Infanta Catherine Michelle of Spain
Catherine Michelle of Spain was a Duchess consort of Savoy by marriage to Charles Emmanuel I, Duke of Savoy, she served as Regent of Savoy several times during the absence of her spouse. She was the youngest surviving daughter of Philip II of Spain and Elisabeth of Valois, she was the sister of Isabella Clara Eugenia, catherine Michelle was described as beautiful, intelligent and well aware of her high social status. She had a relationship with her father and exchanged letters with him after her marriage. Charles Emmanuel I suggested the marriage as a way of gaining Spanish support for his plans to expand Savoy on the coast of the weakened France, the wedding took place in Zaragoza on 11 March 1585 and the couple made their entrance to Turin in Savoy 10 August 1585. Catherine Michelle was initially unpopular because of her arrogance and attempts to introduce Spanish pomp, however, she soon gained respect because of her political and diplomatic skill, which she used to defend the autonomy of Savoy against Spain.
She refused the Spanish offer to install a Spanish garrison in Turin from Milan with the excuse of giving her a life guard and she is reported to have had great influence on Charles Emmanuel I and to have reformed him for the better. She served as regent several times during the absence of the duke on military campaigns, catherine Michelle died near the end of 1597, she had miscarried earlier that year. Her father died the following year and her sister Isabella married Albert VII, Archduke of Austria, and became Governess of the Netherlands. In 1584, she married Charles Emmanuel I, Duke of Savoy and this marriage produced ten children, Philip Emanuel Victor Amadeus Emanuel Filibert of Savoy, Spanish Viceroy of Sicily
Francisco de Quevedo
Francisco Gómez de Quevedo y Santibáñez Villegas was a Spanish nobleman and writer of the Baroque era. Along with his rival, Luis de Góngora, Quevedo was one of the most prominent Spanish poets of the age. His style is characterized by what was called conceptismo and this style existed in stark contrast to Góngoras culteranismo. Quevedo was born in Madrid into a family of hidalgos from the village of Vejorís and his family was descended from the Castilian nobility. Quevedo matured surrounded by dignitaries and nobility at the royal court, intellectually gifted, Quevedo was physically handicapped with a club foot, and myopia. Since he always wore pince-nez, his name in the plural, orphaned by the age of six, he was able to attend the Imperial School run by the Jesuits in Madrid. He attended university at Alcalá de Henares from 1596 to 1600, by his own account, he made independent studies in philosophy, classical languages, Hebrew and Italian. In 1601, Quevedo, as a member of the Court, moved to Valladolid, where the Court had been transferred by the Kings minister, the Duke of Lerma.
There he studied theology, a subject that would become a lifelong interest, by this time, he was becoming noted as both a poet and a prose writer. Some of his poetry was collected in a 1605 generational anthology by Pedro Espinosa entitled Flores de Poetas Ilustres, around this time, he began a very erudite exchange of letters with the humanist Justus Lipsius, in which Quevedo deplored the wars that were ravaging Europe. The Court returned to Madrid in 1606, and Quevedo followed, by then, he was a well-known and accomplished man-of-letters. He befriended and was praised by Miguel de Cervantes and Lope de Vega, Quevedos enemies included, among others, the dramatist Juan Ruiz de Alarcón for, despite his own physical handicaps, Quevedo found Alarcóns redheaded and hunchbacked physique a source of amusement. Quevedo attacked Juan Pérez de Montalbán, the son of a bookseller with whom he had quarrelled, satirizing him in La Perinola, in 1608, Quevedo dueled with the author and fencing master Luis Pacheco de Narváez as a result of Quevedo criticizing one of Pachecos works.
