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Leopold I
Portrait by Benjamin von Block, c. 1672
Holy Roman Emperor
Reign18 July 1658 – 5 May 1705
Coronation1 August 1658
Frankfurt Cathedral
PredecessorFerdinand III
SuccessorJoseph I
Born(1640-06-09)9 June 1640
Vienna, Archduchy of Austria, Holy Roman Empire
Died5 May 1705(1705-05-05) (aged 64)
Vienna, Archduchy of Austria, Holy Roman Empire
(m. 1666; died 1673)​
(m. 1673; died 1676)​
(m. 1676)​
Leopold Ignaz Joseph Balthasar Franz Felician
FatherFerdinand III, Holy Roman Emperor
MotherMaria Anna of Spain
ReligionCatholic Church
SignatureLeopold I's signature

Leopold I (Leopold Ignaz Joseph Balthasar Franz Felician; Hungarian: I. Lipót; 9 June 1640 – 5 May 1705) was Holy Roman Emperor, King of Hungary, Croatia, and Bohemia. The second son of Ferdinand III, Holy Roman Emperor, by his first wife, Maria Anna of Spain, Leopold became heir apparent in 1654 after the death of his elder brother Ferdinand IV. Elected in 1658, Leopold ruled the Holy Roman Empire until his death in 1705, becoming the second longest-ruling Habsburg emperor (46 years and 9 months). He was both a composer and considerable patron of music.

Leopold's reign is known for conflicts with the Ottoman Empire in the Great Turkish War (1683–1699) and rivalry with Louis XIV, a contemporary and first cousin (on the maternal side; fourth cousin on the paternal side), in the west. After more than a decade of warfare, Leopold emerged victorious in the east thanks to the military talents of Prince Eugene of Savoy. By the Treaty of Karlowitz, Leopold recovered almost all of the Kingdom of Hungary, which had fallen under Turkish power in the years after the 1526 Battle of Mohács.

Leopold fought three wars against France: the Franco-Dutch War, the Nine Years' War, and the War of the Spanish Succession. In this last, Leopold sought to give his younger son Charles the entire Spanish inheritance, disregarding the will of the late Charles II. Leopold started a war that soon engulfed much of Europe. The early years of the war went fairly well for Austria, with victories at Schellenberg and Blenheim, but the war would drag on until 1714, nine years after Leopold's death, which barely had an effect on the warring states. When peace returned with the Treaty of Rastatt, Austria could not be said to have emerged as triumphant as it had from the war against the Turks.[1]

Early years

Europe after the Peace of Westphalia in 1648

Born on 9 June 1640 in Vienna, Leopold received the traditional program of education in the liberal arts, history, literature, natural science and astronomy. He was particularly interested in music, as his father Emperor Ferdinand III had been. From an early age Leopold showed an inclination toward learning.[2] He became fluent in Latin, Italian, German, and Spanish.[3] In addition to German, Italian would be the most favored language at his court.

Likewise he had received comprehensive ecclesiastical training as he had originally been selected for a career in the higher clergy. This plan, though, was dropped upon the 1654 death of his older brother, Ferdinand IV, when Leopold became heir apparent.[4][5] Nonetheless, Leopold's spiritual education had had a manifest impact on him. Leopold remained under the spell of his clerical education and Jesuit influence throughout his life. For a monarch he was uncommonly knowledgeable about theology, metaphysics, jurisprudence and the sciences. He also retained his interest in astrology and alchemy which he had developed under Jesuit tutors.[4] A deeply religious and devoted person, Leopold personified the pietas Austriaca, or the loyal Catholic attitude of his house. On the other hand, his piety and education may have caused in him a fatalistic strain which inclined him to reject all compromise on denominational questions, which is not always considered a positive characteristic of a ruler.[6][1]

Young Leopold by anonymous, c. 1660

Leopold was said to have typical Habsburg physical attributes, such as the prominent Habsburg lower jaw. Short, thin, and of sick constitution, Leopold was cold and reserved in public and socially inept. However, he is also said to have been open with close associates. Coxe described Leopold in the following manner: "His gait was stately, slow and deliberate; his air pensive, his address awkward, his manner uncouth, his disposition cold and phlegmatic."[7] Spielman argues that his long-expected career in the clergy caused Leopold to have "early adopted the intense Catholic piety expected of him and the gentle manners appropriate to a merely supporting role. He grew to manhood without the military ambition that characterized most of his fellow monarchs. From the beginning, his reign was defensive and profoundly conservative."[8]

