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Unit Iv Ap European History Essay

8861 words - 36 pages

Reese Orsini October 17 -November 7 Unit IV APEH
FQ1: What economic, social and political crises did Europe experience in the first half of the seventeenth century?During the 17th century, Europe faced one primary crisis from each category, the Witchcraft hysteria for the social, the Thirty Years' war for the political and continent-wide rebellions between differing economic classes . Prior to the widespread witchcraft craze, witchcraft was a common practice in rural towns and villages but had yet been linked by the church to satanic practices and activities. As a result of the Spanish church's inquisition, witchcraft became a popular charge to tack on to a non-Christian suspect who would ...view middle of the document...

King Matthias of Bohemia, who was also Holy Roman Emperor, had no legitimate heirs and in 1617 named the Archduke of Austria, Ferdinand, heir to the Bohemian throne and likewise put him line to become Holy Roman Emperor. This alarmed the primarily Calvinist population of Bohemia as Ferdinand was an ardent Catholic. The newly formed Calvinist rebels in Bohemia appealed to the other Protestant states in the Holy Roman Empire for help in deposing Catholic rule, but their efforts and those of the few allies they found failed; the Bohemians were defeated decisively by Ferdinand - now Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand II - in 1620 at the Battle of White Mountain. As a result, Catholicism was forced upon Bohemia, and the Protestant king the Bohemians had attempted to install, Frederick V, was exiled from the Holy Roman Empire. With the consolidation of power in the Holy Roman Empire by the Emperor, Ferdinand II, France worried about being surrounded, as the Hapsburg family had members installed as both the King of Spain and the Holy Roman Emperor. Meanwhile, Protestant Sweden worried about the growing Catholic forces of the Holy Roman Emperor and what that would mean for Swedish control of the Baltic Sea. As a result, Sweden landed troops in Pomerania in 1630 and France and Sweden signed an alliance - despite France being a Catholic country - to aid the Protestant German states. Led by their King Gustavus Adolphus, until he died in battle in 1632. After his death, the imperial Catholic forces began to regain lost territory and in 1635 concluded a peace with the Protestant states of the Holy Roman Empire. The 1648 Peace of Westphalia ended both the drawn out political conflict, ended Europe's long series of religious wars and more importantly resulted in the decline of Spanish military prominence in the European states.FQ2: What was absolutism in theory and how did its actual practice in France reflect or differ from theory?Prior to the implementation of an absolute monarch in France, the country was largely separated into smaller, provincial based regions who lacked an overarching power to govern them. Absolutism is a political theory and form of government where unlimited, complete power is held by a centralized sovereign individual, with no checks or balances from any other part of the nation or government. In effect, the ruling individual has 'absolute' power, with no legal, electoral or other challenges to that power. This was best stated by French author and bishop, Jacques Bossuet in his work Politics drawn from the Very Words of The Holy Scripture. In his theory, Bossuet described the government as a form of God's power on earth, and as a result of this, a king had complete jurisdiction over his area and his people. This also meant that the king owed to submission to any form of governance, even a parliament that other monarchies had experimented with. However, French rulers who attempted to exercise the powers that Bossuet believed to be theirs were...

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