Quevedo took off Pachecos hat in the first encounter and they remained enemies all their lives. In Quevedos Buscón, this duel was parodied with a fencer relying on mathematical calculations having to run away from a duel with an experienced soldier. He was present at the church of San Martín in Madrid when a woman praying there was slapped on the cheek by another man who had rushed up to her, Quevedo seized the man, dragging him outside the church. The two men drew swords, and Quevedo ran his opponent through, the man, who died of his wounds some time later, was someone of importance. Quevedo thus retired temporarily to the palace of his friend and patron, Pedro Téllez-Girón, 3rd Duke of Osuna
Ferdinand I, Holy Roman Emperor
Ferdinand I was Holy Roman Emperor from 1558, king of Bohemia and Hungary from 1526, and king of Croatia from 1527 until his death. Before his accession, he ruled the Austrian hereditary lands of the Habsburgs in the name of his brother, Charles V. Also, he served as Charles representative in Germany and developed useful relationships with German princes. Ferdinand was able to defend his realm and make it more cohesive. His flexible approach to Imperial problems, mainly religious, finally brought more result than the more confrontational attitude of his brother, Ferdinands motto was Fiat iustitia, et pereat mundus, Let justice be done, though the world perish. Ferdinand shared his customs and even his birthday with his maternal grandfather Ferdinand II of Aragon and he was born and educated in Spain, and did not learn German when he was young. In the summer of 1518 Ferdinand was sent to Flanders following his brother Charless arrival in Spain as newly appointed King Charles I the previous autumn.
He returned in command of his brothers fleet but en route was blown off-course and he was Archduke of Austria from 1521 to 1564. Though he supported his brother, Ferdinand managed to strengthen his own realm, by adopting the German language and culture late in his life, he grew close to the German territorial princes. After the death of his brother-in-law Louis II, Ferdinand ruled as King of Bohemia and Hungary. Ferdinand served as his brothers deputy in the Holy Roman Empire during his brothers many absences, according to the terms set at the First Congress of Vienna in 1515, Ferdinand married Anne Jagiellonica, daughter of King Vladislaus II of Bohemia and Hungary on 22 July 1515. Therefore, after the death of his brother-in-law Louis II, King of Bohemia and of Hungary, at the battle of Mohács on 29 August 1526, the success was only partial, as the Diet refused to recognise Ferdinand as hereditary lord of the Kingdom. The Croatian nobles unanimously elected Ferdinand I as their king in the 1527 election in Cetin, in Hungary, Nicolaus Olahus, secretary of Louis, attached himself to the party of Ferdinand but retained his position with his sister, Queen Dowager Mary.
Ferdinand was elected King of Hungary by a rump Diet in Pozsony in December 1526, the throne of Hungary became the subject of a dynastic dispute between Ferdinand and John Zápolya, Voivode of Transylvania. They were supported by different factions of the nobility in the Hungarian kingdom, Ferdinand had the support of his brother, the Emperor Charles V. Ferdinand defeated Zápolya at the Battle of Tarcal in September 1527 and again in the Battle of Szina in March 1528. Zápolya fled the country and applied to Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent for support, a further Ottoman invasion was repelled in 1533. In 1538, in the Treaty of Nagyvárad, Ferdinand induced the childless Zápolya to name him as his successor, but in 1540, just before his death, Zápolya had a son, John II Sigismund, who was promptly elected King by the Diet. Ferdinand invaded Hungary, but the regent, Frater George Martinuzzi, Bishop of Várad, Suleiman marched into Hungary and not only drove Ferdinand out of central Hungary, he forced Ferdinand to agree to pay tribute for his lands in western Hungary
Manuel I of Portugal
Manuel I, the Fortunate, King of Portugal and the Algarves, was the son of Infante Ferdinand, Duke of Viseu, by his wife, the Infanta Beatrice of Portugal. His name is associated with a period of Portuguese civilization that was distinguished by significant achievements both in political affairs and the arts. Manuels mother was the granddaughter of King John I of Portugal, whereas his father was the surviving son of King Edward of Portugal. In 1495, Manuel succeeded his first cousin, King John II of Portugal, Manuel grew up amidst conspiracies of the Portuguese upper nobility against King John II. He was aware of people being killed and exiled. His older brother Diogo, Duke of Viseu, was stabbed to death in 1484 by the king himself, as a result of this stroke of luck, he was nicknamed the Fortunate. Manuel would prove a worthy successor to his cousin John II for his support of Portuguese exploration of the Atlantic Ocean, during his reign, the following achievements were realized,1498 — The discovery of a maritime route to India by Vasco da Gama.
