-Oels, and of the city of Breslau, as well as in that of the nobility of Lower Austria ; but nowhere else in the Austrian dominions was any exercise of their religion allowed to the Protestants of any class or condition.
In accordance with the principle of the general amnesty announced in the Peace, persons who had emigrated from the Austrian dominions during the course of the War, and who in many instances had taken service under hostile Princes, were now allowed to return home, but without recovering either the free exercise of the Protestant religion or the possession of their lands.
Much trouble between the Confessions had always existed in the free towns of the Empire. It was now settled that where only a single religion had been exercised in 1624 the town should be treated as Catholic or Protestant accordingly ; but in certain towns, of which Augsburg was the most prominent instance, where the adherents of the two religions were mixed, they were to be equally free to exercise that which they professed. At Augsburg, however, a complicated arrangement, quite unfair to the large Protestant majority among the citizens, was adopted as to municipal offices.
From religious grievances we finally pass to political-though, as in the interesting provisions as to ecclesiastical jurisdiction, the two fields of discussion lay very close to each other. At the root of the conflict which had at last become war had lain the opposition between territorial and Imperial claims. Ferdinand III and his advisers expressed much surprise on finding that both the Swedish and the French peace propositions referred so largely to the rights and liberties of the German Estates ; but it was in vain that they sought to postpone to the next Diet considerations which possessed so great an interest for the two foreign Crowns.
What was at issue was nothing short of the restoration of the old territorial sovereignty (Landeshoheit) of the Estates of the realm (a few Imperial rights being reserved), and a fresh statement of certain rights supposed to be inherent in that sovereignty.
Among these rights, Sweden, France, and the Princes of the Empire, were above all anxious to place beyond all reach of dispute the right of concluding alliances, whether with Estates of the Empire or with foreign Powers. This was effected by the provision, common to both the Treaty of Münster and to that of Osnabrück, which secured to every Estate the right of concluding any such alliance with a view to his own security, provided that it was neither directed against the Emperor, the Empire, or its Landfrieden, nor against the conditions of the Peace of Westphalia itself. Notwithstanding these safeguards, a virtually complete independence was thus assured-so far as any of them could assert it-to each of the 300 or more political bodies which made up the Holy Roman Empire ; and this independence extended to the
Conversely, the Estates of the Empire and the two foreign Crowns were alike interested in seeking to prevent any resort by the successors of Ferdinand II to arbitrary measures such as those which from religious or dynastic motives he had adopted in the course of the War-the pronouncement of the Ban of the Empire against the Elector Palatine, the Edict of Restitution, the conclusion of the Peace of Prague In spite of the resistance of the Imperial Government, a clause was inserted in both the Münster and the Osnabrück Treaty assigning to the Estates of the Empire at large (not the Electors only) the right of voting in all Imperial business, whether it concerned legislation or taxation, or the declaration of war or peace. The free towns, whose position had hitherto been in some measure undefined but on whom the Empire might at all times reckon as its sincerest upholders, were now placed on a footing of absolute constitutional equality with the other Estates. In the treaty between Spain and the States General at Münster the Hanse Towns had been allowed the same commercial privileges towards Spain as the United Provinces ; in the Treaty of Osnabrück Sweden undertook that their navigation and trade should be maintained in the same condition as before the War-a strange falling-off" from the dominium maris Baltici which these towns were to have helped to secure to the House of Habsburg.
But of more direct importance for the political future of the Empire, which must continue to be largely dependent on the relations between its religious parties, was an innovation logically deduced from the principle of jura singulorum (Estate rights), upheld by the Protestants in both theory and practice. It was now provided that in matters of religion (or, as came to be the case, in matters regarded or treated as such) a majority of votes should no longer be held decisive at the Diet ; but that such questions should be settled by an amicable " composition " between its two parts or corpora. In other words, by taking advantage of the jus eundi in partes, the Protestants might as a body resist any proposal supported, or likely to be supported, by a numerical majority of Catholic votes. In the same spirit of parity it was agreed that when possible there should be equality of consulting and voting power between the "two religions" on all commissions of the Diet, including those Deputationstage which had come to exercise an authority nearly equalling that of the Diets themselves. The Reichskammer-gericht was reformed on a footing of religious equality ; the preponderance still remaining to the Emperor, by virtue of his nomination of two surplus assessors and of the Kammerrichter or chief justice, being in some measure neutralised by the fact that the tribunal chiefly acted through its committees (Senates). No attempt was made to establish religious parity in the Reichshqfrath, whose character as an Imperial council, not subject to a revision of its
France and Sweden would gladly have lessened the prestige of the House of Austria by introducing into the constitution of the Empire a provision that henceforth no election of a Roman King should be held during the lifetime of an Emperor. They were also desirous of augmenting the power of the Estates at large, among whom Sweden was now herself to be numbered ; and France hoped to exercise an enduring influence, by making their assent requisite for the holding of any such election, and for the settlement of a permanent Wahlcapitulation limiting the Imperial authority. But the Austrian diplomacy succeeded in holding over the consideration of these matters for the next Diet. On the other hand the two Powers were able to delay the actual conclusion of the Peace for some time after its articles were complete by long discussions as to the proper ways of executing and of securing it. The Peace was actually signed at both Münster and Osnabrück on October 27, 1648 ; but, though the Emperor's edicts for its execution were issued -a fortnight afterwards, the ratifications were not exchanged till February 8, 1649. Meanwhile the exchange of prisoners and other matters appertaining to the execution of the Treaties had been taken in hand by the military commanders, and were not wound up till June, 1650, at Nürnberg. The protest which the Papal Nuncio had offered against the Peace immediately after its conclusion, was reiterated a month later by Pope Innocent X in the Bull Zelo domus Dei (November 26, 1648) ; but its validity had been denied beforehand in the Peace itself, and no proceeding could have demonstrated more palpably the complete estrangement which now prevailed between the Imperial and the Papal authority. As a matter of fact, the Papal protest is not known to have been ever invoked by any Power against any stipulation of the Peace of Westphalia.
