Ferdinand II, Holy Roman Emperor
Ferdinand II, a member of the House of Habsburg, was Holy Roman Emperor, King of Bohemia, and King of Hungary. His acts started the Thirty Years War, Ferdinands aim, as a zealous Catholic, was to restore Catholicism as the only religion in the Empire and to suppress Protestantism. He was born at Graz, the son of Charles II, Archduke of Austria and he was educated by the Jesuits and attended the University of Ingolstadt. After completing his studies in 1595, he acceded to his lands and made a pilgrimage to Loreto. Shortly afterwards, he began the suppression of Protestantism in his territories, with the Oñate treaty, Ferdinand obtained the support of the Spanish Habsburgs in the succession of his childless cousin Matthias, in exchange for concessions in Alsace and Italy. In 1617, he was elected King of Bohemia by the Bohemian diet, in 1618, King of Hungary by the Hungarian estates and his devout Catholicism and negative regard of Protestantism caused immediate turmoil in his non-Catholic subjects, especially in Bohemia.
Additionally, Ferdinand was an absolutist monarch and infringed several historical privileges of the nobles, given the relatively great number of Protestants in the kingdom, including some of the nobles, the kings unpopularity soon caused the Bohemian Revolt. The Second Defenestration of Prague of 22 May 1618 is considered the first step of the Thirty Years War, in the following events he remained one of the staunchest backers of the Anti-Protestant Counter Reformation efforts as one of the heads of the German Catholic League. Ferdinand succeeded Matthias as Holy Roman Emperor in 1619, supported by the Catholic League and the Kings of Spain and the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, Ferdinand decided to reclaim his possession in Bohemia and to quench the rebels. On 8 November 1620 his troops, led by the Flemish general Johann Tserclaes, Count of Tilly, smashed the rebels of Frederick V, in 1625, despite the subsidies received from Spain and the Pope, Ferdinand was in a bad financial situation.
Wallenstein was able to recruit some 30,000 men, with whom he was able to defeat the Protestants in Silesia and his military success caused the tottering Protestants to call in Gustavus II Adolphus, King of Sweden. Soon, some of Ferdinands allies began to complain about the power exercised by Wallenstein. Ferdinand replied by firing the Bohemian general in 1630, the leadership of the war thenceforth passed to Tilly, who was however unable to stop the Swedish march from northern Germany towards Austria. Tilly died in battle in 1632, Wallenstein was recalled, being able to muster an army in only a week, and expelled the Swedes from Bohemia. However, in November 1632 the Catholics were defeated in the Battle of Lützen, a period of minor operations followed, perhaps because of Wallensteins ambiguous conduct, which ended with his assassination in 1634. Despite Wallensteins fall, the imperial forces recaptured Regensburg and were victorious in the Battle of Nördlingen, in 1635 Ferdinand signed his last important act, the Peace of Prague, yet this did not end the war.
Ferdinand died in 1637, leaving to his son Ferdinand III, Holy Roman Emperor, Ferdinand II was buried in his Mausoleum in Graz. His heart was interred in the Herzgruft of the Augustinian Church, in 1600, Ferdinand married Maria Anna of Bavaria, daughter of Duke William V of Bavaria
Battle of White Mountain
The Battle of White Mountain was an important battle in the early stages of the Thirty Years War. It was fought on 8 November 1620, the site is now part of the city of Prague. The battle marked the end of the Bohemian period of the Thirty Years War and its aftermath drastically changed the religious landscape of the Czech lands after two centuries of Protestant dominance. Roman Catholicism retained majority in the Czech lands until the late 20th century, Ferdinand saw Protestantism as inimical to the Empire, and wanted to impose absolutist rule on Bohemia while forcefully encouraging conversion to the Roman Catholic faith. Particularly galling to Protestants were perceived violations of Emperor Rudolf IIs 1609 Letter of Majesty and this incident, known as the Second Defenestration of Prague, triggered the Bohemian Revolt. In November 1619, Elector Palatine Frederick V, who many of the rebels was a Calvinist, was chosen as King of Bohemia by the Bohemian Electorate. In 1620, now established as Emperor, Ferdinand II set out to conquer Bohemia.
