It dominates in particular thanks to its religion, Catholicism, majority religion throughout Western Europe. But for some time, Protestant currents are born and question the Roman church. -Roman Church, I have a problem, German populations begin to become Lutheran. -Oh, it was you who also gave them too much religious freedom … In short, in 1618 the war began, the small Protestant countries of northern Germany against Austria and the Spanish Netherlands. But also the small Protestant countries of southern Germany against northern Catholic Italy. All this within the Holy Roman Empire. Among the small Protestant states, two will decide to merge, Brandenburg and Prussia. Casually, it will appeal to Denmark, a Protestant country. -It’s interesting this conflict, if I help northern Germany which is Protestant, I could hope to enlarge my territory.
In 1625, Denmark intervenes in the conflict but following a series of defeats, he surrendered in 1629. Catholic forces regain control of northern Germany. Denmark is giving up on becoming a European power. However, France entered the conflict indirectly due to an inheritance problem in Mantua, in northern Italy. This forces the Spaniards who were in the area to fight France but also Protestants. Sweden, which is also Protestant, enters the conflict in 1630. -Since there is more Denmark, I give it a go. France, she, a Catholic country, will not hesitate to help the Swedes financially, because a decline in Austrian or Spanish influence only helps. Then in 1635, she declared war on Spain.
This will weaken the Spaniards who ten years later will have to surrender, the Austrians too. In short, in 1648, the 30 years war ended. Protestants and the French will benefit the most. The Holy Roman Empire remains in place, but three territories will leave it definitively. First, the Protestant Northwest Territories, which form the United Provinces of the Netherlands. Then, the Protestant territories of the south which form the confederation of 13 cantons, future Switzerland. And the western part of Germany, Catholic, which will be annexed by France. Pomeranian, north of Germany is shared between Sweden and Brandenburg, the latter although Protestant continues to remain in the Holy Roman Empire. The war will however continue between France and Spain who will fix their borders in 1659.
But let’s go back. In 1654, following the crises affecting Poland, Russia, helped by Ukrainian rebels from Poland, decides to invade this country. This worries Sweden, which can boast of being a European power, she entered the war against Russia in 1655. Sweden is positioned as a protector of Protestant populations in Poland, who are in fact Germans. Brandenburg-Prussia hesitates to intervene. -Sweden is increasing its influence on territories which are rather Germans. But on the other hand, the Swedes are Protestants like us … Eventually, Brandenburg allies with Sweden. In 1657, Brandenburg made an agreement with Poland which gives him the German territories and leaves the conflict. In 1658, Russia left the conflict also against Sweden to focus on helping the Ukrainian rebels.
But in the meantime, Denmark has time to intervene against Sweden and in 1660, Sweden came out on top. After this conflict in northern Europe, Sweden gains many territories which were Polish or Danish. Sweden is at its peak. In 1668, France, dissatisfied with the Treaty of the Pyrenees take advantage of Spain’s moment of weakness to attack him in the Spanish Netherlands. Because in view of the Spanish possessions, we can say that Spain encircles France. The United Provinces of the Netherlands aided by England and Sweden will try to slow down France which will have to be satisfied with annexing a small part of Flanders. -Well, this war against Spain is over, but it annoys me that the United Provinces made a union with England against me. France will therefore contact England. -Listen to England, I intend to attack Holland, in return I give you money and you help me. England and France declared war on Holland.
The Holy Empire will come to the aid of the Netherlands. Then Sweden will come to the aid of the French, the Danes will enter against Sweden and Brandenburg. In 1677, a marriage between the English and the Dutch monarch ended the war earlier than expected. France prefers to stop it there before England fights against it. France returns all conquered Dutch territories and recovers Franche-Comté which was Spanish. But the war will continue between Sweden and Denmark but which will not bring about territorial changes. Spain on the other hand, will try to restart a war against France hoping to recover what she had lost recently, but Holland will not want to help him anymore. -Listen to Spain, I have done too much war recently, let go of these territories. Spain is therefore going to ask Austria for help. -Austria! Austria! Come help me!
But Austria cannot answer the aid, Turkey is attacking him just then. Let’s not forget that Turkey had just ended a war against Russia and they sit in Vienna in 1683.
But the Turks lose and in 1699 the treaty and allows Austria to gain the Hungarian territories that belonged to the Ottoman Empire. France, for its part, was an ally of the Turks, in the hope of seeing Austria weaken once and for all. As a result, wars took place in French territory until 1697, but it ended in crisis on both sides. In 1700, Spain saw its monarch die. It remains to be seen whether the successor will be pro-French or pro-Austrian. A war begins again between the two European powers. In 1707 Scotland united with England and form the Kingdom of Great Britain. In 1712, the two countries managed to come to an arrangement despite Spain. Austria reclaims Spanish territories like the Spanish Netherlands which become the Austrian Netherlands. The United Provinces of the Netherlands, just as Spain are the two big losers in the war,even if they haven’t officially lost, they simply saw their influence drastically diminish in Europe. The English, for their part, receive American territories which belonged to France, for England it is the beginning of its expansion in America. The Duchy of Savoy which took part in the war reclaims the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies who was spanish then swap it for Sardinia and will become the Kingdom of Sardinia. Brandenburg-Prussia finally becomes a real kingdom following this war.
Spain will try to go to war against the European powers again, but will lose. In short, following this Spanish war, two countries have weakened, Spain and the Netherlands and two small countries were able to start making a name for themselves: The Kingdom of Sardinia and the Kingdom of Prussia Although weakened, Spain will come to the aid of France and Sardinia during the Polish War of Succession against Austria and Russia. Spain will take the opportunity to regain the Kingdom of Two Sicilies. Now, after all these wars, two countries are discreet. The first is England which begins to let off steam elsewhere in the seas of world since the decline of Dutch influence, the second is Prussia, tiny German country before the 30 years war begins to have great ambition in this Europe.