Each of the two Powers, whose alliance had prolonged the War, might now seem to have achieved its ends. The statesmanship of Sweden, hardly less than the heroic deeds of her great King and a succession of eminent commanders, had obtained for her the position of a great European Power. But her losses in men were so serious, that a war on a similar scale could hardly be contemplated by the living or the next generation ; while the monarchy could only defray the financial cost of the effort by processes which ended in changing the bases of Swedish constitutional life. The Swedish Crown had acquired a fair German province which provided the security desired by both Gustavus Adolphus and Oxenstierna for the kingdom itself and for the sufficiency of its share in the control of the Baltic. Sweden hereby also secured a permanent right to a participation in the affairs of the Empire, which might at any time be used for the purpose of once more gaining the control of them. But she had to reckon with the jealousy of her new
Far different was the case with France, who, though her sacrifices had relatively been far less than those of Sweden, had reaped a far ampler reward. Besides the recognition of the three sees, she had, by acquiring Breisach and the right of garrisoning Philippsburg, secured direct access to the German south-west; and she had taken Austria's place as the chief Power in Elsass. Though she had not herself acquired a place in the system of the Empire, the relations into which she had entered with certain of its Estates furnished arguments for the support of future claims to an extended sovereignty. And-most important of all-besides opening future opportunities of intervention in the affairs of the Empire, the War and the settlement which ended it enormously increased her moral ascendancy in western Germany and in the Empire at large.
By consenting to these losses the House of Austria and the Empire which had so long accepted its headship had purchased a necessary peace. To the House of Austria this meant the preservation to it of the great mass of its dominions, and of so much authority as in the eyes of Europe and of the Empire still remained inseparable from the tenure of the Imperial Crown. But to the Empire at large it meant the settlement of the grievances for the redress of which Catholics and Protestants alike had, sooner or later, appealed to the decision of war, or responded to that appeal when it presented itself before them. The religious settlement, however imperfect from the point of view of later times, secured to the Protestants-and to the Calvinists as well as to the Lutherans-the "equality" for which they had been so long contending, though the point of time which determined the partition of rights and possessions between them and the Catholics had to be more or less arbitrarily fixed. The maintenance of this " equality " within the Empire was guaranteed by a constitutional change of the highest importance introduced into the procedure of the Diet ; and the opportunities of the Counter-reformation had passed away for ever. On the other hand, the provision made for individual freedom in the exercise of any one of the recognised religions was insufficient; and from the dominions of the House of Austria as a whole Protestant worship was deliberately excluded.
Among the changes introduced by the Peace of Westphalia into the political life of the Empire, and contributory to that complete establishment of their " liberties " which its Estates had consistently striven to secure, the most important was the full recognition of their right to conclude alliances with foreign Powers. The Empire thus in point of fact came to be except in name little more than a confederation ; but inasmuch as its Estates were numerous and a large proportion of them
But the political losses and gains which the Peace of Westphalia entailed upon the Empire and its Princes sink alike into insignificance, and even the undeniable advance towards religious freedom marked by the adoption in that Peace of the principle of equality between the recognised religious confessions is obscured, when we turn to consider the general effects of the War now ended upon Germany and the German nation. These effects, either material or moral, cannot be more than faintly indicated here ; but together they furnish perhaps the most appalling demonstrations of the consequences of war to be found in history. The mighty impulses which the great movements of the Renaissance and the Reformation had imparted to the aspirations and efforts of contemporary German life, were quenched in the century of religious conflict which ended with the exhausting struggle of the Thirty Years' War ; the mainspring of the national life was broken, and, to all seeming, broken for ever.
The ruin of agriculture was inevitably the most striking, as it was the most far-reaching, result of this all-destructive war. Each one of those marches, counter-marches, sieges, reliefs, invasions, occupations, evacuations, and reoccupations, which we have noted, and a far larger number of military movements that we have passed by, were accompanied by devastations carried out impartially by " friend " or foe. For the peasants who dwelt upon the land there was no personal safety except in flight ; their harvests, their cattle, the roof over their heads, were at the mercy of the soldiery ; and, as the War went on, whole districts were converted into deserts.