Tillys army enjoyed the advantage of including two of the most successful leaders in European history - Tilly himself and the future General Wallenstein. Tillys force was made up of two groups, Imperial troops commanded by Charles Bonaventure de Longueval, Count of Bucquoy. All of the armies of the day employed numerous mercenaries, including, by some definitions, serving with the Catholic League as an official observer was the future father of modern philosophy, René Descartes. After conquering most of western Bohemia, the Imperial army made for Prague, the Bohemians attempted to block them by setting up defensive positions, which the Imperial army simply bypassed. Force-marching his men, Christian of Anhalt managed to get ahead of the Imperial army just before Prague and he thus gained an advantageous position on the White Mountain, actually a low plateau, but had little time to set up defensive works. Enthusiasm for joining battle was low on both sides, on November 8 a small Imperial force was sent to probe the Protestant flank.
To their surprise, the Bohemians retreated at their advance, Tilly quickly sent in reinforcements, and the Bohemian flank began to crumble. Anhalt tried to retrieve the situation by sending infantry and cavalry led by his son Christian II. The cavalry charged into the Imperial infantry, causing significant casualties, the Bohemian infantry, who were only now approaching the Imperial army, saw the cavalry retreating, at which they fired one volley at extreme range before retreating themselves. A small group of Imperial cavalry began circling the Protestant forces, with the Bohemian army already demoralized, company after company began retreating, most without having actually entered the battle. The Battle of White Mountain was more a skirmish than a full-fledged battle, the Bohemian army was no match for the Emperor Ferdinands troops
The Augsburg Confession was written in both German and Latin and was presented by a number of German rulers and free-cities at the Diet of Augsburg on 25 June 1530. It is the document contained in the Lutheran Book of Concord. On 21 January 1530, Emperor Charles V issued letters from Bologna, although the writ of invitation was couched in very peaceful language, it was received with suspicion by some of the Protestants. This summary has received the name of the Torgau Articles, on 3 April, the elector and reformers started from Torgau, and reached Coburg on 23 April. There, Luther was left behind because he was an outlaw according to the Diet of Worms, the rest reached Augsburg on 2 May. On the journey, Melanchthon worked on an apology, using the Torgau articles, and sent his draft to Luther at Coburg on 11 May, during the diet, the cities of Weißenburg in Bayern, Heilbronn and Windesheim expressed their concurrence with the confession. The Protestant princes, declared that they would not part with the confession until its reading should be allowed, the 25th was fixed for the day of its presentation.
In order to exclude the people, the chapel of the episcopal palace was appointed in place of the spacious city hall. The reading of the German version of the text by Christian Beyer lasted two hours and was so distinct that every word could be heard outside, the reading being over, the copies were handed to the emperor. The German he gave to the chancellor, the Elector of Mainz. Neither of the copies is now extant, the first official publication was edited by Philipp Melanchthon, a professor at the University of Wittenberg and a close colleague and friend of Martin Luther. That in doctrine and ceremonies nothing has been received on our part against Scripture or the Church Catholic, signatures of several secular leaders in Saxony. The Augsburg Confession became the confessional document for the Lutheran movement. Following the public reading of the Augsburg Confession in June 1530, the response by Charles V. However, in September, Charles V declared the response to be sufficient and gave the Lutheran princes until 15 April 1531, in response, Phillipp Melancthon wrote a lengthy and sustained argument both supporting the Augsburg Confession and refuting the arguments made in the Confutation.
