- Prince-Bishop – Rebel – Ruler
Archduke Leopold (1586-1632) in dynastic and military confraternities
Archduke Leopold was a cleric, but he desired the title emperor. This project met with the crisis of the Habsburg power, as Archduke Matthias, brother to Emperor Rudolf II, challenged his power. Archduke Leopold took advantage of this situation in order to install an own powerhouse and to change his family duty, supporting his brother Ferdinand in his pitch for the throne. Leopold switched his family-based confraternity to a confraternity of military parvenus, tried in the Turkish wars, but available then, as Archduke Matthias had met a ceasefire in 1606. This brass knew each other well and turned to Prague and Leopold for new opportunities. The alliance invaded Prague in 1611 and took half of the city, the rest was held by the estates. They called to Mathias and Leopold had to give up. The article is explaining confraternity, analysing the tremor of political possibilities before the thirty-years-war, and is also looking into the sources about the attack, showing how the story was told. Leopold changed his strategy afterwards. He tried to convince the family of his catholic faith and founded some projects, nowadays seen as steps to the ‘Pietas Austriaca’-myth. He succeeded and died 1632 as ruler of Tirol.
Key words: Habsburgs; dynastic and military confraternities; archduke Leopold; Rudolf II
- „The honour and reputation of this state“
Dutch Republic in the forum of the „court public“ in the mid-17th century
The contribution analyses the performance of the Dutch Republic in the system of European „court public“ in the mid-17th century and the drafting of ceremonial-diplomatic policy by the States General as participating actors. It states that the Republic, in contrast to domestic political rhetoric, neither broke new ground nor behaved ideologically from the inside to the outside, as it aligned itself to the rules of monarchic society and strived for integration. It analyses two cases when the States General sent abroad a „negative“ signal that by all appearances broke the rules of diplomatic communication. It shows that this did not happen by accident, because of a lacking in competence or for ideological reasons. On the contrary – in the first case (the absence of a marriage gift for the Elector of Brandenburg) it was the intentional usage of the means of court communication in order to send out a clear signal to a foreign partner and his local followers by the province of Holland. In the second case (the ban on accepting diplomatic gifts) it is possible to interpret this alleged ceremonial faux-pas as a „by-product“ of a domestic development – its negative consequences for the image of the Republic abroad were well perceived, however taken into consideration.
Key words: Dutch Republic; States General; court public; diplomatic history; diplomatic gift
- A Church and a Castle. Centre and periphery of the Empire in duke Ottavio Piccolomini’s self-representation
In 1634, while trying to sell his castle in Náchod, duke Ottavio Piccolomini (1599-1656) started diverting his resources towards the foundation of the church of the Servite order in Vienna. The Florentine origin of the order, the church’s closeness to the center of the Habsburg power and the involvement of other notable patrons in the establishment of the Servites in Vienna are some of the elements that made the church a more suitable investment than the castle for Piccolomini’s need of social and political representation. This contribution analyses the symbolic capital conveyed by both buildings at different stages in Piccolomini’s career as instrumental to his fashioning within the highly-competitive Viennese court society.
Key words: Self-representation; patronage; nobility; Ottavio Piccolomini
- The Question of Welfare State in Natural Law Theories
The contribution points to the fact that the historical research in German historiographies has already revealed the evolution of the idea of the social state in the reforms of Enlightenment absolutism. In this research Christian Wolff has played an important part; he contributed to the establishment of the ideas of public assistance within the scope of natural law. The contribution aims to be a part of those research results. Furthermore, it comes with a revised approach towards the importance of welfare. Welfare did not only gain moral value but it was a fundamental source of wealth. To follow the evolution of the idea of public assistance of the state and the change of opinion in terms of charity, the contribution deals with Pufendorf´s, Wollf´s, Justi´s and Sonnefels´s arguments, as in their theories the Habsburg monarchy revealed its motivation for state leadership. When it came to poor relief, those thinkers argued that the state is obliged to provide its citizens with educational opportunities and also employment so that they could become independent and stand on their own feet. The state is also obliged to care for the poor who are unemployed and cannot earn their living because of their physical or mental disabilities or senility. When it came to the issue of charity those philosophers were dissenting. Samuel von Pufendorf and Christian Wolff admitted that charity has moral values whereas Josef von Sonnenfels banned charitable donations. For the ongoing research it will be advantageous to compare those arguments with the Christian point of view in terms of welfare and charity in the Habsburg monarchy.
Key words: natural law; political science, social obligations of the state, poor relief; charity
HISTORIOGRAPHY AND METHODOLOGY
- Illusions and Realism in the History of Human Rights
The author argues that historiography of human rights should turn from illusionary approaches to realism and that the only way to be realistic is to consider human rights as a part of law. He identifies three such illusions which are all caused by the difficulties of using language to discuss abstract immaterial subjects (essentialist illusion, biographical illusion, military illusion). In the second part he discusses two new American works on theory (Schauer, Buchanan) which help us to understand the properties of law as a social phenomenon. Parts three and four assess two new works on history of human rights (Tierney, Moyn). The conclusion suggests that historiography and legal theory should renew a close cooperation.
Key words: Human rights; historiography; legal theory