Bohemia, where the War broke out, had the earliest experience of its desolating effects, above all in the sorely tried north-west of the kingdom; but its sufferings reached their height-long after the Bohemian rising had been crushed, as it seemed, for ever-early in the last decade of the War. The destruction of villages, from which most parts of the Empire suffered, was probably here carried to the most awful length ; of a total of 35,000 Bohemian villages, it is stated that hardly more than 6000 were left standing. The sufferings of Moravia were in much the same proportion, and even more protracted ; those of Silesia only ended when it was made over by Saxony into the Emperor's care at the Peace of Prague. Upper and Lower Austria also enjoyed some relief during the last part of the War, when the main anxiety of the Emperor was to keep it out of his hereditary dominions. The inflictions to which Maximilian's electorate was subjected during the victorious campaigns of
Gustavus Adolphus and the subsequent invasion of Bernard of Weimar were followed by far more grievous treatment by the troops of Banér and Konigsmarck. During the concluding years of the War no other German land underwent more terrible sufferings than Bavaria, where- especially in its eastern part-famine and desolation stalked unchecked. Franconia and Swabia, too, were made desolate by the ravages of war, famine and disease, especially after the catastrophe of Nördlingen ; the pasture-lands of the Schwarzwald and the vineyards of the Upper Rhine and Neckar country were alike desolated. The Lower Palatinate, when this portion of his patrimony was at last recovered by the Elector Charles Lewis, was little better than a desert ; so utterly had war, anarchy, and emigration changed the face of the garden of Germany. The regions of the Middle Rhine were in little better plight than those of the Upper ; Nassau and the Wetterau had suffered unspeakably, especially during the latter part of the War, and the Hessian lands but slightly more intermittently. In the north-west neither the Brunswick-Luneburg lands nor even remote East Frisia had escaped the scourge of military occupation ; in Calenburg (Hanover) whole forests had been cut down by the Swedes. In central and north-eastern Germany, Brandenburg and Saxony had during nearly two-thirds of the War been at no time free from occupation or raids, especially on the part of the Swedes ; the Anhalt principalities had suffered as if to atone for Christian's share in lighting the flames of war ; and the Mecklenburg Dukes on their return home found the land desolate and depopulated.
The depopulation of Germany was an even more ominous feature in the aspect of the Empire after the War than the devastation of its soil. The statistical data at our command rest on no very satisfactory bases ; but a comparison of statements as to particular territories seems to show that the population of the Empire had been diminished by at least two-thirds-from over sixteen to under six millions. In accounting for the loss it was reckoned (but how could this reckoning be verified?) that not far short of 350,000 persons had perished by the sword ; famine, disease, and emigration had done the rest. In particular territories the loss of population had been enormous. In the Lower Palatinate only one-tenth (for the much-quoted figure of one-fiftieth must be dismissed as fictitious), in Württemberg one-sixth survived; in Bohemia, where, as in the Austrian duchies, emigration had largely helped to depopulate the country, it was reckoned that already before the last invasions of Banér and Torstensson the total of inhabitants had since the opening of the War diminished by more than three-fourths.
Notwithstanding the terrible sufferings which the War had inflicted upon the unprotected peasantry in by far the greater part of the Empire, this unfortunate class were by no means relieved from the burdens ordinarily imposed upon them. The poll-tax and the taxes on articles of consumption were exacted where it was possible to levy them ; the
The economic effects of such a condition of things upon the soil and its cultivators need not be discussed at length. During more than a generation after the conclusion of the War a full third of the land in northern Germany was left uncultivated. Cattle and sheep diminished to an extraordinary extent, and many once fertile districts became forests inhabited by wolves and other savage beasts. The cultivation of many products of the land passed out of use in particular districts or altogether. Prices fell so low that in Saxony, for instance, the average price of wheat during the first twelve years after the Peace was a little less than half what it had been before the War, and that of rye even proportionately lower. Nor was there any prospect of agriculture recovering from so terrible a depression unless in regions where, as in the Palatinate, the exceptional fertility of the soil cooperated with the solicitude shown by the territorial rulers here and in Württemberg, as well as under less favourable conditions in Saxony and Brandenburg, for the interests of the rural population.
If the War reduced agriculture to an almost hopeless depression, and lowered the condition of the peasantry to a level at which it remained for the better part of two centuries, its effects were hardly less disastrous upon the middle or burgher class, and upon the trade and industry to which the members of that class had primarily owed their prosperity. The population of the towns, as a whole, is estimated to have diminished during the War in a ratio less by one-third than that of the country districts. As to property, though the townsmen had more to lose, they were of course on the whole far better protected, and the wealthier among them had opportunities of securing their capital in banks at a distance, or investing it in foreign trade. At the same time the fall in the production of raw material which might be worked at home or exported, together with the disturbance of all trade routes and lines of communication with foreign countries, were prohibitive of any revival of German industry and commerce.
Their chief centres had from of old been the free Imperial towns ; but among these only the three great northern cities, which practically represented the remains of the Hanseatic League-Hamburg, Bremen,
Among the leading commercial towns of central Germany, Erfurt, the chief mart of Thuringia, seems to have suffered more than Leipzig, which recovered by means of its fairs ; Magdeburg, after rising from its ashes, was again and again under military occupation, but, owing to its great advantages as a natural centre of the carrying trade, was able to regain part of its former prosperity. The towns of Westphalia and the adjoining districts lay low ; and, if the Rhenish were in a somewhat better state, it was as hangers-on of the Dutch that they picked up a small share of their neighbours' prosperity. But Cologne was entering upon a long period of commercial and industrial insignificance ; and even more complete was the decay of Aachen, whose population had sunk to one-fourth of its former total.
On the Middle and the Upper Rhine the balance of trade, which had formerly been largely in favour of the products of German, and particularly of Franconian, industry, had now entirely shifted in favour of France. Frankfort, although, together with the surrounding districts, it had suffered severely from the War, recovered with comparative speed ; on the other hand, neither Augsburg nor Nürnberg was destined to regain the leading position which these two grpat towns had held in the commerce and industry of the Empire. The smaller free towns of the south-west lost all mercantile importance ; and their unwillingness to be
Wherever throughout the Empire particular manufacturing industries had flourished, the War had brought about a decline which lasted long after its close. The cloth of Westphalia and of Bavaria, the linen and wool, the glass and pottery, of various parts of the country, were vanishing from the market. Everywhere the twofold lack of capital and of labour made itself felt. Only in those lands where a wise administrative care specially devoted itself to fostering the native industries-in the Electorates of Brandenburg and Saxony, and also in the Palatinate- were there early signs of recovery. In those of the Habsburg lands which passed through so many vicissitudes in the successive stages of the War-in Bohemia, Moravia, and Silesia-various industries had greatly suffered, most of all perhaps the mining industry, which had been largely transferred into Saxony.