Elected king of Hungary in 1655, he followed suit in 1656 and 1657 in Bohemia and Croatia respectively. In July 1658, more than a year after his father's death, Leopold was elected Holy Roman Emperor at Frankfurt in opposition to the French Cardinal Mazarin, who sought to place the Imperial Crown on the head of Ferdinand Maria, Elector of Bavaria or some other non-Habsburg prince. To conciliate France, which had considerable influence in German affairs thanks to the League of the Rhine, the newly elected emperor promised not to assist Spain, then at war with France.[9] This marked the beginning of a nearly 47-year reign characterized by a lasting rivalry with France and its king, Louis XIV. The latter's dominant personality and power completely overshadowed Leopold, even to this day, but Leopold was no less a warrior-king given the greater part of his public life was directed towards the arrangement and furtherance of wars.[10]

Second Northern War

Leopold's first war was the Second Northern War (1655–1660), in which King Charles X of Sweden tried to become King of Poland with the aid of allies including György II Rákóczi, Prince of Transylvania. Leopold's predecessor, Ferdinand III, had allied with King John II Casimir Vasa of Poland in 1656. In 1657, Leopold expanded this alliance to include Austrian troops (paid by Poland). These troops helped defeat the Transylvanian army, and campaigned as far as Denmark. The war ended with the Treaty of Oliwa in 1660.[1][11]

Early wars against the Ottoman Empire

The Ottoman Empire often interfered in the affairs of Transylvania, always an unruly state, and this interference brought on a war with the Holy Roman Empire, which after some desultory operations really began in 1663. By a personal appeal to the diet at Regensburg Leopold induced the princes to send assistance for the campaign; troops were also sent by France, and in August 1664, the great Imperial general Raimondo Montecuccoli gained a notable victory at Saint Gotthard. By the Peace of Vasvár the Emperor made a twenty years' truce with the Sultan, granting more generous terms than his recent victory seemed to render necessary.[1][11]

Wars against France

Leopold I, painted by Guido Cagnacci (1657–1658)

French expansion increasingly threatened the empire, especially the seizure of the strategic Duchy of Lorraine in 1670, followed by the 1672 Franco-Dutch War. By mid-June, the Dutch Republic teetered at the brink of destruction, which led Leopold to agree to an alliance with Brandenburg-Prussia and the Republic on 25 June.[12] However, he was also facing a revolt in Hungary and viewed French conquests in the Rhineland a higher priority than helping the Dutch. His commander, Raimondo Montecuccoli, was ordered to remain on the defensive and avoid a direct conflict. Chaotic logistics made it impossible to maintain the troops and Brandenburg left the war in June 1673 under the Treaty of Vossem.[13][1]

An anti-French Quadruple Alliance was formed in August, consisting of the Dutch Republic, Spain, Emperor Leopold, and the Duke of Lorraine, while in May 1674, the Imperial Diet declared it an Imperial war. The 1678 Treaty of Nijmegen is generally seen as a French victory, although the Alliance succeeded in limiting their gains.[11]

Holy Roman Emperor
Coats of arms

Almost immediately after the conclusion of peace Louis renewed his aggressions on the German frontier through the Réunions policy. Engaged in a serious struggle with the Ottoman Empire, the emperor was again slow to move, and although he joined the Association League against France in 1682 he was glad to make a truce at Regensburg two years later. The whole European position was now bound up with events in England, and the tension lasted until 1688, when William III of Orange won the English crown through the Glorious Revolution and Louis invaded Germany. In May 1689, the Grand Alliance was formed, including the emperor, the kings of England, Spain and Denmark, the Elector of Brandenburg and others, and a fierce struggle against France was waged throughout almost the whole of Western Europe. In general the several campaigns were favourable to the allies, and in September 1697, England, Spain and the United Provinces made peace with France at the Treaty of Rijswijk.[1]

Leopold refused to assent to the treaty, as he considered that his allies had somewhat neglected his interests, but in the following month he came to terms and a number of places were transferred from France to the Holy Roman Empire. The peace with France lasted for about four years and then Europe was involved in the War of the Spanish Succession. The King of Spain, Charles II, was a Habsburg by descent and was related by marriage to the Austrian branch, while a similar tie bound him to the royal house of France. He was feeble and childless, and attempts had been made by the European powers to arrange for a peaceable division of his extensive kingdom. Leopold refused to consent to any partition, and when in November 1700 Charles died, leaving his crown to Philippe, Duke of Anjou, a grandson of Louis XIV, all hopes of a peaceable settlement vanished. Under the guidance of William III a powerful league, a renewed Grand Alliance, was formed against France; of this the emperor was a prominent member, and in 1703 he transferred his claim on the Spanish monarchy to his second son, Archduke Charles. The early course of the war was not favorable to the Imperialists, but the tide of defeat had been rolled back by the great victory of Blenheim before Leopold died on 5 May 1705.[14]

