Thirty Years’ War 1618

Conflicts between Catholic and Protestant factions had been ongoing across Europe for a full century by the time Protestant Bohemian Lords tossed the Catholic representatives of Holy Roman Emperor Matthias out the window of the Bohemian Chancellory on May 23, 1618. The Bohemian Revolt against the expansion of Catholic rights and perceived imposition of Catholic rule over the largely Protestant principality reignited the Catholic-Protestant wars of religion that had been previously settled by the Peace of Augsburg in 1555. For the next thirty years, most of Europe became engulfed in one of the longest continuously fought wars in human history. The resulting Peace of Westphalia in 1648 fundamentally altered the nature of political organization and international relations in Europe, its legacy still apparant in the modern sovereign state system.


The Defenestration of Prague, May 23 1618

The Bohemian Apology, May 1618 Top
Source: Peter H. Wilson. 2010. The Thirty Years War: A Sourcebook. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. Pp. 37-40.

We, the representatives of the lords, knights and cities of Prague, Kuttenberg and other Estates of all three Estates of this kingdom of Bohemia who receive the body and blood of our lord Jesus Christ in both kinds, who confess to the Bohemian Confession, and who are now assembled at Prague castle, unanimously make it known to all, both in the name of those gathered here and those absent, that: for a number of years all three Estates and inhabitants of the kingdom have faced, suffered and endured all kinds of complaints and hardship, both in political as well as ecclesiastical matters. These were caused and instigated by evil, turbulent clergy and laity, most notably those of the Jesuit sect (whose aim, writings and endeavours have always been directed at fraudulently subjugating not only His Majesty, but also all Protestant inhabitants and Estates of the entire kingdom to the Roman See, a foreign power). Hereafter, however, in the years 1609 and 1610 a complete peace was established through the Letter of Majesty of His Majesty Emperor Rudolf of blessed memory, as well as a compact between both Catholics and Protestants that was confirmed at the general diet that neither party would harm the other, but rather both Catholics and Protestants should and could according to their compact freely and peacefully serve the Lord God everywhere, in any place, without any interference from either secular or ecclesiastical authorities. All this and more was contained and confirmed in the said Letter of Majesty and the general diet. His Imperial Majesty, now our most gracious king and lord, confirmed and reiterated all this, not only generally according to the customs of the land, but specifically upon his accession.

However, the enemies of the king, land and the general peace have not desisted from striving to negate the peace that was so desired and confirmed, and to further their evil, extremely dangerous and pernicious intentions towards this kingdom and our successors.

[The authors accuse at length Catholic zealots and Jesuits of deliberately undermining the Letter of Majesty, ignoring or misrepresenting the terms, usurping Protestant rights by promoting fellow Catholics into positions of power, slandering Portestants and their faith, and seeking to frustrate the proper line of succession in the kingdom. Following complaints from the inhabitants of Braunau and Klostergrab, the Protestants twice convened their own assembly and appealed to Emperor Matthias, but were told to disperse.]

We Estates could never have foreseen that, instead of granting our humble petition, we would be condemned without any hearing by His Imperial Majesty at the instigation of our enemies…

For the reason detailed above, we proceeded against two of them, namely Wilhelm Slavata of Chlum and Kosumberg, and Jaroslav Borsita of Martinitz, otherwise known as Smeczensky, as destroyers of justice and the general peace, and also because they disrespected the offices and positions they held, and instead used them evilly to weaken the authority of His Imperial Majesty, our king and lord, and to abolish the general peace of this kingdom of Bohemia. After determining from their past actions that they were indeed such as they appeared to be, we threw both of them out of the window in accordance with the old custom, along with a secretary, their sycophant, who had, among other things, cause considerable disruption in the cities of Prague. We shall proceed further against them (because they are still alive) and their properties, as well as against all those they represent and defend, those who wish to persecute us or anyone else by whatever means, and equally all who are destroyers of the Letter of Majesty and the agreement, or who perpetrate such crimes…

To this end at our assembly at Prague castle we have established a defence system for the entire kingdom for the good of His Imperial Majesty and this kingdom, our beloved fatherland, as well as to protect our women and children from all danger. And through this action we do not intend anything against His Imperial Majesty as our most gracious king and lord, nor desire inconvenience for those Catholics who are our dear friends and peaceful people (as long as they also desire to live in peace). For it is commonly recognised and known that no other secular or ecclesiastical person will be harmed by this action, or will any unrest result, but instead a good peace will be maintained in the cities of Prague and throughout the kingdom, except for the aforementioned unavoidable reasons and only then when we neither should nor can do otherwise or any less. Accordingly, we dare to hope that His Imperial Majesty, our gracious king and lord, will not otherwise interpret our actions, nor give credence to other contemporary reports about us. We also do not doubt that our dear local Catholic friends will not oppose us on account of the just punishment we enacted against the destroyers of our Letter of Majesty, agreement and freedoms and the general peace, still less openly or secretly join our enemies. Instead, we are of firm hope that, considering the reasons explained above and the sufficiently described crimes of the aforementioned persons, all will see that it was not our intention, or is it in the slightest to act against His most gracious Imperial Majesty, king and lord, those of the Roman religion or the agreements with them, and will not only excuse this, but will like us also to assist in preserving the common freedoms, territorial privileges and all that serves mutual love and unity.

There, we beseech His Imperial Majesty, our most gracious king and lord, that he will send another and more detailed apology, should it be necessary, to excuse us to the entire world. Done at Prague castle at our general assembly, Friday after the feast of Christ’s ascension, that is 25 May 1618 new style.

Emperor Matthias’ Open Letter to the Bohemians, May 1618 Top
Source: Peter H. Wilson. 2010. The Thirty Years War: A Sourcebook. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. Pp. 40-41.

Dear subjects. You will know what happened to our regents, secretary and dear loyal subjects on Wednesday 23 May and subsequently in the Bohemian Chancellery in our palace and residence in Prague which should be a place of the highest respect and security. And all this is because it has been alleged that the Letter of Majesty and the free exercise of religion will be abolished. We want to make it clear to you through this open letter that we have no intention of rescinding the Letter of Majesty, or the agreement between the religions, still less want anyone else to do this, despite what others among the Estates of our Bohemian kingdom may have said. Moreover, we have always intended, and still intend, to preserve all the Estates; privileges, liberties, Letters of Majesty, diet recesses and treaties. Anyone who claims otherwise slanders us before God and the world. Rest assured, dear obedient, loyal and true Estates of our Bohemian kingdom, and do not give credence to such falsehoods.We would like nothing more than to return in person to our royal throne and residence amongst our loyal and obedient subjects and inhabitants from all three Estates and clear up these misunderstandings with God’s help. However, we cannot come to our Bohemian kingdom at the moment, partly through poor health, but also pressure of other important affairs. Capable and prominent individuals will be appointed to clear up this misunderstanding. Since no enemy threatens us as Bohemian king, nor the three Estates and all inhabitants, there are no constitutional grounds to raise soldiers to defend the country, and thus no grounds for anyone, whoever, they might be, to use the territorial privileges, letters of majesty, ordinances, freedoms, or laws to justify arming. Accordingly, we graciously order you to disband the soldiers you have recruited to prevent further damage, expense and ruin of the common man. Furthermore, no more troops are to be recruited and the militia is to stand down. All subjects of either faith are to stop attacking each other by word or deed, and instead to deal with one another peacefully as friends. We do not doubt that the loyal Estates will obey these orders. We will stop our recruiting, that was in response to yours, as soon as all the soldiers have been discharged in the kingdom of Bohemia and the militia stood down. We want to spare our loyal subjects the damage and expense that soldiers cause. If our gracious and paternal warnings and our just orders and instructions are ignored and the soldiers and militia are not immediately disbanded in the kingdom of Bohemia, we will be obliged to accept that order and justice are being disregarded. We will be left no choice, but to take the necessary measure to maintain our authority with the help of the Almighty by whose grace we are your rightful king and master. It will be obvious to all that war and unrest bring great inconvenience, hardship and misery to the poor people. We testify before God and the entire world that we have given no grounds for this situation and are entirely innocent. Those who heed our royal order and remain obedient and do not support the unruly (who will not receive another warning are assured of our royal grace, protection, and good-will.

Constitution of the Bohemian Confederation, July 1619 Top
Source: Peter H. Wilson. 2010. The Thirty Years War: A Sourcebook. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

In the name of the Holy and indivisible Trinity, God the father, son and Holy Spirit, the only God in eternal praise, amen.The directors, regents and councillors of the land, our representatives empowered through patents from us, the three Estates of the kingdom of Bohemia, summoned an assembly for Tuesday 23 July at Prague Castle.Imposing envoys for this assembly were sent with plenipotentiary powers by their graces, the worthy Estates of the margraviate of Moravia, their graces and the lord princes and Estates of Upper and Lower Silesia, Upper and Lower Lusatia as incorporated lands, as well as their graces the Evangelical Estates of Lower and Upper Austria.[The preamble stresses the legitimacy of the Confederation, based on earlier agreements between the Estates in 1609 and the Letter of Majesty. All actions were directed to upholding these privileges in the face of ‘evil people’ bent on undermining them and bringing violence and ruin to the land. For these reasons, the Estates had agreed to the following terms:]1 Since the Almighty has also given his grace and blessing as this Confederation is solely in defence of religion, the territories have agreed that each and everyone of their coreligionists should follow a Christian life according to the Evangelical teaching and faith, avoid and prevent sin, vice, public trouble, hypocrisy, in whatever form, and follow strictly the admonishments from the pulpit and the authorities.2 Following this from the beginning the king shall also be included in this Confederation, provided he pays gracious attention to the privileges, Letters of Majesty, concessions and terms of this Confederation, adjust his rule accordingly and offers equal protection to all territories in matters of religion and justice, regardless of religion.3 The king should not take advice from Jesuits, foreign envoys or councillors in any matter concerning these territories, nor appoint such foreigners to prominent offices or councils, or for other tasks, or any civic office.4 And the Jesuits are now and henceforth never to be introduced under any pretext or [in the guise of other religious] orders into these united territories. And where they or their disciples remain or creep back in, they are to be abolished entirely. Their revenue and property and that of other orders concealing them and their disciples is to be confiscated and used to fund territorial defence…5 Further, no other [religious] orders are to be introduced to these united territories, other than those already present.6 Equally, those foundations, churches, monasteries and the like that are currently left waste and abandoned are to be given to the eternal possession and free disposition of the Evangelical Estates for the use of Evangelical [church] services and schools.7 Above all, the king must confirm without any exception or restriction, both the letters of Majesty and the religious concessions, as well as the union between the Evangelical Estates of Bohemia and those of Silesia in 1609 that was confirmed by His Imperial Majesty, and the confederation of 1614 between the territories permitted by Emperor Matthias of blessed memory.8 All churches in these united territories currently in Evangelical hands are to remain so in perpetuity.9 Those united and confederated lands, namely Moravia, Upper and Lower Lusatia, which do not have a special Letter of Majesty concerning the free exercise of religion but which join this agreement, may enjoy the free exercise of religion in all the clauses, points and articles of the Bohemian and Silesian Letters of Majesty.10 The free exercise of Evangelical religion of the Bohemian and Augsburg Confessions is extended to every man and woman in all united territories and town regardless as to whether they belong to the king or queen, permitting the construction of churches, schools and cemeteries, and the appointment of Evangelical pastors and school teachers. Everyone shall be allowed to follow the old ceremonies of their Christian conscience in their own church. However, to ensure better unity and to prevent all kinds of difficulties and bitterness, there are to be no insults or personal attacks from the pulpit upon pain of removal from office.11 Similarly, no foundations or benefices, be they bishoprics, abbeys, commanderies, priories, prelatures, or the like in these united territories are to be conferred on foreigners, but only upon natives of the lands of the Bohemian crown, and no further foundations or benefices are to be established, either by the king or anyone else.12 All Roman Catholics in all the united lands are bound by law of the Estates of each territory not to undertake anything against the Letters of Majesty and agreements regarding the free exercise of religon…13 No Roman Catholic may hold a high or low civic office without first swearing obedience to abide by the Letters of Majesty, unions and above all this agreement as specified in the seventh and twelfth articles.

14 No Roman Catholic from the highest to the lowest status present in the united territories shall be tolerated unless they have also sworn obedience to the religious concessions and unions and above all this agreement as specified in the seventh and twelfth articles.

15 No Roman Catholic higher or lesser cleric may, as they did formerly, exercise either spiritual or above all secular jurisdiction or hold office over the Evangelicals under any pretext.

16 The following offices in Bohemia are reserved for Evangelicals: the senior castellan, the senior chancellor, both castellans of Karlstein, the senior administrator, treasurer and president of the court of appeal, both under-treasurers, the captain of Prague Castle, the senior mint administrator or both court judges.

In Moravia: the lord lieutenant, senior territorial treasurer, under-treasurer. In Silesia: the senior lord lieutenant, all lieutenants, and [the] chancellor; in the two hereditary principalities of Upper and Lower Lusatia: both bailiffs and the lord lieutenant, district lieutenants and territorial judge.

17 To ensure that qualified candidates are appointed to the above senior and territorial posts, the Estates shall have the right of selecting certain individuals in their territories, while confirmation of appointment rests with the king. As far as what happens in Bohemia and Moravia, each Estate shall name four individuals for the post in its power, without hindrance from other Estates, and the king shall choose and confirm [from these four] the candidate to be appointed. These matters concerning Bohemia and Moravia shall not infringe the concessions and privileges of the princes and Estates of Silesia, or the Estates of Upper Lusatia.

18 Those councillors’ posts that until now have been occupied exclusively by Roman Catholics in the towns of all united territories are henceforth to be filled half by Roman Catholics and half by Evangelicals, but the most prominent among them, either as presiding member, or where there is not such a person, the mayor, shall always be an Evangelical, well-qualified person.

19 In the three towns of Prague and those other towns in Bohemia, Moravia, Silesia, Upper and Lower Lusatia where the Evangelicals already hold the majority of council posts, these are henceforth exclusively reserved for the Evangelical persons in perpetuity.

20 All privileges, title deeds and the like that have been used to oppress Evangelicals, such as in Budweis, Pilsen, in almost all royal towns in Moravia, in Oppeln, Ratibor and other places in Silesia, [and] in Wettigerau, Bernstadt, Osterriz [and] Hennersdorf unter dem Konigsholz in Upper Lusatia, are declared null and void, and Evangelicals, living amongst Catholics in those places are to enjoy equal protection.

21 [Article protects Evangelicals from  being dismissed from their posts or being denied trade qualifications due to their religion and granted them freedom to exercise trades.]

22 And since these territories of Bohemia, Moravia, Silesia, Upper and Lower Lusatia are not hereditary lands, but have the right of free election, and have freely joined together, no king shall dare to have the audacity to make a prejudicial judgment against them.

23 Thus, no one shall be designated successor, still less be elected or crowned, during the reign of a future king, unless the united territories consider this necessary or desire this.

24 The oath of allegiance shall henceforth apply only to the king and not to any heirs…

25 The recent treaty with the House of Spain regarding the kingdom of Bohemia and its incorporated lands to their devastation and against their will is hereby declared null and void.

26 Henceforth all discussions regarding the entire Corpus [body] and especially those where a king of Bohemia is elected, are to be held together with all territories of Bohemia, Moravia, Silesia, Upper and Lower Lusatia present and voting, unless one territory is unable to attend through pressing need. If that be the case, then then absent land is not bound by, or obliged to contribute to, any decisions or elections of the king, taken by the others.

27 [Article specifies that royal elections are to be held at a general diet in Prague Castle.]

28 [Article specifies that the five territories take turns to vote in a specific order with Bohemia voting last.]

29 Once a king has confirmed this Confederation and assumed government, he is to use the following defence arrangements against all enemies always with the advice of the Estates.

30 Should, contrary to hope, a king attempt anything contravening the religious concessions, unions, and this constitution, and thereby force the territories to take defensive measures, then all Estates of these united kingdoms and provinces are ipso facto released from their duty and cannot be subsequently held to account for any insults to the royal sovereignty and majesty.

31 The king is not permitted to start a war without the agreement of the territories, nor undertake any recruitment [of soldiers], nor permit foreign troops into these territories, or post garrisons in country or town, or demand restitution from anyone for marching, transit, mustering or disbandment.

32 Further, the king does not have the power to build a castle or fortress in any of the united territories without their consent.

33 Similarly, the king shall henceforth not be allowed to contract debts on any of the united lands without their consent, not compel the Estates and towns to stand surety.

[Articles 34-35 charged Bohemian Chancellery with administrative oversight which was to be exercised in conformity with the Letters of Majesty and the constitution. Articles 36-43 made each territory autonomous for administrative and judicial purposes. Article 44 state that royal orders contrary to the rights and freedoms of the Estates were not binding.]

45 While it is only the Evangelicals in the aforementioned territories who have agreed this Confederation and defensive measure, the Roman Catholic Estates and foundations may enjoy its protection against their and our own enemies, provided they abide peacefully by the Letters of Majesty and religious concessions, as well as this union, and do not instigate evil practices against the Evangelicals.

[Articles 46-54 made the Confederation and its associated defence system binding on all members against their enemies and all threats to their privileges. Article 52 threatened a territory trying to secede with common military action. Article 55 made the Confederation eternally binding.]

56 Henceforth all these united territories belonging to the Bohemian crown are to behave towards each other only as true members and no territory is to assume superiority over another, except for the traditional ceremonial precedence among them.

[Article 57 forbade on territory from suppressing the privileges of another. Article 58 prevented any land claiming any distinctions other than those specified in the Confederation. Article 59 provided the text of a common oath for the Defensors. Article 60-68 specified the Defensors’ duties to uphold the constitution. Article 69 allowed each territory to consult another for advice.]

70 Concerning the common defensive measures, it has been agreed between the territories of Bohemia, Moravia, Silesia, Upper and Lower Lusatia that each shall help the other without fail in all emergencies with the following assistance.

[Articles 71-79 specified quotas of varying size depending on which territory was being helped. The maximum total strength was set at 3,250 cavalry and 9,500 infantry, with Bohemia, Moravia and Silesia each obliged to send 4,000 men, and the two parts of Lusatia only sending 750. Article 80 said more could be summoned if necessary. Article 81 agreed a common commanding general, but each contingent was to serve under its own lieutenant general, with precedence amongst them regulated according to seniority in Articles 82 and 85. Articles 83-84 stated that territories that were themselves attacked were not to recall their contingents, but were to wait for assistance from those not currently under attack. Article 86 obliged each to stockpile munitions.]

87 and since no defence can be established or maintained without money, the willing contributions of the beery levy and the like are initially to be used to fund this until a tranquil peace can be obtained, because the king will need his domains in Bohemia and in his own lands to finance his court.

[Articles 88-94 specified common administration of military finances and permitted confiscation of ecclesiastical land to help fund defence if the relevant Catholic clergy opposed the Confederation.]

95 Otherwise, whatever is agreed by the Estates of this or that territory at diets, princely congresses and meetings between the territories and is proposed to the king and granted, is to remain binding and not contravened…

96 No diet is to last longer than fourteen days, unless the Estates agree this is necessary for the common good.

[Articles 97-98 stated that emigrants and other ‘disloyal children of the fatherland’ were not to hold public office and were subject to any future decision of the Estates.]

99 Finally, the next diet shall decide what to do about the hereditary alliance with his electoral grace [of the Palatinate] and other surrounding lands.

100 The terms of this Confederation shall not infringe the constitution, privileges, freedoms, rights, statutes and hallowed customs of any territory.

Affirmed by the signatures and seals of the assembled envoys of the aforementioned Estates of Bohemia and the other territories. Enacted at the general public assembly of all aforementioned territories at Prague Castle 31 July 1619.

The Treaty of Munich, October 1619 Top
Source: Peter H. Wilson. 2010. The Thirty Years War: A Sourcebook. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

On behalf of the Holy Roman Emperor, King of Hungary and Bohemia, and on behalf of the German ecclesiastical electors, His Grace Duke Maximilian of Bavaria has been requested for the common good of all of  us to take over full command of the Catholic defences to which the high Catholic Estates of the Empire, His Imperial Majesty, his dynasty and the endangered lands have been constrained for their own preservation to agree. From this task His Grace, the Duke of Bavaria, has not dissented, as a sign of his friendly feelings towards His Imperial Majesty, towards His Royal Highness in Spain and towards the whole praiseworthy House of Austria, to protect the Catholic religion and all the Estates of the Empire loyal to it.

His Grace, the Duke of Bavaria, is granted free and absolute direction over the Catholic constitutional and defence system, including recruitment and movements of the troops, whom he will lead in the name of the Almighty for the common good. His Grace, the Duke of Bavaria, regardless of the difficulty of this business, danger and problems, is prepared to commit his own person, his worthy house, land and subjects, and is also prepared to give further proof of his affection and support to His Imperial Majesty, his Royal Highness in Spain and the entire praiseworthy House of Austria to defend the Catholic religion and its adherents amongst the imperial Estates, and to accept the associated heavy burdens, dangers and other consequences and to put the common good above all privatis and to accept the free and absolute directorship of the Catholic defence system that is entrusted to him, along with the recruitment and leadership of the soldiers in the name of the Almight, but on the following express condition, that this is to begin once His Grace has actually completed the collection of the necessary money, soldiers and other requirements.