As a matter of course, the mercantile policy of each one of the German Governments, which the Peace of Westphalia had rendered to so large an extent independent of the Imperial authority, was regulated entirely by what it conceived to be its particular interests, or by the arbitrary choice or whim of its ruler. This applied to systems of communications, and to tariffs of duties and tolls. While there was no question of combination or union between several Governments for the advancement of trade or industry, the development of internal traffic in any particular principality was liable to be impeded or stopped by greed, ignorance, or stupidity. The worst of all the bad financial expedients to which any of the three hundred or more Governments into which the Empire was split up could resort was that debasement of the coin already noted ; fortunately, however, this evil practice reached its height so early in the War that measures for arresting it could not be delayed.
The decline of German commerce and industry could not but lead to the domination of the foreign trades in the ports, along the river-ways, and through entire regions, of the interior of the country. A large proportion of the natural and industrial products of western Germany served to supply the Dutch with articles of export, some of which they occasionally brought back in a different form as imports into the Empire. The Dutch were masters of the outlets of the Rhine ; and, except in so far as in the North Sea and the Baltic England had begun to compete, they practically controlled the trade of the German ports in both seas. On the other hand, French manufactures commanded an ascendancy in almost every sphere of life-partly because of the deference paid to France in the political, and not less in the literary and artistic world, partly because of a craving for finery of all sorts which was characteristic of the age, and which the French market alone could meet. Thus the French export trade flourished as that of
Germany, whose exports were mainly confined to her natural products, lessened and languished.
If we pass from the material to the moral effects upon the nation of the tremendous social upheaval of the Thirty Years' War-whether we trace these effects in the pages, only too truthful in their colouring, of contemporary romance, or in the endless mosaic of details accumulated by historic research-they seem hardly to admit of exaggeration. Some of them are no doubt merely continuations of phenomena noticeable already in the period immediately preceding the outbreak of the War ; but for the unparalleled depression as a whole, of which to this day the effects cannot be said to have been altogether effaced, the War itself must be held accountable. Not only was this a conflict in arms more extensive in its range and more protracted in its duration than any that the Empire had previously experienced. It was a religious war, in which even the most high-minded of those who took part in it could not so much as pretend to be guided solely by the inspirations of religious enthusiasm, while the deadliest promptings of religious hatred were designedly fostered and the whole savagery of religious fanaticism was deliberately let loose upon its prey. It was a civil war, fought between members of the same nation, at times between subjects of the same Princes, between kinsmen and brothers ; but it inflicted upon the greater part of Germany invasions of foreign troops from almost every corner of Europe-Swedes and Danes, Spaniards and Frenchmen, Transylvanians, Magyars, Croats and Poles. Very early in its course, it became a war of mercenaries, a character which it more or less maintained throughout- thus combining every element that deadens and destroys the impulses, the convictions, the hopes, which in a measure redeem the brutality of all warfare. Such, and worse than this, was the Thirty Years' War. How then could its moral effect upon all classes of the population have been other than that of a deadly blight? The Princes, with certain exceptions no doubt, had unlearnt, with the sense of loyalty towards the Empire, the consciousness of duty towards the States over which they severally claimed sovereign authority ; their eyes were turned westward in admiration of the splendours of a Court which was seeking to make itself the centre of all public and private effort ; and it is in this period, rather than in the much-decried age preceding it, that there grew up the notion, anything but German in its essence, of a rigidly exclusive princely dignity and authority. The territorial potentate, who esteemed himself the sole fountain of honour, by enlarging the numbers of his nobility lowered its political and social importance; while the official class, passing more and more completely under his personal control out of that of the territorial Estates, became marked by that offensive blend of servility and insolence which was to mark the German bureaucracy of so many successive generations.
Among both the nobility and the well-to-do section of the burgher
The order, the comfort, the decency which had so long distinguished German town life had come to an end, as the War made sieges, and the fear of sieges, a normal experience ; nor had the comeliness of the flourishing towns of central and western Germany, with their comely walls and smiling gardens, their busy markets and gay Vogelwiesen, undergone a more complete change than had the local patriotism and solid self-esteem, the whole moral tone and temper, of their citizens. The horrors of which some of the towns shared the remembrance with the villages of the peasantry-only that in the case of the former the fury of their captors had usually been intensified by long expectancy and licensed by military usage-had left their degrading mark on the life of families, whose womenkind had been dragged away into the servile gipsydom of the moving camps.
In the midst of this social chaos religion, in whose name these iniquities were perpetrated, was trampled in the mire ; but in its place superstition reared its hundred heads unchecked. No doubt, in this instance also the age had but entered into a damnosa hereditas of previous generations ; but it put out the legacy to multiple usury. Terror, suffering, the loss of all effective spiritual guidance and the absence of all controlling mental discipline, drove the population at large-and first and foremost the soldiers who were the prime agents of the universal unsettlement-headlong into the wildest and most irrational varieties of misbelief. In the earlier years of the War the popular delusions as to witches and witchcraft from time to time demanded their saturnalia of sacrifice ; but, as the conflict went on, men's minds became more and more unhinged by the volume of sufferings which overwhelmed the country ; and though these very sufferings diverted public attention from minor causes, or supposed causes, of trouble and calamity, we hear to the last of wholesale burnings of witches-as if something must be done to balance the account with the author of evil. Within the years 1627-8 the Bishop of Würzburg is stated to have put to death 9000 witches and wizards, and between 1640 and 1641 nearly 1000 of these unfortunates are said to have been sent to the stake in the single Silesian principality of Neisse.
