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Central European Monarchs Clash

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1 Central European Monarchs Clash
Chapter 5 Section 3

2 Main Ideas After a period of turmoil, absolute monarchs ruled Austria and the Germanic state of Prussia. Prussia built a strong military tradition in Germany that contributed in part to world wars in the 20th century.

3 Introduction The Peace of Augsburg (1555) had temporarily settled their religious differences. They had agreed that the faith of each prince would determine the faith of their subjects. Churches in Germany could be Lutheran or Catholic, but not Calvinist. Peace was short-lived and was replaced by a long war.


5 Bohemian Protestants Revolt
1618 – War began. Ferdinand II - head of the Hapsburg family. Ruled Czech republic of Bohemia. Protestants in Bohemia did not trust Ferdinand. He was a Catholic & a foreigner. Closed some Protestant churches. Revolt Sends army to crush revolt.

6 The Thirty Years’ War Lutheran and Catholic princes tried to gain followers. Both groups felt threatened by Calvinism because it was spreading through Germany and gaining many followers. Tension continued and the Lutherans formed the Protestant Union. The Catholic princes then formed the Catholic League. With two groups ready to fight, it wouldn’t take much to set off a war.

7 Beginning of Thirty Years’ War
German Protestant princes took this chance to challenge their Catholic emperor. This began the Thirty Years’ War. Conflict over religion and territory and for power among European ruling families. Two phases: Hapsburg triumphs & Hapsburg defeats.

8 Hapsburg Triumphs During the first twelve years, Hapsburg armies crushed Protestant armies. Ferdinand paid his army of 125,000 men by allowing them to rob German villages. This army destroyed everything in its path.

9 Hapsburg Defeats Swedish army drove the Hapsburg armies out of Germany. Cardinal Richelieu and Cardinal Mazarin feared the Hapsburgs more than the Protestants. They wanted the French king to stay the most powerful. Finished off the Hapsburg armies.

10 Ending the War War greatly damaged Germany.
It’s population dropped by 4 million. Germany’s economy was ruined. Peace of Westphalia ended the war.

11 Peace of Westphalia This treaty had many consequences:
Weakened Spain & Austria (Hapsburg states) Strengthened France by awarding it German territory. German princes became independent of Holy Roman emperor. Ended religious wars in Europe. New method of peace negotiation.

12 Beginning of Modern States
The treaty banned the idea that the Catholic empire would rule most of Europe. Recognized Europe as a group of equal, independent states. Basically, the Catholic Church loses control.

13 States Form in Central Europe
Strong states formed more slowly in central Europe than western Europe. Major central powers: Poland Holy Roman Empire Ottoman Empire None were very strong until the mid-1600s.

14 Western Europe v. Eastern Europe

15 Economic Contrasts with the West
Economy was very different from western Europe. In the West – serfs slowly won freedom & moved to towns. Became middle-class & gained economic power. Central Europe passed laws restricting the ability of serfs to gain freedom & move to cities. Wanted serfs to produce large harvests. Sell the surplus to western Europe.

16 Several Weak Empires Central Europe also blocked the development of strong kings. Ottoman Empire had already expanded as far as possible. Began to decline. Holy Roman Empire was seriously weakened by the Thirty Years’ War. No longer had any real power.

17 Austria Grows Stronger
Hapsburgs tried to become absolute monarchs. 1. Conquered Bohemia. 2. Centralized the government & created an army. 3. Took Hungary back from the Ottoman Empire.

18 Maria Theresa Inherits the Austrian Throne
With Austria increasing their territory, they wanted to make sure that they kept it. Charles VI had other European leaders sign an agreement recognizing his daughter, Maria Theresa as the heir to all Hapsburg territories. She still faced years of war. Main enemy Prussia.

19 Maria Theresa Looked out for working class.
Decreased power of the nobility. Mother of Marie Antoinette.

20 Prussia Challenges Austria
Prussia rose to power in the late 1600s, like Austria. Prussia’s ruling family = Hohenzollerns. Prussia had ambitions that upset Europe’s balance of power.

21 The Rise of Prussia Controlled small German states of Brandenburg and Prussia. Frederick William controlled Brandenburg. Decided that a strong army was needed to ensure safety. Moved toward absolute monarchy. Created strongest army in Europe.

22 Frederick the Great Frederick William worried that his son, Frederick, was not military enough to rule. Loved music, philosophy & poetry. Tried to run away with a friend when he was young. Punishment? Watched his friend get beheaded.

23 Frederick the Great (cont.)
Followed in his father’s military policies. Softened some of his father’s laws. Encouraged religious toleration & legal reform. Believed a ruler should be a father to his people.

24 War of Austrian Succession
Maria Theresa succeeded her father. Frederick wanted Austrian land that bordered Prussia. He underestimated Maria’s strength. He sent his army in 1740 & started a war. Maria stopped Prussia. But pursuant to a treaty, Prussia received the land.

25 The Seven Years’ War Maria Theresa made an alliance with France.
Frederick became scared and signed a treaty with Great Britain. Austria, France, Russia, etc. v. Britain & Prussia. Prussia & Austria had switched allies. Russia played a role in European affairs for the first time.

26 Seven Years’ War (cont.)
Frederick attacked Saxony, Austria’s ally. All European powers were involved in war. Fought in Europe, India & North America. Did not change any territory in Europe. Britain got France’s colonies. Prussia emerges as a European power.

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