I For as long as they are under threat, His Grace, the Duke of Bavaria, shall have the full support with money and troops of all the Catholic Estates as well as of His Imperial Highness, and that this aid in money and troops will be forthcoming for as long as His Grace, the Duke of Bavaria, as supreme commander, deems necessary. And Furthermore, His Imperial Majesty shall not hinder his Grace, the Duke of Bavaria, in any manner whatsoever from exercising absolute and total command.

II In return, His Grace, the Duke of Bavaria, will to the best of his ability use his direction, assistance and public defence system against all the enemies of His Imperial Majesty, including any of the Estates of the Protestant Union who subsequently become his enemies. It is expressly stated that His Imperial Majesty and His House will refrain from any negotiations, suspension of hostilities or conclusion of truce or peace with the enemies without prior knowledge, consent and inclusion of His Grace, the Duke of Bavaria, undertakes to support His Imperial Majesty in like manner.

III Since the lands of His Grace, the Duke of Bavaria, would remain untouched and secure from His Imperial Majesty’s enemies and others if he did nothing, but as soon as he declares openly for His Majesty and the House of Austria, his own person and lands and everything that belongs to them will be exposed to the greatest danger and uncertainty since they are surrounded by the enemy, and much anxiety, effort and work will result, and in addition to these (already heavy and important considerations), they will be obliged to contribute their quota like that of other Catholic Estates of the Roman Empire. Therefore, and particularly because His Grace is likely to contribute well in excess of what is needed for the defence system, His Imperial Majesty and His entire praiseworthy House are obliged with their property and lands to refund all the…expenses incurred through the military constitution and soldiery (excluding the cost of his own territorial defence militia) provided as assistance to His Majesty…To this end, as much of the Austrian lands are to be pawned to His Grace until the debts are settled.

IV If His Grace, the Duke of Bavaria, should lose all or part of his lands through the fulfillment of this constitution, His Imperial Majesty promises to help His Grace, the Duke of Bavaria, to recover what is lost, or to compensate him for it with the equivalent from the Austrian lands if, contrary to expectation, the lost lands cannot be recovered in the eventual peace with the enemy.

V If His Grace, the Duke of Bavaria, should capture anything from the enemy during this campaign in the Austrian lands, then it, together with all associated usages, jurisdictions, rights and property, shall be pawned to him and his descendants and not released, nor the soldiers disbanded, until all his expenses have been liquidated and refunded.

VI Finally, it is highly necessary and mutually agreed that those who will command His Imperial Majesty’s troops communicate diligently and confidentially everything that happens to His Grace, the Duke of Bavaria, and inform him of their intentions. Documented herein everything that has been negotiated and mutually promised by seals of His Imperial Majesty and His Ducal Grace and their own signatures. Munich, 8 October 1619.

Open letter from Frederick V regarding his acceptance of the Bohemian Crown, November 1619 Top
Source: Peter H. Wilson. 2010. The Thirty Years War: A Sourcebook. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

We, Frederick by the grace of God king of Bohemia, count Palatine and elector [etc.] offer each and every Christian potentate, elector and Estate our zealous service, friendship and gracious intentions and therefore declare: That we have no doubt that everyone without and beyond the Empire is sufficiently aware of the wretched and dangerous state into which the ancient and worthy kingdom of Bohemia, that most prominent member of the Holy Roman Empire, has fallen, together with its incorporated lands and other neighbouring states, and what suffering tribulations and hostilities have been occurring for some time with unceasing robbery , murder, arson and ruination of the territory, as well as spilling of much innocent Christian blood, violation of honourable women and virgins, hacking of suckling babes and the like inhuman, barbarous excesses, maliciousness and atrocities. Further, experience and various comprehensive reports of such evil, misery and distress that has occurred or may yet happen make the main cause so crystal clear that even those who supported it in both word and deed (and thus willingly misleading the higher powers and bringing them into the present danger and loss) must themselves be convinced of it in their consciences.

Even in these recent times, when differences of opinion have emerged in matters of belief and religion, it is clear from Holy Scripture and the teaching of the church fathers that people’s consciences cannot be commanded, bound or overpowered, but that whenever such compulsion has been attempted overtly or covertly it has had evil consequences and caused marked changes in distinguished kingdoms and provinces. Furthermore and in particular, after various foreign people crept into the Empire of the German Nation and its component and neighbouring kingdoms and lands, a new teaching and opinion emerged that is fundamentally extremely dangerous to all potentates and rulers. Using the cover of apparent holiness, these people insinuated themselves not only with great lords and rulers, but also their advisors and officials and generally the richest and most distinguished everywhere, thereby promoting a marked increase in the false zeal to pressure, persecute, and wherever they failed to yield, completely recover those who had separated from the Roman Church. It followed that, though the previous worthy regents had done their utmost to preserve the common peace, despite the aforementioned disunity of religion both in the Roman Empire as well as especially in the kingdom of Bohemia, particularly by issuing concessions, arranging religious settlements and agreements, and sustaining an equilibrium between the adherents of both religions. However, doubtless more due to others’ instigation than their own nature and inclinations, their successors gave such free rein to the aforementioned malicious people and their followers that they were able to implement one innovation after the other, and not only used public writings to cast doubt on all religious concessions, agreements and other obligations and laws, but also to actively weaken, abolish and annul them.

We do not wish to use this time or place to go into everything that has been begun, proposed or promoted for so many years here in the Roman Empire, and what a regrettable situation pertains now, but rather such a discussion will find an appropriate exposition in due course.

Instead, concerning the worthy kingdom of Bohemia and its incorporated lands in particular, it is quite undeniable and notorious how the Roman religion declined significantly over time, while the light of the Holy Gospel dawned and that great difficulties often arose from this, so that finally there was no other way to preserve peace except through certain compacts, concessions and liberties, so that peaceful co-existence and human society was not totally undermined by differences of religious opinion.

As long as things remained on these terms, both sides were content. However, the aforementioned hotheads could not bear this peaceful prosperity any longer, but instead, as reported, preferred to push things to extremes and risk all, rather than abandon their deep-rooted intention of returning everything under the spiritual domination of the Pope and the secular domination of a foreign power. It so came to pass the the religious complaints mounted daily on the lands, especially concerning the Letter of Majesty, as one trick and violent act followed the other with the destruction and closure of newly built Evangelical churches, with the instigation of division amongst the Estates, with the withdrawal of the defence they had been allowed, with the un-Christian heinous persecution of the poor subjects, with the threat of great hardship, insult and danger to life and limb, and even death, made against those both high and low. Then, when people naturally tried to resist by whatever means they were compelled to use (as has already been extensively reported by the Estates concerned in a public pamphlet) they were met by force of arms and open hostilities. Thus, unfortunately both the said crown of Bohemia and its incorporated and other neighbouring lands and provinces have largely and most painfully been ravaged by fire and sword, spoiled and ruined and literally burnt to ashes. And though the said lands have for many years, especially recently, contributed their utmost in goods and blood to maintain the border defences of the Hungarian crown against the Turks, a mighty enemy, yet matters have now come to such extremes that the said border defences are denuded of troops, artillery and munitions, and what was intended against the Turks is now destined for Bohemia…

Now we hope that it is known at least throughout the Empire that we, together with some other good-hearted electors and princes and even other potentates, right from the start of this dangerous fire left nothing wanting in true-hearted warnings and appropriate intercession to find kinder ways and means to prevent further misfortune. We would have much preferred and desired, and also advised in a timely manner, that, where possible, the differences that had arisen between a lord and his Estates and subjects might be settled quickly without further complications by involving the territories concerned according to the worthy custom, as experience shows that the efforts of distant potentates and princes only takes time, does not stem the evil, but causes more delay.

[Much time was wasted discussing possible mediation and an armistice, during which hostilities continued. The situation deteriorated after the death of Emperor Matthias. The Bohemians were driven to such a state that] they established a confederation amongst themselves to stabilise and promote the defence they were entitled to make under divine and natural law, and completely altered their government with a new election. They set out the reasons and basis for this clearly in a published pamphlet [Frederick reaffirms he tried to act as a well-intentioned mediator and had no thought of personal gain].

However, as the election to the crown of Bohemia and its incorporated lands has fallen to us by the unanimous vote of the Estates gathered in a general diet, we testify before God and with a clear conscience that we have always been perfectly satisfied with the electoral dignity and our hereditary principality and lands which the true God granted us, and so never sought elevation, still less tried to obtain the said Bohemian crown by force or other means. The Estates electing us have testified to this and can do so again. Furthermore, we had no reason to do so, given the deplorable situation, but would have much rather preferred the return of peace, which would have preserved the peace and security of the Empire for longer.

For we can easily see the burden, worry, effort, work and danger during the current persistent warfare and ruined lands that must arise for us, alongside many other considerations. We also do not doubt that sensible people will agree that to accept the offer of a kingdom in such a state demands a far stronger resolution than to refuse a peaceable kingdom, and for this reason many have been praised in the history books. We testify again with a clear conscience that if we had seen the means or certainty that, by repudiating the crown, we might have ended this unholy war, obtained the noble peace and thus adequately secured the entire Roman Empire, then all the goods and honour in the world would not have swayed us, but we would have not only immediately refused the offer of the Bohemian crown, but have done our utmost to this end.

We have also not acted precipitously in this great work, but have first faithfully appealed to Almighty God, who takes and grants kingdoms to whoever he wishes, to put the proper intention into our heart. We also communicated the matter in confidence to our lords and friends, and finally after consideration of all the circumstances, perceived God’s wondrous Providence and firm hand in this entire great work. Since we cannot, nor should, oppose God’s will and calling in any way, still less as we are completely convinced that the oft-metnioned Estates of the Bohemian crown and incorporated lands had many well-founded, legitimate and sufficient reasons to change their government, and stabilise more firmly their liberty and [exercise the] ancient renowned election, which some wanted to take away from them and enfeeble by extraordinary means. Thus, the affair is in itself legal, Christian and worthy, which is also easily proven by various examples from ecclesiastical and secular history. However, we do not thereby seek unjustly to dispossess or deprive any other person of that which belongs to him, but rather to legitimise those who desire their liberty, privileges, the Letter of Majesty, the free exercise of the Evangelical religion, and other just practices; to protect and preserve them against unjust violence, and also, as far as we are able and as far as God grants us His power and blessings, to rescue and emancipate this magnificent land and its many thousands of honest people from further suffering and eventual ruin.

Since we gain to temporal joy, delight or advantage from this, bur rather have before our eyes solely God’s honour, the common good, its subsequent consolation, protection and conservation, and the pleas and sighs of so many pious hearts, which move us greatly, we very much ope that the true God will not abandon us in this task, but contrary to men’s thoughts will grant us, from on high, the means so that, through His assistance, we can accomplish and implement that which, according to His inconceivable wisdom, has long since been decided through His divine Providence and omnipotence. And should we fail to do this, our conscience would not only be greatly burdened, but also we would have to expect God’s wrath and punishment.

We have also further considered that, had we brushed aside this divine vocation, then presumably we would have been blamed, especially by the adherents of the Evangelical religion, for all the subsequent bloodshed and destruction of lands. This would have allowed the adversaries to succeed in their intended and imminent oppression of the Bohemian nation and its confederates, and this would have allowed them to turn the weapons they had in their hands against us and other Evangelical imperial Estates, so they could try to effect the same thing. For the aforementioned restless people have constantly admonished and instigated them to act like this, even using published writings, and have also stated that the little innocents should not be spared, no not even their own children, noble families or land and people. These and various similar threats have been heard constantly.

In addition, we have had to weigh and consider that were the worthy kingdom of Bohemia and its incorporated lands, which are, after all, both a distinguished member of the Empire and a bulwark against foreign nations, not immediately assisted in some way, it might well have fallen into other foreign hands, and into such a state that it would have become detached from the Holy Empire of the German Nation, or at least have been the cause of numerous difficulties, especially for neighbouring Evangelical electors and princes. On account of our electoral house and principality of the Upper Palatinate, therefore, we neither could nor should have allowed this, not only because of the obligation and loyalty that we possess and owe to the Empire, our beloved fatherland, but also because of the ancient hereditary alliance between our electoral house of the Palatinate and the Bohemian crown. For these said reasons, therefore, we had to be all the diligent about the conservation of this kingdom, confident that no one who sufficiently and dispassionately considered everything that had actually occurred could hold it against us.

We also attest before God and the entire world that we are firmly resolved in our reign that no one be molested or oppressed on account of religion, nor hindered in his traditional religious practice, not even those who still confess in the Roman church (when they merely abide peacefully and blamelessly by the constitution of the kingdom and the lands, and especially the Letters of Majesty concerning religion). Consequently, the aforementioned Roman Catholics in the kingdom of Bohemia and its associated lands have, in great numbers and by a solemn oath and hand pledge, accepted the commonly established defensive confederation, assented to our recent election and subsequent coronation, and pledged themselves to be obedient to us.

We are fully determined to strive with the highest seriousness and enthusiasm, and to do our utmost to see that not only is the noble peace restored and all difficulties of war set aside in our kingdom of Bohemia and its incorporated lands through [God’s] grace, but also greater trust is sown in the Empire itself and further danger is pre-empted and averted, if only others will also be generally similarly disposed not to hinder us in this, nor give cause for further unrest.

We also propose to cultivate and maintain the goodwill, friendship, correspondence and trust of all Christian potentates, electors and Estates and principalities of our neighbours as much as possible. We anticipate the equivalent from them, and hereby request with friendliness, graciousness and good intentions that they would spring to our aid with both word and deed against all those who, with vile intentions, would set upon us or our kingdom and lands with hostile force. We offer our services in turn to every one of them for whatever may happen that is in our power.

We have judged it to be both advisable and necessary, given the state of things and in these difficult times, to make all of this fully known through this, our public proclamation.

The Letter of King Christian IV of Denmark, February 1626 Top
Source: Tryntje Helffreich. 2009. The Thirty Years’ War: A Documentary History. Indianapolis, IN: Hackett Publishing.

His Royal Majesty of Denmark, Norway, etc.; letter sent to the archbishops and electors of Mainz, Trier, and Cologne, and also to Maximilian and Wolfgang Wilhelm, counts of Palatine of the Rhine and dukes of Bavaria, etc.; Rotenburg, the 21st of February 1626We do not doubt that you are sufficiently aware how His Roman Imperial Majesty is now trying to cast doubt on our and the praiseworthy Lower Saxon Circle’s defensive organization, as if it were intended for something other than the alleged defense. He has also used this as a pretense and pretext in order to overrun this circle with two hostile armies, and to allow them free rein to ravage utterly and devastate as much as they wish, which they are still doing. Similarly, we are told that ill-intentioned people are being found who pretend that our confederation, which was established for the maintenance of the German Liberties (with several neighboring potentates and sovereigns who are extremely interested in the conservation of the traditional constitution of the Roman Empire), was instead supposed to oppress those princes and estates of the Roman Empire who belong to the Roman Catholic religion.Since so much that was hostile on one or another point was directed toward us and the princes and estates of the circle, we decided that it was very important to explain to you in somewhat greater detail both the reasons that compelled us to form the defensive organization and confederation, and the purpose for which these were actually intended…. We fully hope that this, our plea and intercession – which flows forth from our well-intentioned heart and soul – shall not fail to bear fruit. This is particularly because of the various letters (especially those of July 20 and December 3, 1620, and then of April 14 of the following year) that His Imperial Majesty had sent out to us. These quite firmly pledged that he had resolved to use his Lower Burgundian and other armies neither to demolish the statues of the empire and the Religious and Secular Peace [of 1555], nor to aggrieve or assault any obedient electors, princes, and estates of the empire. Instead, his actions were solely intended to preserve all of these and regain that which he had been deprived of in the kingdom of Bohemia and its incorporated principalities and lands. Thus the other princes could remain securely peaceful and so set aside any unnecessary military preparations and costs.Yet we found that, in fact, our hopes had been in vain. For although His Imperial Majesty regained and took back into his possession all of the above-mentioned lands, we came to see (and the electoral prince Palatine also made multiple efforts to show us_ that only if [Frederick of the Palatinate] agreed to renounce completely all claims that he might have to these lands – and would also submit to and humble himself before His Imperial Majesty – would he then be allowed to keep his own hereditary lands and dignities…. Instead of this, armies were raised by one means or another, and other princes and estates of the empire who had had nothing whatsoever to do with the Bohemian matter were completely ruined and spoiled through the quartering of troops and other afflictions of war. Among these was the Lower Saxon Circle, which His Imperial Majesty himself had much praised on account of the staunch obedience that it had consistently demonstrated, and which no other person had ever denounced. But it was nevertheless not spared in the slightest, and rather was made desolate in many places through the quartering and passage of troops. Our cousin and brother-in-law the duke of Lünburg alone estimates the damages done to his lands at several tons of gold, such that it would be much more bearable for him to keep several thousand men in the field instead. Thus the princes and estates of this circle sought some help and rescue through serious letters and numerous discussions…. Subsequently, some of these princes and estates of the circle were induced to come together, where they thought to form an organization to ward off such territorial damages. This was all the more urgent as, in the meantime, the armies of other potentates were being established in the Roman Empire, led by Duke Christian of Brunswick and the count of Mansfeld. Thus General Tilly himself urgently warned the circle to see to its own protection and to ready itself for its own defense, and this was agreed to by majority vote in the general diet of the circle, although some few estates were not in agreement. We were then assigned to lead this defense because shortly before, with the urgent prompting of the estates, we had been charged with the office of director of the circle, which had become vacant on the resignation of the aforementioned Duke Christian of Lünburg. We then specifically notified His Roman Imperial Majesty and the entire circle about this organization and the goal for which it was intended: that is, solely toward the defense of the circle, not to offend any person. And neither we nor the circle could have believed that it would be interpreted in this way, as did indeed happen subsequently, given that the imperial constitution allows such a thing to the circles and that Tilly himself had desired it….In addition to the previous explanation that we made to His Imperial Majesty and also the the general [Tilly] (although we are in no way responsible to give him an account of our actions), nevertheless, for even more evidence of our peaceful disposition, we avow that this was only to be a defensive project, and this is also sufficiently proven in fact, in that we offended no man with our army, but instead remained at the river on the border of the circle in order to secure it. But despite all of this, General Tilly hostilely led his army into the circle in the month of July [1625], and did so with such rampant robbery, murder, and arson that the Turks and Tatars would not have behaved worse…. In a letter dated Neustadt on the 3rd of August 1625, which was delivered to us on the 22nd of that month, [His Imperial Majesty] advised us that he had empowered the duke of Bavaria to grant an ordinance to his lieutenant general, Count Tilly, that he should move into this circle (or to wherever our or the circle’s suspicious armaments were to be found); and he had also ordered his own general, the duke of Friedland, to do the same thing and not to leave the circle until his army was given leave to do so.As for why our armaments were suspicious, no other reason was given than that they were unnecessary and much too strong. Yet it should have been evident that as for the resolution that His Majesty had given, one would have to tread outside the reins of the imperial constitution before one could justifiably condemn the organization and hostilely invade the circle. But without considering this, both armies authorized by His Imperial Majesty proceeded with their perpetration of this hostile act, ignoring the requests for peace and amicable negotiations by both us and the estates of the circle. They even went so far that in his reply (dated Holβmünden the 5th of August) to our vice regent and commissioner – who had similarly proposed amicable negotiations and, in order to promote this, had offered to pull back our army – General Tilly had quite arrogantly declared that he would not be satisfied by the proposed negotiations and pullback of the troops. Instead, he said the army of the kingdom of Denmark and the circle must be disbanded, broken up, and eliminated, and should it remain any longer, one could not blame him were he personally to see to such a breaking up and elimination.From such threats, but also from the actions themselves, we sense that the final goal here is to beat our army, occupy the circle, and stain the laudable royal reputation that we have held until now. Thus we had to grab hold of our defenses and take up all appropriate means in order to save ourselves and the circle. Yet before we acted to involve other potentates in this matter, we once again decreed and attested to the resolution of August 24 of the past year [1624], which we had given to His Imperial Majesty and also to the king of Spain (who at that time had an envoy with us), stating that we were inclined toward peace, would gladly be freed from the defense we had been compelled to undertake, and wished to be excused before God and the world for all of the judgments and bloodletting that would ensue. Because, however, there was still no answer forthcoming, and we and the circle were instead, day by day, increasingly pressed to the limit by hostile forces, we finally stopped resisting the assistance that had long been offered to us by our relatives and neighboring potentates and sovereigns. In order to save this circle, which, though completely innocent, had been attacked contrary to the imperial constitution and the sworn capitulations, and to save German liberty, which is everywhere suffering, we joined with them in a confederation so that thereby, with the grace of God the Almighty, liberty and the Religious and Secular Peace [of 1555] might not be lost, but conserved through those means allowed by God and nature, and transferred to our dear posterity….And we hereby not only publicly deny that this conjunction is only designed to oppress you or the adherents of your religion…but also firmly and most persistently stipulate and attest that it was never, even in the least, our intention, nor is it now. Instead we profess only friendly feelings toward you and the adherents of your religion, and, for our part, we will not rest until it comes to pass that the princes and estates of the Roman Empire – of both one and the other religion – shall all live together in abiding peace, quiet, and unity as Christians and patriots, and that the liberty in religious and secular affairs that was inherited from our ancestors might also be transferred to posterity as hereditary law. This [we attest] with a very Christian and serious consideration of the extent to which it concerns all of Christendom that the standing of the Holy Roman Empire (in which neighboring potentates and states are so noticeably interested) be restored to its former state.Also, you should not think badly of Count von Mansfeld, for he did not come here on his own behalf, but was sent here by the kings of France and Great Britain in order to further the oft-mentioned goal [of self-defense]; and he is, moreover, not to treat anyone with hostility.

