Rudolf I of Germany
Rudolf I known as Rudolf of Habsburg, was Count of Habsburg from about 1240 and King of Germany from 1273 until his death. Rudolf's election marked the end of the Great Interregnum in the Holy Roman Empire after the death of the Hohenstaufen emperor Frederick II in 1250. A Swabian count, he was the first Habsburg to acquire the duchies of Austria and Styria in opposition to his mighty rival, the Přemyslid king Ottokar II of Bohemia, whom he defeated in the 1278 Battle on the Marchfeld; the territories remained under Habsburg rule for more than 600 years, forming the core of the Habsburg Monarchy and the present-day country of Austria. Rudolf was the first king of the Romans of the Habsburg dynasty, he played a vital role in raising the comital house to the rank of Imperial princes, he was the first of a number of late medieval count-kings, so called by the historian Bernd Schneidmüller, from the rival noble houses of Habsburg and Wittelsbach, all striving after the Roman-German royal dignity, taken over by the Habsburgs in 1438.
Rudolf was born on 1 May 1218 at Limburgh Castle near Sasbach am Kaiserstuhl in the Breisgau region of present-day southwestern Germany. He was the son of Count Albert IV of Habsburg and of Hedwig, daughter of Count Ulrich of Kyburg. Around 1232, he was given as a squire to his uncle, Rudolf I, Count of Laufenburg, to train in knightly pursuits. At his father's death in 1239, he inherited large estates from him around the ancestral seat of Habsburg Castle in the Aargau region of present-day Switzerland as well as in Alsace. Thus, in 1240 in order to quell the rising power of Rudolf and in an attempt to place the important "Devil’s Bridge" across the Schöllenenschlucht under his direct control, Emperor Frederick II, granted Schwyz Reichsfreiheit in the Freibrief von Faenza. In 1242, Hugh of Tuffenstein provoked Count Rudolf through contumelious expressions. In turn, the Count of Habsburg failed to take his seat of power; as the day passed on, Count Rudolf bribed the sentinels of the city and gained entry, killing Hugh in the process.
In 1244, to help control Lake Lucerne and restrict the neighboring forest communities of Uri and Unterwalden, Rudolf built near its shores Neuhabsburg Castle. In 1245 Rudolf married Gertrude, daughter of Count Burkhard III of Hohenberg, he received as her dowry the castles of Oettingen, the valley of Weile, other places in Alsace, he became an important vassal in Swabia, the former Alemannic German stem duchy. That same year, Emperor Frederick II was excommunicated by Pope Innocent IV at the Council of Lyon. Rudolf sided against the Emperor; this gave them a pretext to damage Neuhabsburg. Rudolf defended it and drove them off; as a result, Rudolf, by siding with the Pope, gained influence. Rudolf paid frequent visits to the court of his godfather, the Hohenstaufen emperor Frederick II, his loyalty to Frederick and his son, King Conrad IV of Germany, was richly rewarded by grants of land. In 1254, he engaged with other nobles of the Staufen party against Bishop of Basle; when night fell, he burnt down the local nunnery.
Pope Innocent IV excommunicated him and all parties involved. As penance, he took up the cross and joined Ottokar II, King of Bohemia in the Prussian Crusade of 1254. Whilst there, he oversaw the founding of the city of Königsberg, named in memory of King Ottokar; the disorder in Germany during the interregnum after the fall of the Hohenstaufen dynasty afforded an opportunity for Count Rudolf to increase his possessions. His wife was a Hohenberg heiress. Successful feuds with the Bishops of Strasbourg and Basel further augmented his wealth and reputation, including rights over various tracts of land that he purchased from abbots and others; these various sources of wealth and influence rendered Rudolf the most powerful prince and noble in southwestern Germany. In the autumn of 1273, the prince-electors met to choose a king after Richard of Cornwall had died in England in April 1272. Rudolf's election in Frankfurt on 1 October 1273, when he was 55 years old, was due to the efforts of his brother-in-law, the Hohenzollern burgrave Frederick III of Nuremberg.
