The Habsburg Empire 1648–1914


Map Code: Ax02199

Having faced destruction during the Siege of Vienna (1683), the Habsburg monarchy of Austria bounced back to secure Hungary and Transylvania from the Ottomans by the Treaty of Karlowitz (1699). Further wars with the Ottomans produced more mixed results: the Banat of Temesvar was annexed in 1718, and (mostly) retained, but both Serbia and Wallachia were surrendered by the Treaty of Belgrade (1739). Meanwhile, the Treaty of Utrecht (1713) ended potential Habsburg hegemony in Europe by confirming the Bourbon succession in Spain: the Habsburgs were awarded the Austrian Netherlands and the Duchy of Milan as palliatives. After Ferdinand II provoked the Thirty Years’ war (1618–48), the Habsburgs of Austria adopted a naturally conservative role in the centre of Europe, acting as a bulwark of Christendom against the Turks, Catholicism against Protestantism, and the status quo against aspiring imperialists: Louis XIV, Frederick the Great, Napoleon. Backing the latest aspirant, Germany in 1914, would prove fatal.

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