The Thirty Years War was a joy to undertake, but it was one shnell of a project. Through it all, my goal was to shed light on the period, which I felt was criminally under-represented in history despite everyone acknowledging the importance of it. 1648 is the date most modern European surveys begin, justifiably or not, but what happened before that date? That's what I seek to explain, as all the previous episodes led me to this incredible story.

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WDF 25.0: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part One: The End of the 16th Century

With a longer title than the war itself, we are finally here with the first of nine parts on the 30 Years War!!! I am very excited, so join me as we look at the rebuilding of France, the failures of Liz' fightback policies, the war within Ireland and much more! Thanksssss!

The first episode in fact hosts the forgotten tale of what came after the failure of the Spanish Armada, as we examine how Elizabeth I sought to take the fight to Philip's Spain.

The first episode in fact hosts the forgotten tale of what came after the failure of the Spanish Armada, as we examine how Elizabeth I sought to take the fight to Philip's Spain.

WDF 25.1: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Two: The Germans and the East

An insanely long title means it's time to (historically) party! So join me for the second part of our special as I delve into the crazy world of the HRE, the Poles, the Ottomans and more! This should introduce you well to the era and flesh out any questions about geopolitics you may have. Thankssss!

The Ottoman Empire was near the peak of its power by the time of 1600 - it would only be in 1683 that much of the light blue colour shown here would be pushed back

The Ottoman Empire was near the peak of its power by the time of 1600 - it would only be in 1683 that much of the light blue colour shown here would be pushed back

WDF 25.2: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Three: Years of Armed Neutrality

Welcome to the long awaited third installment of the TYW special! Today we look at Scandinavia and the history of that region; what it meant for the rest of Europe and how Europe saw it. We also look at the truce between the Dutch and Spanish, the regency of Marie de Medici and Spain's Italian preoccupations. Check us out!

So ruinous had the Spanish Dutch War been by 1609 that a truce was believed to be mutually beneficial for both sides.

So ruinous had the Spanish Dutch War been by 1609 that a truce was believed to be mutually beneficial for both sides.

WDF 25.3: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Four: Defenestrating Prague, Again

And we're back with part 4 of the 30 years war special! This time we look at the apparent cause of the war, at least in the beginning. We look at Bohemia, a lovely place, generally, and then analyse Freddy's decision to accept the crown of Bohemia, as well as Ferdinand's general mean-ness. Take a look!

Sure what else can one do with one's civil servants except throw them out the windows? I still don't understand the rationale behind this, especially since they'd done it before 200 years ago!

Sure what else can one do with one's civil servants except throw them out the windows? I still don't understand the rationale behind this, especially since they'd done it before 200 years ago!

WDF 25.4: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Five: 1620-1623

Wow it's great to be back! Here we bring you up to speed on the years that would make the 30 years war; the building blocks of the conflict if you will! We see a Winter King, a broken Truce and a worsening geopolitical situation that Ferdinand in particular is getting ready to chow down on. Thanks (ssssssssssss).

Frederick V of the Palatinate, also known as the Winter King for his intrigues into Bohemia. The character and motives of Freddy are difficult to untangle today, but he seems to have genuinely believed in his cause, and was let down by his allies who thought his accession to the Bohemian crown a step too far.

Frederick V of the Palatinate, also known as the Winter King for his intrigues into Bohemia. The character and motives of Freddy are difficult to untangle today, but he seems to have genuinely believed in his cause, and was let down by his allies who thought his accession to the Bohemian crown a step too far.

WDF 25.45: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Six: TALK ONE

Surprise! Sean joins me for a TALK episode as we run through Europe's pressing issues up to around 1625. Take it for a spin if you want to fill in the gaps and revise in time for the heavy hitters coming your way soon! Thankssss

WDF 25.5: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Seven: The End of the 1620's I

We're back in two parts! An even more ridiculously long title than before means that you're in for a good one as well! So sit back and relax as we look today at the machinations of Fredrick, who was still very much active from the Hague, while the Danes FINALLY make a move, and generalissimo Wallenstein emerges from Ferdinand's sleevey ace thing! Check it out! Thanksssss

Christian IV Denmark was a critical figure for many Protestant German princes. While on paper the Danish King's resources were impressive, in practical terms he would fall to the impregnable forces of Wallenstein, Ferdinand II's generalissimo