The support of Duke Albert II of Saxony and Elector Palatine Louis II had been purchased by betrothing them to two of Rudolf's daughters. As a result, within the electoral college, King Ottokar II of Bohemia, himself a candidate for the throne and related to the late Hohenstaufen king Philip of Swabia, was alone in opposing Rudolf. Other candidates were Prince Siegfried I of Anhalt and Margrave Frederick I of Meissen, a young grandson of the excommunicated Emperor Frederick II, who did not yet have a principality of his own as his father was still alive. By the admission of Duke Henry XIII of Lower Bavaria instead of the King of Bohemia as the seventh Elector, Rudolf gained all seven votes. Rudolf was crowned in Aachen Cathedral on 24 October 1273. To win the approbation of the Pope, Rudolf renounced all imperial rights in Rome, the papal territory, Sicily, promised to lead a new crusade. Pope Gregory X, despite the protests of Ottokar II of Bohemia, not only recognised Rudolf himself, but persuaded King Alfonso X of Castile, chosen German
Müllenheim is the name of an old Strasbourg noble family. The lords and knights of Müllenheim belonged to the Alsatian old nobility; the family is first mentioned through Berthold von Mülnheim in 1108. The unbroken family line begins in 1225 with Johann von Mülenheim, the bishop's wine oath in Strasbourg. Walther von Müllenheim, a knight from 1290, was bailiff of the bishop of Strasbourg. Members of the family became part of the upper strata of the free imperial city; the Müllenheim and the Zorn families were the most important Strasbourg dynasties, their rivalries over power in the city resulted in several street fights. Thus the town hall, for example, received two entrances, one for the Müllenheims and one for the Zorns; the city councillor Hermann von Müllenheim pushed through a measure to name the two banks of the Northern Strasbourg island in the river Ill the Quai Müllenheim and the Quai Zorn. The high point of the rivalry was the battle on 20 May 1332, as a consequence the nobles were thrown from power in the city, since the guilds were actual winners of this fight.
The family had three main lines around 1300: the Johannes line, extinguished with Philip Andreas von Müllenheim-Rosenburg in 1684, the Heinrich line and the Burkhard line, which died out in the 15th century. From these lines, about 40 different members were elected between 1300 and 1760 to be Stettmeister of Strasbourg; the history of the town of Illkirch-Graffenstaden is connected with the Müllenheims. When Rudolf of Habsburg became Holy Roman Emperor, he granted in 1284 to his confidant Bernhard von Müllenheim the ford of "Gravenstaden vor der Hate“ with the right to levy tolls there; as there was no bridge in Grafenstaden, one could only cross the river via this ford, which the residents of Strasbourg had done until for free. Maria Esther von Müllenheim's husband, the Strasbourg Stettmeister Hans Georg von Zedlitz, tried in 1681 to get the Empire's help to stave off the threatened capture of the city by soldiers of Louis XIV of France, under Joseph de Montclar; as no such help was forthcoming, he was forced to sign the treaty of capitulation of Illkirch on 30 September 1681, in order to prevent further suffering.
Several members of the Müllenheim family in and around Strasbourg have been knighted, belonged to the Imperial Knights of the Lower Alsace and Ortenau. One branch of the Heinrich line settled in the early 17th century in Poland. Gebhard von Müllenheim auf Puschkeiten was in 1635 appointed a Polish royal chamberlain and a Starosta; the Müllenheim-Rechberg line received permission from Prussia in 1886, 1900, 1902 and 1904 to use the title of Freiherr. Genealogisches Handbuch des Adels, Adelslexikon Volume IX, No. 116 of the complete series, C. A. Starke Verlag, Limburg 1998, ISSN 0435-2408 Erich Pelzer: Müllenheim, elsässische Familie. In: Neue Deutsche Biographie. Band 18, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin 1997, ISBN 3-428-00199-0, p. 307 f. Otto Hupp: Münchener Kalender 1931. Buch u. Kunstdruckerei AG, München / Regensburg 1931. Julius Kindler von Knobloch: Oberbadisches Geschlechterbuch, p. 129-147, Heidelberg 1919. Deutsche Adelsgenossenschaft: Jahrbuch des Deutschen Adels, Volume 2, 1898, Verlag von W. T. Bruer, p. 609 Dr. Friedrich von Weech: Der Rotulus Sanpetrinus.
