Bohemia Implications

Bohemia Implications

The Bohemian crisis is generally considered to be the first stage of the Thirty Years War. The Bohemian revolt was finally defeated in the Battle of White Mountain near Prague on 8 November 1620, however the conflict continued for the next 28 years.

Battle of White Mountain
Battle of White Mountain

The conflict raised many questions about leadership and power in the Empire. Bohemia implications included:

1. The Defenestration of Prague was a sign of dissatisfaction and unrest in the empire.  The act of throwing two Catholic representatives of Holy Roman Emperor Matthias out the window of the Bohemian Chancellery was highly symbolic. It symbolised political dissent and raised questions over leadership in Bohemia.

2. The Protestants’ defeat at the Battle of White Mountain had far-reaching implications. An English envoy in Bohemia summed up the significance of the battle to Protestants across Bohemia and Europe.

“The loss of soldiers was not much unequal, but the loss of cannon, the baggage, reputation, is the Imperialists victory who, as it seems, hold Bohemia now by conquest.”

Ferdinand expelled all Protestants and abolished the constitution. All over Europe Catholics celebrated the victory, but the defeat concerned Britain, France and the Protestant German states. France and Holland reacted by allying against the Habsburgs by the Treaty of Compiegne (10 June 1624), closely followed by England, Sweden, Denmark, Savoy and Venice.

3. The conflict had far-reaching implications in Bohemia itself. The Czech defeat at the Battle of White Mountain was followed by measures that ensured Habsburg authority and the dominance of the Roman Catholic Church. A estimated five-sixths of the Czech nobility were forced to flee Bohemia and some were even executed. Large numbers of Czech and German Protestant burghers emigrated. In 1622, the entire education system of the Bohemian Kingdom was placed under Jesuit control when Charles University was merged with the Jesuit Academy. In 1624, all non-Catholic priests were expelled by royal decree.

The revolt in Bohemia and victory of the Catholics sent shockwaves through the world, leading to international involvement and a war that would change the landscape of Europe.

See also: Bohemia

MLA Citation/Reference

"Bohemia Implications". HistoryLearning.com. 2015. Web.