Should, however, things proceed contrary to our hopes, such that disorder is fomented and the armies that rampaged into this circle advance, we would be forced to take action, though this would be contrary to our intentions. We console ourselves fully, however, with the thought that you, as leading electors of the Roman Empire, shall moderate matters among your co-electors and other Catholic princes and estates of the Roman Empire, so that we shall be given no reason to act….

The Edict of Restitution, March 1629 Top
Source: Tryntje Helffreich. 2009. The Thirty Years’ War: A Documentary History. Indianapolis, IN: Hackett Publishing.

We, Ferdinand II, by the grace of God elected Roman Emperor, always august, king of Germany, Hungary, Bohemia, Dalmatia, Croatia, and Slavonia…etc., offer our friendship, grace, and goodwill to each and every ecclesiastic and secular elector, prince, prelate, count, baron, knight…and also to all other subjects and loyalists of ours and of the empire, of whatever dignity, estate, or nature they may be.

It is beyond doubt that you and yours, and also every man, understand and know far too well the state of injurious disagreement and disruption in which our beloved fatherland, the German nation, has now hovered for so long, and how the mistrust and extremely dangerous division owe their original beginning and wellspring, and their current state, to the tiresome schism of religion. Next to his, however, is the fact that, contrary to the Religious and Public Peace – which was principally established so that the estates of both religions would, in accordance with this peace, behave peacefully toward each other, and no party would invade, damage, or disadvantage any other in his rights, property, lands, and people – not only were various forms of robbery and other extremely harmful attacks performed, but also, extremely harmful arguments were proffered, under all kinds of pretenses against the Religious Peace itself and against those who would have justified and defended the contents of the Peace against its enemies.

From this then followed, that after these troublemakers had lost several legal verdicts, and, due to their illegal encroachments, had to expect even further losses, they then finally refused to tolerate another magistrate, but instead (contrary to the clear contents of the Religious Peace itself as also other imperial laws) tried to force everyone else to make a new accord so that they might gain all of their demands and claims in full under the pretext of an agreement. To obtain such an illegal intent, they initially pursued all kinds of clandestine schemes, secret coalitions, various correspondences, and finally an open union. Then, when the Bohemian rebellion occurred and they thought they had gained the advantage they had desired, they made even further confederations and alliances with domestic and foreign sovereigns and municipalities in order to bring about their plans, and even brought in the hereditary enemy of all Christians, [the Turks] themselves, until finally, through such machinations, the entire fatherland was set afire and placed into the situation in which it still finds itself: filled with the most extreme signs and lamentations of the poor, destitute subjects….

Given our imperial office, we then gauged not only how we might face the difficulties of the Holy Roman Empire and place it at peace once again, but also, at the same time, how we might arrange assiduously so that the estates of the empire would not incur further discord and disagreement among themselves because of disparate interpretations and readings of the Religious Peace. For these reasons we were also asked by the electoral congress and Mühlhausen (out of their most humble and loyal concern for the well-being of the Holy Empire) to make the most gracious provision so that, in order to bring about good and reasonable confidence, the complaints brought and filed so often by the estates would be submitted and debated to an extent and amount allowed by the contents of the imperial constitution and of the Religious and Secular Peace, and that no estate would continue to be offended and aggrieved contrary to these.

Thus we neither ought to nor wished to delay the declaration and resolution that were bound to our imperial office in the matter of the Religious and Secular Peace (and according to the contents of the imperial recesses, principally that of 1566), especially…as even  long ago, in the 1576 supplication presented by the Protestant estates to our ancestor Emperor Maximilian, which asked for settlement of their complaints, they themselves clearly stated with good reason that it was unnecessary to look to or await the approval of one or another party; but instead the Imperial Majesty, as the leader and dispenser of all statutes and laws and the protector and guardian of the oppressed, is rightfully entitled to use every absolute power and authority, to interpose his imperial office, and to command whatever might be beneficial for the propagation of the common welfare and the abolition of every injurious misunderstanding and disaster in the Roman Empire, in accordance with previous imperial statues….

To come now to the matter itself, we first find that, contrary to the Religious Peace (and to the previous imperial statutes that were not completely abrogated on account of it), a completely unnecessary dispute has arisen, which has in large part caused the current ills in the Holy Roman Empire. This concerns whether those foundations, cloisters, and prelatures that are under the command and rule of the princes and estates are included within the Religious Peace, and if those under princely or other territorial authority and over which one had or still has power can be confiscated, reformed, or granted in another way, or can otherwise be used as one desires.

This shall not be, for the Religious Peace clearly and expressly states that such interference in ecclesiastical property, whether or not it is immediately subject to the Holy Roman Empire, is not allowed to ruling authorities…

Then, second, there is more to be found in the paragraph beginning “Because, however,” etc. For here it provides that those dioceses and cloisters that do not belong to imperial estates and that were not in the possession of ecclesiastics at the time of, or subsequent to, the Treaty of Passau, but instead were confiscated by estates belonging to the Augsburg Confession before the Treaty of Passau, shall remain with the adherents of the Augsburg Confession, and this shall no longer be contested any further….But this indisputably excludes those mediate dioceses and cloisters that were not confiscated before the Treaty of Passau, but only afterward, and since the Religious Peace. And the adherents of the Augsburg Confession are conceded no right at all to reform or confiscate these same lands. Instead, such a thing is not permitted, and should it still have occurred, the offended parties are to be provided their rights and prerogatives undiminished.

Third, it thereby also appears that it is nowhere to be found in the Religious Peace that adherents of the Augsburg Confession might thereafter confiscate further dioceses and cloisters. Instead, the intent was much more the contrary. For indeed, while such a thing was not therein explicitly forbidden, because it was also not expressly allowed it would then be judged by the disposition of general ecclesiastical and secular laws, and by the common public peace. And by dint of these no one ought to divest another of his possessions, no less should he alter another’s ecclesiastical institutions and property – especially as these, by their very foundations, are ruled by divine law and belong solely to God and the Church….

And it is indeed true that the Religious Peace states, in the paragraph beginning “And so that,” etc., that the estates belonging to the Augsburg Confession should be and remain unhindered in the faith, ceremonies, and Church statutes that they erected or shall erect in their principalities, lands, and dominions. From this some have thought to conclude that they also have the power to reform those cloisters that lie within their lands. Yet although these same cloisters respect the obligations they admittedly owe to the secular powers, in their foundations and in ecclesiastical matters they have nothing to do with the lands and dominions. Instead, as mentioned previously, they belong to God and the Church; thus they are then, in this case, exempt and free from the secular domain and rule….

In addition, it is now well known in the empire that several Protestant estates presume to act contrary to the express wording of the Religious Peace (in the paragraph beginning “And after, etc.), which provides in clear words that where an archbishop, bishop, prelate, or any other cleric of our old religion shall abandon it, he shall quit his archbishopric, prelature, or benefice, along with all profit and income that he had from it, at once and without any reluctance and delay, yet without any prejudice to his honor. Also the chapter and those to whom it belongs by common law or by the traditions of the churches and foundations, shall be permitted to choose and ordain a person who adheres to the old religion, who , along with the ecclesiastical chapters and other churches, shall also be left unhindered and in peace, etc., with the endowments, elections, presentations, confirmations, old conventions, prerogatives, and property. Yet despite this, after they had abandoned the Catholic religion, not only did they dare to keep their bishoprics, prelatures, and prebendships, but those who were not provided with such bishoprics and prelatures endeavored to gain them. This they did under the affected pretext and pretense as if this paragraph, which seems all too clear to their eyes, were not a part of the Religious Peace and was something to which they never agreed, but instead had protested.

Therefore, we then diligently informed ourselves from imperial records about the actual nature of such a paragraph, which people in general usually call the Ecclesiastical Reservation, and about how it came to be in the Religious Peace (although to us, the very wording of the Religious Peace should have been sufficient). From this we then determined that, notwithstanding the contradiction and lack of consent by the Protestants, on the contrary, the oft-mentioned Religious Peace did indeed include this point within its contents; that it was made, concluded, and so executed with the advice and goodwill of the collected electors and estates of both religions; that it was, at the same time, confirmed and sworn to by all of the estates with a solemn oath that it would be upheld unhesitatingly, firmly, and unswervingly in each and every one of its points, clauses, and articles; and that it would not in the least be either contradicted or opposed….

Then also third and finally, the matter is once again raised…whether the subejcts of imperial estates are also able to enjoy the Religious Peace and so likewise cannot be expelled on account of religion by their authorities….We then found in this regard that in the beginning a great deal of conflict occurred over this, and the adherents of the Augsburg Confession strongly urged that the subjects of other estates might be left equally free to practice the Augsburg Confession, and thus a special clause was proposed for the Religious Peace. Yet the Catholics absolutely refused to agree to this, but instead said that such a thing would give cause for raucous revolt, disobedience, and indignation between sovereigns and subjects. Thus it would be unjust for them to want to impose such a law and statute on the Catholics. They, the Catholics, meant to provide for their own souls, as well as those of others, and for this reason they could not tolerate that their subjects would be given room and air to follow a different religion than their own….

As, however, the estates belonging to the Augsburg Confession no less strongly urged for freedom of conscience, the Catholics finally relented insofar that the subjects should be free to emigrate from the land. With this the estates let the above-mentioned clause fall and the matter was agreed to with His Majesty and the Catholics as it stands today in the Religious Peace….

From these above-mentioned three main articles, which we have resolved according to the contents of the Religious Peace and other recesses, negotiations, and acts of the Holy Empire, we then thereby recognize and declare: first, the Protestant estates have no cause to complain and to take up as a grievance that the heads of religious orders, abbots, prelates, and other clerics who are not subject immediately to the empire, pursued necessary litigation with us or our imperial supreme court on account of their confiscated dioceses and property, hospitals, and other religious foundations; that the same were then granted back to them; and that these cases thereby proceeded even to judgment and execution. On the other hand, the Catholic estates are justly and legitimately aggrieved (in agreement with these mediate ecclesiastics) that the cloisters and ecclesiastical property that they held at the time of the Treaty of Passau, or subsequently, were then confiscated from them contrary to the clear contents of the Religious Peace, their rents and revenues were suspended, and they were also completely stripped of every right and claim over them, as if they were not at all included within the Religious Peace, while their property was given over to the arbitrary occupation of the authorities, contrary to the intention and sentiments of [the cloisters’] pious founders, and also against the clear wording of the Religious Peace.

As to the second article, we equally recognize that the adherents of the Augsburg Confession have no cause for any complaint that the Catholic estates do not wish to recognize their co-religionists [Lutherans] who occupy ecclesiastical dioceses, bishoprics, and imperial prelatures that are immediate to the empire (or who are endeavoring to gain the same status) as being bishops and prelates, nor allow them a seat and vote at the imperial diets, nor grant them regalia and fiefs. For, on the contrary, following the contents of the Ecclesiastical Reservation and its indisputable wording, the Catholics, for their part, have no unjustly complained of manifest grievances: that such ecclesiastical bishops and prelates who have deviated from the Catholic religion have nonetheless remained in their bishoprics and prelatures, kept all rights and privileges that they had with the Catholic religion, and expected to be regarded as estates of the empire on account of such bishoprics and prelatures. Also, that those who are not of the Catholic religion, much less otherwise qualified for the clergy, have nevertheless pushed their way into such bishoprics and prelatures, and thereby eventually intend, as far as they are able, to abolish the entire Catholic clergy along with the religion.

We then also, for the third point, find the grievances brought by several Protestant estates to be completely insignificant: including that the Catholic estates should not be allowed to press the subjects in their territories to join their religion, and if the subjects refuse to devote themselves to it, to extract whatever escape fee and supplementary tax that they feel are proper and to deport them; nor should they be allowed to forbid their subjects from traveling to a foreign place to seek other preaching and religious exercise, under the argument that they were indeed fully warranted to abolish such exercise completely. On the other hand, however, and following the observations given above, it is obvious that the Catholics justly feel aggrieved that limitations were placed on their own reformation by the other party, and that from this basis their subjects were incited and stirred toward a complete defection and secession from their authorities. And this grievance made on the Catholic side is all the stronger, because it is on account of such a reformation that the adherents of the Augsburg Confession argue as if the Catholics do not share the same rights they enjoy. Instead, they claim that while the adherents of the Augsburg Confession are indeed allowed to reform their subjects and deport the obstinate (and have indeed openly demonstrated such acts), for the Catholics, however, such a thing is not acceptable….

Thus we are finally resolved, for the genuine implementation of the Religious and Secular Peace, to delegate forthwith our imperial commissioners to go into the empire; to reclaim from their illegal holders those archbishoprics and bishoprics, prelatures, cloisters, and their ecclesiastical property, hospitals, and foundations that the Catholics possessed at the time of the Treaty of Passau, or subsequently, but that they were illegally deprived of (whether these drifted away or were confiscated by force or otherwise); and to have them suitably staffed with duly appointed and qualified persons, according to their foundations and endowments, and thus to restore to each person his due and what, according to the stipulations of the oft-mentioned Religious Peace, is legitimately his, without the requisite digression and delay.

We also hereby…declare and recognize that the Religious Peace concerns and includes only those of the ancient Catholic religion and the adherents of the unaltered Augsburg Confession, as it was presented to our beloved ancestor Emperor Charles V in the year 1530 on the 25th of June. All other contrary doctrines and sects, of whatever name and whether they have already arisen or are still to arise, shall be impermissible, excluded from the peace, forbidden, and neither tolerated nor suffered.

We thus command your graces and each and every one of you, under penalty of the Religious and Public Peace, not to defy this, our final decree, but instead to promote it in your lands and territories, to help it succeed, and also to offer a helping hand to our commissioners when they call upon you. As for those, however, who possess these archbishoprics and bishoprics, prelatures, cloisters, hospitals, prebendships, and other ecclesiastical property and foundations: they are to be prepared to relinquish and restore these bishoprics, prelatures, and other ecclesiastical property immediately after the issuance of this, our imperial edict, and to grant and restore them, along with all of their trappings and appurtenances, to our imperial commissioners on demand. Should they not comply with this order, or prove to be slow in doing so, not only will they, on account of their notorious defiance, be subject to the penalty of the Public and Religious Peace – namely the ban of empire and final proscription, as well as the loss of all their privileges, rights, and prerogatives ipso facto and without any further sentence and judgment – but immediately afterward, we will also inevitably have the actual execution carried out and enforced.

We also command, order, and desire that this, our imperial edict, resolution, and declaration, be openly published by each and every circle executive prince, and that it be made known to everyone, such that everyone gives the same absolute credence to the copies sent here and thereby the circle executive princes as they do the original itself. We mean this seriously.

Given in our city of Vienna, the 6th of March, 1629: the tenth year of our Roman, the eleventh of our Hungarian, and the twelfth of our Bohemian reign.

Gustavus Adolphus’ Manifesto on Invading Germany Top
Source: Tryntje Helffreich. 2009. The Thirty Years’ War: A Documentary History. Indianapolis, IN: Hackett Publishing.

The reasons why the most serene and powerful prince and lord, Lord Gustavus Adolphus, king of the Swedes, Goths, and Wends, grand duke of Finland, duke of Estonia and Karelia, lord over Ingermanland, etc., has finally been forced to cross over and advance into Germany with an army.

Stralsund, July 1630

It is an old adage that no one can be at peace any longer than it suits or pleases his neighbor. His Royal Majesty of Sweden has, to his great loss, experienced the truth of this adage in past years and still experiences it daily. For although there is nothing for which he has more assiduously endeavored and striven during the entire time of his royal rule, than that he might maintain a genuine friendship with all of those adjacent to him, and especially with the estates of the German Nation, in order that peace and tranquillity might flourish everywhere and commerce and other things that depend on peace might be maintained to the benefit of neighboring peoples; yet he could achieve nothing more than that greater and greater schemes were made against His Royal Majesty’s security form one year to the next…by some who hated the common peace, after they had destroyed almost all of Germany through murder and fire. Long ago, while this fire still burned in upper Germany, His Royal Majesty was indeed advised by many German estates to tread warily and opportunely, and not to think that the enemy would behave in a friendlier manner were one to allow him to approach somewhat closer; but instead, they advised his Royal Majesty immediately to take up arms, come into Germany, and, with a common force, extinguish the general fire; for they firmly advised that the affairs of His Royal Majesty were also touched neighboring provinces were ablaze.

Nor at that time did His Royal Majesty lack either a superb opportunity – for his residents requested it and foreigners pushed him to it – or a just cause – for his friends were oppressed and his allies had most strenuously requested his aid and assistance.

Nevertheless, since His Royal Majesty still hoped that the adversary would, in the end, proceed much more moderately instead of impatiently pressing the neighboring provinces, and as he judged others to be like himself, with the same morals and naturally implanted virtue, he decided that it would be much better to see to his own security, submitting to God and maintaining an innocent conscience, rather than to act in this matter prematurely.

But then, back in the year 1626, when – by reason of His Royal Majesty’s own war that had developed against the king and kingdom of Poland – he moved into the country of Prussia (which was subject to the kingdom of Poland), he began to notice much more closely what he might expect from these spoilers of Germany. Indeed, he found little that was false in the warnings of his friends and instead perceived, even more, that the closer the enemies thrust themselves into the Baltic provinces of Germany, the more and greater opportunities they sought, day by day, to war against His Royal Majesty….

And so that they might achieve in fact what they had promised with words, and so that they could also, using all possible means that they could bring to bear, strop the kingdom of Sweden of power and strengthen the Poles, they not only forbid the transference of any troops and arms to His Royal Majesty in Sweden, while freely allowing it to the then-enemies of His Royal Majesty, the Poles; but when this accomplished little and, despite this prohibition, a large number of soldiers rushed to join the powerful king of Sweden (coming not only from other places, but also from Germany, which was even more opposition to the enemy’s will), in the following year, 1627, they also dispatched the duke of Holstein with a great army against His Royal Majesty, and it marched not under the colors of this duke or of the king of Poland, but rather under those of the Roman emperor. And not being satisfied with this enmity, but instead, so that they might bar the kingdom of Sweden from all human associations, when innocent subjects of his Royal Majesty landed at German seaports on business, they relieved them forcefully of their goods, seized their shops, and robbed them unjustly. Also, they did not stop there, but rather they sent out men to Lu:beck and other Wendish and Hanseatic League cities under the pretense that they wished only these places to benefit from commerce, but actually intending thereby that the subjects of the kingdom of Sweden would be completely excluded; and so through this opportunity, [these enemies] could then ready shops and naval weaponry by which they could spit out into the Baltic Sea itself the poison contained within their minds. And this was then much more manifestly demonstrated by their issuance [to the imperial General Wallenstein] of the monstrous title of Generality of the Baltic Sea, and also by their taking of principal places and fortresses throughout Mecklenburg and Pomerania, along with their seaports and harbors, and also by other subsequent acts.

At this any man might perhaps judge that as long as his opponent remained on the opposite side of the border, these things should have been tolerated and borne in patience, lest it seem as if one wished to meddle in another’s affairs. Yet after they chose the seaport of Stralsund as a base for their piracy and moved to extend their power over the sea itself, it was clear that this was a matter of great prejudice or loss to everyone who depended on this sea, though especially to the German estates. And it was thus even less tolerable to the most serene king of Sweden, principally because the rightful protection of this sea had remained in the hands of the kings of Sweden since time immemorial.

Therefore, once the most serene king of Sweden considered that…the pleas of the tormented city [of Stralsund] were grounded upon divine and secular rights; and further considered that the city had always been attached to His Royal Majesty’s ancestors, to the kings and empire of Sweden, by the bonds of honor, proximity, common religion, liberty, and commerce; and finally [considered] what great danger would arise, not only to himself and the kingdom of Sweden, but also to all of his neighbors, if anyone, out of private ambition, were to establish in this port a nest from which to launch piratical raids; His Royal Majesty could then not, in any fashion or by any right, wait any longer to come to the assistance of the oppressed, who had so urgently requested help, solace, and advice; nor to act for the benefit of neighbors and friends, and also for both his own and the public common security….

So many and such great insults have truly been made against His Royal Majesty – letters intercepted and opened; subjects, servants, and soldiers robbed and carried off into servitude; commerce, which is naturall common, prohibited; his enemy [the Poles] so often dissuaded from peace, and powerful auxiliary troops sent out in order to ruin the kingdom of Sweden, while the king of Sweden was not even granted a peaceful passage; even worse, his friends, neighbors, and blood relatives oppressed because of their association with him, their dominions robbed and almost utterly destroyed; envoys who, unlike barbarians, were to negotiate the peace, ignominiously expelled; and, for the second time, a hostile army set out; and all of this without any cause or pretext. Are these not, either altogether or each portion by itself, and given the unanimous assent of all peoples, the counsel of reason, and almost the instigation of nature itself, of the most vital importance? And, if not just restitution is made, do they not warrant a most justified vengeance? And meanwhile so many threats, such great preparations, and so many attempts have, as of yet, to be manifested, mocking all of the Baltic ports and the sea itself. From which it appears that all plots, assaults, and arrangements by land and sea conspire toward His Majesty’s ruin. Do they not then impose upon him, though unwilling, the right of self-defense, such that, according to the military custom of all peoples, he might render a measure of justifiable defense? Because, having sought so many remedies in the law, no further legal methods were allowed him. Indeed, he was offered only hostility. Does not, then, the law itself finally demand that this matter be settled by force, so that force counters force?

