The Peace of Westphalia
The Thirty Years' War was finally ended in 1648 by the Peace
of Westphalia. The treaty guaranteed the religious and political
constitution of the Holy Roman Empire, giving the German princes
the sovereign right to settle the religious question in their
respective territories. France also achieved its main war aim
because the costly war and the concessions to the princes
effectively stopped the Habsburgs from transforming the Holy
Roman Empire into an absolutist state under their direction.
Nonetheless, in their own lands, the Habsburgs enjoyed greater
political and religious control than before the war: they had
gained loyal new followers from among the nobles by
redistributing estates confiscated from rebels, and they were
free to enforce religious conformity, which they did based on the
model applied earlier in Bohemia.
Data as of December 1993