The Thirty Years’ War engulfed Europe between 1618 and 1648. It was a clash between Protestants and Catholics in Germany, which spread into a wider conflict involving Denmark, Sweden, and France.
Table 48. THIRTY YEARS’ WAR
|1618||Protestant revolt in Prague|
|1625–1629||Denmark enters war for the Protestants|
|1630||Sweden joins Protestant cause|
|1635||France joins the war as Sweden’s ally|
|1646||France and Sweden invade Bavaria|
|1648||Treaty of Westphalia ends the war|
The Catholic Habsburg family ruled the Holy Roman Empire and Spain. When the Habsburgs tried to place a Catholic on the throne of Protestant Bohemia, their representatives were hurled from a window of Prague castle. Rebellion spread across Germany as Protestant princes within the empire challenged its authority.
The war was part of a wider struggle between the Holy Roman Empire and its enemies. Denmark, Sweden, and France all opposed the empire. The Swedish king Gustavus Adolphus, “Lion of the North,” was victorious at Lützen in 1632, but died in battle.