Herder, Freiburg im Breisgau, 1882. Burkard Freiherr von Müllenheim-Rechberg, German diplomat, Kapitänleutnant zur See and author Hermann Freiherr von Müllenheim, German historian Franz Jakob Ferdinand Freiherr von Müllenheim, hunt master of the bishopric of Strasbourg and member of the Alsatian provincial assembly Gebhard von Müllenheim auf Puschkeiten, Polish royal chamberlain and Starosta
Thirty Years' War
The Thirty Years' War was a war fought in Central Europe between 1618 and 1648. One of the most destructive conflicts in human history, it resulted in eight million fatalities not only from military engagements but from violence and plague. Casualties were overwhelmingly and disproportionately inhabitants of the Holy Roman Empire, most of the rest being battle deaths from various foreign armies. In terms of proportional German casualties and destruction, it was surpassed only by the period January to May 1945. A war between various Protestant and Catholic states in the fragmented Holy Roman Empire, it developed into a more general conflict involving most of the European great powers; these states employed large mercenary armies, the war became less about religion and more of a continuation of the France–Habsburg rivalry for European political pre-eminence. The war was preceded by the election of the new Holy Roman Emperor, Ferdinand II, who tried to impose religious uniformity on his domains, forcing Roman Catholicism on its peoples.
The northern Protestant states, angered by the violation of their rights to choose, granted in the Peace of Augsburg, banded together to form the Protestant Union. Ferdinand II was a devout Roman Catholic and much more intolerant than his predecessor, Rudolf II, who ruled from the Protestant city of Prague. Ferdinand's policies were considered pro-Catholic and anti-Protestant; these events caused widespread fears throughout northern and central Europe, triggered the Protestant Bohemians living in the relatively loose dominion of Habsburg Austria to revolt against their nominal ruler, Ferdinand II. After the so-called Defenestration of Prague deposed the Emperor's representatives in Prague, the Protestant estates and Catholic Habsburgs started gathering allies for war; the Protestant Bohemians ousted the Habsburgs and elected the Calvinist Frederick V, Elector of the Rhenish Palatinate as the new king of the Kingdom of Bohemia. Frederick took the offer without the support of the Protestant Union.
The southern states Roman Catholic, were angered by this. Led by Bavaria, these states formed the Catholic League to expel Frederick in support of the Emperor; the Empire soon crushed the perceived Protestant rebellion in the Battle of White Mountain, executing leading Bohemian aristocrats shortly after. Protestant rulers across Europe unanimously condemned the Emperor's action. After the atrocities committed in Bohemia, Saxony gave its support to the Protestant Union and decided to fight back. Sweden, at the time a rising military power, soon intervened in 1630 under its king Gustavus Adolphus, transforming what had been the Emperor's attempt to curb the Protestant states into a full-scale war in Europe. Habsburg Spain, wishing to crush the Dutch rebels in the Netherlands and the Dutch Republic, intervened under the pretext of helping its dynastic Habsburg ally, Austria. No longer able to tolerate the encirclement of two major Habsburg powers on its borders, Catholic France entered the coalition on the side of the Protestants in order to counter the Habsburgs.
The Thirty Years' War devastated entire regions, resulting in high mortality among the populations of the German and Italian states, the Crown of Bohemia, the Southern Netherlands. Both mercenaries and soldiers in fighting armies traditionally looted or extorted tribute to get operating funds, which imposed severe hardships on the inhabitants of occupied territories; the war bankrupted most of the combatant powers. The Dutch Republic enjoyed contrasting fortune; the Thirty Years' War ended with the Treaty of Osnabrück and the Treaties of Münster, part of the wider Peace of Westphalia. The war altered the previous political order of European powers; the rise of Bourbon France, the curtailing of Habsburg ambition, the ascendancy of Sweden as a great power created a new balance of power on the continent, with France emerging from the war strengthened and dominant in the latter part of the 17th century. The Peace of Augsburg, signed by Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, confirmed the result of the Diet of Speyer, ending the war between German Lutherans and Catholics, establishing that: Rulers of the 224 German states could choose the religion of their realms.