This document became known as the Apology of the Augsburg Confession and was translated into German and was widely distributed. The Lutheran princes at the diet concurrently agreed to an alliance in the event of action by Charles V known as the Schmalkaldic League. By 1535, the League admitted any city or state to the alliance that gave official assent to the Augsburg Confession and the Apology
Lutheranism is a major branch of Protestant Christianity which identifies with the theology of Martin Luther, a German friar, ecclesiastical reformer and theologian. Luthers efforts to reform the theology and practice of the Catholic Church launched the Protestant Reformation in the German-speaking territories of the Holy Roman Empire. Lutheranism advocates a doctrine of justification by grace alone through faith alone on the basis of Scripture alone and this is in contrast to the belief of the Catholic Church, defined at the Council of Trent, concerning authority coming from both the Scriptures and Tradition. In addition, Lutheranism accepts the teachings of the first seven ecumenical councils of the undivided Christian Church, unlike Calvinism, Lutherans retain many of the liturgical practices and sacramental teachings of the pre-Reformation Church, with a particular emphasis on the Eucharist, or Lords Supper. Lutheran theology differs from Reformed theology in Christology, the purpose of Gods Law, the grace, the concept of perseverance of the saints.
Today, Lutheranism is one of the largest denominations of Protestantism, with approximately 80 million adherents, it constitutes the third most common Protestant denomination after historically Pentecostal denominations and Anglicanism. The Lutheran World Federation, the largest communion of Lutheran churches, Other Lutheran organizations include the International Lutheran Council and the Confessional Evangelical Lutheran Conference, as well as independent churches. The name Lutheran originated as a term used against Luther by German Scholastic theologian Dr. Johann Maier von Eck during the Leipzig Debate in July 1519. Eck and other Catholics followed the practice of naming a heresy after its leader. Martin Luther always disliked the term Lutheran, preferring the term Evangelical, which was derived from euangelion, the followers of John Calvin, Huldrych Zwingli, and other theologians linked to the Reformed tradition began to use that term. To distinguish the two groups, others began to refer to the two groups as Evangelical Lutheran and Evangelical Reformed.
As time passed by, the word Evangelical was dropped, Lutherans themselves began to use the term Lutheran in the middle of the 16th century, in order to distinguish themselves from other groups such as the Philippists and Calvinists. In 1597, theologians in Wittenberg defined the title Lutheran as referring to the true church, Lutheranism has its roots in the work of Martin Luther, who sought to reform the Western Church to what he considered a more biblical foundation. Lutheranism spread through all of Scandinavia during the 16th century, as the monarch of Denmark–Norway, through Baltic-German and Swedish rule, Lutheranism spread into Estonia and Latvia. Since 1520, regular Lutheran services have been held in Copenhagen, under the reign of Frederick I, Denmark-Norway remained officially Catholic. Although Frederick initially pledged to persecute Lutherans, he adopted a policy of protecting Lutheran preachers and reformers. During Fredericks reign, Lutheranism made significant inroads in Denmark, at an open meeting in Copenhagen attended by the king in 1536, the people shouted, We will stand by the holy Gospel, and do not want such bishops anymore.
Fredericks son Christian was openly Lutheran, which prevented his election to the throne upon his fathers death, following his victory in the civil war that followed, in 1537 he became Christian III and advanced the Reformation in Denmark-Norway
Moravia is a historical country in the Czech Republic and one of the historical Czech lands, together with Bohemia and Czech Silesia. Moravia has an area of over 22,348.87 km2 and about 3 million inhabitants, the statistics from 1921 states, that the whole area of Moravia including the enclaves in Silesia covers 22,623.41 km2. The people are historically named Moravians, a subgroup of Czechs, the land takes its name from the Morava river, which rises in the northern tip of the region and flows southward to the opposite end, being its major stream. Moravias largest city and historical capital is Brno, however before being sacked by the Swedish army during the Thirty Years War, though officially abolished by an administrative reform in 1949, Moravia is still commonly acknowledged as a specific land in the Czech Republic. Moravian people are aware of their Moravian identity and there is some rivalry between them and the Czechs from Bohemia. Moravia occupies most of the part of the Czech Republic.
