The German Political Broadsheet 1600-1700
The latter half of the seventeenth century in Europe was marked by virtually constant warfare on the Continent, and the Habsburgs found themselves involved in all of these confrontations. Their struggle to maintain their territorial integrity was threatened by the expansionist policies of France in the west and the Ottoman Empire in the east, and they were often hard-pressed to respond forcefully to the challenges. An attempt by the Turks to settle the question of political control in Eastern Europe culminated in their siege of Vienna in 1683, a defining historical event of immense importance, for its outcome determined the future course of European politics. With the defeat of the Turks the Austrian Habsburgs were able to focus their attention on driving the Ottoman forces from the Continent, and during this unsettling time citizens in the empire received much of their news of military events in the form of broadsheets. There had been two high points in the production of broadsheets earlier in the century – first during the early years of the Thirty Years’ War and then again at the time of Gustavus Adolphus’s military success in the early 1630s – and the siege of Vienna and subsequent campaign against the Turks became the third such highpoint.
This volume brings together for the first time all of the known German political broadsheets from the siege of Vienna to the final months before the siege and capture of Budapest. Many of the broadsheets have never been reproduced and thus offer readers a unique resource for understanding public opinion at the time.