Subjects had to follow that emigrate. Prince-bishoprics and other states ruled by Catholic clergy were excluded and should remain Catholic. Prince-bishops who converted to Lutheranism were required to give up their territories. Lutherans could keep the territory they had taken from the Catholic Church since the Peace of Passau in 1552. Although the Peace of Augsburg created a temporary end to hostilities, it did not resolve the underlying religious conflict, made yet more complex by the spread of Calvinism throughout Germany in the years that followed; this added a third major faith to the region, but its position was not recognized in any way by the Augsburg terms, to which only Catholicism and Lutheranism were parties. The rulers of the nations neighboring the Holy Roman Empir
Bas-Rhin is a department in Alsace, a part of the Grand Est super-region of France. The name means "Lower Rhine", geographically speaking it belongs to the Upper Rhine region, it is the more populous and densely populated of the two departments of the traditional Alsace region, with 1,121,407 inhabitants in 2016. The prefecture and the General Council are based in Strasbourg; the INSEE and Post Code is 67. The inhabitants of the department are known as Bas-Rhinoises; the Rhine has always been of great historical and economic importance to the area, it forms the eastern border of Bas-Rhin. The area is home to some of the foothills of the Vosges Mountains. To the north of Bas-Rhin lies the Palatinate forest in the German State of Rhineland-Palatinate, the German State of Baden-Württemberg lies to the east. To the south lies the department of Haut-Rhin, the town of Colmar and southern Alsace, to the west the department of Moselle. On its south-western corner, Bas-Rhin joins the department of Vosges.
The Bas-Rhin has a continental-type climate, characterised by cold, dry winters and hot, stormy summers, due to the western protection provided by the Vosges. The average annual temperature is 7 °C on high ground; the annual maximum temperature is high. The average rainfall is 700 mm per year. Established according to data from the Infoclimat station at Strasbourg-Entzheim, over the period from 1961 to 1990; this is the last French department to have kept the term Bas meaning "Lower" in its name. Other departments using this prefix preferred to change their names - e.g.: Basses-Pyrenees in 1969 became Pyrénées-Atlantiques and Basses-Alpes in 1970 became the department of Alpes-de-Haute-Provence. The same phenomenon was observed for the inférieur departments such as Charente-Inférieure, Seine-Inférieure, Loire-Inférieure. Bas-Rhin is one of the original 83 departments created on 4 March 1790, during the French Revolution. On 14 January 1790 the National Constituent Assembly decreed: "- That Alsace be divided into two departments with Strasbourg and Colmar as their capitals.
In 1871 Bas-Rhin was annexed by Germany and became Bezirk Unterelsass in Reichsland Elsaß-Lothringen. Strasbourg, the chef lieu of Bas-Rhin is the official seat of the European Parliament as well as of the Council of Europe; the demography of Bas-Rhin is characterized by high density and high population growth since the 1950s. In January 2014 Bas-Rhin had 1,112,815 inhabitants and was 18th by population at the national level. In fifteen years, from 1999 to 2014, its population grew by more than 86,000 people, or about 5,800 people per year, but this variation is differentiated among the 517 communes. The population density of Bas-Rhin is 234 inhabitants per square kilometre in 2014, more than twice the average in France, 112 in 2009; the first census was conducted in 1801 and this count, renewed every five years from 1821, provides precise information on the evolution of population in the department. With 540,213 inhabitants in 1831, the department represented 1.66% of the total French population, 32,569,000 inhabitants.
From 1831 to 1866, the department gained 48,757 people, an increase of 0.26% on average per year compared to the national average of 0.48% over the same period. Demographic change between the Franco-Prussian War of 1870 and the First World War was higher than the national average. Over this period, the population increased by 100,532 inhabitants, an increase of 16.74%, compared to 10% nationally. The population increased by 9.23% between the two world wars from 1921 to 1936 compared to a national growth of 6.9%. Like other French departments, Bas-Rhin experienced a population boom after the Second World War, higher than the national level; the rate of population growth between 1946 and 2007 was 83.83%
A keep is a type of fortified tower built within castles during the Middle Ages by European nobility. Scholars have debated the scope of the word keep, but consider it to refer to large towers in castles that were fortified residences, used as a refuge of last resort should the rest of the castle fall to an adversary; the first keeps were made of timber and formed a key part of the Motte-and-Bailey castles that emerged in Normandy and Anjou during the 10th century. The Anglo-Normans and French rulers began to build stone keeps during the 11th centuries. Stone keeps carried considerable political as well as military importance and could take up to a decade or more to build. During the 12th century, new designs began to be introduced – in France, quatrefoil-shaped keeps were introduced, while in England polygonal towers were built. By the end of the century and English keep designs began to diverge: Philip II of France built a sequence of circular keeps as part of his bid to stamp his royal authority on his new territories, while in England castles were built without keeps.