1500 — The discovery of Brazil by Pedro Álvares Cabral,1505 — The appointment of Francisco de Almeida as the first viceroy of India. 1503–1515 — The establishment of monopolies on maritime routes to the Indian Ocean and Persian Gulf by Afonso de Albuquerque. All these events made Portugal wealthy from trade as it formally established a vast overseas empire. Manuel used the wealth to build a number of royal buildings, commercial treaties and diplomatic alliances were forged with China and the Persian Empire. Pope Leo X received an embassy from Portugal during his reign designed to draw attention to Portugals newly acquired riches to all of Europe. In Manuels reign, royal absolutism was the method of government, the Portuguese Cortes met only three times during his reign, always in Lisbon, the kings seat. He reformed the courts of justice and the municipal charters with the crown, modernizing taxes, during his reign, the laws in force in the kingdom of Portugal were recodified with the publication of the Manueline Ordinations.
Manuel endeavoured to promote another crusade against the Turks and his relationship with the Portuguese Jews started out well. At the outset of his reign, he released all the Jews who had been made captive during the reign of John II, unfortunately for the Jews, he decided that he wanted to marry Infanta Isabella of Aragon, heiress of the future united crown of Spain. Ferdinand and Isabella had expelled the Jews in 1492 and would never marry their daughter to the king of a country that still tolerated their presence, in the marriage contract, Manuel I agreed to persecute the Jews of Portugal. In December 1496, it was decreed that all Jews either convert to Christianity or leave the country without their children, those expelled could only leave the country in ships specified by the king
Philip II of Spain
Philip II of Spain, called the Prudent, was King of Spain, King of Portugal, King of Naples and Sicily, and jure uxoris King of England and Ireland. He was Duke of Milan, from 1555, he was lord of the Seventeen Provinces of the Netherlands. Known in Spain as Felipe el Prudente, his empire included territories on every continent known to Europeans, during his reign, Spain reached the height of its influence and power. This is sometimes called the Golden Age, the expression, the empire on which the sun never sets, was coined during Philips time to reflect the extent of his dominion. During Philips reign there were separate state bankruptcies in 1557,1560,1569,1575 and this was partly the cause of the declaration of independence that created the Dutch Republic in 1581. The Ambassador went on to say He dresses very tastefully, the culture and courtly life of Spain were an important influence in his early life. He was tutored by Juan Martínez Siliceo, the future Archbishop of Toledo, Philip displayed reasonable aptitude in arms and letters alike.
Later he would study with more illustrious tutors, including the humanist Juan Cristóbal Calvete de Estrella, though Philip had good command over Latin and Portuguese, he never managed to equal his father, Charles V, as a polyglot. While Philip was a German archduke of the House of Habsburg, Philip felt himself to be culturally Spanish, he had been born in Spain and raised in the Castilian court, his native tongue was Spanish, and he preferred to live in Spain. This would ultimately impede his succession to the imperial throne, in April 1528, when Philip was eleven months old, he received the oath of allegiance as heir to the crown from the Cortes of Castile. Philip was close to his two sisters, María and Juana, and to his two pages, the Portuguese nobleman Rui Gomes da Silva and Luis de Requesens, the son of his governor Juan de Zúñiga. These men would serve Philip throughout their lives, as would Antonio Pérez, Philips martial training was undertaken by his governor, Juan de Zúñiga, a Castilian nobleman who served as the commendador mayor of Castile.