Internal problems

Leopold I column (1673) in Trieste

The emperor himself defined the guidelines of the politics. Johann Weikhard of Auersperg was dismissed in 1669 as the leading minister. He was followed by Wenzel Eusebius, Prince of Lobkowicz. Both had arranged some connections to France without the knowledge of the emperor. In 1674 Lobkowicz also lost his appointment.[15]

He also expelled Jewish communities from his realm, for example the Viennese Jewish community, which used to live in an area called "Im Werd" across the Danube Canal. After the expulsion of the Jewish population, with popular support, the area was renamed Leopoldstadt as a thanksgiving. But Frederick William, Elector of Brandenburg, issued an edict in 1677, in which he announced his special protection for 50 families of these expelled Jews.[1]

In governing his own lands Leopold found his chief difficulties in Hungary, where unrest was caused partly by his desire to crush Protestantism and partly by the so-called Magnate conspiracy. A rising was suppressed in 1671 and for some years Hungary was treated with great severity. In 1681, after another rising, some grievances were removed and a less repressive policy was adopted, but this did not deter the Hungarians from revolting again. Austrian forces occupied the castle of Trebišov in 1675, but in 1682 Imre Thököly captured it and then fled from continuous Austrian attacks, so they blew the castle up, leaving it in ruins. They fled as supposedly Hungarian rebel troops under the command of Imre Thököly, cooperating with the Turks, and sacked the city of Bielsko in 1682. In 1692, Leopold gave up his rights to the property, giving his rights by donation to Theresia Keglević.[16][17]

Espousing the cause of the rebels Sultan Mehmed IV sent an enormous army into Austria early in 1683; this advanced almost unchecked to Vienna, which was besieged from July to September, while Leopold took refuge at Passau. Realizing the gravity of the situation somewhat tardily, some of the German princes, among them the electors of Saxony and Bavaria, led their contingents to the Imperial Army, which was commanded by the emperor's brother-in-law, Charles, Duke of Lorraine, but the most redoubtable of Leopold's allies was the King of Poland, John III Sobieski, who was already dreaded by the Turks.

Success against the Turks and in Hungary

The Battle of Vienna marked the historic end of the expansion of the Ottoman Empire into Europe.

On 12 September 1683, the allied army fell upon the enemy, who was completely routed, and Vienna was saved. The Imperial forces, among whom Prince Eugene of Savoy was rapidly becoming prominent, followed up the victory with others, notably one near Mohács in 1687 and another at Zenta in 1697, and in January 1699, Sultan Mustafa II signed the Treaty of Karlowitz by which he ceded almost the whole of Hungary (including Serbs in Vojvodina) to the Habsburg monarchy. As the Habsburg forces retreated, they withdrew 37,000 Serb families under Patriarch Arsenije III Čarnojević of the Serbian Patriarchate of Peć. In 1690 and 1691 Emperor Leopold I had conceived through a number of edicts (Privileges) the autonomy of Serbs in his dominions, which would last and develop for more than two centuries until its abolition in 1912. Before the conclusion of the war, however, Leopold had taken measures to strengthen his hold upon this country. In 1687, the Diet of Hungary in Pressburg (now Bratislava) changed the constitution; the right of the Habsburgs to succeed to the throne without election was admitted and the emperor's elder son Joseph I was crowned hereditary King of Hungary.[18][19]

The Holy Roman Empire

The Peace of Westphalia in 1648 had been a political defeat for the Habsburgs. It ended the idea that Europe was a single Christian empire; governed spiritually by the Pope and temporally by the Holy Roman Emperor. Moreover, the treaty was devoted to parceling out land and influence to the "winners", the anti-Habsburg alliance led by France and Sweden. However, the Habsburgs did gain some benefits out of the Thirty Years' War; the Protestant aristocracy in Habsburg territories had been decimated, and the ties between Vienna and the Habsburg domains in Bohemia and elsewhere were greatly strengthened. These changes would allow Leopold to initiate necessary political and institutional reforms during his reign to develop somewhat of an absolutist state along French lines. The most important consequences of the war was in retrospect to weaken the Habsburgs as emperors but strengthen them in their own lands. Leopold was the first to realize this altered state of affairs and act in accordance with it.[20][14]