In Spain, keeps were incorporated into both Christian and Islamic castles, although in Germany tall fighting towers called bergfriede were preferred to keeps in the western fashion. In the second half of the 14th century, there was a resurgence in the building of keeps. In France, the keep at Vincennes began a fashion for tall machicolated designs, a trend adopted in Spain most prominently through the Valladolid school of Spanish castle design. Meanwhile, tower keeps in England became popular amongst the most wealthy nobles: these large keeps, each uniquely designed, formed part of the grandest castles built during the period. In the 15th century, the protective function of keeps was compromised by improved artillery. For example, in 1464 during the Wars of the Roses, the keep in the Bamburgh Castle considered to be impregnable, was defeated with bombards. By the 16th century, keeps were falling out of fashion as fortifications and residences. Many were destroyed in civil wars between the 17th and 18th centuries, or incorporated into gardens as an alternative to follies.
During the 19th century, keeps became fashionable once again and in England and France a number were restored or redesigned by Gothic architects. Despite further damage to many French and Spanish keeps during the wars of the 20th century, keeps now form an important part of the tourist and heritage industry in Europe. Since the 16th century, the English word keep has referred to large towers in castles; the word originates from around 1375 to 1376, coming from the Middle English term kype, meaning basket or cask, was a term applied to the shell keep at Guînes, said to resemble a barrel. The term came to be used. By the 17th century, the word keep lost its original reference to baskets or casks, was popularly assumed to have come from the Middle English word keep, meaning to hold or to protect. Early on, the use of the word keep became associated with the idea of a tower in a castle that would serve both as a fortified, high-status private residence and a refuge of last resort; the issue was complicated by the building of fortified Renaissance towers in Italy called tenazza that were used as defences of last resort and were named after the Italian for to hold or to keep.
By the 19th century, Victorian historians incorrectly concluded that the etymology of the words "keep" and tenazza were linked, that all keeps had fulfilled this military function. As a result of this evolution in meaning, the use of the term keep in historical analysis today can be problematic. Contemporary medieval writers used. In Latin, they are variously described as turris, turris castri or magna turris – a tower, a castle tower, or a great tower; the 12th-century French came to term them a donjon, from the Latin dominarium "lordship", linking the keep and feudal authority. Medieval Spanish writers called the buildings torre del homenaje, or "tower of homage." In England, donjon turned into dungeon, which referred to a keep, rather than to a place of imprisonment. This ambiguity over terminology has made historical analysis of the use of "keeps" problematic. While the term remains in common academic use, some academics prefer to use the term donjon, most modern historians warn against using the term "keep" simplistically.
The fortifications that we would today call keeps did not form part of a unified medieval style, nor were they all used in a similar fashion during the period. The earliest keeps were built as part of motte-and-bailey castles from the 10th century onwards – a combination of documentary and archaeological evidence places the first such castle, built at Vincy, in 979; these castles were built by the more powerful lords of Anjou in the late 10th and 11th centuries, in particular Fulk III and his son, Geoffrey II, who built a great number of them between 987 and 1060. William the Conqueror introduced this form of castle into England when he invaded in 1066, the design spread through south Wales as the Normans expanded up the valleys during the subsequent decades. In a motte-and-bailey design, a castle would include a mound called a motte artificially constructed by piling up turf and soil, a bailey, a lower walled enclosure. A keep and a protective wall would be built on top of the motte; some protectiv
Alsace is a cultural and historical region in eastern France, on the west bank of the upper Rhine next to Germany and Switzerland. From 1982 to 2016, Alsace was the smallest administrative région in metropolitan France, consisting of the Bas-Rhin and Haut-Rhin departments. Territorial reform passed by the French legislature in 2014 resulted in the merger of the Alsace administrative region with Champagne-Ardenne and Lorraine to form Grand Est. Alsatian is an Alemannic dialect related to Swabian and Swiss German, although since World War II most Alsatians speak French. Internal and international migration since 1945 has changed the ethnolinguistic composition of Alsace. For more than 300 years, from the Thirty Years' War to World War II, the political status of Alsace was contested between France and various German states in wars and diplomatic conferences; the economic and cultural capital of Alsace, as well as its largest city, is Strasbourg. The city is the seat of bodies; the name "Alsace" can be traced to the Old High German Ali-saz or Elisaz, meaning "foreign domain".