If we ask, in fine, what restraining curative and consoling influences sought to counteract such phenomena as have been noted,-together with a mass of others of the grossest sort at which it is impossible here to
As to popular education, the village schools which the Reformation had not attempted to make much more than appendages to the village churches, had been for the most part swept away by the storms of the War; though it is interesting to find that immediately after the proclamation of peace-in 1649-the Württemberg Government, always specially intent upon the care of education in all its branches, sought to impress upon its subjects the general obligation of school attendance by their children. In the " Latin " schools of the Catholic towns the Jesuits lost no time in resuming their activity where it had been interrupted ; in the Protestant towns a new influence was needed to animate a system of teaching hardened and narrowed by confessional jealousy, and by the long-continued subordination of all intellectual effort to theological ends. This influence was found in the gradual assertion of the idea of individual education of the individual, which found expression in the pedagogic principles of the great Moravian John Amos Comenius (1592-1671).
In the Universities, an all-subduing formalism had in the earlier half of the seventeenth century seized upon, and half-petrified, student life. In this backwater phase of academical history the Universities isolated themselves from the life of the nation. "Pennalism'"-the effort to codify the usages of student life, especially with regard to the treatment of freshmen-reached so rank a growth that in 1654 the Diet of the Empire thought it necessary to issue an ordinance. This barbarity of manners had only too close a counterpart in the unprofitableness of University teaching, and its failure to communicate that highest impetus without which all academical life must sink into stagnation. Not, of course, that here also exceptional instances to the contrary were altogether lacking; we know that Milton's treatises were used in the German Universities about 1651 ; and at Helmstädt George Calixtus during a forty years' tenure (1614-56) of the professorship "of controversies'" applied himself single-mindedly to the solution of the problem of religious reunion, and bequeathed his sanguine aspirations to the great mind of Leibniz. Helmstädt was also the immediate sphere of the scientific labours stedfastly carried on during these troubled times by the celebrated polyhistor Hermann Conring (1606-81), and by other
Where education so largely failed to exercise a remedial influence, literature, whose opportunities were even more intermittent and could be more easily ignored, could only play a still more subordinate part. Christoph von Grimmeishausen, Adventurous Simplicissimus (1669), closes a satirical narrative of a shrewd peasant's experience in an age of military violence, quackery, and vagabondage, with his relegation to a desert island, and his refusal to return thence to Germany, the land of his birth. Not less lurid is the light thrown on this age of war and outrage by the last seven of the Visions of Philander (1G41-4), in which Johann Michael Moscherosch went on from an imitation of Quevedo's generalising satire to a series of largely original sketches. But these works contained no suggestion of recovery from the ills of the times, or of a real cure of them. With the exception of some hymn-writers, among whom the Lutheran Paul Gerhardt is pre-eminent, there are but two figures in the German literature of the period of the Thirty Years' War to whom our sympathies are attracted as standing forth from their generation and its sphere of ideas. The one is that of the Jesuit Friedrich von Spec, who, moved by a missionary enthusiasm for which the world was not too wide, is remembered not so much by his hymns as because of his exertions against the persecution of witches ; and the other, that of an enthusiast of a different type, Jacob Böhme, the inspired shoemaker of Görlitz, whom orthodoxy passed by with repugnance on the other side, but with whom both in his own and in other lands lofty and loving spirits in later generations were to find themselves united in mystical fellowship. But Spee died in 1635 ; Jacob Böhme already in 1624.
The durability of the Westphalian settlement, and the extent to which its provisions met the existing condition of things at home in the Empire and beyond its borders were to be severely tested during the decade which followed upon its conclusion. The whole of this period exhibits a persistent revival of the old and ineradicable tendency among the Estates of the Empire towards the formation of leagues and associations of all kinds, stimulated by their continued distrust of the policy of the House of Austria and encouraged by the recognition in the Peace of the right of alliance as appertaining to the sovereignty of each immediate Estate. The movement began quite unpretentiously in April, 1651, by an alliance between the members of the two Rhenish Circles. In February, 1652, followed the so-called Hildesheim Alliance, an association for military purposes, including, together with the Bruns-wick-Liineburg Dukes and the Landgrave of Hesse-Cassel, the possessor of the duchies of Bremen and Verden-in other words, the Swedish Crown. It was afterwards joined by the Catholic Bishop of Paderborn.
Though of no great intrinsic importance, these alliances were significant of the combinations which seemed in the end likely to determine the course of affairs in the Empire, unless indeed any particular Government proved powerful enough to set the balance right from its own point of view. But an attempt of this kind on the part of the Elector Frederick William of Brandenburg, who in 1651 by a coup de main (the so-called " Jiilich War ") sought to settle in his own favour the perennial problem of the Rhenish duchies left open by the Peace of Westphalia, was thwarted in time by his Neuburg opponent.