Administrative reform

The reign of Leopold saw some important changes made in the constitution of the Empire.[21] In 1663 the Imperial Diet entered upon the last stage of its existence, and became a body permanently in session at Regensburg. This perpetual diet would become a vital tool for consolidation of Habsburg power under Leopold.[22]

Political changes

In 1692, the Duke of Hanover was raised to the rank of an elector, becoming the ninth member of the electoral college. In 1700, Leopold, greatly in need of help for the impending war with France, granted the title of King in Prussia to the Elector of Brandenburg. The net result of these and similar changes was to weaken the authority of the emperor over the princes of the empire and to compel him to rely more and more upon his position as ruler of the Austrian archduchies and of Hungary and Bohemia.[23]

Character and overall assessment

Leopold was a man of industry and education, and during his later years, he showed some political ability. Regarding himself as an absolute sovereign, he was extremely tenacious of his rights. Greatly influenced by the Jesuits, he was a staunch proponent of the Counter-Reformation. In person, he was short, but strong and healthy. Although he had no inclination for a military life, he loved outdoors exercise, such as hunting and riding. He also had a taste and talent for music and composed several Oratorios and Suites of Dances.

Perhaps due to inbreeding among his progenitors, the hereditary Habsburg jaw was most prominent in Leopold. Because his jaw was depicted unusually large on a 1670 silver coin, Leopold was nicknamed "the Hogmouth"; however, most collectors do not believe the coin was an accurate depiction.[24]

Marriages and children

Leopold I in costume as Acis in La Galatea, 1667, by Jan Thomas van Ieperen, Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna
Margaret Theresa in theater dress, 1667, by Jan Thomas van Ieperen, Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna
Detail of sarcophagus of Leopold I, Kapuzinergruft, Vienna, Austria

In 1666, he married Margaret Theresa of Spain (1651–1673), daughter of King Philip IV of Spain, who was both his niece and his first cousin. She was depicted in Diego Velázquez' paintings sent from the court of Madrid to Leopold as he waited in Vienna for his fiancée to grow up. Leopold and Margaret Theresa had four children, all but one short-lived:

  1. Archduke Ferdinand Wenzel (1667–1668)
  2. Archduchess Maria Antonia (1669–1692), who married Maximilian II Emanuel, Elector of Bavaria
  3. Archduke Johann Leopold (1670)
  4. Archduchess Maria Anna Antonia (1672)

His second wife was Claudia Felicitas of Austria, who died in 1676 at the age of 22. Neither of their two daughters survived:

  1. Archduchess Anna Maria Josepha (1674)
  2. Archduchess Maria Josepha Clementina (1675–1676)

His third wife was Eleonor Magdalene of Neuburg. They had the following children:

  1. Joseph I, Holy Roman Emperor (1678–1711), who married Wilhelmine Amalia of Brunswick-Lüneburg
  2. Archduchess Maria Christina (1679)
  3. Archduchess Maria Elisabeth (1680–1741), Governor of the Austrian Netherlands
  4. Archduke Leopold Joseph (1682–1684)
  5. Archduchess Maria Anna (1683–1754) married John V of Portugal
  6. Archduchess Maria Theresa (1684–1696)
  7. Charles VI, Holy Roman Emperor (1685–1740), who married Elisabeth Christine of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel
  8. Archduchess Maria Josepha (1687–1703)
  9. Archduchess Maria Magdalena (1689–1743)
  10. Archduchess Maria Margaret (1690–1691)
    Leopold and Eleonora Magdalena, detail from 1684 portrait by Jakob Heybel


Like his father, Leopold was a patron of music and a composer.[25] He continued to enrich the court's musical life by employing and providing support for distinguished composers such as Antonio Bertali, Giovanni Bononcini, Johann Kaspar Kerll, Ferdinand Tobias Richter, Alessandro Poglietti, and Johann Fux. Leopold's surviving works show the influence of Bertali and Viennese composers in general (in oratorios and other dramatic works), and of Johann Heinrich Schmelzer (in ballets and German comedies). His sacred music is perhaps his most successful, particularly Missa angeli custodis, a Requiem Mass for his first wife, and Three Lections, composed for the burial of his second wife.[26] Much of Leopold's music was published with works by his father, and described as "works of exceeding high merit."[27][28]