The practical lessons in warfare were overseen by the Duke of Alba during the Italian Wars, Philip was present at the Siege of Perpignan in 1542 but did not see action as the Spanish army under Alba decisively defeated the besieging French forces under the Dauphin of France. On his way back to Castile, Philip received the oath of allegiance of the Aragonese Cortes at Monzón. The king-emperors interactions with his son during his stay in Spain convinced him of Philips precocity in statesmanship, who had previously been made the Duke of Milan in 1540, began governing the most extensive empire in the world at the young age of sixteen. Charles left Philip with experienced advisors—notably the secretary Francisco de los Cobos, Philip was left with extensive written instructions that emphasised piety, patience and distrust. These principles of Charles were gradually assimilated by his son, who would grow up to become grave, self-possessed, Philip spoke softly and had an icy self-mastery, in the words of one of his ministers, he had a smile that cut like a sword.
After living in the Netherlands in the years of his reign
Joanna of Austria, Princess of Portugal
Joanna of Austria was the mother of Sebastian of Portugal, and regent of Spain for her brother, Philip II of Spain. She was born in Madrid to Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor and her siblings were King Philip II of Spain and Maria, Holy Roman Empress. Among others, Joanna held the titles of an Archduchess of Austria, Infanta of Castile and of Aragon, joannas only child, Sebastian of Portugal, was born posthumously in 1554, a couple of weeks after her husbands death at the age of 16. Shortly after Sebastians birth, Joanna was called back to Madrid by her brother Philip to act as regent during his absence in England and she filled this role with intelligence and efficiency. Joanna never remarried and never returned to Portugal and she never saw her son Sebastian again, although she sent him letters and had portraits of him painted at various ages so she could see what he looked like. This convent is now a monument and holds an art collection. It was founded in the palace where Joanna was born. Joanna repeatedly intervened in favor of the new order of the Jesuits, in 1555, she is reputed to have been admitted surreptitiously to the male-only Jesuit order under the name of a pseudonym, Mateo Sánchez
Carlos, Prince of Asturias
Several of the Carlist pretenders to the Spanish throne were known as Don Carlos. Carlos, Prince of Asturias, known as Don Carlos, was the eldest son and his mother was Maria Manuela of Portugal, daughter of John III of Portugal. Carlos was mentally unstable and was imprisoned by his father in early 1568 and his fate was a theme in Spains Black Legend, and inspired a play by Friedrich Schiller and an opera by Giuseppe Verdi. Carlos was born at Valladolid on 8 July 1545 and his mother, María Manuela of Portugal, died four days from a haemorrhage she had suffered after the birth. The young Infante Carlos was delicate and deformed and he grew up proud and willful and, as a young adult, began to show signs of mental instability. Many of his physical and psychological afflictions may have stemmed from the common to the House of Habsburg. Carlos had only four great-grandparents instead of the maximum of eight, in 1559 Prince Carlos was betrothed to Elizabeth of Valois, eldest daughter of King Henry II of France.
However, for reasons, she instead married King Philip in 1560. It was agreed in 1564 that Carlos should marry Anna, Carlos was recognized in 1560 as the heir-apparent to the Castilian throne, and three years as heir-apparent to the Crown of Aragon as well. He became the 218th Knight of the Order of the Golden Fleece and he often attended meetings of the Council of State and was in correspondence with his aunt Margaret, who governed the Low Countries in his fathers name. In 1562 Carlos fell down a flight of stairs, which caused serious head injuries and his life was saved by a trepanation of the skull, performed by the eminent anatomist Andreas Vesalius. After his recovery, Carlos became wild and unpredictable in his behavior and he took a dislike to the Duke of Alba, who became the commander of Philips forces in the Netherlands, a position that had been promised to Carlos. Carlos possibly made contacts with representative of the Count Egmont from the Low Countries and he exhibited an antipathy towards his father, whose murder, according to Carlos confessor, he supposedly contemplated at one time.