On June 30, 1653, Ferdinand III opened his last Diet at Ratisbon. Its meeting had been delayed by the disputes between Sweden and Brandenburg as to the evacuation by the former of Eastern Pomerania ; but the Emperor had quite recently (May) contrived to secure the object nearest to his heart, the election of his eldest son Ferdinand as Roman King. He was thus encouraged to make a stand at the Diet in questions directly affecting his interests, concerning the authority of the Reichshofrath and the composition of the College of Princes. But in the matter of religious parity in the College of Electors he had to accept a settlement by which a fourth vote equalising the two parties was accorded to the three Protestant Electors by whom it was to be held in rotation. This result was due to the action of the Elector of Brandenburg, and the politician who at this time was his chief adviser. This was Count (afterwards Prince) George Frederick of Waldeck, who served in turn under the Great Elector, Charles X of Sweden, and William III of Orange, and counted for much in the counsels of each of these great Princes. Distinguished as a commander, he was still more eminent as a statesman, far-sighted in his combinations as Christian of Anhalt had been a generation before, but much superior to him in solidity and power of judgment.
On July 9, 1654, the young King Ferdinand, who was to have followed his father on the Imperial throne, died; and the question of the succession became one of paramount interest. Waldeck, who had been planning the formation of a League of Protestant Estates of which the leadership would naturally fall to Brandenburg, recognised that, as there could be no question of a Protestant Emperor, the readiest way of excluding the House of Habsburg from the succession would be to secure the election of his only possible Catholic rival, Ferdinand Maria, since 1651 Elector of Bavaria. This " great design " was nursed by him during the years next ensuing ; and with a view to carrying it into execution he entered into protracted secret negotiations with Mazarin. In September, 1654<, Brandenburg entered into a defensive alliance with the Brunswick Dukes, which was formally confirmed in July, 1655. But this combination had led, in December, 1654, to the conclusion of a counter-alliance, also " defensive," between the Electors of Cologne and Trier, Philip William of Neuburg, and the martial Bishop of Münster
(Bernard von Galen). Before, however, the death of Ferdinand III in 1657 brought this complication of alliances to a more definite issue, an imminent danger threatened the peace of the Empire.
The quarter whence this danger had mainly come was not the west, but the north. The harryings of Charles of Lorraine had been stopped by his imprisonment in 1654. On the other hand, the ambition of Sweden had soon revived under its German King, Gustavus Adolphus1 nephew, Charles X Gustavus. Already before his accession (1654) Sweden, taking advantage of a quarrel between Oldenburg and Bremen, had sought to lay hands upon the free city, which had not been included in the cession of the duchy to Sweden. But the Emperor and the Diet then took the side of Bremen ; and, the Swedish King being unwilling to involve himself prematurely in a quarrel with the Empire, the independence of the city had been saved.
Charles X of Sweden, as will be shown elsewhere, had other ends more immediately in view ; and the general unrest which pervaded the Baltic coasts marked out these as the theatre of his conquering ambition. He was desirous, not only of lengthening out the Swedish coast-line, but also of securing to Sweden the port-duties along the Prussian coast, which, combined with those of the Pomeranian, possessed an importance for her exchequer, paramount like that of the Sound-dues for the Danish. This involved an encroachment on Brandenburg-Prussian as well as on Polish rights ; and Frederick William of Brandenburg could not remain a neutral spectator of the conflict preparing itself among the Baltic Powers. Indeed, as early as September, 1654, Sweden showed her hand at Berlin by suggesting that Brandenburg should give up the Prussian ports of Pillau and Memel in exchange for an inland Polish province.
Frederick William had treated his vassalship to Poland in his capacity as Duke of Prussia lightly, refusing to the Polish Crown any share in the Prussian coast-dues. Nevertheless, he was anxious to be rid of the vassalship itself; and Waldeck advised him to take advantage of the present occasion. If, however, he had to run the risk of a Swedish alliance, a friend in reserve might be of use. Hence Frederick William's defensive alliance with the States General, concluded for eight years in July, 1655, at the very time when Waldeck was carrying on negotiations with Sweden at Stettin. But Charles X would have no such double-dealing ; the Stettin negotiations were broken off, and Brandenburg had to be contented with a more modest programme of gains. But even this proved premature. In July, 1655, Charles began his Polish war, which is narrated in another chapter. By October the doom of Poland seemed sealed ; and Frederick William could only hold in readiness for future wants the fine army of near 18,000 men which he had on foot. Much alarm was felt at Vienna, where King John Casimir was suing for aid and whither accurate reports were sent by Baron Francis von Lisola, a diplomatist of notable sagacity and zeal. But Ferdinand III was not
In October, 1655, he reached Königsberg, and began to form an alliance with the Estates of Polish (Western) Prussia, by which he placed himself de facto in hostile relations with Sweden. But already in December Charles X broke through these thinly woven toils; Thorn and Elbing capitulated to him ; and in greater strength than ever he faced the Elector of Brandenburg. Before long Frederick William had conformed to the necessities of the situation, and by the Treaty of Königsberg (January 17, 1656), submitted to the far more burdensome overlordship of Sweden in lieu of that of Poland, undertaking in the event of another war against the latter to furnish a contingent of 1500 men. Pillau and Memel remained in his hands ; but half of the Prussian port-dues were henceforth to belong to Sweden. Warmia (Ermeland) was however transferred to Brandenburg, though also as a Swedish fief.