Christian IV Denmark was a critical figure for many Protestant German princes. While on paper the Danish King's resources were impressive, in practical terms he would fall to the impregnable forces of Wallenstein, Ferdinand II's generalissimo

WDF 25.55: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Eight: The End of the 1620's II

Part Two of 25.5 looks at Ferdinand's 'fruits of victory' within the HRE: the Edict of Restitution and the problems it was soon to pose. We then examine the changing diplomatic and strategic situation for the Habsburgs, and outline how the Dutch managed to reverse their fortunes. Thankssss.

Albrecht of Wallenstein was Ferdinand's saviour for much of the 1620s.

Albrecht of Wallenstein was Ferdinand's saviour for much of the 1620s.

WDF 25.6: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Nine: 1630-32 I

Great to be back with our second double batch 3 weeks later. Today we examine the diplomacy like never before; everyone gets a look in, so sit back and relax as everyone talks very nicely for selfish reasons. Some hugely overlooked issues are tackled here, as the Russian element suddenly becomes important. Thanksss

Michael Romanov was the Tsar of Russia during this turbulent time, and would actually rule for the duration of the TYW, though his reign was hampered by Poland's powerful king Sigismund III and the regular interventions he made into his country.

Michael Romanov was the Tsar of Russia during this turbulent time, and would actually rule for the duration of the TYW, though his reign was hampered by Poland's powerful king Sigismund III and the regular interventions he made into his country.

WDF 25.65: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Ten: 1630-32 II

Today we look at Gustavus' legend, imperial goings on and many other issues, as well as the diplomacy you all know and love. The battle of Breitenfeld changed everything in Europe, in the space of a day the Habsburgs were running scared after years of supremacy. Take a bite of me and enojoy!

Who else but Gustavus Adolphus? His victory at Breitenfeld ensured that the TYW would continue into the future, and that it would not end with the crushing Habsburg victory which had at one point seemed certain.

Who else but Gustavus Adolphus? His victory at Breitenfeld ensured that the TYW would continue into the future, and that it would not end with the crushing Habsburg victory which had at one point seemed certain.

WDF 25.7: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Eleven: 1632-1635

Hello folks! Today we look at the situation in Europe following the death of Gustavus; Axe Ox's plans for Germany and the increasing comebacks of the Habsburgs. Thankssss

Axel Oxenstierna was tasked with helping Sweden recover from its massive party induced hangover, and get some order back in the place. He steered Sweden through some of its most difficult years following Gustavus' death.

Axel Oxenstierna was tasked with helping Sweden recover from its massive party induced hangover, and get some order back in the place. He steered Sweden through some of its most difficult years following Gustavus' death.

WDF 25.75: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Twelve: 1635-1638

Back so soon? Today we look at the results of Nordlingen, how France justified war and how Sweden and the Dutch tried to hold on despite the new Imperial onslaught. Thanksss!

Cardinal Richelieu was arguably the most important French statesman of the 17th century, and his role in the TYW was profound, particularly after the French entry into the war in 1635

Cardinal Richelieu was arguably the most important French statesman of the 17th century, and his role in the TYW was profound, particularly after the French entry into the war in 1635

WDF 25.8: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Thirteen: 1638-1642

Welcome back! Here we look at the years 1638-42; what everyone was doing and why. Of particular mention is the Spanish ruin in the face of its angry so-called friends, as well as the numerous meetings that would soon form the backbone of Westphalia. Eventually. THANKSSSSSSS!

The Portuguese Restoration War erupted in 1640 amidst growing problems elsewhere in the Iberian Union - it became clear that in the person of John IV, also known as John the Restorer, the Portuguese people would have their man. The war would outlast the TYW itself, and would result in yet another messy separation for the troubled Spanish Empire.

The Portuguese Restoration War erupted in 1640 amidst growing problems elsewhere in the Iberian Union - it became clear that in the person of John IV, also known as John the Restorer, the Portuguese people would have their man. The war would outlast the TYW itself, and would result in yet another messy separation for the troubled Spanish Empire.