Moravian territory is naturally strongly determined, in fact, as the Morava river basin, with effect of mountains in the west and partly in the east. Moravia occupies a position in Central Europe. All the highlands in the west and east of part of Europe run west-east. Moravia borders Bohemia in the west, Lower Austria in the south, Slovakia in the southeast, Poland very shortly in the north and its natural boundary is formed by the Sudetes mountains in the north, the Carpathians in the east and the Bohemian-Moravian Highlands in the west. The Thaya river meanders along the border with Austria and the tripoint of Moravia and Slovakia is at the confluence of the Thaya, the northeast border with Silesia runs partly along the Moravice and Ostravice rivers. Between 1782–1850, Moravia included a portion of the former province of Silesia – the Austrian Silesia. Geologically, Moravia covers an area between the Bohemian Massif and the Carpathians, and between the Danube basin and the North European Plain.
Its core geomorphological features are three wide vales, namely the Dyje-Svratka Vale, the Upper Morava Vale and the Lower Morava Vale, the former two form the westernmost part of the Subcarpathia, the latter one is the northernmost part of the Vienna Basin. The vales surround the low range of Central Moravian Carpathians, the highest mountains of Moravia are situated on its northern border in Hrubý Jeseník, the highest peak is Praděd. Second highest are the Moravian-Silesian Beskids at the very east, with Smrk, the White Carpathians along the southeastern border rise up to 970 m at Velká Javořina. The spacious, but moderate Bohemian-Moravian Highlands on the west reach 837 m at Devět skal. The fluvial system of Moravia is very cohesive, as the border is similar to the watershed of the Morava river
Martin Luther, O. S. A. was a German professor of theology, priest, monk and a seminal figure in the Protestant Reformation. Luther came to reject several teachings and practices of the Roman Catholic Church and he strongly disputed the Catholic view on indulgences as he understood it to be, that freedom from Gods punishment for sin could be purchased with money. Luther proposed a discussion of the practice and efficacy of indulgences in his Ninety-five Theses of 1517. His translation of the Bible into the vernacular made it accessible to the laity. It fostered the development of a version of the German language, added several principles to the art of translation, and influenced the writing of an English translation. His hymns influenced the development of singing in Protestant churches and his marriage to Katharina von Bora, a former nun, set a model for the practice of clerical marriage, allowing Protestant clergy to marry. In two of his works, Luther expressed antagonistic views towards Jews, writing that Jewish homes and synagogues should be destroyed, their money confiscated.
Condemned by virtually every Lutheran denomination, these statements and their influence on antisemitism have contributed to his controversial status, Martin Luther was born to Hans Luder and his wife Margarethe on 10 November 1483 in Eisleben, part of the Holy Roman Empire. He was baptized as a Catholic the next morning on the feast day of St. Martin of Tours and his family moved to Mansfeld in 1484, where his father was a leaseholder of copper mines and smelters and served as one of four citizen representatives on the local council. He had several brothers and sisters, and is known to have close to one of them. Hans Luther was ambitious for himself and his family, and he was determined to see Martin, his eldest son, become a lawyer. He sent Martin to Latin schools in Mansfeld, Magdeburg in 1497, where he attended a school operated by a lay group called the Brethren of the Common Life, the three schools focused on the so-called trivium, grammar and logic. Luther compared his education there to purgatory and hell, in 1501, at the age of 19, he entered the University of Erfurt, which he described as a beerhouse and whorehouse.
