1st Edition

The Ashgate Research Companion to the Thirty Years' War

By Olaf Asbach, Peter Schröder Copyright 2014

    The Thirty Years’ War (1618-1648) remains a puzzling and complex subject for students and scholars alike. This is hardly surprising since it is often contested among historians whether it is actually appropriate to speak of a single war or a series of conflicts. Similarly emphasis is also put on the different motives for going to war, as conflicting religious and political interests were involved. This research companion brings together leading scholars in the field to synthesize the range of existing research on the war, which is still fragmented and divided along national historical lines, and to further explore the complexities of the conflict using an innovative comparative approach. The companion is designed to provide scholars and graduate students with a comprehensive and authoritative overview of research on one of the most destructive conflicts in European history.

    Contents: The Thirty Years’ War - an introduction, Olaf Asbach and Peter Schröder. Part I The Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation: Imperial politics 1555-1618, Joachim Whaley; The Palatinate and its networks in the Empire and in Europe, Brennan Pursell. Part II The Great Powers, Coalitions and Conflicting Interests: The emperor, Christoph Kampmann; The Spanish monarchy and the challenges of the Thirty Years’ War, Gabriel Guarino; Denmark, Paul Douglas Lockhart; Sweden, Pärtel Piirimäe; France and the Thirty Years’ War, Lucien Bély; The papacy, Guido Braun; Non-splendid isolation: the Ottoman empire and the Thirty Years’ War, Maria Baramova. Part III Different Stages and Theatres of the War: 1618-1629, Ronald G. Asch; 1629-1635, Toby Osborne; The long war (1635-1648), Tryntje Helfferich; The Dutch-Spanish war in the Low Countries 1621-1648, Olaf van Nimwegen; The Thirty Years’ War in Italy 1628-1659, Sven Externbrink. Part IV Religion and Politics: The Peace of 1555 - a failed settlement?, Matthias Pohlig; The Edict of Restitution (1629) and the failure of Catholic restoration, Marc R. Forster; Lutherans, Calvinists and the road to a normative year, Ralf-Peter Fuchs; The Thirty Years’ War - a religious war? Religion and Machiavellism at the turning point of 1635, Cornel Zwierlein; The material conditions of war, John Theibault; The experience of war, Sigrun Haude; Strategy and the conduct of war, Peter H. Wilson. Part V Experience and Praxis of War: The Peace of Prague - a failed settlement?, Martin Espenhorst (née Peters); The settlement of 1648 for the German empire, Axel Gotthard; The Peace of Westphalia: a European peace, Heinz Duchardt; A peace for the whole world? Perceptions and effects of the Peace Treaty of Münster (1648) on the world outside Europe, Susan Richter. Index.


    Olaf Asbach is Professor of Political Science at the University of Hamburg, Germany, and Peter Schröder is Senior Lecturer in Early Modern History at University College London, UK.

    "The complexity of the War makes it a challenging subject for both scholars and undergraduates, but this collection of articles comprehensively and authoritatively reviews current historiographical opinion to shed new light over the field."

    Mariusz Bęcławski, Kozminski University, Poland, Journal of the Australian and New Zealand Association for Medieval and Early Modern Studies