WDF 25.85: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Fourteen: 1642-1645

Nobody told them that Westphalia was due to be signed in a few short years, so there's still plenty going on! Spain continues to shrivel up, while France desperately goes it alone thanks to Swedish preocupation with... well I won't spoil the surprise, you should just know that France and Sweden came a little bit prepared thanks to their requests to ____ to join in the war. Well you can't expect me to give it all away can you? Just listen! And thanksssssSSSSSSSSS

The Battle of Rocroi in 1643 marked the dramatic end of Spanish military supremacy in Europe. Broken emphatically by the French, it resembled a changing of the guard in the camp of the great powers which would be fully realised come the Peace of the Pyrenees in 1659.

The Battle of Rocroi in 1643 marked the dramatic end of Spanish military supremacy in Europe. Broken emphatically by the French, it resembled a changing of the guard in the camp of the great powers which would be fully realised come the Peace of the Pyrenees in 1659.

WDF 25.92: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Fifteen: Making Westphalia I

So much happens in the years 1645-48 that I elected to split it into 4 more manageable episodes rather than 2 large ones. We jump into the first part here; we establish the major ideas that were going around at the time, and we introduce you to what everyone wanted and what tried to make everyone think they wanted. Thanksss!

The Peace of Westphalia would not come for a few tenuous years to a Europe aching from the throes of war. Much had changed since the Bohemians first threw their magnates out the window, and even Ferdinand II himself seemed like a distant memory.

The Peace of Westphalia would not come for a few tenuous years to a Europe aching from the throes of war. Much had changed since the Bohemians first threw their magnates out the window, and even Ferdinand II himself seemed like a distant memory.

WDF 25.94: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Sixteen: Making Westphalia II

We continue our narrative here, as everyone decides what it will take to make them make love not war. The Ottomans make a cameo too! What's not to love? Thanks!

For some powers represented at Westphalia, the peace couldn't come soon enough. Maximilian of Bavaria had been at his greatest high and worst low in the thirty years since his electorate entered into the war on the side of the Habsburgs. Since then his fortunes and fortune had waxed and waned, but by the 1640s his lands were literally desperate for peace.

For some powers represented at Westphalia, the peace couldn't come soon enough. Maximilian of Bavaria had been at his greatest high and worst low in the thirty years since his electorate entered into the war on the side of the Habsburgs. Since then his fortunes and fortune had waxed and waned, but by the 1640s his lands were literally desperate for peace.

WDF 25.96: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Seventeen: Making Westphalia III

We're back with our penultimate episode on the TYW! Within you'll find the final stages of the negotiations, especially those happening in 1646, as all involved try to leverage their way into a better position. Check it out!

Though not technically part of the Peace of Westphalia, having sorted their affairs out by May rather than October like the French, Swedes and Imperials, the Dutch were quote capable of throwing their own banquet to mark the end of their own conflict with Spain - the Eighty Years War. Credit triadvisor.com

Though not technically part of the Peace of Westphalia, having sorted their affairs out by May rather than October like the French, Swedes and Imperials, the Dutch were quote capable of throwing their own banquet to mark the end of their own conflict with Spain - the Eighty Years War. Credit triadvisor.com

WDF 25.98: SPECIAL= The 30 Years War Part Eighteen: Westphalia, Made

Finally, it's been a long time in the making, but we can at last bring you the final part of the WDF special on the TYW. Herein lies the tales that wrap up the most destructive, but also the most important, conflict in the 17th century. Here my thoughts and conclusions on the whole thing, as well as whole raft of thanksssss!

One imagines that it actually was as chaotic and disorganised in the peace making as this painting suggested - that probably explains why it took so flaming long! Europe emerged at peace (with the exception of France and Spain) following a three decade period of intense warfare. It remained to be seen if the continent would indeed be at peace, of if the remainder of the century was to be just like the first terrible half. If you're wondering how it went, let's just say the Post-Westphalian Age gave us a load of material to work with.

One imagines that it actually was as chaotic and disorganised in the peace making as this painting suggested - that probably explains why it took so flaming long! Europe emerged at peace (with the exception of France and Spain) following a three decade period of intense warfare. It remained to be seen if the continent would indeed be at peace, of if the remainder of the century was to be just like the first terrible half. If you're wondering how it went, let's just say the Post-Westphalian Age gave us a load of material to work with.