An alternative explanation is from a Germanic Ell-sass, meaning "seated on the Ill", a river in Alsace. In prehistoric times, Alsace was inhabited by nomadic hunters. By 1500 BC, Celts began to settle in Alsace and cultivating the land, it should be noted that Alsace is a plain surrounded by the Vosges mountains and the Black Forest mountains. It creates Foehn winds which, along with natural irrigation, contributes to the fertility of the soil. In a world of agriculture, Alsace has always been a rich region which explains why it suffered so many invasions and annexations in its history. By 58 BC, the Romans had established Alsace as a center of viticulture. To protect this valued industry, the Romans built fortifications and military camps that evolved into various communities which have been inhabited continuously to the present day. While part of the Roman Empire, Alsace was part of Germania Superior. With the decline of the Roman Empire, Alsace became the territory of the Germanic Alemanni; the Alemanni were agricultural people, their Germanic language formed the basis of modern-day dialects spoken along the Upper Rhine.
Clovis and the Franks defeated the Alemanni during the 5th century AD, culminating with the Battle of Tolbiac, Alsace became part of the Kingdom of Austrasia. Under Clovis' Merovingian successors the inhabitants were Christianized. Alsace remained under Frankish control until the Frankish realm, following the Oaths of Strasbourg of 842, was formally dissolved in 843 at the Treaty of Verdun. Alsace formed part of the Middle Francia, ruled by the eldest grandson Lothar I. Lothar died early in 855 and his realm was divided into three parts; the part known as Lotharingia, or Lorraine, was given to Lothar's son. The rest was shared between Louis the German; the Kingdom of Lotharingia was short-lived, becoming the stem duchy of Lorraine in Eastern Francia after the Treaty of Ribemont in 880. Alsace was united with the other Alemanni east of the Rhine into the stem duchy of Swabia. At about this time, the surrounding areas experienced recurring fragmentation and reincorporations among a number of feudal secular and ecclesiastical lordships, a common process in the Holy Roman Empire.
Alsace experienced great prosperity during the 13th centuries under Hohenstaufen emperors. Frederick I set up Alsace as a province to be ruled by ministeriales, a non-noble class of civil servants; the idea was that such men would be more tractable and less to alienate the fief from the crown out of their own greed. The province had a central administration with its seat at Hagenau. Frederick II designated the Bishop of Strasbourg to administer Alsace, but the authority of the bishop was challenged by Count Rudolf of Habsburg, who received his rights from Frederick II's son Conrad IV. Strasbourg began to grow to become the commercially important town in the region. In 1262, after a long struggle with the ruling bishops, its citizens gained the status of free imperial city. A stop on the Paris-Vienna-Orient trade route, as well as a port on the Rhine route linking southern Germany and Switzerland to the Netherlands and Scandinavia, it became the political and economic center of the region. Cities such as Colmar and Hagenau began to grow in economic importance and gained a kind of autonomy within the "Décapole", a federation of ten free towns.
As in much of Europe, the prosperity of Alsace came to an end in the 14th century by a series of harsh winters, bad harvests, the Black Death. These hardships were blamed on Jews, leading to the pogroms of 1336 and 1339. In 1349, Jews of Alsace were accused of poisoning the wells with plague, leading to the massacre of thousands of Jews during the Strasbourg pogrom. Jews were subsequently forbidden to settle in the town. An additional natural disaster was the Rhine rift earthquake of 1356, one of Europe's worst which made ruins of Basel. Prosperity returned to Alsace under Habsburg administration during the Renaissance. Holy Roman Empire central power had begun to decline following years of imperial adventures in Italian lands ceding hegemony in Western Europe to France, which had long since centralized power. France began an aggressive policy of expanding eastward, first to the riv