He was made to wake at four every morning for what has been described as a day of rote learning and he received his masters degree in 1505. In accordance with his fathers wishes, Luther enrolled in law school at the university that year but dropped out almost immediately. Luther sought assurances about life and was drawn to theology and philosophy, expressing particular interest in Aristotle, William of Ockham, philosophy proved to be unsatisfying, offering assurance about the use of reason but none about loving God, which to Luther was more important. Reason could not lead men to God, he felt, for Luther, reason could be used to question men and institutions, but not God. Human beings could learn about God only through divine revelation, he believed and he attributed his decision to an event, on 2 July 1505, he was returning to university on horseback after a trip home
A bookplate, known as ex-librīs, is usually a small print or decorative label pasted into a book, often on the inside front cover, to indicate its owner. Simple typographical bookplates are termed booklabels, Bookplates typically bear a name, device, coat-of-arms, badge, or any motif that relates to the owner of the book, or is requested by him or her from the artist or designer. The name of the owner usually follows an inscription such as from the books of, Bookplates are important evidence for the provenance of books. In the United States, bookplates replaced book rhymes after the 19th century, the earliest known marks of ownership of books or documents date from the reign of Amenophis III in Egypt. However, in their form, they evolved from simple inscriptions in books which were common in Europe in the Middle Ages. The earliest known examples of printed bookplates are German, and date from the 15th century, the woodcut, in imitation of similar devices in old manuscripts, is hand-painted.
An example of this bookplate can be found in the Farber Archives of Brandeis University, in France the most ancient ex-libris as yet discovered is that of one Jean Bertaud de la Tour-Blanche, the date of which is 1529. Holland comes next with the plate of Anna van der Aa, in 1597, the earliest known American example is the plain printed label of Stephen Daye, the Massachusetts printer of the Bay Psalm Book,1642. A sketch of the history of the bookplate, as a symbolical and decorative print used to mark ownership of books, begins in Germany. The earliest examples known are German, but they are found in great numbers long before the spread to other countries. Albrecht Dürer is known to have engraved at least six plates between 1503 and 1516, and to have supplied designs for several others, notable plates are ascribed to Lucas Cranach and to Hans Holbein, and to the so-called Little Masters. It was not before the 17th century that printed ex-libris became common in France, up to that time, the more luxurious habit of blind or gold-stamping the books binding with a personal device had been more widespread, the supralibros.
From the middle of the century, the ex-libris proper became quite popular, examples of that period are numerous and it may be here pointed out that the term ex-libris, used as a substantive found its origin in France. In many ways the consideration of the English bookplate, in its numerous styles, in all its varieties it reflects with great fidelity the prevailing taste in decorative art at different epochs—as bookplates do in all countries. The next is that of Sir Thomas Tresham, dated 1585, until the last quarter of the 17th century the number of authentic English plates is very limited. Their composition is remarkably simple, and displays nothing of the German elaborateness. They are as a very plainly armorial, and the decoration is usually limited to a symmetrical arrangement of mantling. Soon after the Restoration, however, a bookplate seems to have become an established accessory to most well-ordered libraries
Cieszyn Silesia or Těšín Silesia or Teschen Silesia is a historical region in south-eastern Silesia, centered on the towns of Cieszyn and Český Těšín and bisected by the Olza River. Since 1920 it has been divided between Poland and Czechoslovakia, and the Czech Republic. It covers an area of about 2,280 square kilometres and has about 810,000 inhabitants, of which 1,002 square kilometres is in Poland, the historical boundaries of the region are roughly the same as those of the former independent Duchy of Teschen/Cieszyn. Currently, over half of Cieszyn Silesia forms one of the euroregions, Cieszyn Silesia covers the area of the former Duchy of Teschen, which existed from 1290 to 1918. Before 1290 the area constituted a castellany, which together with Castellany of Racibórz formed the Duchy of Racibórz in 1172, from 1202 it was a part of the united Duchy of Opole and Racibórz. From 1290 to 1653 the Duchy of Teschen was ruled by the branch of the Piast dynasty. In 1327 Casimir I, Duke of Cieszyn, swore homage to the Bohemian king John of Bohemia, and the duchy became an autonomous fiefdom of the Kingdom of Bohemia and the Bohemian Crown.