The full titulature of Leopold after he had become emperor went as follows: "Leopold I, by the grace of God elected Holy Roman Emperor, forever August, King of Germany, King of Hungary, King of Bohemia, Dalmatia, Croatia, Slavonia, Rama, Serbia, Galicia, Lodomeria, Cumania, Bulgaria, Archduke of Austria, Duke of Burgundy, Brabant, Styria, Carinthia, Carniola, Margrave of Moravia, Duke of Luxemburg, of the Upper and Lower Silesia, of Württemberg and Teck, Prince of Swabia, Count of Habsburg, Tyrol, Kyburg and Gorizia, Landgrave of Alsace, Marquess of the Holy Roman Empire, Burgovia, the Enns, the Upper and Lower Lusatia, Lord of the Marquisate of Slavonia, of Port Naon and Salines, etc. etc."



Male-line family tree

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Schumann, Jutta (13 September 2012). Die andere Sonne: Kaiserbild und Medienstrategien im Zeitalter Leopolds I. Walter de Gruyter. pp. 3–. ISBN 978-3-05-005581-7.
  2. ^ Spielman 1977, pp. 33–34.
  3. ^ Spielman 1977, p. 34.
  4. ^ a b Joseph A. Biesinger; "Germany: European nations" in Facts on File library of world history. p. 529.
  5. ^ Crankshaw 1971, p. 132.
  6. ^ Heide Dienst; Professor, Institute of Austrian History Research, University of Vienna.
  7. ^ Coxe, William (1853). History of the House of Austria: From the Foundation of the Monarchy by Rhodolph of Hapsburgh, to the Death of Leopold the Second: 1218 to 1792. London: Henry G. Bohn. p. 515.
  8. ^ John P. Spielman; "Europe, 1450 to 1789" in Encyclopedia of the Early Modern World
  9. ^ O'Connor 1978, pp. 7–14.
  10. ^ Johannes Burkhardt. Vollendung und Neuorientierung des frühmodernen Reiches. H-Soz-Kult. ISBN 9783608600117. Retrieved March 19, 2020.
  11. ^ a b c Volker Press (1991). Kriege und Krisen: Deutschland 1600–1715. C.H.Beck. ISBN 978-3-406-30817-8.
  12. ^ Mckay 1997, p. 206.
  13. ^ Mckay 1997, p. 207.
  14. ^ a b Helmut Neuhaus (6 May 2019). Die Frühe Neuzeit als Epoche. Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co KG. pp. 35–. ISBN 978-3-11-065083-9.
  15. ^ Volker Press (1985), "Leopold I.", Neue Deutsche Biographie (in German), vol. 14, Berlin: Duncker & Humblot, pp. 257–257
  16. ^ Das Königreich Ungarn: Ein topograph.-hist.-statistisches Rundgemälde, d. Ganze dieses Landes in mehr denn 12,400 Artikeln umfassend, Band 3, Seite 271, J.C. von Thiele, 1833.
  17. ^ Henryk Rechowicz: Bielsko-Biała. Zarys Rozwoju miasta i powiatu. Katowice: Wydawnictwo "Śląsk", 1971.
  18. ^ Charles W. Ingrao (2000). The Habsburg Monarchy, 1618–1815 (Second ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 84. ISBN 978-0-521-78505-1.
  19. ^ Andrew Wheatcroft (10 November 2009). The Enemy at the Gate: Habsburgs, Ottomans and the Battle for Europe. Random House. ISBN 978-1-4090-8682-6.
  20. ^ Noble, Thomas (2008). Western Civilization: Beyond Boundaries. Cengage Learning. pp. 507–508.
  21. ^ Crankshaw 1971, p. 140.
  22. ^ Anton Schindling. "The Development of the Eternal Diet in Regensburg". The Journal of Modern History 58 (December 1986). p. S69.
  23. ^ Harm Klueting (1999). Das Reich und Österreich 1648-1740. LIT Verlag Münster. pp. 56–. ISBN 978-3-8258-4280-2.
  24. ^ Anton Schindling; Walter Ziegler (1990). Die Kaiser der Neuzeit, 1519-1918: Heiliges Römisches Reich, Österreich, Deutschland. C.H.Beck. pp. 169–. ISBN 978-3-406-34395-7.
  25. ^ Dalberg-Acton, John Emerich Edward; et al. (1912). The Cambridge Modern History: Volume V: The Age of Louis XIV. New York: The MacMillan Company. p. 341.
  26. ^ Schnitzler, Rudolf & Seifert, Herbert (2001). "Leopold I". In Sadie, Stanley & Tyrrell, John (eds.). The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians (2nd ed.). London: Macmillan Publishers. ISBN 978-1-56159-239-5.
  27. ^ (organization), Jstor (1892). "Musical times" (PDF). The Musical Times. 1892. Retrieved 2009-03-16.
  28. ^ Adler, Guido (1892). Musikalishe Werke der Kaiser Ferdinand III., Leopold I., and Joseph I. Vienna, Austria: Antaria & Company.
  29. ^ a b Eder, Karl (1961), "Ferdinand III.", Neue Deutsche Biographie (in German), vol. 5, Berlin: Duncker & Humblot, pp. 85–86; (full text online)
  30. ^ a b Wurzbach, Constantin von, ed. (1861). "Habsburg, Maria Anna von Spanien" . Biographisches Lexikon des Kaiserthums Oesterreich [Biographical Encyclopedia of the Austrian Empire] (in German). Vol. 7. p. 23 – via Wikisource.
  31. ^ a b Eder, Karl (1961), "Ferdinand II.", Neue Deutsche Biographie (in German), vol. 5, Berlin: Duncker & Humblot, pp. 83–85; (full text online)
  32. ^ a b Wurzbach, Constantin von, ed. (1861). "Habsburg, Maria Anna von Bayern" . Biographisches Lexikon des Kaiserthums Oesterreich [Biographical Encyclopedia of the Austrian Empire] (in German). Vol. 7. p. 23 – via Wikisource.
  33. ^ a b Wurzbach, Constantin von, ed. (1861). "Habsburg, Philipp III." . Biographisches Lexikon des Kaiserthums Oesterreich [Biographical Encyclopedia of the Austrian Empire] (in German). Vol. 7. p. 120 – via Wikisource.
  34. ^ a b Wurzbach, Constantin von, ed. (1861). "Habsburg, Margaretha (Königin von Spanien)" . Biographisches Lexikon des Kaiserthums Oesterreich [Biographical Encyclopedia of the Austrian Empire] (in German). Vol. 7. p. 13 – via Wikisource.