Therefore, because there is no other way for [the king] to be safe except that he, alongside God, gain security for himself and his people through force of arms, he hereby wished to allow all of Christendom to judge his conduct and how unwillingly he had been forced to proceed to such extremities….

Hence the king hereby protests that he has not taken up these arms to the detriment of the Roman Empire (for whom he bears no ill will), but looks only to the protection of himself, his people, and the general liberty, until such time as his friends and neighbors are returned to the state in which the entire neighborhood peacefully flourished before this war, and, principally, until the city of Stralsund, the Baltic Sea, and the kingdom of Sweden may assure themselves that they will have more definitive security in the future. The king therefore has no doubt that the law-abiding reader and the popular welfare itself shall see through and condemn the unjust proceedings of the opposition (a response that they have earned). And he certainly hopes that all Germans, and also the entirety of Christendom, shall support and be favorably inclined toward his innocent and just move to take up arms in order legitimately to oppose such unjust persecution.

The Swedish Manifesto, 1630 Top
Source: Peter H. Wilson. 2010. The Thirty Years War: A Sourcebook. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

When we come to consider the business of war, the first question to be proposed is, whether it be just or no. This is the case at present with respect to that which the King of Sweden has undertaken anew, who may very justly be called great, both for his courage and valor, and other heroic virtues, for his power, strength, and endeavors, and also for all his high and mighty designs, and actions truly worthy of a great King; having for these last years, in order to support and encourage his friends, made war successfully against the Muscovites and Polanders, and then dextrously made peace still for his glory and notable advantage; and some months ago, in a very short time, brought his army into the harbors of the Baltic Sea; having made himself master of all Pomerania, and fortified the places within his conquest, not to extend his limits, and enlarge his bounds, but to deliver his relations and friends from oppression; not by the devastation of countries and cities, but at his own charges and expense, and at the hazard of his own person, as appears by the public accounts, which have spread his fame through the whole universe. It is true, such as envy his glory, and those who are not yet informed of the justice of his arms, put various constructions upon his designs, and spread sinister reports of him, to the prejudice of his reputation. It has therefore been thought fit and proper, to declare to the world the motives and reasons of his last progress and entry into Germany. And not to dwell upon what is notorious to all the people and states of Christendom, it will be sufficient to say, that the Spaniards and the House of Austria have been always intent upon a Universal Monarchy, or least designed the conquest of the Christian states and provinces in the West, and particularly of the principalities and free towns in Germany, where that House has made such a progress, that if this brave and generous northern prince had not bestirred himself, and opposed that torrent, she had pushed her ambition and arms to the most distant kingdoms and provinces, which have hitherto preserved and maintained their liberty, notwithstanding thousands of secret and open practices and threats made use of by the Spaniards and their partisans. this is what has given occasion to His Majesty of Sweden to put fleets to sea, and bring armies into the field, in order to preserve his friends, and render traffic and commerce free through this whole climate, as well by sea as by land; being thereto invited by several princes and states of the Empire, before they were entirely reduced to servitude and misery, wherein they now find themselves shackled by the tyranny of ambitious designers, ringleaders, counselors and generals of the said House; and by all means to prevent to total ruin of both himself and his neighbors, friends, and allies, which is truly an effect of the charity and protection which a prudent and generous prince naturally owes to his own subjects, and his nearest neighbors, who are ready to fall under the oppression of their enemies, though he was scarce able to imagine that the enemies of public liberty would have rushed with so much violence and impetuosity into the countries of their neighbors as they have done. And this belief and opinion was the cause of His Majesty’s stopping short in his design of succoring those who apprehended that invasion, and turning his counsels and arms in the mean while elsewhere, that he might not lost the opportunities that offered themselves.For after the wars of Poland in the year 1626 had obliged His Majesty to march his army into Prussia (a province subject of the said King of Poland), he then began to consider more narrowly everything he had to hope or fear from those who ravaged Germany in that manner; and judged right, that his friends had not without reason or foundation advised him of what he understood the enemy always intended against him more and more with relation to the war, as they drew nearer to the Baltic provinces.For in the first place, in the said year, the letters sent by His said Majesty to the Prince of Transylvania were intercepted; and after they had been opened, and false flosses put upon them, to load His Majesty with the people’s hatred, and render him odious everywhere, they were maliciously published; and the courier who carried them was put in prison, and treated as a criminal by open and public violence contrary to the law of nations.

In the second place, the enemies of the public quiet hindered the peace, which was then treating, from being concluded between His said Majesty and the King of Poland; although there was great appearance of its being in a fair way to be brought to a conclusion, insomuch that they practiced upon and corrupted the chief ministers of the States of Poland by presents and artifices, with an intention still to continue and keep up that war, until they had executed their designs in the Empire; by making the Polanders hope that after they had subdued the Protestant party in Germany, they would not fail to assist them to invade and take possession of the kingdom of Sweden.

For confirmation of which promise, and to acquit themselves of their obligation by real effects, which tended only to animate the Polanders, and weaken Sweden, they forbade any levies to be made in Germany for Sweden, and on the contrary allowed the enemy to levy soldiers openly, and to make notwithstanding all their prohibitions, soldiers flocked from all the countries of Germany into the service of the King of Sweden, the following year 1627, they dispatched the duke of Holsace [Holstein] with a powerful army to make head against him in Prussia, and that under the colors and banners of the Emperor himself. Besides this, and for a greater testimony of their ill will, and in order to deprive the Swedes of all conveniences, they forbade the merchants all freedom of trade and commerce, taking away their merchandise, and even such whereof the carriage had been paid in the towns of Germany, and confiscated the Swedish ships, on the pretext of establishing a general commerce in Lübeck for the Hansa towns: which in effect was driving and excluding the Swedes from the whole commerce of the Baltic, and making a naval force at the expense of poor merchants, subjects of the King of Sweden, in order freely to range and pirate in the said sea at their will and pleasure; which they showed with a witness the following year, having newly created a General of the Seas (a new and unheard of title in that climate) and possessed themselves of the ports and fortified places in the duchies of Mecklenburg and Pomerania.

It may be objected here, that all this was tolerable, if they had gone no further. But it was to be supposed that they would not stop there, and indeed they soon began to range the sea and fortify the port of the city of Stralsund, for a receptacle and retreat to their pirates; a thing that so nearly concerned all the neighboring states and galled them so much that the King of Sweden, who from time immemorial had a right to the protection of the Baltic Sea, neither could or ought to suffer any further progress to be made.

His Majesty then, invited by the earnest prayers of his friends and allies, and irritated by the injuries and outrages done as well to his own subjects as to his friends and allies, marched a second time into Prussia about the spring of the following year 1628 with a design to remedy all those inconveniences by good and lawful ways and means. And it happened in the meantime, that the deputies of the said city of Stralsund came to wait upon him, to complain, that notwithstanding their city had not in the least offended the Emperor, although they had neither been accused, cited, or condemned, and even after they had been declared innocent by an Imperial decree, with a promise and assurance of an entire deliverance; yet the imperial army under the command of general Wallenstein, committed ravage and devastation, and exercised unheard of cruelties upon the burgesses of that city and the inhabitants of the flat country; and proceeded so far as to fortify themselves in their territory, and without any declaration of war, surprised the Isle of Denholm, over against the port of the said city, which they were going to strengthen and fortify, to the great damage and prejudice thereof: that they had besides seized the passes of the Isle of Rügen, and those of their city, in order to make their way to the continent; that they had amused the citizens with vain hopes on purpose to surprise them: that after having drained their purses, they designed likewise to oblige them to receive a garrison, and demanded their ships, guns, and harbors; and in the meantime oppressed them with all manner of violences without either regarding their innocence or the Imperial constitution or the Emperor’s decree or the treaty made in Pomerania with the Camp Marshal Arnim or several other factions, not even the vast sums of money which the said city had contributed whereby they thought to have been in safety and liberty.

This poor city then finding they could not be delivered by the decrees of the Emperor, and perceiving that the duke of Pomerania, their prince, was not able to assist them, and feeling themselves abandoned by their confederates, were forced out of necessity to have recourse to a foreign aid and assistance, in order to divert the ruin that threatened them, and so accept succor from the most serene King of Denmark, in hopes that hostility and violence might either be appeased or moderated. But fearing however lest they should be accused for being allied with a King, who was then at war with the Emperor, they judged it proper and convenient to throw themselves into the hands of the King of Sweden, who was then a friend and neutral prince.

Wherefore His Majesty, perceiving that no moderation was to be expected from an army, which had behaved themselves with so much injustice and cruelty; and feeling that the request of that city was founded upon the justest reason and equity, and considering that it had been always allied to the Crown of Sweden, as well by a common tie of religion and commerce, as by all other manner of good correspondence, and perceiving likewise that permitting the pirates to possess themselves of that harbor for a retreat was of the highest concern and importance to his own states and all his neighbors, he could not without wounding his honor and conscience refuse those poor afflicted people the succors they demanded, which he was obliged to given for the safety of his kingdom, neighbors, and allies.

And forasmuch as His Majesty of Sweden expected thereby to have the decrees of the Emperor so much the better observed and respected, and by that means to get the Baltic Sea to remain in its former state; that is to say, free and safe to his allies, and all other nations usually driving a trade upon it; and that the city of Stralsund (which had been formerly preserved by the King of Denmark, then at war with the Emperor) should be preserved in its liberty though his mediation and intervention, as evidently appears by the pacts which he entered into on that head with the said city, when he took it under his protection, yet he could not hinder those firebrands and usurpers from carrying on their pernicious and ambitious designs, nor turn them from that war, which they have ever since that time continued by sea and land, with more rage and violence that ever. For not being able to make themselves masters of that port, according to their intention, they seized that of the city of Wismar, and some others that were advantageous to them, and carried out of the port of Danzig the ships of Poland, which was at that time at enmity with the King of Sweden, to make use of them; and made so many marches and committed so many depredations and ravages upon the neighboring seas, that His said Majesty of Sweden was at last constrained, for the preservation of commerce in his own seas, to equip, at a great expense, a navy to keep in those pirates, in order to enjoy quiet the rest of the year.

Notwithstanding all this, the most serene King of Sweden was ever inclined to peace, and contribute toward it all in his power. For understanding that a treaty of peace was just upon the point of being entered into between the Emperor and the King of Denmark at Lübeck, he presently sent his ambassadors thither to accommodate the difference relating to the city of Stralsund, and to pacify, in an amicable way, all the other differences which had arisen in the course of several years last past, with an express charge to use all the diligence and persuasion they were masters of to facilitate the accommodation between the Emperor and the King of Denmark; reckoning that peace could not be well made with the said King without comprehending the city of Stralsund in it; and that it was comprehended therein, upon the account of the agreements and pacts formerly made between him and that city.

But although the King of Denmark received that embassy very honorably, and the other party was invited thereto in a very decent and becoming manner by several letters from His Majesty of Sweden; yet his ambassadors were inhumanly denied audience, and no answer vouchsafed them, but were commanded upon pain of death to depart immediately not only from Lübeck but likewise out of Germany. This unworthy and dishonorable treatment was held and judged by all nations a sufficient cause of a rupture, and of requiring satisfaction by arms. And His Majesty had then been very excusable, if he had had recourse to violent remedies, since there was no valid cause or reason for his abstaining from them. However, after the deputies of the Emperor in their letters of answer dated March had acknowledged the receipt of those of His Majesty’s embassy, and by that acknowledgment seemed to make an apology for their first fault, His Majesty likewise, as being more inclined to put a good than a bad construction upon them, imagined all this might have proceeded from the wicked suggestion of some malicious and ill-advised counselors, and nor from the common concert and advice of all; and did not judge that offense to be yet sufficient to oblige him to show his resentment by a just war, especially since the deputies said they had no orders to treat with any but the King of Denmark. Add to this, that if the Emperor or the duke of Friedland were spoke to on this head, a favorable answer might be expected from them. It is true, affairs were then brought to such a pass, that there was no longer any room or appearance that a treaty of accommodation would be hearkened to, because of former offenses and indignities. It came also to be considered, how, and in what manner the party offended could make the first overture to the Emperor (without wounding his honor) with whom he had not yet had any communication because of the difficulty of the passes in all the Emperor’s lands, which were then stopped up, and since the negotiation of the treat of Lübeck was drawing to a period.

However, to try once more all possible ways and in order to surmount all difficulties that might stand in the way to the blessing of peace (it being impossible to find means of making an overture to the Emperor himself), the Parliament of Sweden persuaded His Majesty to write about it to the College of Electors, not imagining that they would approve such a treatment of foreign Kings. Accordingly this was done the April following, that so the princes, who have a great authority in the Empire, might themselves seek and find out some proper remedy for that evil. Nay His Majesty consented, that deputy should be sent to the general of the imperial army, on the part of the said Parliament, judging that the difficulties that had crept in among them might have been amicably composed in the armies. And for that effect Baron Sten Bielke was presently dispatched, with power to treat of a truce for the city of Stralsund, if he could find minds any way disposed to peace, till an occasion should offer sending commissioners to terminate that matter entirely. But the said Baron, being arrived at Stralsund about the beginning of spring, found affairs in a yet worse state than formerly; and the enemies resolved to pursue their pernicious designs with more violence and warmth than ever.

For Stralsund was then harassed and attacked on all sides, the gates crowded with soldiers to infest the Swedish Ocean; and as the highest piece of injustice, a very great army (without any previous defiance or denunciation of war), designed for Prussia against His Majesty of Sweden, under the conduct and command of Armin, the Emperor’s camp marshal: which hindered the aforesaid Baron from proceeding any farther, who judged that it would be somewhat necessary for his discharge to write to the duke of Friedland to acquaint him with the occasion of his embassy; and having protested against that injury and injustice of the army which was upon its march, he demanded it might be sent back and that all other acts of hostility might be forbidden according to the promise made at Lübeck by the Emperor’s deputies.

Notwithstanding all this, the duke of Friedland declared that he had not as yet any inclinations toward peace, and that the promises of those deputies at Lübeck were nothing but trick and chicane. For he protested he could not recall the troops under the command of Arnim, and that His Imperial Majesty having too many soldiers, was forced to discharge himself of some of them, having already sent them to the King of Poland his friend, for that reason, to make war upon the King of Sweden (all which can be made out by authentic letters), and without giving any other answer, he made the same army advance with great diligence and harassed that of the King of Sweden in Prussia during the whole summer, whereby he had doubtless suffered the entire ruin of his states, friends and allies, if God, who is the protector of righteous causes, and the preserver of his innocence, had not taken in his own hand the defense of his cause, having made his enemies justly suffer the evils which they had unjustly prepared and designed against him.

All this being considered, it is abundantly evident how much His Majesty of Sweden, who has been so often crossed in his good designs for a peace, has been constrained at last to take up arms in good earnest against his enemies in his own defense, and for the preservation of his person, states, and allies.

It may be objected here that he ought to have temporized and waited for the answer to his letters from the College of Electors, since the King of Denmark interposed in that matter; who, by the persuasion and instigation of His said Majesty, had, ever since last winter, endeavored to compose the whole by a treaty of peace. But it must also be infallibly presupposed here, that if His said Majesty had seen the least sign or appearance of receiving a just reparation for the outrages and damages done him, and some security and liberty for his neighbors, he had never been so warm in his resentment, but rather condescended to any proposals of a peace, according to his zeal and natural inclination to the public tranquility and quiet. But after another treaty of peace was projected in the city of Danzig in Prussia, and the commissioner of the aggressor would signify or declare nothing to the commissioner of the party offended, who offered to treat with him, and fully to apprise him of his pretensions, had showed his commission; it is easy to conclude from thence, that the Swedish commissioner was entirely disposed to seek peace and that, on the contrary, the enemy had no such intention, considering the frauds and tricks they made use of formerly, and which they likewise practiced in that same negotiation at Danzig, and which are but too manifest, since at that time they seized the passes and fortified places in Pomerania to push their conquests further and continue the war with more violence; a proof too sufficient to show how little security and certainty there was in such treaties.

As to the College of Electors, there is but too much appearance that he had gained as little there; although His said Majesty was apt to believe, that had the said Electoral College had full power from the Emperor, they would have certainly fallen upon some good measures in order to a peace; not to mention the authority which the said College has had, and ought to have in all times, which is endeavored to be diminished by little and little. For by their answer of the month of April to the letters of His said Majesty, the said lords Electors approved very well the proposition which he made them of an amicable agreement and composition, promising him herein to go along with him by a mutual goodwill; but they made no mention of the reparation demanded for the wrongs, injuries and other indignities which he complained of, which however his letters required in a special manner: from whence it is easy to judge that they left him at liberty to take care of his own affairs, as he should think proper.

And for as much as His Majesty of Sweden has suffered so many outrages and injuries without being able to receive any satisfaction for them, such as having his letters intercepted, opened, falsely deciphered, and interpreted, his subjects, officers, and soldiers imprisoned, after having been robbed of all they had prohibited commerce, which by the right of nature is common to all the world; since the Emperor has disconcerted and hindered the peace or agreement with the King of Poland, and on the contrary assisted him with a great many troops; since he has caused whole armies to march into Prussia against His Majesty and the kingdom of Sweden, to ruin them; since he has entirely denied him the passage demanded in all friendship, and under cautions and assurances; since he has plundered his friends, allies, neighbors, and relations (in hatred to His Majesty’s name) who are oppressed, persecuted, and despoiled of their duchies and lordships, banished and chased from their lands and houses, and almost reduced to beggary; since he ignominiously debarred and rejected, in a most barbarous manner; his ambassadors, who were dispatched with full power to treat of a peace; and since, in fine, he sent two strong armies against His Majesty without any just cause or reason and even without any pretext that may serve for a color to the wicked designs of his enemies. Seeing all this, is there any person of understanding and sense, not prepossessed with passion and private interest that can deny both by divine and human laws and by the very instinct of nature it is lawful to make use of the means which God puts in our hands to resent and avenge ourselves for so sensible an injury? Especially for Kings and sovereign princes, particularly when their honor and person, the safety of their states, and the good of their subjects are concerned; when all appearance of honor and satisfaction is denied them: it being most true and notorious to all the world that not only by menaces and secret practices but also by force and violence the enemy has seized and would likewise take possession of the ports and harbors of the Baltic Sea, to establish new admiralties there, in prejudice of the ordinary commerce and ancient liberty, and of the total ruin of the maritime towns; and after such unjust enterprises and designs are yet continued by the preparations of the enemy both by sea and land: Is there anyone, I saw, that can blame the most serene King of Sweden for endeavoring by his arms to defend his subjects friends from such an oppression?

And to sum up the whole in a few words: Are not we instructed by the laws of nature to repel force by force? And who is he that will not judge that His Majesty has been really forced against his will to undertake this just war and obliged thereto by constraint and urgent necessity, after having tried all the ways of right justice and met with all sorts of obstructions and hindrances instead of the good and wholesome remedies he proposed?

Now there remaining no other means to be employed but that of arms for his own preservation and for the defense and protection of his subjects and friends, he desires that all Christendom would judge whether he has not taken them up with regret and after being forced by extreme necessity.

If there be found any one of his enemies who should blame and reproach His Majesty for having taken upon him the defense and particular protection of the city of Stralsund, (the justice whereof is however very apparent), the blame ought to be imputed to those who gave occasion to it and who without all reason first attacked that city, its ports, and territory, and exercised the ravages and barbarities mentioned above.

If His Majesty had in any manner favored the enterprises of the Emperor’s and the Empire’s enemies, or if he had entered into a league and association with them, people would not be surprised if they paid him back in his own coin; but having always persisted in a resolution to live in peace and constantly continued in the amity and neutrality of both parties during the wars of Germany without having ever given any cause of suspicious or offence, he hath at present all the reason in the world to complain to all Christendom of the bad and unworthy treatment he has met with.

For which cause His said Majesty of Sweden having no designs to the prejudice of the Empire, against which he protests he has no quarrel or enmity whatsoever, has only taken up arms for the public good, for his own safety, and the preservation of his friends, whom he desires to be put in the same state and liberty which they were in before this war, and by the same means to secure for the future the future the neighborhood and the Baltic Sea, and his own kingdom of Sweden, against all violence of pirates and robbers.

And to come to a conclusion; His Majesty has this confidence, that all honest people, who shall see this manifesto and his declaration, and read it without prejudice and consider the reasons therein briefly and truely laid down, will find cause for blaming and condemning the procedure of his enemies, as most unjust and detestable, most wicked and dangerous, examples for the Electors and other princes of the Empire, upon whom the like attempts and usurpations may be endeavored to be made afterwards. He hopes also that all Germany and even all Christendom will favor the just resolution he has taken to defend himself by arms, in order to prevent and repel the violent enterprises of those usurpers, who have so unhappily conspired his ruin and given the Emperor such pernicious counsels, as tend only to the usurpation of what is another’s and of the liberty of Germany; His Majesty being willing favorably to believe that they have herein exceeded the powers, instructions, and commands of the said lord the Emperor, and eluded the good and wholesome counsels of the Electors and princes of the Empire.

French Declaration of War Against Spain, May 1635 Top
Source: Tryntje Helffreich. 2009. The Thirty Years’ War: A Documentary History. Indianapolis, IN: Hackett Publishing.

To be read out by the French herald, Jehan Gratiollet de Daubas

I am summoned here on the part of the king my master, my one sovereign lord, to inform you as follows: Since you have failed to release the archbishop of Trier, elector of the Holy Roman Empire, who had placed himself under his protection, when he was unable to receive it from the emperor or any other prince; and since contrary to the dignity of the Empire and the law of nations you are holding as prisoner a sovereign prince with whom you are not at war; now therefore His Majesty declares that his is resolved to avenge this offence by force of arms, for it is of concern to all the princes of Christendom.