In the autumn of 1567 he made preparations to flee to the Netherlands, John of Austria, whom Carlos tried to draw into his plans, revealed everything to King Philip. Carlos remained in confinement at the Alcázar of Madrid until his death six months later. It was claimed that he was poisoned on the orders of King Philip, especially by William the Silent in his Apology, modern historians think that Don Carlos died of natural causes. He grew very thin and developed eating disorders during his imprisonment, Carlos left an unfavourable impression on some foreign ambassadors. Another Venetian, Paolo Tiepolo, wrote, He wished neither to study nor to take physical exercise, the idea of King Philip confining and murdering his own son played a minor role in establishing the anti-Spanish Black Legend
Anna of Austria, Queen of Spain
Anna of Austria was Queen of Spain by virtue of her marriage to her uncle, King Philip II of Spain. She was the eldest daughter of Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian II and her maternal grandparents were Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor who was emperor when she was born, and Isabella of Portugal. Her paternal grandparents were Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand I and Anna of Bohemia, Anna was born in Spain, but lived in Vienna from the age of four. She had many siblings, two of whom became emperors, among her sisters was Queen Elisabeth of France, wife of King Charles IX of France. Anna was considered her fathers favorite child, the story goes that he enjoyed playing and gambling with her and once a meeting of the Estates of Hungary was postponed because Anna was sick. She received a Catholic education even though her father was sympathetic to Lutheranism, as the eldest daughter of the Holy Roman Emperor, Anna was a desirable candidate for marriage at the European courts. Her parents thought of a Spanish marriage to strengthen links between the Austrian and Spanish Habsburg families, initially she had her cousin Don Carlos of Spain in mind, the only son of her maternal uncle Philip II of Spain.
These plans were shattered in 1568 when Don Carlos died, plans for a Spanish marriage were revived when Philips third wife, died in childbirth, in 1568. As a result, Philip was left a widower with two young daughters, Philip was now looking for his fourth wife, since he had no male heir since Don Carlos died. In February 1569, Annas engagement to her uncle Philip II was announced, Anna traveled from Austria to Spain in the autumn of 1570 accompanied by her brothers Albert and Wenzel. They traveled through the Netherlands, where Anna was accosted by friends and relatives of Floris of Montigny, Montigny had been imprisoned in Spain since 1567. Now that King Philip had entered into a new marriage, Montignys family and they received a promise from the future queen that she would do her utmost to free Montigny, however she was unsuccessful, with Montigny being strangled on the orders of the king. Anna passed along the English Channel, where Elizabeth I sent her admirals, Charles Howard and William Wynter, to offer support, on 3 October Anna arrived on Spanish soil, but before she could reach the king, Floris was secretly put to death on 16 October 1570.
The historian John Brewer believes that Philip had him executed soon after Philips first meeting with Anna. Besides being her fathers favorite child, Anna was Philips most beloved wife, but the marriage was at first opposed by many, including Pope Pius V. According to diplomats, the king was in love with his young bride, Philip was a conscientious monarch and maintained his relationship with Anna twice a week to write notes. It was Philips fourth marriage, but the still had no male heir. Anna completed her duties flawlessly in that regard, not only was she a good stepmother to Philips daughters Isabella Clara Eugenia and Catherine Michelle, but she gave birth to five children, including sons
Philip I of Castile
Philip I called the Handsome or the Fair, was the first member of the house of Habsburg to be King of Castile. He was the first Habsburg monarch in Spain, the future King Henry VIII of England met Philip the Handsome on a visit Philip made to Henrys fathers court in London and regarded him as providing a model of leadership towards which he aspired. The two would become brothers-in-law since Philip married Joanna of Castile, and Henry married Joannas youngest sister, in 1482, upon the death of his mother, he succeeded to her Burgundian possessions under the guardianship of his father. A period of turmoil ensued which witnessed sporadic hostilities between, the towns of Flanders and the supporters of Maximilian. Both sides came to terms in the Treaty of Senlis in 1493 and this smoothed over the internal power struggle as the two sides agreed to make the 15-year-old Philip prince in the following year. On 20 October 1496, he married Joanna, daughter of King Ferdinand II of Aragon and Queen Isabella I of Castile, in Lier, the matter became more urgent after Charles VIIIs invasion of Italy.