This compact left Frederick William with an unemployed army; and, on the assumption that the Northern troubles were for the time at least at an end, he quickly concluded (February 24, 1656), a "defensive" treaty with France, who, in return for his support in her war against Spain, was to aid him in securing the portion of the Jülich-Cleves inheritance possessed by Neuburg. But, as is related elsewhere, the Polish rising that took place at this very time drove Charles X to seek safety within the walls of Warsaw, and Frederick William found himself the object of the most seductive solicitations. By the advice of Waldeck he however decided on preferring the Swedish to the Polish side, and by the important Treaty of Marienburg (June 2,5, 1656), concluded an alliance which bound both Governments mutually to defend their respective Polish and Prussian acquisitions, Brandenburg's full sovereignty over a large part of Great Poland being recognised in the treaty. The great victory gained by the allies in the three days' battle of Warsaw (July 29-31), justified his decision; and the judicious self-restraint of Charles X in forbearing to seize Danzig induced the Dutch to enter into a commercial treaty with him, which further strengthened his position and that of his ally.
But at Vienna the success of Charles X and Frederick William augmented the ill-will cherished against the King of Sweden ; and on December 1, 1656, an Austro-Polish alliance was concluded, which, though putting in the foreground the Imperial mediation for peace, promised an Austrian contingent of 4000 men. Charles was proportionately desirous of retaining the alliance of Frederick William ; and the latter in consequence insisted upon readjusting its conditions in his favour. The Treaty of Labiau (November 20, 1658) acknowledged the sovereignty of the Duke of Prussia over his duchy and Ermeland, while Sweden renounced her share of the Prussian port-dues ; but
Frederick William was still denied the right of keeping warships in the Baltic. Would he be able to assert against Poland the independent sovereignty in ducal Prussia, which Sweden had thus been forced to acknowledge ? In consequence of the conclusion of this treaty against his advice, Waldeck passed from the Brandenburg service into that of Sweden. The situation was difficult enough ; it would become still more unmanageable if the Imperial Government carried out its promise of aid to Poland.
It was at this crisis that on April 2, 1657, Ferdinand III died. But, thanks mainly to previous exertions on the part of Lisola, the decision of the House of Austria in the Polish question had been taken; on May 27, 1657, the Austro-Polish alliance was signed ; and in July an Austrian army under Count von Hatzfeldt entered Poland, where, after driving back the bands of George Rakoczy, it in the following month held its entry into Cracow. Instead of adopting the advice of Mazarin, and retaliating by an invasion of the Austrian hereditary dominions, Charles X turned upon Denmark, reserving to a later date his settlement with the House of Habsburg. The final abandonment by Charles X of what had hitherto been the chief theatre of his ambition, and the definitive entrance of Austria into the war, determined Frederick William to a further change of attitude. Neutrality being out of the question, he resolved to face both ways. While Mazarin sought anxiously to avert a rupture between Brandenburg and Sweden, Lisola more successfully operated to gain over the Elector to the Austro-Polish alliance. After persuading King John Casimir to yield the crucial demand of the Prussian sovereignty, this bold diplomatist kept in his pocket certain minimising instructions, and thus brought about on September 19, 1657, the signature of the Treaty of Wehlau, which, in return for a Brandenburg auxiliary force of 6000 men, recognised Frederick William's sovereignty over the duchy of Prussia. Some final difficulties having been overcome with the aid of Queen Marie-Louise of Poland (a Gonzaga), the definitive Treaty of Bromberg was signed on November 6 following.
The northern conflict had inevitably led to violations of the territory of the Empire on the part of Poland and Denmark ; and, if Charles X of Sweden could have come to terms with the Protector Oliver Cromwell, England might in 1657 have been found in occupation of the duchy of Bremen, or at least of the important position of Stade. The heroic Swedish King fought out his first war with Denmark, and achieved the triumph proclaimed by the Peace of Roeskilde (February, 1658), while Frederick William was trying to take advantage of his late ally's difficulties to reopen the question of the cession of Western Pomerania. At Vienna the question of the Imperial succession was under eager consideration ; and on February 14, 1658, an Austro-Brandenburg offensive and defensive alliance had been concluded against Sweden, a
Before the signal was given for the actual opening of the attack upon Sweden by the strangely concerted alliance between Austria, Poland, and Brandenburg, the question of the election to the vacant Imperial throne had been decided. The struggle to prevent the election of the young Archduke Leopold Ignatius, who, at the time of the death of his elder brother in 1654 was only in his fifteenth year, and whose election as Roman King it was therefore then impossible to press, might almost be said to form a final episode in the war of France against the House of Habsburg, whose Austrian branch was still suspected of furnishing support to the Spanish. Mazarin, after some flourishes in favour of the choice of his own sovereign, resolved on pressing the candidature of the young Elector Ferdinand Maria of Bavaria, which Swedish diplomacy likewise supported. Among the Electors, Mazarin's Brandenburg ally, so long as Waldeck directed his policy, the impecunious Charles Lewis of the Palatinate, and the Elector of Cologne (Maximilian Henry), as a kinsman of the Elector of Bavaria, were likewise in his favour. But Ferdinand Maria was devoid of aspiring ambition, and the female influence at his Court was divided. Thus he adhered loyally to his resolution of supporting Archduke Leopold ; and when, on the death of the Emperor Ferdinand in 1657, Mazarin renewed his efforts., they were made in vain. Saxony as usual adhered to the House of Austria, and Brandenburg was tied by policy to her interests. The Elector of Mainz (John Philip von Schönborn), who played the most prominent part in these transactions, was intent on utilising the occasion in favour of the conclusion of peace between France and Spain, but not on ultimately thwarting the House of Austria. Thus, with his assistance and the support of Brandenburg, Mazarin in the end concentrated his efforts upon securing a Wahlcapitulation, which included a direct engagement on the part of Archduke Leopold that he would renounce all de facto support of Spain, either in the Netherlands or in Italy. This was the price paid by the House of Habsburg for the unanimous election of Leopold as Emperor (July 18, 1658) ; and the sagacious purpose of the Elector of Mainz, to make sure of the Franco-Spanish peace before assenting to the candidature of the head of the House of Austria for the Imperial throne, was thus practically fulfilled.