Declaration of György Rákóczi, Prince of Transylvania, February 1644 Top
Source: Tryntje Helffreich. 2009. The Thirty Years’ War: A Documentary History. Indianapolis, IN: Hackett Publishing.

George Racokzkie by the grace of God, Prince of Transylvania, Lord of a part of the Kingdome of Hungarie, and Count of Zekella: To the right Honourable and right Worshipfull; Our well-beloved Lords and Gentry, Greeting.

How precious, and of what high esteeme there be with every one the liberty of the soule and body, hereof we need not to seek afar off many examples, nor to write thereof to your Lordships in many words. The modern state & condition of the Occidentall Provinces, doth sufficiently testifie it; which, to reduce the aforesaid inestimable good to its ancient State and condition, have counted for nothing other Temporall and precious goods; yea with hazarding, and quite losing their own lives, doe not cease as yet to fight for it. How seriously also the Countreyes of Portugall and Catalonia, who sate under the Spanish power, and taken up Armes not in defence of the liberty of their soules, but only in defence of their temporall liberty do labour and endevour to settle the same in the former condition of liberty, is not unknown to your Lordships, especially my Countrymen, the Hungarians, how much blood they have shed for it, yes how many of them have suffered death for it, We have sufficient examples thereof. What troubles and miseries Our Nation, especially from the years 1619, hath suffered in this case, hereof whole bundles of letters full of complaints are to be found with us. How often also We have not only been admonished, but also quite forced, as well by the Protestants, as by the Roman Catholicks, that Wee at least would awaken, and remedie the grievances, because otherwise, if the oppression of the priviledges and liberties should further encrease and enlarge itself, Our Children and Posteriry would be forced to possesse a Kingdome hereafter, that had lost all Liberty. We have been desired also by some of the high Officers and Ministers of the Crown which have discovered unto Us, that the Clergie intends to make the Kingdome of Hungarie hereditarie Subject to the House of Austria, and withal strives to domineer both Spiritually and Temporally over the fellow Members of their Religion, & to keep them under. It is not unknown to your Lordships, how many complaints there have bin made against those last Wils and Testament, that have bin forced from some, and thereby the lands and goods of the right natuall heir been alienated? The Clergy hath begun also to impropriate unto it selfe the chiefest Offices and places in the Frontier Townes of the Kingdome, and thus to pull fully out of the hands of the Temporall States and Peeres, that small Prerogativ which they had left unto them: But what shall I say of the washing of the common Revenues of the whole Kingdom, and then the ruine following thereupon, which however must concern also the Clergie it selfe.

With what swiftnesse or tricks also the Jesuits are crept into the Kingdome to the utmost ruine of the libertie thereof, & of the Protestant Religion (which by all meanes and wayes is expressed) and with what unjustnesse also in the Frontier Townes themselves, those, that have Iura Patronatus in the Churches, are troubled: hereof your Lordships have sufficiently been enformed.

One of the Spirituall Prelates also, who is yet living with His Imperial majesties knowledge, hath desired Us also by a confiding person and in His Imperiall Majesties name, promised unto Us to turne over also all Our lands and goods situated in the Kingdom of Hungarie, to Our Heirs and Successors (which are as yet pawned to Us till they are redeemed) and to shew unto Us yet greater and more graces and favour, if We would only give Our assent unto it, that Hungarie might be an Hereditary Kingdome to the house of Austria, but whereas neither Our Conscience nor also the zeale and love we beare to Our Hungarian nation could give way to it, We returned unto him that answer, as hath been seeming to an Hungarian Prince loving his native Country, and desiring the liberty of his Countrey.

Concerning the authority of the Palatine, it was laid thus, that nothing but the mear name was left to that office; though He do sollicite something for the good of the Country, yet he labours in vaine, yea withall is prohibited to do it. How zealous the Protestant States and Peeres as well in particulare as in generall have been in the Dyet, Anno 1638 to sollicite that their grievances might be redressed, but what effect after divers great charges and expences your Lorships have seen thereof, and enjoyed indeed, is sufficiently manifest unto every one.

The decree which His Imperiall Majesty caused to be imparted to the Protestant States and Peeres, is in Specie [in Appearance] in Our hands, but that notwithstanding hereupon divers Churches and Ministers houses have bin taken away, and the Ministers driven out of them; to repeat all would require a great deale more of time.

If we now consider the violation of Our corporall liberties, We finde it, that the offices and places are conferred upon no Protestant fellow-Member of the Countrey, neither are they preferred to any higher dignity, and if by chance one or the other attains thereunto, yet he hath no honour, trust and credit with them. Moreover also though the Protestants have good right or claime to some requisition, yet they labour to hinder therein in one or other way: Yea it happened also, that one that pretended a just cause to his Lands, notwithstanding by reason of a pretended contradiction, went in extream danger of his life about it.

When the 13 Counties in Generall in the yeare 1640, 1641, 1643 petitioned his Imperiall Majestie and the Lord Palatine for the redressing of their Grievances, what benefit & profit got your Lordships by it? yea what unkind entertainment your Lordships Deputies had for demanding of their just cause, and with what sharp and bitter words they have beene sent away againe, your Lordships still have in fresh memory; all which, how justly We took it to heart, so as well Our conscience, as also our duty to the glory and service of God, and the love and zeale to the Libertie of Our native Country and Nation required Us, yea by some of the Protestant States and Peeres also, and not lesse by some of the Roman Catholiques, We have beene exhorted upon Our soules salvation, and in a manner beene forced, that for defence of their Liberties We would rule.

Wherefore We could suffer this no longer, nor see the apparant ruine and perdition of Our native Country and the oppression of Our Nation, which before had tryed all meanes how these inconveniences by faire meanes might have beene remedied….

We take God the Lord the searcher of all hearts to Our witnesse, and We dare write it also to your Lordships in very truth, that We have taken up Arms not for Our own profit, nor out of a desire of revenge, neither also for those manifold wrongs and injuries done unto Us, nor lastly out of an intention to reforme or persecute Religion, much lesse to extirpate the same: but that We onely intend to Erect againe the Statutes and Laws of the Kingdome, to Reestablish the same, and to proceed according to the same, insomuch that every one without feare, trouble, let or hinderance openly may professe and exercise that same wherein his conscience is appeased, and therby also safely to enjoy the corporall Liberty, because to Domineere and Rule over Consciences doth not belong to men, but to God alone.

But being our dear God hath already graciously turned off fro mus many hinderances, such herein principally have hitherto stood in our way, yea also drawne to Us the Outlandish hearts; We must needs conceive thereby that it is Gods will and providence that to the service of his glory We shall protect the Liberty of Our Native Country, whereof the glory will be rendered to God and not to men. And We beleeve therefore firmely that his divine Majestie without all doubt will grace this Designe with a happy desired issue, and Crowne it with a joyfull end.

Wherefore We deme and exhort your Lordships friendly, that you will be pelased in a zealous consideration, that for your Lordships good, and upon the desire and request of many amongst you We are risen from Our peaceable Government and wholly quiet Native Country, and taken up Armes, to afford your helping hands to the furtherance of this Worke, being in it selfe well pleasing to God Almighty, that will tend to the benefit and profit not onely of your Lordships, but also of the whole Coutnry, and of all the grieved Inhabitants thereof. And withall in this case to shew their love and zeale as well towards God, as towards the Protestant Religion and the Liberty of their Native Country; and as soone as you have received these letters, to send unto Us one of your good Friends and Fellow-Brethren, and thus to joyne with us unanimously in the commendable furtherance and expedition of this worke.

We assure all persons, of what degree or qualitie soever they be, by Our true Christian Faith and Truth, that in no way We will dsturbe or opresse Religion, nor also that We have any intention to offend or trouble in the least way Our deare Native Country and Nation, and so all and every one of you in Generall either now or in the future time in all Right, Libertie, or Immunitie, but rather that your Lordships according to your pleasure may safely live, and yet further rejoyce in those precious Priviledges which have beene obtained long agoe with much blood.

No man shall also thinke, that if perhaps one or other hath done and shewed here before any wrong to Us, or committed any thing against Us whatsoever it bee, We would revenge Our selfe on him, and thus beare an ill will in Our heart for a future punishment; but rather that lal and every the like wrong shall be buried in a perpetuall oblivion as if it had never happened or been done. We admonish therefore all and every one of what degree or qualitie soever he be, that no man retire out of the Country to another place, or forsake his Lands or Goods: for if by chance such (which We doe not hope) should be found, and We should bee forced to seize upon their Goods, they may attribute the fault and losse which thereby they may receive to no man else, but to themselves.

But in case your Lordships (against all hope and expectation) should offer to doe contrary to that which hath beene said above, We will protest hereby before God and his holy Angels, that We are not the cause of the ruine and destruction which thereby will fall upon them; for otherwise We should be forced also to draw to Us so much the more stronger Ayde, and the greater number of Souldiers from Our High and Mighty Emperour, if your Lordships should oppose Us in the defence of Our Native Country, and not accommodate yourselves unto Us, which Wee will not hope.

The God Almighty who rules and governes all the hearts, doe thus rule and direct the hearts and minds of your Lordships that you doe unanimously every one, putting in the meane time out of his mind and all other respects, afford unto us your helping hands, for the obtaining of that wherein consists every one true proper benefit and profit, that, after that We have finished this happy worke, and every one of Us attained to His intention, both you and your whole Posterity may safely and peaceably enjoy both spirituall and corporall liberty till unto the end of the World, Amen. Given at Our Castle Calow the 17th of Febraury, Anno 1644.

Georgius Racokzkio

Treaty of Westphalia, October 24, 1648 Top
Source: The Avalon Project, “Treaty of Westphalia.”

Peace Treaty between the Holy Roman Emperor and the King of France and their respective Allies.

In the name of the most holy and individual Trinity: Be it known to all, and every one whom it may concern, or to whom in any manner it may belong, That for many Years past, Discords and Civil Divisions being stir’d up in the Roman Empire, which increas’d to such a degree, that not only all Germany, but also the neighbouring Kingdoms, and France particularly, have been involv’d in the Disorders of a long and cruel War: And in the first place, between the most Serene and most Puissant Prince and Lord, Ferdinand the Second, of famous Memory, elected Roman Emperor, always August, King of Germany, Hungary, Bohemia, Dalmatia, Croatia, Slavonia, Arch-Duke of Austria, Duke of Burgundy, Brabant, Styria, Carinthia, Carniola, Marquiss of Moravia, Duke of Luxemburgh, the Higher and Lower Silesia, of Wirtemburg and Teck, Prince of Suabia, Count of Hapsburg, Tirol, Kyburg and Goritia, Marquiss of the Sacred Roman Empire, Lord of Burgovia, of the Higher and Lower Lusace, of the Marquisate of Slavonia, of Port Naon and Salines, with his Allies and Adherents on one side; and the most Serene, and the most Puissant Prince, Lewis the Thirteenth, most Christian King of France and Navarre, with his Allies and Adherents on the other side. And after their Decease, between the most Serene and Puissant Prince and Lord, Ferdinand the Third, elected Roman Emperor, always August, King of Germany, Hungary, Bohemia, Dalmatia, Croatia, Slavonia, Arch-Duke of Austria, Duke of Burgundy, Brabant, Styria, Carinthia, Carniola, Marquiss of Moravia, Duke of Luxemburg, of the Higher and Lower Silesia, of Wirtemburg and Teck, Prince of Suabia, Count of Hapsburg, Tirol, Kyburg and Goritia, Marquiss of the Sacred Roman Empire, Burgovia, the Higher and Lower Lusace, Lord of the Marquisate of Slavonia, of Port Naon and Salines, with his Allies and Adherents on the one side; and the most Serene and most Puissant Prince and Lord, Lewis the Fourteenth, most Christian King of France and Navarre, with his Allies and Adherents on the other side: from whence ensu’d great Effusion of Christian Blood, and the Desolation of several Provinces. It has at last happen’d, by the effect of Divine Goodness, seconded by the Endeavours of the most Serene Republick of Venice, who in this sad time, when all Christendom is imbroil’d, has not ceas’d to contribute its Counsels for the publick Welfare and Tranquillity; so that on the side, and the other, they have form’d Thoughts of an universal Peace. And for this purpose, by a mutual Agreement and Covenant of both Partys, in the year of our Lord 1641. the 25th of December, N.S. or the 15th O.S. it was resolv’d at Hamburgh, to hold an Assembly of Plenipotentiary Ambassadors, who should render themselves at Munster and Osnabrug in Westphalia the 11th of July, N.S. or the 1st of the said month O.S. in the year 1643. The Plenipotentiary Ambassadors on the one side, and the other, duly establish’d, appearing at the prefixt time, and on the behalf of his Imperial Majesty, the most illustrious and most excellent Lord, Maximilian Count of Trautmansdorf and Weinsberg, Baron of Gleichenberg, Neustadt, Negan, Burgau, and Torzenbach, Lord of Teinitz, Knight of the Golden Fleece, Privy Counsellor and Chamberlain to his Imperial Sacred Majesty, and Steward of his Houshold; the Lord John Lewis, Count of Nassau, Catzenellebogen, Vianden, and Dietz, Lord of Bilstein, Privy Counsellor to the Emperor, and Knight of the Golden Fleece; Monsieur Isaac Volmamarus, Doctor of Law, Counsellor, and President in the Chamber of the most Serene Lord Arch-Duke Ferdinand Charles. And on the behalf of the most Christian King, the most eminent Prince and Lord, Henry of Orleans, Duke of Longueville, and Estouteville, Prince and Sovereign Count of Neuschaftel, Count of Dunois and Tancerville, Hereditary Constable of Normandy, Governor and Lieutenant-General of the same Province, Captain of the Cent Hommes d’Arms, and Knight of the King’s Orders, &c. as also the most illustrious and most excellent Lords, Claude de Mesmes, Count d’Avaux, Commander of the said King’s Orders, one of the Superintendents of the Finances, and Minister of the Kingdom of France &c. and Abel Servien, Count la Roche of Aubiers, also one of the Ministers of the Kingdom of France. And by the Mediation and Interposition of the most illustrious and most excellent Ambassador and Senator of Venice, Aloysius Contarini Knight, who for the space of five Years, or thereabouts, with great Diligence, and a Spirit intirely impartial, has been inclin’d to be a Mediator in these Affairs. After having implor’d the Divine Assistance, and receiv’d a reciprocal Communication of Letters, Commissions, and full Powers, the Copys of which are inserted at the end of this Treaty, in the presence and with the consent of the Electors of the Sacred Roman Empire, the other Princes and States, to the Glory of God, and the Benefit of the Christian World, the following Articles have been agreed on and consented to, and the same run thus.


That there shall be a Christian and Universal Peace, and a perpetual, true, and sincere Amity, between his Sacred Imperial Majesty, and his most Christian Majesty; as also, between all and each of the Allies, and Adherents of his said Imperial Majesty, the House of Austria, and its Heirs, and Successors; but chiefly between the Electors, Princes, and States of the Empire on the one side; and all and each of the Allies of his said Christian Majesty, and all their Heirs and Successors, chiefly between the most Serene Queen and Kingdom of Swedeland, the Electors respectively, the Princes and States of the Empire, on the other part. That this Peace and Amity be observ’d and cultivated with such a Sincerity and Zeal, that each Party shall endeavour to procure the Benefit, Honour and Advantage of the other; that thus on all sides they may see this Peace and Friendship in the Roman Empire, and the Kingdom of France flourish, by entertaining a good and faithful Neighbourhood.


That there shall be on the one side and the other a perpetual Oblivion, Amnesty, or Pardon of all that has been committed since the beginning of these Troubles, in what place, or what manner soever the Hostilitys have been practis’d, in such a manner, that no body, under any pretext whatsoever, shall practice any Acts of Hostility, entertain any Enmity, or cause any Trouble to each other; neither as to Persons, Effects and Securitys, neither of themselves or by others, neither privately nor openly, neither directly nor indirectly, neither under the colour of Right, nor by the way of Deed, either within or without the extent of the Empire, notwithstanding all Covenants made before to the contrary: That they shall not act, or permit to be acted, any wrong or injury to any whatsoever; but that all that has pass’d on the one side, and the other, as well before as during the War, in Words, Writings, and Outrageous Actions, in Violences, Hostilitys, Damages and Expences, without any respect to Persons or Things, shall be entirely abolish’d in such a manner that all that might be demanded of, or pretended to, by each other on that behalf, shall be bury’d in eternal Oblivion.


And that a reciprocal Amity between the Emperor, and the Most Christian King, the Electors, Princes and States of the Empire, may be maintain’d so much the more firm and sincere (to say nothing at present of the Article of Security, which will be mention’d hereafter) the one shall never assist the present or future Enemys of the other under any Title or Pretence whatsoever, either with Arms, Money, Soldiers, or any sort of Ammunition; nor no one, who is a Member of this Pacification, shall suffer any Enemys Troops to retire thro’ or sojourn in his Country.


That the Circle of Burgundy shall be and continue a Member of the Empire, after the Disputes between France and Spain (comprehended in this Treaty) shall be terminated. That nevertheless, neither the Emperor, nor any of the States of the Empire, shall meddle with the Wars which are now on foot between them. That if for the future any Dispute arises between these two Kingdoms, the abovesaid reciprocal Obligation of not aiding each others Enemys, shall always continue firm between the Empire and the Kingdom of France, but yet so as that it shall be free for the States to succour; without the bounds of the Empire, such or such Kingdoms, but still according to the Constitutions of the Empire.


That the Controversy touching Lorain shall be refer’d to Arbitrators nominated by both sides, or it shall be terminated by a Treaty between France and Spain, or by some other friendly means; and it shall be free as well for the Emperor, as Electors, Princes and States of the Empire, to aid and advance this Agreement by an amicable Interposition, and other Offices of Pacification, without using the force of Arms.


According to this foundation of reciprocal Amity, and a general Amnesty, all and every one of the Electors of the sacred Roman Empire, the Princes and States (therein comprehending the Nobility, which depend immediately on the Empire) their Vassals, Subjects, Citizens, Inhabitants (to whom on the account of the Bohemian or German Troubles or Alliances, contracted here and there, might have been done by the one Party or the other, any Prejudice or Damage in any manner, or under what pretence soever, as well in their Lordships, their fiefs, Underfiefs, Allodations, as in their Dignitys, Immunitys, Rights and Privileges) shall be fully re-establish’d on the one side and the other, in the Ecclesiastick or Laick State, which they enjoy’d, or could lawfully enjoy, notwithstanding any Alterations, which have been made in the mean time to the contrary.


If the Possessors of Estates, which are to be restor’d, think they have lawful Exceptions, yet it shall not hinder the Restitution; which done, their Reasons and Exceptions may be examin’d before competent Judges, who are to determine the same.


And tho by the precedent general Rule it may be easily judg’d who those are, and how far the Restitution extends; nevertheless, it has been thought fit to make a particular mention of the following Cases of Importance, but yet so that those which are not in express Terms nam’d, are not to be taken as if they were excluded or forgot.


Since the Arrest the Emperor has formerly caus’d to be made in the Provincial Assembly, against the moveable Effects of the Prince Elector of Treves, which were transported into the Dutchy of Luxemburg, tho releas’d and abolish’d, yet at the instance of some has been renew’d; to which has been added a Sequestration, which the said Assembly has made of the Jurisdiction of Burch, belonging to the Archbishoprick, and of the Moiety of the Lordship of St. John, belonging to John Reinbard of Soeteren, which is contrary to the Concordat’s drawn up at Ausburg in the year 1548 by the publick interposition of the Empire, between the Elector of Treves, and the Dutchy of Burgundy: It has been agreed, that the abovesaid Arrest and Sequestration shall be taken away with all speed from the Assembly of Luxemburg, that the said Jurisdiction, Lordship, and Electoral and Patrimonial Effects, with the sequestred Revenues, shall be releas’d and restor’d to the Elector; and if by accident some things should be Imbezel’d, they shall be fully restor’d to him; the Petitioners being refer’d, for the obtaining a determination of their Rights, to the Judge of the Prince Elector, who is competent in the Empire.


As for what concerns the Castles of Ehrenbreitstein and Homestein, the Emperor shall withdraw, or cause the Garisons to be withdrawn in the time and manner limited hereafter in the Article of Execution, and shall restore those Castles to the Elector of Treves, and to his Metropolitan Chapter, to be in the Protection of the Empire, and the Electorate; for which end the Captain, and the new Garison which shall be put therein by the Elector, shall also take the Oaths of Fidelity to him and his Chapter.


The Congress of Munster and Osnabrug having brought the Palatinate Cause to that pass, that the Dispute which has lasted for so long time, has been at length terminated; the Terms are these.


In the first place, as to what concerns the House of Bavaria, the Electoral Dignity which the Electors Palatine have hitherto had, with all their Regales, Offices, Precedencys, Arms and Rights, whatever they be, belonging to this Dignity, without excepting any, as also all the Upper Palatinate and the County of Cham, shall remain, as for the time past, so also for the future, with all their Appurtenances, Regales and Rights, in the possession of the Lord Maximilian, Count Palatine of the Rhine, Duke of Bavaria, and of his children, and all the Willielmine Line, whilst there shall be any Male Children in being.


Reciprocally the Elector of Bavaria renounces entirely for himself and his Heirs and Successors the Debt of Thirteen Millions, as also all his Pretensions in Upper Austria; and shall deliver to his Imperial Majesty immediately after the Publication of the Peace, all Acts and Arrests obtain’d for that end, in order to be made void and null.


