Reconstruction and Resurgence, 1648–1705: the Reich Under Ferdinand III And Leopold I

Joachim Whaley

in Germany and the Holy Roman Empire

Published in print November 2011 | ISBN: 9780199693078
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191732256 | DOI:

Series: Oxford History of Early Modern Europe

Reconstruction and Resurgence, 1648–1705: the Reich Under Ferdinand III And Leopold I

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Against the traditional view that the Reich declined after the Peace of Westphalia, this section argues that Ferdinand III and Leopold I forged a viable synthesis of German monarchy and German liberty. They were aided by a general desire for peace and by the need to defend the Reich repeatedly against France and the Turks. The Reichstag again became the central decision forum for negotiation between emperor and princes. Leopold I shrewdly exploited his position as overlord and supreme judge and the court at Vienna became a central vehicle of imperial authority. Leopold's reaffirmation of the crown's special relationship with the church (Reichskirche) and the cities further strengthened his position. He inspired plans for the economic regeneration of the Reich (J.J. Becher) and for academies of arts and sciences (Leibniz), schemes for religious reconciliation (Spinola, Molanus, Leibniz) and new writing about the nature of the Reich (Conring, Hugo, Pufendorf, Leibniz).

Keywords: Ferdinand III; Leopold I; Perpetual Diet; France; Turks; supreme judge; dynastic elevations; imperial church; imperial cities; economic regeneration; arts and sciences; religious reconciliation; Leibniz; Becher; Hugo; Pufendorf

Chapter.  50944 words. 

Subjects: Early Modern History (1500 to 1700)

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