The political complications in the Empire were about this time increased by the contention between the Bavarian and Palatine Electors as to the Vicariate of the Empire (settled a century later by the adoption of the obvious expedient of alternation) and by the action that resulted in the conclusion of the Rheinbund. The object of this movement was
In August, 1655, the Elector of Mainz had, by joining the Catholic counter-alliance and bringing about its amalgamation with the Rhenish alliance of 1651, at once enhanced its importance and enlarged its scope. He was now desirous of widening it still further, and completely freeing it from any confessional character by including in it the members of the Hildesheim alliance of 1652 ; but these efforts were only very partially successful, though the Brunswick Dukes and the Landgrave of Hesse-Cassel joined.
On the death of the Emperor, and during the interregnum which ensued, the policy of the Elector of Mainz and his alliance developed further. He was, as has been seen, willing to support the Austrian candidature on condition of a change in the Austrian policy ; but, although by no means disposed to assist France in securing an Emperor favourable to her interests, he proceeded, especially after the election of the Austrian candidate was assured, to avail himself of the assistance of France in obtaining the desired safeguards against the policy and action of the new Emperor. (Brandenburg, it must be remembered, was now the ally of Austria.) Mazarin, who as late as the summer of 1657, continued to show much reserve towards the Elector of Mainz and his friends, now, after his policy as to the Imperial election had failed, was ready to go hand in hand with the Rheinbund. Both this alliance and France desired above all to hold down the Emperor to the promise of his Wahlcapitulation which bound him to refrain from support of Spain, and thus assured Spain's acceptance of peace with France a certainty. In the case of certain members of the Rheinbund corruption may have cooperated with motives of self-interest ; but such was not the case with its chief promoter, the Elector of Mainz, and with other Princes who like himself sought to make use of France, without intending to become her vassals, a course full of danger, but not for that reason to be condemned as tainted with treason.
On August 15, 1658, the new league was formally signed as a defensive alliance for three years by the three Spiritual Electors, the Bishop of Münster, the Count Palatine of Neuburg (who had taken an early and active part in the negotiations with Mazarin), the Brunswick-
Liineburg Dukes, and the Landgrave of Hesse-Cassel. As Sweden signed for Bremen and Verden, Brandenburg refused to sign; nor was the league joined by Frederick William till 1665, three years before it came to an end. On August 16, at Mainz, the league was formally joined by the King of France in his capacity of " member of the Peace " of Westphalia. The military force of the alliance was fixed at 10,000 men ; and as a matter of fact its object was entirely military, and no political purpose was indicated in its deed of agreement. While it indicated to the Princes of the Empire a mode of action which they had adopted before and were tolerably certain to adopt again, its chief political importance lay in its ensuring the conclusion of a pacific settlement between France and Spain. Its main value consequently passed away so soon as the Peace of the Pyrenees had been actually signed.
On the very day on which the Rheinbund was formally concluded (August 15, 1658), Charles X began his second Danish war. His expedition against Copenhagen at once relieved Frederick William of the fear of a Swedish invasion, for which he had already laid his account at Berlin, and enabled him at the head of a motley host of Brandenburgers, Austrians, and Poles, to open his campaign in Holstein against the Swedish attack upon the Danish troops there. On December 14 he took the island of Alsen, which had been occupied by the Swedes, but he was grievously hampered by the want of a fleet, and could obtain no active cooperation from the Dutch, notwithstanding their recent naval victory in the Sound. Although the Swedish attempt on Copenhagen had failed, and the Danish mainland was cleared of the Swedes, the allies were, even with Dutch support, unable to occupy Fiinen, and it seemed advisable to attack the Swedish power in another quarter. In August, 1659, an Austrian army laid siege to Stettin; but, though Frederick William and Montecuculi now also appeared in these parts and most of Pomerania was soon in the hands of the allies, Stralsund and Stettin, with the mouth of the Oder, still remained in Swedish hands.
For a time it seemed as if peace was still distant. The refusal of both Sweden and Denmark to agree to the proposals of England and Holland (First Hague Concert), and of Sweden to accept the modification allowed by Denmark (Second Hague Concert) led to Dutch participation in active pressure upon Charles X. On November 24 the allies gained the victory of Nyborg ; and Fünen was recovered from Sweden. But the Dutch had no desire to see either of the two Scandinavian States completely crushed, and Mazarin had throughout adhered to the policy of maintaining in northern Germany the power of Sweden-a military power, always likely to be open to the influence of subsidies. Thus, after he had concluded the Peace of the Pyrenees with Spain (November, 1659), he proceeded to take decisive steps for breaking up the anti-Swedish coalition. Charging Frederick William with having violated the Peace of Westphalia by the invasion of Pomerania, he threatened
Thus, the Peace of Westphalia was, though in a less important degree than by the Peace of the Pyrenees, supplemented by the Peace of Oliva, as this Peace was in its turn by the Swedish pacifications with Denmark and Russia. From the north no menace seemed likely to arise against the settlement of Münster and Osnabrück. The Empire still had to fear the perennial but far from extinct Turkish peril, and the pressure on the western frontier which party alliances might seek to avert or to control, but which there hardly remained so much as the pretence of an Imperial authority, commanding the support of a nation, to withstand.