As for what regards the House of Palatine, the Emperor and the Empire, for the benefit of the publick Tranquillity, consent, that by virtue of this present Agreement, there be establish’d an eighth Electorate; which the Lord Charles Lewis, Count Palatine of the Rhine, shall enjoy for the future, and his Heirs, and the Descendants of the Rudolphine Line, pursuant to the Order of Succession, set forth in the Golden Bull; and that by this Investiture, neither the Lord Charles Lewis, nor his Successors shall have any Right to that which has been given with the Electoral Dignity to the Elector of Bavaria, and all the Branch of William.


Secondly, that all the Lower Palatinate, with all and every the Ecclesiastical and Secular Lands, Rights and Appurtenances, which the Electors and Princes Palatine enjoy’d before the Troubles of Bohemia, shall be fully restor’d to him; as also all the Documents, Registers and Papers belonging thereto; annulling all that hath been done to the contrary. And the Emperor engages, that neither the Catholick King, nor any other who possess any thing thereof, shall any ways oppose this Restitution.


Forasmuch-as that certain Jurisdictions of the Bergstraet, belonging antiently to the Elector of Mayence, were in the year 1463 mortgag’d to the House Palatine for a certain Sum of Money: upon condition of perpetual Redemption, it has been agreed that the same Jurisdictions shall be Restor’d to the present Elector of Mayence, and his Successors in the Archbishoprick of Mayence, provided the Mortgage be paid in ready Mony, within the time limited by the Peace to be concluded; and that he satisfies the other Conditions, which he is bound to by the Tenor of the Mortgage-Deeds.


It shall also be free for the Elector of Treves, as well in the Quality of Bishop of Spires as Bishop of Worms, to sue before competent Judges for the Rights he pretends to certain Ecclesiastical Lands, situated in the Territorys of the Lower Palatinate, if so be those Princes make not a friendly Agreement among themselves.


That if it should happen that the Male Branch of William should be intirely extinct, and the Palatine Branch still subsist, not only the Upper Palatinate, but also the Electoral Dignity of the Dukes of Bavaria, shall revert to the said surviving Palatine, who in the mean time enjoys the Investiture: but then the eighth Electorate shall be intirely suppress’d. Yet in such case, nevertheless, of the return of the Upper Palatinate to the surviving Palatines, the Heirs of any Allodian Lands of the Bavarian Electors shall remain in Possession of the Rights and Benefices, which may lawfully appertain to them.


That the Family-Contracts made between the Electoral House of Heidelberg and that of Nieuburg, touching the Succession to the Electorate, confirm’d by former Emperors; as also all the Rights of the Rudolphine Branch, forasmuch as they are not contrary to this Disposition, shall be conserv’d and maintain’d entire.


Moreover, if any Fiefs in Juliers shall be found open by lawful Process, the Question shall be decided in favour of the House Palatine.


Further, to ease the Lord Charles Lewis, in some measure, of the trouble of providing his Brothers with Appenages, his Imperial Majesty will give order that forty thousand Rixdollars shall be paid to the said Brothers, in the four ensuing Years; the first commencing with the Year 1649. The Payment to be made of ten thousand Rixdollars yearly, with five per Cent Interest.


Further, that all the Palatinate House, with all and each of them, who are, or have in any manner adher’d to it; and above all, the Ministers who have serv’d in this Assembly, or have formerly serv’d this House; as also all those who are banish’d out of the Palatinate, shall enjoy the general Amnesty here above promis’d, with the same Rights as those who are comprehended therein, or of whom a more particular and ampler mention has been made in the Article of Grievance.


Reciprocally the Lord Charles Lewis and his Brothers shall render Obedience, and be faithful to his Imperial Majesty, like the other Electors and Princes of the Empire; and shall renounce their Pretensions to the Upper Palatinate, as well for themselves as their Heirs, whilst any Male, and lawful Heir of the Branch of William shall continue alive.


And upon the mention which has been made, to give a Dowry and a Pension to the Mother Dowager of the said Prince, and to his Sisters; his Sacred Imperial Majesty (according to the Affection he has for the Palatinate House) has promis’d to the said Dowager, for her Maintenance and Subsistence, to pay once for all twenty thousand Rixdollars; and to each of the Sisters of the said Lord Charles Lewis, when they shall marry, ten thousand Rixdollars, the said Prince Charles Lewis being bound to disburse the Overplus.


That the said Lord Charles Lewis shall give no trouble to the Counts of Leiningen and of Daxburg, nor to their Successors in the Lower Palatinate; but he shall let them peaceably enjoy the Rights obtain’d many Ages ago, and confirm’d by the Emperors.


That he shall inviolably leave the Free Nobility of the Empire, which are in Franconia, Swabia, and all along the Rhine, and the Districts thereof, in the state they are at present.


That the Fiefs confer’d by the Emperor on the Baron Gerrard of Waldenburg, call’d Schenck-heeren, on Nicholas George Reygersberg, Chancellor of Mayence, and on Henry Brombser, Baron of Rudeheim; Item, on the Elector of Bavaria, on Baron John Adolph Wolff, call’d Meternicht, shall remain firm and stable: That nevertheless these Vassals shall be bound to take an Oath of Fidelity to the Lord Charles Lewis, and to his Successors, as their direct Lords, and to demand of him the renewing of their Fiefs.


That those of the Confession of Augsburg, and particularly the Inhabitants of Oppenheim, shall be put in possession again of their Churches, and Ecclesiastical Estates, as they were in the Year 1624. as also that all others of the said Confession of Augsburg, who shall demand it, shall have the free Exercise of their Religion, as well in publick Churches at the appointed Hours, as in private in their own Houses, or in others chosen for this purpose by their Ministers, or by those of their Neighbours, preaching the Word of God.


That the Paragraphs, Prince Lewis Philip, &c. Prince Frederick, &c. and Prince Leopold Lewis, &c. be understood as here inserted, after the same manner they are contain’d in the Instrument, or Treaty of the Empire with Swedeland.


That the Dispute depending between the Bishops of Bamberg and Wirtzberg on the one, and the Marquiss of Brandenburg, Culmbach, and Onalzbach, on the other side, touching the Castle, Town, Jurisdiction, and Monastery of Kitzingen in Franconia, on the Main, shall be amicably compos’d; or, in a judicial manner, within two years time, upon pain of the Person’s losing his Pretensions, that shall delay it: and that, in the mean time, the Fort of Wirtzberg shall be surrender’d to the said Lords Marquisses, in the same state it was taken, according as it has been agreed and stipulated.


That the Agreement made, touching the Entertainment of the Lord Christian William, Marquiss of Brandenburg, shall be kept as if recited in this place, as it is put down in the fourteenth Article of the Treaty between the Empire and Swedeland.


The Most Christian King shall restore to the Duke of Wirtemberg, after the manner hereafter related, where we shall mention the withdrawing of Garisons, the Towns and Forts of Hohenwiel, Schorendorff, Turbingen, and all other places, without reserve, where he keeps Garisons in the Dutchy of Wirtemberg. As for the rest, the Paragraph, THE HOUSE OF WIRTEMBERG, &c. shall be understood as inserted in this Place, after the same manner it’s contain’d in the Treaty of the Empire, and of Swedeland.


That the Princes of Wirtemberg, of the Branches of Montbeillard, shall be re-establish’d in all their Domains in Alsace, and wheresoever they be situated, but particularly in the three Fiefs of Burgundy, Clerval, and Passavant: and both Partys shall re-establish them in the State, Rights and Prerogatives they enjoy’d before the Beginning of these Wars.


That Frederick, Marquiss of Baden, and of Hachberg, and his Sons and Heirs, with all those who have serv’d them in any manner whatsoever, and who serve them still, of what degree they may be, shall enjoy the Amnesty above-mention’d, in the second and third Article, with all its Clauses and Benefices; and by virtue thereof, they shall be fully re-establish’d in the State Ecclesiastical or Secular, in the same manner as the Lord George Frederick Marquiss of Beden and of Hachberg, possess’d, before the beginning of the Troubles of Bohemia, whatever concern’d the lower Marquisate of Baden, call’d vulgarly Baden Durlach, as also what concern’d the Marquisate of Hachberg, and the Lordships of Rottelen, Badenweiller, and Sausenberg, notwithstanding, and annulling all the Changes made to the contrary. After which shall be restor’d to Marquiss Frederick, the Jurisdictions of Stein and Renchingen, without being charg’d with Debts, which the Marquiss William has contracted during that time, by Reason of the Revenues, Interests and Charges, put down in the Transaction pass’d at Etlingen in the Year 1629. and transfer’d to the said William Marquiss of Baden, with all the Rights, Documents, Writings, and other things appertaining; so that all the Plea concerning the Charges and Revenues, as well receiv’d as to receive, with their Damages and Interests, to reckon from the time of the first Possession, shall be intirely taken away and abolish’d.


That the Annual Pension of the Lower Marquisate, payable to the Upper Marquisate, according to former Custom, shall by virtue of the present Treaty be intirely taken away and annihilated; and that for the future nothing shall be pretended or demanded on that account, either for the time past or to come.


That for the future, the Precedency and Session, in the States and Circle of Swabia, or other General or Particular Assemblys of the Empire, and any others whatsoever, shall be alternative in the two Branches of Baden; viz. in that of the Upper, and that of the Lower Marquisate of Baden: but nevertheless this Precedency shall remain in the Marquiss Frederick during his Life. It has been agreed, touching the Barony of Hohengerolt Zegk that if Madam, the Princess of Baden, verifies the Rights of her Pretension upon the said Barony by authentick Documents, Restitution shall be made her, according to the Rights and Contents of the said Documents, as soon as Sentence shall be pronounc’d. That the Cognizance of this Cause shall be terminated within two Years after the Publication of the Peace: And lastly, no Actions, Transaction, or Exceptions, either general or particular, nor Clauses comprehended in this Treaty of Peace, and whereby they would derogate from the Vigour of this Article, shall be at any time alledg’d by any of the Partys against this special Agreement. The Paragraphs, the Duke of Croy, &c. As for the Controversy of Naussau-Siegen, &c. To the Counts of Naussau, Sarrepont, &c. The House of Hanau, &c. John Albert Count of Solms, &c. as also, Shall be re-establish’d the House of Solms, Hohensolms, &c. The Counts of Isemburg, &c. The Rhinegraves, &c. The Widow of Count Ernest of Sainen, &c. The Castle and the County of Flackenstein, &c. Let also the House of Waldeck be re-establish’d, &c. Joachim Ernest Count of Ottingen, &c. Item, The House of Hohenlo, &c. Frederick Lewis, &c. The Widow and Heirs of the Count of Brandenstein, &c. The Baron Paul Kevenhuller, &c. shall be understood to be inserted in this place word by word, as they are put down in the Instruor Treaty between the Empire and Swedeland.


That the Contracts, Exchanges, Transactions, Obligations, Treatys, made by Constraint or Threats, and extorted illegally from States or Subjects (as in particular, those of Spiers complain, and those of Weisenburg on the Rhine, those of Landau, Reitlingen, Hailbron, and others) shall be so annull’d and abolish’d, that no more Enquiry shall be made after them.


That if Debtors have by force got some Bonds from their Creditors, the same shall be restor’d, but not with prejudice to their Rights.


That the Debts either by Purchase, Sale, Revenues, or by what other name they may be call’d, if they have been violently extorted by one of the Partys in War, and if the Debtors alledge and offer to prove there has been a real Payment, they shall be no more prosecuted, before these Exceptions be first adjusted. That the Debtors shall be oblig’d to produce their Exceptions within the term of two years after the Publication of the Peace, upon pain of being afterwards condemn’d to perpetual Silence.


That Processes which have been hitherto enter’d on this Account, together with the Transactions and Promises made for the Restitution of Debts, shall be look’d upon as void; and yet the Sums of Money, which during the War have been exacted bona fide, and with a good intent, by way of Contributions, to prevent greater Evils by the Contributors, are not comprehended herein.


That Sentences pronounc’d during the War about Matters purely Secular, if the Defect in the Proceedings be not fully manifest, or cannot be immediately demonstrated, shall not be esteem’d wholly void; but that the Effect shall be suspended until the Acts of Justice (if one of the Partys demand the space of six months after the Publication of the Peace, for the reviewing of his Process) be review’d and weigh’d in a proper Court, and according to the ordinary or extraordinary Forms us’d in the Empire: to the end that the former Judgments may be confirm’d, amended, or quite eras’d, in case of Nullity.


In the like manner, if any Royal, or particular Fiefs, have not been renew’d since the Year 1618. nor Homage paid to whom it belongs; the same shall bring no prejudice, and the Investiture shall be renew’d the day the Peace shall be concluded.


Finally, That all and each of the Officers, as well Military Men as Counsellors and Gownmen, and Ecclesiasticks of what degree they may be, who have serv’d the one or other Party among the Allies, or among their Adherents, let it be in the Gown, or with the Sword, from the highest to the lowest, without any distinction or exception, with their Wives, Children, Heirs, Successors, Servants, as well concerning their Lives as Estates, shall be restor’d by all Partys in the State of Life, Honour, Renown, Liberty of Conscience, Rights and Privileges, which they enjoy’d before the abovesaid Disorders; that no prejudice shall be done to their Effects and Persons, that no Action or accusation shall be enter’d against them; and that further, no Punishment be inflicted on them, or they to bear any damage under what pretence soever: And all this shall have its full effect in respect to those who are not Subjects or Vassals of his Imperial Majesty, or of the House of Austria.


But for those who are Subjects and Hereditary Vassals of the Emperor, and of the House of Austria, they shall really have the benefit of the Amnesty, as for their Persons, Life, Reputation, Honours: and they may return with Safety to their former Country; but they shall be oblig’d to conform, and submit themselves to the Laws of the Realms, or particular Provinces they shall belong to.


As to their Estates that have been lost by Confiscation or otherways, before they took the part of the Crown of France, or of Swedeland, notwithstanding the Plenipotentiarys of Swedeland have made long instances, they may be also restor’d. Nevertheless his Imperial Majesty being to receive Law from none, and the Imperialists sticking close thereto, it has not been thought convenient by the States of the Empire, that for such a Subject the War should be continu’d: And that thus those who have lost their Effects as aforesaid, cannot recover them to the prejudice of their last Masters and Possessors. But the Estates, which have been taken away by reason of Arms taken for France or Swedeland, against the Emperor and the House of Austria, they shall be restor’d in the State they are found, and that without any Compensation for Profit or Damage.


As for the rest, Law and Justice shall be administer’d in Bohemia, and in all the other Hereditary Provinces of the Emperor, without any respect; as to the Catholicks, so also to the Subjects, Creditors, Heirs, or private Persons, who shall be of the Confession of Augsburg, if they have any Pretensions, and enter or prosecute any Actions to obtain Justice.


But from this general Restitution shall be exempted things which cannot be restor’d, as Things movable and moving, Fruits gather’d, Things alienated by the Authority of the Chiefs of the Party, Things destroy’d, ruin’d, and converted to

other uses for the publick Security, as publick and particular Buildings, whether sacred or profane, publick or private Gages, which have been, by surprize of the Enemys, pillag’d, confiscated, lawfully sold, or voluntarily bestow’d.


And as to the Affair of the Succession of Juliers, those concern’d, if a course be not taken about it, may one day cause great Troubles in the Empire about it; it has been agreed, That the Peace being concluded it shall be terminated without any Delay, either by ordinary means before his Imperial Majesty, or by a friendly Composition, or some other lawful ways.


And since for the greater Tranquillity of the Empire, in its general Assemblys of Peace, a certain Agreement has been made between the Emperor, Princes and States .of the Empire, which has been inserted in the Instrument and Treaty of Peace, concluded with the Plenipotentiarys of the Queen and Crown of Swedeland, touching the Differences about Ecclesiastical Lands, and the Liberty of the Exercise of Religion; it has been found expedient to confirm,and ratify it by this present Treaty, in the same manner as the abovesaid Agreement has been made with the said Crown of Swedeland; also with those call’d the Reformed, in the same manner, as if the words of the abovesaid Instrument were reported here verbatim.


Touching the Affair of Hesse Cassel, it has been agreed as follows: In the first place, The House of Hesse Cassel, and all its Princes, chiefly Madam Emelie Elizabeth Landgravine of Hesse, and her Son Monsieur William and his Heirs, his Ministers, Officers, Vassals, Subjects, Soldiers, and others who follow his Service in any manner soever, without any Exception, notwithstanding Contracts to the contrary, Processes, Proscriptions, Declarations, Sentences, Executions and Transactions; as also notwithstanding any Actions and Pretensions for Damages and Injuries as well from Neutrals, as from those who were in Arms, annull’d by the General Amnesty here before establish’d, and to take place from the beginning of the War in Bohemia, with a full Restitution (except the Vassals, and Hereditary Subjects of his Imperial Majesty, and the House of Austria, as is laid down in the Paragraph, Tandemomnes, &c.) shall partake of all the Advantages redounding from this Peace, with the same Rights other States enjoy, as is set forth in the Article which commences, Unanimi, &c.


In the second place, the House of Hesse Cassel, and its Successors, shall retain, and for this purpose shall demand at any time, and when it shall be expir’d, the Investiture of his Imperial Majesty, and shall take the Oath of Fidelity for the Abby of Hitsfield, with all its Dependencys, as well Secular as Ecclesiastical, situated within or without his Territorys (as the Deanery of Gellingen) saving nevertheless the Rights possess’d by the House of Saxony, time out of mind.


In the third place, the Right of a direct Signiory over the Jurisdictions and Bayliwick of Schaumburg, Buckenburg, Saxenhagen, and Stattenhagen, given heretofore and adjudged to the Bishoprick of Mindau, shall for the future belong unto Monsieur William, the present Landgrave of Hesse, and his Successors in full Possession, and for ever, so as that the said Bishop, and no other shall be capable of molesting him; saving nevertheless the Agreement made between Christian Lewis, Duke of Brunswick and Lunenburg, and the Landgravine of Hesse, and Philip Count of Lippe, as also the Agreement made between the said Landgravine, and the said Count.


It has been further agreed, That for the Restitution of Places possess’d during this War, and for the Indemnity of Madam, the Landgravine of Hesse, who is the Guardian, the Sum of Six Hundred Thousand Rixdollars shall be given to her and her Son, or his Successors Princes of Hesse, to be had from the Archbishopricks of Mayence and Cologne, from the Bishopricks of Paderborn and Munster, and the Abby of Fulden; which Sum shall be paid at Cassel in the term of eight Months, to reckon from the Day of the Ratification of the Peace, at the peril and charge of the Solvent: and no Exception shall be used to evade this promis’d Payment, on any Pretence; much less shall any Seizure be made of the Sum agreed on.


And to the end that Madam, the Landgravine, may be so much the more assur’d of the Payment, she shall retain on the Conditions following, Nuys, Cuesfeldt, and Newhaus, and shall keep Garisons in those Places which shall depend on her alone; but with this Limitation, That besides the Officers and other necessary Persons in the Garisons, those of the three above-nam’d Places shall not exceed the number of Twelve Hundred Foot, and a Hundred Horse; leaving to Madam, the Landgravine, the Disposition of the number of Horse and Foot she shall be pleas’d to put in each of these Places, and whom she will constitute Governor.


The Garisons shall be maintain’d according to the Order, which has been hitherto usually practis’d, for the Maintenance of the Hessian Soldiers and Officers; and the things necessary for the keeping of the Forts shall be furnish’d by the Arch-bishopricks and Bishopricks, in which the said Fortresses are situated, without any Diminution of the Sum above-mention’d. It shall be allow’d the Garisons, to exact the Money of those who shall retard Payment too long, or who shall be refractory, but not any more than what is due. The Rights of Superiority and Jurisdiction, as well Ecclesiastical as Secular, and the Revenues of the said Castles and Towns, shall remain in the Arch-bishop of Cologne.


As soon as after the Ratification of Peace, Three Hundred Thousand Rixdollars shall be paid to Madam, the Landgravine, she shall give up Nuys, and shall only retain Cuesfeldt and Newhaus; but yet so as that the Garison of Nuys shall not be thrown into the other two Places, nor nothing demanded on that account; and the Garisons of Cuesfeldt shall not exceed the Number of Six Hundred Foot and Fifty Horse. That if within the term of nine Months, the whole Sum be not paid to Madam the Landgravine, not only Cuesfeldt and Newhaus shall remain in her Hands till the full Payment, but also for the remainder, she shall be paid Interest at Five per Cent. and the Treasurers and Collectors of the Bayliwicks appertaining to the abovesaid Arch-bishopricks, Bishopricks and Abby, bordering on the Principality of Hesse, shall oblige themselves by Oath to Madam the Landgravine, that out of the annual Revenues, they shall yearly pay the Interest of the remaining Sum notwithstanding the Prohibitions of their Masters. If the Treasurers and Collectors delay the Payment, or alienate the Revenues, Madam the Landgravine shall have liberty to constrain them to pay, by all sorts of means, always saving the Right of the Lord Proprietor of the Territory.


But as soon as Madam the Landgravine has receiv’d the full Sum, with all the Interest, she shall surrender the said Places which she retain’d for her Security; the Payments shall cease, and the Treasurers and Collectors, of which mention has been made, shall be freed, from their Oath: As for the Bayliwicks, the Revenues of which shall be assign’d for the Payment of the Sum, that shall be adjusted before the Ratification of the Peace; and that Convention shall be of no less Force than this present Treaty of Peace.