External links

Regnal titles

1893 text

Leopold I, the Holy Roman Emperor, was born June 9th, 1640. He became King of Hungary in 1655, and King of Bohemia in 1658, in which year he received the imperial crown. The Princes of the German Empire watched for some time the progress of his struggle with the Turks with indifference, but in 1663 they were induced to grant aid to Leopold after he had made a personal appeal to them in the diet at Ratisbon.

This text comes from a footnote on a diary entry in the 1893 edition edited by Henry B. Wheatley.

1 Annotation

First Reading

Terry F  •  Link

"Leopold I Habsburg (June 9, 1640 - May 5, 1705), Holy Roman emperor, was the second son of the emperor Ferdinand III and his first wife Maria Anna of Spain. His maternal grandparents were Philip III of Spain and Margaret of Austria....In 1655 he was chosen king of Hungary and in 1656 king of Bohemia,1657 king of Croatia and in July 1658, more than a year after his father's death, he was elected emperor at Frankfurt in spite of the intrigues of Jules Cardinal Mazarin, who wished to place on the imperial throne Ferdinand Maria, Elector of Bavaria or some other prince whose elevation would break the Habsburg succession....Leopold's long reign covers one of the most important periods of European history; for nearly the whole of its forty-seven years he was pitted against Louis XIV of France, whose dominant personality completely overshadowed Leopold. The emperor was not himself a man of war, and never led his troops in person; yet the greater part of his public life was spent in arranging and directing wars. The first was with Sweden, whose king Charles X found a useful ally in the prince of Transylvania, György II Rákóczi, a rebellious vassal of the Hungarian crown....The Ottoman Empire interfered in the affairs of Transylvania, always an unruly district, and this interference brought on a war with the Holy Roman Empire, which after some desultory operations really began in 1663. By a personal appeal to the diet at Regensburg Leopold induced the princes to send assistance for the campaign; troops were also sent by France, and in August 1664 the great imperialist general, Raimondo Montecuccoli, gained a notable victory at Saint Gotthard. By the Peace of Vasvár the emperor made a twenty years' truce with the sultan, granting more generous terms than his recent victory seemed to render necessary."…

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Chart showing the number of references in each month of the diary’s entries.