Philips sister Margaret married John, Prince of Asturias, only son of Ferdinand and Isabella and heir apparent to the crowns of Castile. The double alliance was never intended to let the Spanish kingdoms fall under Habsburg control, at the time of her marriage to Philip, Joanna was third in line to the throne, with John and their sister Isabella married and hopeful of progeny. In 1500, shortly after the birth in Flanders of Joanna and Philips second child, the heir apparent, had died in 1497 very shortly after his marriage to Margaret of Austria. The crown thereby seemed destined to devolve upon his and Joannas elder sister Isabella, the succession to the Castilian and Aragonese crowns now fell to Joanna. Because Ferdinand could produce another heir, the Cortes of Aragon refused to recognize Joanna as heir presumptive to the Kingdom of Aragon, in the Kingdom of Castile, the succession was clear. Moreover, there was no Salic tradition which the Castilian Cortes could use to thwart the succession passing to Joanna.
Philip and the majority of the returned to the Low Countries in the following year, leaving a pregnant Joanna behind in Madrid. Philips life with Joanna was rendered extremely unhappy by his infidelity and political insecurity, most historians now agree she was merely clinically depressed at the time, not insane as commonly believed. Before her mothers death, in 1504, husband and wife were living apart. In 1504, Philips mother-in-law, Queen Isabella of Castile, Isabella Is widower and former co-monarch, King Ferdinand II, endeavored to lay hands on the regency of Castile, but the nobles, who disliked and feared him, forced him to withdraw. Philip was summoned to Spain, where he was recognized as king, however, en route to Spain in January 1506, Philip and Joanna were caught in a tempest and shipwrecked off the Dorset coast, forcing them on shore near Melcombe Regis. The couple stayed as guests of Henry VII of England but were in fact hostages for the duration of their stay, after handing over Edmund and Joanna were allowed to leave England after a stay of six weeks
Maximilian II, Holy Roman Emperor
Maximilian II, a member of the Austrian House of Habsburg, was Holy Roman Emperor from 1564 until his death. He was crowned King of Bohemia in Prague on 14 May 1562, on 8 September 1563 he was crowned King of Hungary and Croatia in the Hungarian capital Pressburg. On 25 July 1564 he succeeded his father Ferdinand I as ruler of the Holy Roman Empire, maximilians rule was shaped by the confessionalization process after the 1555 Peace of Augsburg. Though a Habsburg and a Catholic, he approached the Lutheran Imperial estates with a view to overcome the denominational schism and he was faced with the ongoing Ottoman–Habsburg wars and rising conflicts with his Habsburg Spain cousins. According to Fichtner, he failed to achieve his three major aims, rationalizing the government structure, unifying Christianity, and evicting the Turks from Hungary and he was named after his great-grandfather, Emperor Maximilian I. At the time of his birth, his father Ferdinand succeeded his brother-in-law King Louis II in the Kingdom of Bohemia, having spent his childhood years at his fatherss court in Innsbruck, Tyrol, he was educated principally in Italy.
Among his teachers were humanist scholars like Kaspar Ursinus Velius and Georg Tannstetter, Maximilian came in contact with the Lutheran teaching and early on corresponded with the Protestant prince Augustus of Saxony, suspiciously eyed by his Habsburg relatives. From the age of 17, he gained experience of warfare during the Italian War campaign of his uncle Charles V against King Francis I of France in 1544. On 13 September 1548 Emperor Charles V married Maximilian to Charless daughter Mary of Spain in the Castile residence of Valladolid, by the marriage his uncle intended to strengthen the ties with the Spanish branch of the Habsburgs, but to consolidate his nephews Catholic faith. Maximilian temporarily acted as the representative in Spain, however not as stadtholder of the Habsburg Netherlands as he had hoped for. He returned to Germany in December 1550 in order to part in the discussion over the Imperial succession. However, Charles brother Ferdinand, who had already designated as the next occupant of the imperial throne.