Besides the Places of Surety, which shall be left, as aforesaid, to Madam the Landgravine, which she shall restore after the Payment, she shall restore, after the Ratification of the Peace, all the Provinces and Bishopricks, as also all their Citys, Bayliwicks, Boroughs, Fortresses, Forts; and in one word, all immoveable Goods, and all Rights seiz’d by her during this War. So, nevertheless, that as well in the three Places she shall retain as Cautionary, as the others to be restor’d, the said Lady Landgravine not only shall cause to be convey’d away all the Provisions and Ammunitions of War she has put therein (for as to those she has not sent thither, and what was found there at the taking of them, and are there still, they shall continue; ) but also the Fortifications and Ramparts, rais’d during the Possession of the Places, shall be destroy’d and demolish’d as much as possible, without exposing the Towns, Borroughs, Castles and Fortresses, to Invasions and Robberys.


And tho Madam the Landgravine has only demanded Restitution and Reparation of the Arch-bishopricks of Mayence, Cologne, Paderborn, Munster, and the Abby of Fulden; and has not insisted that any besides should contribute any thing for this Purpose: nevertheless the Assembly have thought fit, according to the Equity and Circumstances of Affairs, that without prejudice to the Contents of the preceding Paragraph, which begins, Conventum praterea est, &c. IT HAS BEEN FURTHER AGREED, the other States also on this and the other side the Rhine, and who since the first of March of this present Year, have paid Contributions to the Hessians, shall bear their Proportion pro Rata of their preceding Contributions, to make up the said Sum with the Arch-bishopricks, Bishopricks and Abby above-named, and forward the Payments of the Garisons of the Cautionary Towns. If any has suffer’d Damage by the delay of others, who are to pay their share, the Officers or Soldiers of his Imperial Majesty, of the most Christian King, and of the Landgravine of Hesse, shall not hinder the forcing of those who have been tardy; and the Hessian Soldiers shall not pretend to except any from this Constraint, to the prejudice of this Declaration, but those who have duly paid their Proportion, shall thereby be freed from all Charges.


As to the Differences arisen between the Houses of Hesse Cassel, and of Darmstadt, touching the Succession of Marburg; since they have been adjusted at Cassel, the 14th of April, the preceding Year, by the mutual Consent of the Interested Partys, it has been thought good, that that Transaction, with all its Clauses, as concluded and sign’d at Cassel by both Partys, should be intimated to this Assembly; and that by virtue of this present Treaty, it shall be of the same force, as if inserted word by word: and the same shall never be infring’d by the Partys, nor any other whatsoever, under any pretence, either by Contract, Oath, or otherways, but ought to be most exactly kept by all, tho perhaps some of the Partys concern’d may refuse to confirm it.


As also the Transaction between the Deceas’d monsieur William, Landgrave of Hesse, and Messieurs Christian and Wolrad, Counts of Waldeck, made the 11th of April, 1635. and ratify’d to Monsieur George, Landgrave of Hesse, the 14th of April 1648. shall no less obtain a full and perpetual force by virtue of this Pacification, and shall no less bind all the Princes of Hesse, and all the Counts of Waldeck.


That the Birth-right introduc’d in the House of Hesse Cassel, and in that of Darmstadt, and confirm’d by His Imperial Majesty, shall continue and be kept firm and inviolable.


And as His Imperial Majesty, upon Complaints made in the name of the City of Basle, and of all Switzerland, in the presence of their Plenipotentiarys deputed to the present Assembly, touching some Procedures and Executions proceeding from the Imperial Chamber against the said City, and the other united Cantons of the Swiss Country, and their Citizens and Subjects having demanded the Advice of the States of the Empire and their Council; these have, by a Decree of the 14th of May of the last Year, declared the said City of Basle, and the other Swiss-Cantons, to be as it were in possession of their full Liberty and Exemption of the Empire; so that they are no ways subject to the Judicatures, or Judgments of the Empire, and it was thought convenient to insert the same in this Treaty of Peace, and confirm it, and thereby to make void and annul all such Procedures and Arrests given on this Account in what form soever.


And to prevent for the future any Differences arising in the Politick State, all and every one of the Electors, Princes and States of the Roman Empire, are so establish’d and confirm’d in their antient Rights, Prerogatives, Libertys, Privileges, free exercise of Territorial Right, as well Ecclesiastick, as Politick Lordships, Regales, by virtue of this present Transaction: that they never can or ought to be molested therein by any whomsoever upon any manner of pretence.


They shall enjoy without contradiction, the Right of Suffrage in all Deliberations touching the Affairs of the Empire; but above all, when the Business in hand shall be the making or interpreting of Laws, the declaring of Wars, imposing of Taxes, levying or quartering of Soldiers, erecting new Fortifications in the Territorys of the States, or reinforcing the old Garisons; as also when a Peace of Alliance is to be concluded, and treated about, or the like, none of these, or the like things shall be acted for the future, without the Suffrage and Consent of the Free Assembly of all the States of the Empire: Above all, it shall be free perpetually to each of the States of the Empire, to make Alliances with Strangers for their Preservation and Safety; provided, nevertheless, such Alliances be not against the Emperor, and the Empire, nor against the Publick Peace, and this Treaty, and without prejudice to the Oath by which every one is bound to the Emperor and the Empire.


That the Diets of the Empire shall be held within six Months after the Ratification of the Peace; and after that time as often as the Publick Utility, or Necessity requires. That in the first Diet the Defects of precedent Assemblys be chiefly remedy’d; and that then also be treated and settled by common Consent of the States, the Form and Election of the Kings of the Romans, by a Form, and certain Imperial Resolution; the Manner and Order which is to be observ’d for declaring one or more States, to be within the Territorys of the Empire, besides the Manner otherways describ’d in the Constitutions of the Empire; that they consider also of re-establishing the Circles, the renewing the Matricular-Book, the re-establishing suppress’d States, the moderating and lessening the Collects of the Empire, Reformation of Justice and Policy, the taxing of Fees in the Chamber of Justice, the Due and requisite instructing of ordinary Deputys for the Advantage of the Publick, the true Office of Directors in the Colleges of the Empire, and such other Business as could not be here expedited.


That as well as general as particular Diets, the free Towns, and other States of the Empire, shall have decisive Votes; they shall, without molestation, keep their Regales, Customs, annual Revenues, Libertys, Privileges to confiscate, to raise Taxes, and other Rights, lawfully obtain’d from the Emperor and Empire, or enjoy’d long before these Commotions, with a full Jurisdiction within the inclosure of their Walls, and their Territorys: making void at the same time, annulling and for the future prohibiting all Things, which by Reprisals, Arrests, stopping of Passages, and other prejudicial Acts, either during the War, under what pretext soever they have been done and attempted hitherto by private Authority, or may hereafter without any preceding formality of Right be enterpris’d. As for the rest, all laudable Customs of the sacred Roman Empire, the fundamental Constitutions and Laws, shall for the future be strictly observ’d, all the Confusions which time of War have, or could introduce, being remov’d and laid aside.


As for the finding out of equitable and expedient means, whereby the Prosecution of Actions against Debtors, ruin’d by the Calamitys of the War, or charg’d with too great Interests, and whereby these Matters may be terminated with moderation, to obviate greater inconveniences which might arise, and to provide for the publick Tranquillity; His Imperial Majesty shall take care to hearken as well to the Advices of his Privy Council, as of the Imperial Chamber, and the States which are to be assembled, to the end that certain firm and invariable Constitutions may be made about this Matter And in the mean time the alledg’d Reasons and Circumstances of the Partys shall be well weigh’d in Cases brought before the Sovereign Courts of the Empire, or Subordinate ones of States and no body shall be oppress’d by immoderate Executions; and ail this without prejudice to the Constitution of Holstein.


And since it much concerns the Publick, that upon the Conclusion of the Peace, Commerce be re-establish’d, for that end it has been agreed, that the Tolls, Customs, as also the Abuses of the Bull of Brabant, and the Reprisals and Arrests, which proceeded from thence, together with foreign Certifications, Exactions, Detensions; Item, The immoderate Expences and Charges of Posts, and other Obstacles to Commerce and Navigation introduc’d to its Prejudice, contrary to the Publick Benefit here and there, in the Empire on occasion of the War, and of late by a private Authority against its Rights and Privileges, without the Emperor’s and Princes of the Empire’s consent, shall be fully remov’d; and the antient Security, Jurisdiction and Custom, such as have been long before these Wars in use, shall be re-establish’d and inviolably maintain’d in the Provinces, Ports and Rivers.


The Rights and Privileges of Territorys, water’d by Rivers or otherways, as Customs granted by the Emperor, with the Consent of the Electors, and among others, to the Count of Oldenburg on the Viserg, and introduc’d by a long Usage, shall remain in their Vigour and Execution. There shall be a full Liberty of Commerce, a secure Passage by Sea and Land: and after this manner all and every one of the Vassals, Subjects, Inhabitants and Servants of the Allys, on the one side and the other, shall have full power to go and come, to trade and return back, by Virtue of this present Article, after the same manner as was allowed before the Troubles of Germany; the Magistrates, on the one side and on the other, shall be oblig’d to protect and defend them against all sorts of Oppressions, equally with their own Subjects, without prejudice to the other Articles of this Convention, and the particular laws and Rights of each place. And that the said Peace and Amity between the Emperor and the Most Christian King, may be the more corroborated, and the publick Safety provided for, it has been agreed with the Consent, Advice and Will of the Electors, Princes and States of the Empire, for the Benefit of Peace:


First, That the chief Dominion, Right of Sovereignty, and all other Rights upon the Bishopricks of Metz, Toul, and Verdun, and on the Citys of that Name and their Diocesses, particularly on Mayenvick, in the same manner they formerly belong’d to the Emperor, shall for the future appertain to the Crown of France, and shall be irrevocably incorporated therewith for ever, saving the Right of the Metropolitan, which belongs to the Archbishop of Treves.


That Monsieur Francis, Duke of Lorain, shall be restor’d to the possession of the Bishoprick of Verdun, as being the lawful Bishop thereof; and shall be left in the peaceable Administration of this Bishoprick and its Abbys (saving the Right of the King and of particular Persons) and shall enjoy his Patrimonial Estates, and his other Rights, wherever they may be situated (and as far as they do not contradict the present Resignation) his Privileges, Revenues and Incomes; having previously taken the Oath of Fidelity to the King, and provided he undertakes nothing against the Good of the State and the Service of his Majesty.


In the second place, the Emperor and Empire resign and transfer to the most Christian King, and his Successors, the Right of direct Lordship and Sovereignty, and all that has belong’d, or might hitherto belong to him, or the sacred Roman Empire, upon Pignerol.


In the third place the Emperor, as well in his own behalf, as the behalf of the whole most Serene House of Austria, as also of the Empire, resigns all Rights, Propertys, Domains, Possessions and Jurisdictions, which have hitherto belong’d either to him, or the Empire, and the Family of Austria, over the City of Brisac, the Landgraveship of Upper and Lower Alsatia, Suntgau, and the Provincial Lordship of ten Imperial Citys situated in Alsatia, viz. Haguenau, Calmer, Sclestadt, Weisemburg, Landau, Oberenheim, Rosheim, Munster in the Valley of St. Gregory, Keyerberg, Turingham, and of all the villages, or other Rights which depend on the said Mayoralty; all and every of them are made over to the most Christian King, and the Kingdom of France; in the same manner as the City of Brisac, with the Villages of Hochstet, Niederrimsing, Hartem and Acharren appertaining to the Commonalty of Brisac, with all the antient Territory and Dependence; without any prejudice, nevertheless, to the Priviliges and Libertys granted the said Town formerly by the House of Austria.


Item, The said Landgraveship of the one, and the other Alsatia, and Suntgau, as also the Provincial Mayoralty on the ten Citys nominated, and their Dependencys.


Item, All the Vassals, Subjects, People, Towns, Boroughs, Castles, Houses, Fortresses, Woods, Coppices, Gold or Silver Mines, Minerals, Rivers, Brooks, Pastures; and in a word, all the Rights, Regales and Appurtenances, without any reserve, shall belong to the most Christian King, and shall be for ever incorporated with the Kingdom France, with all manner of Jurisdiction and Sovereignty, without any contradiction from the Emperor, the Empire, House of Austria, or any other: so that no Emperor, or any Prince of the House of Austria, shall, or ever ought to usurp, nor so much as pretend any Right and Power over the said Countrys, as well on this, as the other side the Rhine.


The most Christian King shall, nevertheless, be oblig’d to preserve in all and every one of these Countrys the Catholick Religion, as maintain’d under the Princes of Austria, and to abolish all Innovations crept in during the War.


Fourthly, By the Consent of the Emperor and the whole Empire, the most Christian King and his Successors shall have perpetual Right to keep a Garison in the Castle of Philipsburg, but limited to such a number of Soldiers, as may not be capable to give any Umbrage, or just Suspicion to the Neighbourhood; which Garison shall be maintain’d at the Expences of the Crown of France. The Passage also shall be open for the King into the Empire by Water, when, and as often as he shall send Soldiers, Convoys, and bring necessary things thither.


Nevertheless the King shall pretend to nothing more than the Protection and safe Passage of his Garison into the Castle of Philipsburg: but the Property of the Place, all Jurisdiction, Possession, all its Profits, Revenues, Purchases, Rights, Regales, Servitude, People, Subjects, Vassals, and every thing that of old in the Bishoprick of Spire, and the Churches incorporated therein, had appertain’d to the Chapter of Spire, or might have appertain’d thereto; shall appertain, and be intirely and inviolably preserv’d to the same Chapter, saving the Right of Protection which the King takes upon him.


The Emperor, Empire, and Monsieur the Arch Duke of Insprug, Ferdinand Charles, respectively discharge the Communitys, Magistrates, Officers and Subjects of each of the said Lordships and Places, from the Bonds and Oaths which they were hitherto bound by, and ty’d to the House of Austria; and discharge and assign them over to the Subjection, Obedience and Fidelity they are to give to the King and Kingdom of France; and consequently confirm the Crown of France in a full and just Power over all the said Places, renouncing from the present, and for ever, the Rights and Pretensions they had thereunto: Which Cession the Emperor, the said Arch-Duke and his Brother (by reason the said Renunciation concerns them particularly) shall confirm by particular Letters for themselves and their Descendants; and shall so order it also, that the Catholick King of Spain shall make the same Renunciation in due and authentick form, which shall be done in the name of the whole Empire, the same Day this present Treaty shall be sign’d.


For the greater Validity of the said Cessions and Alienations, the Emperor and Empire, by virtue of this present Treaty, abolish all and every one of the Decrees, Constitutions, Statutes and Customs of their Predecessors, Emperors of the sacred Roman Empire, tho they have been confirm’d by Oath, or shall be confirm’d for the future; particularly this Article of the Imperial Capitulation, by which all or any Alienation of the Appurtenances and Rights of the Empire is prohibited: and by the same means they exclude for ever all Exceptions hereunto, on what Right and Titles soever they may be grounded.


Further it has been agreed, That besides the Ratification promis’d hereafter in the next Diet by the Emperor and the States of the Empire, they shall ratify anew the Alienations of the said Lordships and Rights: insomuch, that if it shou’d be agreed in the Imperial Capitulation, or if there shou’d be a Proposal made for the future, in the Diet, to recover the Lands and Rights of the Empire, the abovenam’d things shall not be comprehended therein, as having been legally transfer’d to another’s Dominion, with the common Consent of the States, for the benefit of the publick Tranquillity; for which reason it has been found expedient the said Seigniorys shou’d be ras’d out of the Matricular-Book of the Empire.


Immediately after the Restitution of Benfield, the Fortifications of that Place shall be ras’d, and of the Fort Rhinau, which is hard by, as also of Tabern in Alsatia, of the Castle of Hohember and of Newburg on the Rhine: and there shall be in none of those Places any Soldiers or Garison.


The Magistrates and the Inhabitants of the said City of Tabern shall keep an exact Neutrality, and the King’s Troops shall freely pass thro’ there as often as desir’d. No Forts shall be erected on the Banks of this side the Rhine, from Basle to Philipsburg; nor shall any Endeavours be made to divert the Course of the River, neither on the one side or the other.


As for what concerns the Debts wherewith the Chamber of Ensisheim is charg’d, the Arch-Duke Ferdinand Charles shall undertake with that part of the Province, which the most Christian King shall restore him, to pay one third without distinction, whether they be Bonds, or Mortgages; provided they are in authentick form, and that they have a particular Mortgage, either on the Provinces to be restor’d, or on them which are to be transfer’d; or if there be none, provided they be found on the Books of Accounts, agreeing with those of Receipts of the Chamber of Ensisheim, until the Expiration of the year 1632, and have been inserted amonst the Debts of the publick Chamber, and the said Chamber having been oblig’d to pay the Interests: the Arch-Duke making this Payment, shall keep the King exempt from the same.


And as for those Debts which the Colleges of the States have been charg’d with by the Princes of the House of Austria, pursuant to particular Agreements made in their Provincial Assemblys, or such as the said States have contracted in the name of the Publick, and to which they are liable; a just distribution of the same shall be made between those who are to transfer their Allegiance to the King of France, and them that continue under the Obedience of the House of Austria, that so either Party may know what proportion of the said Debt he is to pay.


The most Christian King shall restore to the House of Austria, and particularly to the Arch-Duke Ferdinand Charles, eldest Son to Arch-Duke Leopold, four Forest-Towns, viz. Rheinselden, Seckingen, Laussenberg and Waltshutum, with all their Territorys and Bayliwicks, Houses, Villages, Mills, Woods, Forests, Vassals, Subjects, and all Appurtenances on this, or the other side the Rhine.


Item, The County of Hawenstein, the Black Forest, the Upper and Lower Brisgaw, and the Towns situate therein, appertaining of Antient Right to the House of Austria, viz. Neuburg, Friburg, Edingen, Renzingen, Waldkirch, Willingen, Bruenlingen, with all their Territorys; as also, the Monasterys, Abbys, Prelacys, Deaconrys, Knight-Fees, Commanderships, with all their Bayliwicks, Baronys, Castles, Fortresses, Countys, Barons, Nobles, Vassals, Men, Subjects, Rivers, Brooks, Forests, Woods, and all the Regales, Rights, Jurisdictions, Fiefs and Patronages, and all other things belonging to the Sovereign Right of Territory, and to the Patrimony of the House of Austria, in all that Country.


All Ortnaw, with the Imperial Citys of Ossenburg, Gengenbach, Cellaham and Harmospach, forasmuch as the said Lordships depend – on that of Ortnaw, so that no King of France can or ought ever to ; pretend to or usurp any Right or Power over the said Countrys situated on this and the other side the Rhine: nevertheless, in such a manner, that by this present Restitution, the Princes of Austria shall acquire no new Right; that for the future, the Commerce and Transportation shall be free to the Inhabitants on both sides of the Rhine, and the adjacent Provinces. Above all, the Navigation of the Rhine be free, and none of the partys shall be permitted to hinder Boats going up or coming down, detain, stop, or molest them under any pretence whatsoever, except the Inspection and Search which is usually done to Merchandizes: And it shall not be permitted to impose upon the Rhine new and unwonted Tolls, Customs, Taxes, Imposts, and other like Exactions; but the one and the other Party shall contented with the Tributes, Dutys and Tolls that were paid before these Wars, under the Government of the Princes of Austria.


That all the Vassals, Subjects, Citizens and Inhabitants, as well on this as the other side the Rhine, who were subject to the House of Austria, or who depended immediately on the Empire, or who acknowledg’d for Superiors the other Orders of the Empire, notwithstanding all Confiscations, Transferrings, Donations made by any Captains or Generals of the Swedish Troops, or Confederates, since the taking of the Province, and ratify’d by the most Christian King, or decreed by his own particular Motion; immediately after the Publication of Peace, shall be restor’d to the possession of their Goods, immovable and stable, also to their Farms, Castles, Villages, Lands, and Possessions, without any exception upon the account of Expences and Compensation of Charges, which the modern Possessors may alledge, and without Restitution of Movables or Fruits gather’d in.


As to Confiscations of Things, which consist in Weight, Number and Measure, Exactions, Concussions and Extortions made during the War; the reclaiming of them is fully annull’d and taken away on the one side and the other, in order to avoid Processes and litigious Strifes.


That the most Christian King shall be bound to leave not only the Bishops of Strasburg and Basle, with the City of Strasburg, but also the other States or Orders, Abbots of Murbach and Luederen, who are in the one and the other Alsatia, immediately depending upon the Roman Empire; the Abess of Andlavien, the Monastery of St. Bennet in the Valley of St. George, the Palatines of Luzelstain, the Counts and Barons of Hanaw, Fleckenstein, Oberstein, and all the nobility of Lower Alsatia; Item, the said ten Imperial Citys, which depend on the Mayory of Haganoc, in the Liberty and Possession they have enjoy’d hitherto, to arise as immediately dependent upon the Roman Empire; so that he cannot pretend any Royal Superiority over them, but shall rest contented with the Rights which appertain’d to the House of Austria, and which by this present Treaty of Pacification, are yielded to the Crown of France. In such a manner, nevertheless, that by the present Declaration, nothing is intended that shall derogate from the Sovereign Dominion already hereabove agreed to.


Likewise the most Christian King, in compensation of the things made over to him, shall pay the said Archduke Ferdinand Charles three millions of French Livres, in the next following Years 1649 1650, 1651, on St. John Baptist’s Day, paying yearly one third of the said Sum at Basle in good Money to the Deputys of the said Archduke.