From 1722, the dukes of Teschen hailed from the Dukes of Lorraine dynasty, from 1767 to 1822 from the Wettin dynasty, Cieszyn Silesia was cemented as a uniform historic, socio-cultural and economic entity during the period of Habsburg rule. It is distinct from the rest of Silesia because after the First Silesian War between the Austrian Empire and Prussia it remained part of Austria, whereas most of Silesia became a part of Prussia. After the end of World War I, both of the two newly created independent states of Poland and Czechoslovakia claimed the area, Czechoslovakia claimed the area partly on historic and ethnic grounds, but especially on economic and strategic grounds. The area was important for the Czechs, as the railway line connecting Czech Silesia with Slovakia crossed the area. The western area of Cieszyn Silesia is rich in coal. Many important coal mines and metallurgy factories are located there, the Polish side based its claim to the area on ethnic criteria, a majority of the areas population was Polish according to the last Austrian census.
Two local self-government councils and Czech, were created, on 31 October 1918, in the wake of World War I and the dissolution of Austria-Hungary, most of the area was taken over by local Polish authorities. In 1919 the councils were absorbed by the created and independent central governments in Prague. The impetus for the Czech invasion in 1919 was Polands organising of elections to the Sejm of Poland in the disputed area, the elections were to be held in the whole of Cieszyn Silesia. The Czechs claimed that the polls must not be held in the area, as the delimitation was only interim. The Czech demand was rejected by the Poles and, following the rejection, Czech units led by Colonel Josef Šnejdárek and Polish units commanded by General Franciszek Latinik clashed after the swift Czech advance near Skoczów where a battle took place on 28–30 January
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America is a mainline Protestant denomination headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. The ELCA officially came into existence on January 1,1988, as of 2015, it has approximately 3.7 million baptized members in just over 9,300 congregations. In 2015, Pew Research estimated that 2. 1% of the U. S population self-identifies with the ELCA and it is the seventh-largest religious body and the largest Lutheran denomination in the United States. The next two largest Lutheran denominations are the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod and the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod, there are many smaller Lutheran church bodies in the United States, some of which came into being composed of dissidents following the major 1988 merger. The ELCA belongs to the World Council of Churches and the Lutheran World Federation, the ELCA is in full communion with the Episcopal Church, Moravian Church, Presbyterian Church, Reformed Church in America, United Church of Christ, and the United Methodist Church.
In 1970, a survey by Strommen et al, the ELCA formally came into existence on January 1,1988, creating the largest Lutheran church body in the United States. The ALC and LCA were themselves the product of previous mergers, the ALC brought approximately 2.25 million members into the ELCA. Its immigrant heritage came mostly from Germany and Denmark and it was the most theologically conservative of the forming bodies, having a heritage of Old Lutheran theology. Its geographic center was in the Upper Midwest, especially Minnesota, some congregations in the ALC opted not to join the merger and instead formed the American Association of Lutheran Churches. The LCA brought approximately 2.85 million members into the ELCA and its immigrant heritage came mostly from Germany, Slovakia and Finland. Its demographic focus was on the East Coast, with numbers in the Midwest. There are notable exceptions, but LCA-background churches tend to be more liturgical than ALC-background churches and its theological orientation ranged from moderately liberal to neo-orthodox, with tendencies toward conservative Pietism in some rural and small-town congregations.
Its theology originated in the Neo-Lutheran movement, the AELC brought approximately 100,000 members into the ELCA. Its immigrant heritage came mostly from Germany, the complexion of its theology generally resembled that of the LCA, the ELCA is headed by a Presiding Bishop, who is elected by the Churchwide Assembly for a term of six years. To date, four people have elected to the position of Presiding Bishop of the ELCA. Herbert W. Chilstrom served as the first Presiding Bishop from 1987 to 1995 and he was followed by H. George Anderson, who had previously been the President of Luther College. The third Presiding Bishop was Mark Hanson, who is the past president of the Lutheran World Federation, Hanson began his tenure as Bishop of the Church in 2001 and was re-elected in August 2007 for a second term. Elizabeth Eaton was elected Presiding Bishop in August 2013 and took office on November 1,2013, the Conference of Bishops is formed of the elected synodical bishops from each of the constituent synods and is often consulted by the Presiding Bishop and the Church Council