Maximilian sought the support of the German princes such as Duke Albert V of Bavaria and even contacted Protestant leaders like Maurice of Saxony and Duke Christoph of Württemberg. At length a compromise was reached, Philip was to succeed Ferdinand, the relationship between the two cousins was uneasy. While his cousin was reserved and shy, Maximilian was outgoing and his adherence to humanism and religious tolerance put him at odds with Philip who was more committed to the defence of the Catholic faith. Also, he was considered a promising commander, while Philip disliked war, the two remained committed to the unity of their dynasty. In Vienna, he had his Hofburg residence extended with the Renaissance Stallburg wing, the site of the Spanish Riding School, the court held close ties to the University of Vienna and employed scholars like the botanist Carolus Clusius and the diplomat Ogier Ghiselin de Busbecq. Maximilians library curated by Hugo Blotius became the nucleus of the Austrian National Library and he implemented the Roman School of composition with his court orchestra, his plans to win Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina as Kapellmeister foundered on financial reasons
Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand of Austria
Born at the Escorial near Madrid, Spain in 16091, he was the son of the King of Spain and Portugal, Philip III and II and Margaret of Austria, sister of Emperor Ferdinand II. His older siblings were King Philip IV and III and the French queen Anne of Austria, as his father wished that he pursue an ecclesiastical career, Ferdinand was elevated to the Primacy of Spain in 1619, becoming Archbishop of Toledo. Shortly afterwards he was created Cardinal, the style Cardinal-Infante was a combination of his dignity as Cardinal and his station as a royal Prince of Spain. Ferdinand was never ordained a priest, In 1630 the Cardinal Infantes aunt Isabella Clara Eugenia planned to make him her successor as governor of the Spanish Netherlands. To move to the Netherlands in a style befitting a governor and he met with an army from Milan for a planned march through the famous Spanish Way across Lombardy and Swabia, and following the Rhine to the Netherlands. Since disease delayed his travels, he sent half of his army ahead under the command of the Duke of Feria, this army was severely depleted during fighting with the Swedish army of Bernhard of Saxe-Weimar and Gustaf Horn.
The Spanish requested 4000 cavalry from the Imperial general Albrecht von Wallenstein, but this being denied, the Cardinal-Infante was able to continue his travels in 1634, collecting in Bavaria the remains of the army of Gómez Suárez, who had died in January 1634. Meanwhile, Ferdinand of Hungary was able to defeat the Swedish army at Regensburg in July 1634 and this Ferdinand and his cousin the Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand raced to merge their armies. The Swedish forces of Bernhard of Saxe-Weimar and Gustaf Horn desperately tried to prevent this merger, the Cardinal-Infante crossed the Danube in August 1634. In September both armies were able to merge, and camped south of Nördlingen in Swabia, at that time Nördlingen was protected by a small Swedish garrison. Shortly thereafter, the armies of Bernhard of Saxe-Weimar and Gustaf Horn reached Nördlingen, Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand and his nephew Ferdinand prepared for battle, ignoring the advice of the more experienced generals, such as the Imperial general Matthias Gallas.
Bernhard and Horn prepared for battle, but they were by now rivals, Gustaf Horn was captured, the Swedish army was destroyed, and the remainder that fled to Heilbronn was only a shadow of the former glorious army. At the end of 1634 he entered Brussels with all the glory befitting a Governor-General, due to the unpopularity of the clergy in Brussels, he downplayed his religious status and instead emphasized his worldly ranks. Ferdinand was a politician and diplomat, and quickly reformed the government. He especially managed to win the support of the Flemings against France, his powers were secretly limited, and the leader of his army was instructed to follow Spanish orders instead of Ferdinands orders if necessary. In 1635 the French attacked Namur, planning to merge with the Dutch near Maastricht, the Dutch hesitated, and the French retreated. Ferdinand subsequently was able to capture Diest, Gennep, Limbourg, on October 10,1637, Breda was recaptured again after a 10-month siege by the Prince of Orange after being under Spanish control for 12 years.
In the southern front Ferdinand lost the towns of La Capelle and Damvillers to the French, in 1638 Ferdinands army successfully defended Antwerp, Saint-Omer and Geldern from the Dutch and French armies