Besides the said Sum, the most Christian King shall be oblig’d to take upon him two Thirds of the Debts of the Chamber of Ensisheim without distinction, whether by Bill or Mortgage, provided they be in due and authentic Form, and have a special Mortgage either on the Provinces to be transfer’d, or on them to be restor’d; or if there be none, provided they be found on the Books of Accounts agreeing with those of the Receits of the Chamber of Ensisheim, until the end of the Year 1632, the said Sums having been inserted among the Debts of the Community, and the Chamber having been oblig’d to pay the Interests: And the King making this Payment, the Archduke shall be exempted for such a proportion. And that the same may be equitably executed, Commissarys shall be deputed on the one side and the other, immediately after the signing of this present Treaty, who before the Payment of the first Sum, shall agree between them what Debts every one has to pay.


The most Christian King shall restore to the said Archduke bona fide, and without delay, all Papers, Documents of what nature so-ever, belonging to the Lands which are to be surrender’d to him, even as many as shall be found in the Chancery of the Government and Chamber of Ensisheim, or of Brisac, or in the Records of Officers, Towns, and Castles possess’d by his Arms.


If those Documents be publick, and concern in common and jointly the Lands yielded to the King, the Archduke shall receive authentick Copys of them, at what time and as often as he shall demand them.


Item, For fear the Differences arisen between the Dukes of Savoy and Mantua touching Montserrat, and terminated by the Emperor Ferdinand and Lewis XIII. Fathers to their Majestys, shou’d revive some time or other to the damage or Christianity; it has been agreed, That the Treaty of Cheras of the 6th of April 1631. with the Execution thereof which ensu’d in the Montserrat, shall continue firm for ever, with all its Articles: Pignerol, and its Appurtenances, being nevertheless excepted, concerning which there has been a decision between his most Christian Majesty and the Duke of Savoy, and which the King of France and his Kingdom have purchas’d by particular Treatys, that shall remain firm and stable, as to what concerns the transferring or resigning of that Place and its Appurtenances. But if the said particular Treatys contain any thing which may trouble the Peace of the Empire, and excite new Commotions in Italy, after the present War, which is now on foot in that Province, shall be at an end, they shall be look’d upon as void and of no effect; the said Cession continuing nevertheless unviolable, as also the other Conditions agreed to, as well in favour of the Duke of Savoy as the most Christian King: For which reason their Imperial and most Christian Majestys promise reciprocally, that in all other things relating to the said Treaty of Cheras, and its Execution, and particularly to Albe, Trin, their Territorys, and the other places, they never shall contravene them either directly or indirectly, by the way of Right or in Fact; and that they neither shall succour nor countenance the Offender, but rather by their common Authority shall endeavour that none violate them under any pretence whatsoever; considering that the most Christian King has declar’d, That he was highly oblig’d to advance the Execution of the said Treaty, and even to maintain it by Arms; that above all things the said Lord, the Duke of Savoy, notwithstanding the Clauses abovemention’d, shall be always maintain’d in the peaceable possession of Trin and Albe, and other places, which have been allow’d and assign’d him by the said Treaty, and by the Investiture which ensu’d thereon of the Dutchy of Montserrat.


And to the end that all Differences be extirpated and rooted out between these same Dukes, his most Christian Majesty shall pay to the said Lord, the Duke of Mantua, four hundred ninety four thousand Crowns, which the late King of blessed Memory, Lewis XIII. had promis’d to pay to him on thu Duke of Savoy’s Discount; who by this means shall together with his Heirs and Successors be discharg’d from this Obligation, and secur’d from all Demands which might be made upon him of the said Sum, by the Duke of Mantua, or his Successors; so that for the future neither the Duke of Savoy, nor his Heirs and Successors, shall receive any Vexation or Trouble from the Duke of Mantua, his Heirs and Successors, upon this subject, or under this pretence.


Who hereafter, with the Authority and Consent of their Imperial and most Christian Majestys, by virtue of this solemn Treaty of Peace, shall have no Action for this account against the Duke of Savoy, or his Heirs and Successors.


His Imperial Majesty, at the modest Request of the Duke of Savoy, shall together with the Investiture of the antient Fiefs and States, which the late Ferdinand II. of blessed memory granted to the Duke of Savoy, Victor Amadeus, also grant him the Investiture of the Places, Lordships, States, and all other Rights of Montserrat, with their Appurtenances, which have been surrender’d to him by virtue of the abovesaid Treaty of Cheras, and the Execution thereof which ensu’d; as also, of the Fiefs of New Monsort, of Sine, Monchery, and Castelles, with their Appurtenances, according to the Treaty of Acquisition made by the said Duke Victor Amadeus, the 13th of October 1634. and conformable to the Concessions or Permissions, and Approbation of his Imperial Majesty; with a Confirmation also of all the Privileges which have been hitherto granted to the Dukes of Savoy, when and as often as the Duke of Savoy shall request and demand it.


Item, It has been agreed, That the Duke of Savoy, his Heirs and Successors, shall no ways be troubled or call’d to an account by his Imperial Majesty, upon account of the Right of Sovereignty they have over the Fiefs of Rocheveran, Olme, and Casoles, and their Appurtenances, which do not in the least depend on the Roman Empire, and that all Donations and Investitures of the said Fiefs being revok’d and annul’d, the Duke shall be maintain’d in his Possession as rightful Lord; and if need be, reinstated: for the same reason his Vassal the Count de Verrue shall be re-instated in the same Fiefs of Olme and Casoles, and in the Possession of the fourth part of Rocheveran, and in all his Revenues.


Item, It is Agreed, That his Imperial Majesty shall restore to the Counts Clement and John Sons of Count Charles Cacheran, and to his Grandsons by his Son Octavian, the whole Fief of la Roche d’Arazy, with its Appurtenances and Dependencys, without any Obstacle whatever.


The Emperor shall likewise declare, That within the Investiture of the Dutchy of Mantua are comprehended the Castles of Reygioli and Luzzare, with their Territorys and Dependencys, the Possession whereof the Duke of Guastalla shall be oblig’d to render to the Duke of Mantua, reserving to himself nevertheless, the Right of Six Thousand Crowns annual Pension, which he pretends to, for which he may sue the Duke before his Imperial Majesty.


As soon as the Treaty of Peace shall be sign’d and seal’d by the Plenipotentiarys and Ambassadors, all Hostilitys shall cease, and all Partys shall study immediately to put in execution what has been agreed to; and that the same may be the better and quicker accomplish’d, the Peace shall be solemnly publish’d the day after the signing thereof in the usual form at the Cross of the Citys of Munster and of Osnabrug. That when it shall be known that the signing has been made in these two Places, divers Couriers shall presently be sent to the Generals of the Armys, to acquaint them that the Peace is concluded, and take care that the Generals chuse a Day, on which shall be made on all sides a Cessation of Arms and Hostilitys for the publishing of the Peace in the Army; and that command be given to all and each of the chief Officers Military and Civil, and to the Governors of Fortresses, to abstain for the future from all Acts of Hostility: and if it happen that any thing be attempted, or actually innovated after the said Publication, the same shall be forthwith repair’d and restor’d to its former State.


The Plenipotentiarys on all sides shall agree among themselves, between the Conclusion and the Ratification of the Peace, upon the Ways, Time, and Securitys which are to be taken for the Restitution of Places, and for the Disbanding of Troops; of that both Partys may be assur’d, that all things agreed to shall be sincerely accomplish’d.


The Emperor above all things shall publish an Edict thro’out the Empire, and strictly enjoin all, who by these Articles of Pacification are oblig’d to restore or do any thing else, to obey it promptly and without tergi-versation, between the signing and the ratifying of this present Treaty; commanding as well the Directors as Governors of the Militia of the Circles, to hasten and finish the Restitution to be made to every one, in conformity to those Conventions, when the same are demanded. This Clause is to be inserted also in the Edicts, That whereas the Directors of the Circles, or the Governors of the Militia of the Circles, in matters that concern themselves, are esteem’d less capable of executing this Affair in this or the like case and likewise if the Directors and Governors of the Militia of the Circles refuse this Commission, the Directors of the neighbouring Circle, or the Governors of the Militia of the Circles shall exercise the Function, and officiate in the execution of these Restitutions in the other Circles, at the instance of the Partys concern’d.


If any of those who are to have something restor’d to them, suppose that the Emperor’s Commissarys are necessary to be present at the Execution of some Restitution (which is left to their Choice) they shall have them. In which case, that the effect of the things agreed on may be the less hinder’d, it shall be permitted as well to those who restore, as to those to whom Restitution is to be made, to nominate two or three Commissarys immediately after the signing of the Peace, of whom his Imperial Majesty shall chuse two, one of each Religion, and one of each Party, whom he shall injoin to accomplish without delay all that which ought to be done by virtue of this present Treaty. If the Restorers have neglected to nominate Commissioners, his Imperial Majesty shall chuse one or two as he shall think fit (observing, nevertheless, in all cases the difference of Religion, that an equal number be put on each side) from among those whom the Party, to which somewhat is to be restor’d, shall have nominated, to whom he shall commit the Commission of executing it, notwithstanding all Exceptions made to the contrary; and for those who pretend to Restitutions, they are to intimate to the Restorers the Tenour of these Articles immediately after the Conclusion of the Peace.


Finally, That all and every one either States, Commonaltys, or private Men, either Ecclesiastical or Secular, who by virtue of this Transaction and its general Articles, or by the express and special Disposition of any of them, are oblig’d to restore, transfer, give, do, or execute any thing, shall be bound forthwith after the Publication of the Emperor’s Edicts, and after Notification given, to restore, transfer, give, do, or execute the same, without any Delay or Exception, or evading Clause either general or particular, contain’d in the precedent Amnesty, and without any Exception and Fraud as to what they are oblig’d unto.


That none, either Officer or Soldier in Garisons, or any other whatsoever, shall oppose the Execution of the Directors and Governors of the Militia of the Circles or Commissarys, but they shall rather promote the Execution; and the said Executors shall be permitted to use Force against such as shall endeavour to obstruct the Execution in what manner soever.


Moreover, all Prisoners on the one side and the other, without any distinction of the Gown or the Sword, shall be releas’d after the manner it has been covenanted, or shall be agreed between the Generals of the Armys, with his Imperial Majesty’s Approbation.


The Restitution being made pursuant to the Articles of Amnesty and Grievances, the Prisoners being releas’d, all the Soldiery of the Garisons, as well the Emperor’s and his Allys, as the most Christian King’s, and of the Landgrave of Hesse, and their Allys and Adherents, or by whom they may have been put in, shall be drawn out at the same time, without any Damage, Exception, or Delay, of the Citys of the Empire, and all other Places which are to be restor’d.


That the very Places, Citys, Towns, Boroughs, Villages, Castles, Fortresses and Forts which have been possess’d and retain’d, as well in the Kingdom of Bohemia, and other Countrys of the Empire and Hereditary Dominions of the House of Austria, as in the other Circles of the Empire, by one or the other Army, or have been surrender’d by Composition; shall be restor’d without delay to their former and lawful Possessors and Lords, whether they be mediately or immediately States of the Empire, Ecclesiastical or Secular, comprehending therein also the free Nobility of the Empire: and they shall be left at their own free disposal, either according to Right and Custom, or according to the Force this present Treaty ought to have, notwithstanding all Donations, Infeoffments, Concessions (except they have been made by the free-will of some State) Bonds for redeeming of Prisoners, or to prevent Burnings and Pillages, or such other like Titles acquir’d to the prejudice of the former and lawful Masters and Possessors. Let also all Contracts and Bargains, and all Exceptions contrary to the said Restitution cease, all which are to be esteem’d void; saving nevertheless such things as have been otherwise agreed on in the precedent Articles touching the Satisfaction to made to his most Christian Majesty, as also some Concessions and equivalent Compensations granted to the Electors and Princes of the Empire. That neither the Mention of the Catholick King, nor Quality of the Duke of Lorain given to Duke Charles in the Treaty between the Emperor and Swedeland, and much less the Title of Landgrave of Alsace, given to the Emperor, shall be any prejudice to the most Christian King. That also which has been agreed touching the Satisfaction to be made to the Swedish Troops, shall have no effect in respect to his Majesty.


And that this Restitution of possess’d Places, as well by his Imperial Majesty as the most Christian King, and the Allys and Adherents of the one and the other Party, shall be reciprocally and bona fide executed.


That the Records, Writings and Documents, and other Moveables, be also restor’d; as likewise the Cannon found at the taking of the Places, and which are still in being. But they shall be allow’d to carry off with them, and cause to be carry’d off, such as have been brought thither from other parts after the taking of the Places, or have been taken in Battels, with all the Carriages of War, and what belongs thereunto.


That the Inhabitants of each Place shall be oblig’d, when the Soldiers and Garisons draw out, to furnish them without Money the necessary Waggons, Horses, Boats and Provisions, to carry off all things to the appointed Places in the Empire; which Waggons, Horses and Boats, the Governors of the Garisons and the Captains of the withdrawing Soldiers shall restore without any Fraud or Deceit. The Inhabitants of the States shall free and relieve each other of this trouble of carrying the things from one Territory to the other, until they arrive at the appointed Place in the Empire; and the Governors or other Officers shall not be allow’d to bring with him or them the lent Waggons, Horses and Boats, nor any other thing they are accommodated with, out of the limits they belong unto, much less out of those of the Empire.


That the Places which have been restor’d, as, well Maritime as Frontiers, or in the heart of the Country shall from henceforth and for ever be exempted from all Garisons, introduc’d during the Wars, and left (without prejudice in other things to every one’s Right) at the full liberty and disposal of their Masters.


That it shall not for the future, or at present, prove to the damage and prejudice of any Town, that has been taken and kept by the one or other Party; but that all and every one of them, with their Citizens and Inhabitants, shall enjoy as well the general Benefit of the Amnesty, as the rest of this Pacification. And for the Remainder of their Rights and Privileges, Ecclesiastical and Secular, which they enjoy’d before these Troubles, they shall be maintain’d therein; save, nevertheless the Rights of Sovereignty, and what depends thereon, for the Lords to whom they belong.


Finally, that the Troops and Armys of all those who are making War in the Empire, shall be disbanded and discharg’d; only each Party shall send to and keep up as many Men in his own Dominion, as he shall judge necessary for his Security.


The Ambassadors and Plenipotentiarys of the Emperor, of the King, and the States of the Empire, promise respectively and the one to the other, to cause the Emperor, the most Christian King, the Electors of the Sacred Roman Empire, the Princes and States, to agree and ratify the Peace which has been concluded in this manner, and by general Consent; and so infallibly to order it, that the solemn Acts of Ratification be presented at Munster, and mutually and in good form exchang’d in the term of eight weeks, to reckon from the day of signing.


For the greater Firmness of all and every one of these Articles, this present Transaction shall serve for a perpetual Law and establish’d Sanction of the Empire, to be inserted like other fundamental Laws and Constitutions of the Empire in the Acts of the next Diet of the Empire, and the Imperial Capitulation; binding no less the absent than the present, the Ecclesiasticks than Seculars, whether they be States of the Empire or not: insomuch as that it shall be a prescrib’d Rule, perpetually to be follow’d, as well by the Imperial Counsellors and Officers, as those of other Lords, and all Judges and Officers of Courts of Justice.


That it never shall be alledg’d, allow’d, or admitted, that any Canonical or Civil Law, any general or particular Decrees of Councils, any Privileges, any Indulgences, any Edicts, any Commissions, Inhibitions, Mandates, Decrees, Rescripts, Suspensions of Law, Judgments pronounc’d at any time, Adjudications, Capitulations of the Emperor, and other Rules and Exceptions of Religious Orders, past or future Protestations, Contradictions, Appeals, Investitures, Transactions, Oaths, Renunciations, Contracts, and much less the Edict of 1629. or the Transaction of Prague, with its Appendixes, or the Concordates with the Popes, or the Interims of the Year 1548. or any other politick Statutes, or Ecclesiastical Decrees, Dispensations, Absolutions, or any other Exceptions, under what pretence or colour they can be invented; shall take place against this Convention, or any of its Clauses and Articles neither shall any inhibitory or other Processes or Commissions be ever allow’d to the Plaintiff or Defendant.


That he who by his Assistance or Counsel shall contravene this Transaction or Publick Peace, or shall oppose its Execution and the abovesaid Restitution, or who shall have endeavour’d, after the Restitution has been lawfully made, and without exceeding the manner agreed on before, without a lawful Cognizance of the Cause, and without the ordinary Course of Justice, to molest those that have been restor’d, whether Ecclesiasticks or Laymen; he shall incur the Punishment of being an Infringer of the publick Peace, and Sentence given against him according to the Constitutions of the Empire, so that the Restitution and Reparation may have its full effect.


That nevertheless the concluded Peace shall remain in force, and all Partys in this Transaction shall be oblig’d to defend and protect all and every Article of this Peace against any one, without distinction of Religion; and if it happens any point shall be violated, the Offended shall before all things exhort the Offender not to come to any Hostility, submitting the Cause to a friendly Composition, or the ordinary Proceedings of Justice.


Nevertheless, if for the space of three years the Difference cannot be terminated by any of those means, all and every one of those concern’d in this Transaction shall be oblig’d to join the injur’d Party, and assist him with Counsel and Force to repel the Injury, being first advertis’d by the injur’d that gentle Means and Justice prevail’d nothing; but without prejudice, nevertheless, to every one’s Jurisdiction, and the Administration of Justice conformable to the Laws of each Prince and State: and it shall not be permitted to any State of the Empire to pursue his Right by Force and Arms; but if any difference has happen’d or happens for the future, every one shall try the means of ordinary Justice, and the Contravener shall be regarded as an Infringer of the Peace. That which has been determin’d by Sentence of the Judge, shall be put in execution, without distinction of Condition, as the Laws of the Empire enjoin touching the Execution of Arrests and Sentences.


And that the publick Peace may be so much the better preserv’d intire, the Circles shall be renew’d; and as soon as any Beginnings of Troubles are perceiv’d, that which has been concluded in the Constitutions, of the Empire, touching the Execution and Preservation of the Public Peace, shall be observ’d.


And as often as any would march Troops thro’ the other Territorys, this Passage shall be done at the charge of him whom the Troops belong to, and that without burdening or doing any harm or damage to those whole Countrys they march thro’. In a word, all that the Imperial Constitutions determine and ordain touching the Preservation of the publick Peace, shall be strictly observ’d.


In this present Treaty of Peace are comprehended such, who before the Exchange of the Ratification or in six months after, shall be nominated by general Consent, by the one or the other Party; mean time by a common Agreement, the Republick of Venice is therein compriz’d as Mediatrix of this Treaty. It shall also be of no prejudice to the Dukes of Savoy and Modena, or to what they shall act, or are now acting in Italy by Arms for the most Christian King.


In Testimony of all and each of these things, and for their greater Validity, the Ambassadors of their Imperial and most Christian Majestys, and the Deputys, in the name of all the Electors, Princes, and States of the Empire, sent particularly for this end (by virtue of what has been concluded the 13th of October, in the Year hereafter mention’d, and has been deliver’d to the Ambassador of France the very day of signing under the Seal of the Chancellor of Mentz) viz. For the Elector of Mayence, Monsieur Nicolas George de Reigersberg, Knight and Chancellor; for the Elector of Bavaria, Monsieur John Adolph Krebs, Privy Counsellor; for the Elector of Brandenburg, Monsieur John Count of Sain and Witgenstein, Lord of Homburg and Vallendar, Privy Counsellor.

In the Name of the House of Austria, M. George Verie, Count of Wolkenstein, Counsellor of the Emperor’s Court; M. Corneille Gobelius, Counsellor of the Bishop of Bamberg; M. Sebastian William Meel, Privy Counsellor to the Bishop of Wirtzburg; M. John Earnest, Counsellor of the Duke of Bavaria’s Court; M. Wolff Conrad of Thumbshirn, and Augustus Carpzovius, both Counsellors of the Court of Saxe-Altenburg and Coburg; M. John Fromhold, Privy Counsellor of the House of Brandenburg-Culmbac, and Onolzbac; M. Henry Laugenbeck, J.C. to the House of Brunswick-Lunenburg; James Limpodius, J.C. Counsellor of State to the Branch of Calemburg, and Vice-Chancellor of Lunenburg. In the Name of the Counts of the Bench of Wetteraw, M. Matthews Wesembecius, J. D. and Counsellor.

In the Name of the one and the other Bench, M. Marc Ottoh of Strasburg, M. John James Wolff of Ratisbon, M. David Gloxinius of Lubeck, and M. Lewis Christopher Kres of Kressenstein, all Syndick Senators, Counsellors and Advocates of the Republick of Noremberg; who with their proper Hands and Seals have sign’d and seal’d this present Treaty of Peace, and which said Deputys of the several Orders have engag’d to procure the Ratifications of their Superiors in the prefix’d time, and in the manner it has been covenanted, leaving the liberty to the other Plenipotentiarys of States to sign it, if they think it convenient, and send for the Ratifications of their Superiors: And that on condition that by the Subscription of the abovesaid Ambassadors and Deputys, all and every one of the other States who shall abstain from signing and ratifying the present Treaty, shall be no less oblig’d to maintain and observe what is contain d in this present Treaty of Pacification, than if they had subscrib’d and ratify’d it; and no Protestation or Contradiction of the Council of Direction in the Roman Empire shall be valid, or receiv’d in respect to the Subscription and said Deputys have made.

Done, pass’d and concluded at Munster in Westphalia, the 24th Day of October, 1648


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s