Biography of Carlos VI. Emperador del Sacro Imperio (1685-1740)

Emperor of Holy Emperor (1711-1740), King of Bohemia (1711-1740), and with the name of Carlos III, King of Hungary (1712-1740). Born in Vienna in October 1, 1685 and died in his hometown of October 20, 1740. It was the Austrian candidate to the Crown of Spain during the war of the Spanish succession, and when he/she succeeded his brother as Emperor directed most of its efforts to achieve recognition of the pragmatic sanction, which would allow the succession of his daughter María Teresa.

Biographical synthesis

Last member of the male branch of the Habsburg, Carlos was second son of the Emperor Leopold I and of Leonor de Neburg. As Archduke of Austria, from 1700 to 1714 he/she was pretender to the Crown of Spain, who finally got Bourbon Felipe V . Carlos succeeded in 1711 his brother, the Emperor José I, and received also the crowns of Hungary and Bohemia. He/She married Isabel Cristina of Brunswich-Lüneburg (1708), which had four children: Leopoldo, the only male, born and died in 1716; María Teresa (1717-1780), who succeeded him; María Ana (1718-1744), who married Carlos Alejandro de Lorena; María Amalia, born in 1724 and died in 1730. Carlos de Habsburgo died at the age of 65 after eating mushrooms in poor condition. María Teresa left a number of treaties of guarantee for the succession, but an army and an administration disorganized; the succession was answered, giving rise to the war of Austrian succession. Carlos VI was patron of the arts and Sciences, a lover of music and very worried about finances; It was the Foundation of the company's East, in Fiume and Trieste and the Ostend company, in the Netherlands.

Carlos VI, Emperor of Germany.

Pretender to the Spanish Crown

When Carlos II of Spain died childless in 1700, it was named heir on his deathbed Felipe of Anjou, grandson of Luis XIV. However the Emperor Leopoldo I did not accept the testamentary provisions of its Spanish relative in favor of the House of Bourbon, claiming the rights of her son, the Archduke Carlos. Initially the European powers recognized the testament of Carlos II, but when the new sovereign, Felipe V, refused to comply with the Treaty of partition, whereby he/she should renounce his dynastic rights in France; The Netherlands and England were alarmed at the prospect of a France with the power to break the equilibrium of Europe; the 7 September 1701 English and Dutch signed with the Empire of the great Alliance of the Hague, against France and the Bourbons of Spain. They later joined this coalition Portugal and Savoy. 12 September 1703 the European powers recognized the Archduke Carlos, who was crowned King of Spain in Vienna, and began to title III of Spain as King of Spain.

The support of the Europeans to Carlos resulted in the outbreak of the war of Spanish succession, conflict that took international dimensions. Between 1701 and 1704 operations were favorable for the Habsburg and were developed in the European possessions of Spain. Felipe V turned their efforts to defend the Italian territories and could not prevent the English is apoderasen of the lower Rhine and the Meuse and that the French army was defeated in 1704 near the Danube. That year landed the Archduke Carlos in Lisbon (May) and was recognized King of Spain by Pedro II of Portugal. The war spread the Peninsula, showing the Aragonese as supporters of the Archduke, while most of the Castilians supported Felipe of Anjou. At the beginning of August 1704 the Anglo-Dutch fleet seized Gibraltar and later of Denia, where on 8 August the following year Carlos III was again proclaimed King of Spain. The Archduke established its headquarters in Barcelona, which revolted in his favor. The viceroy of Catalonia capitulated on 9 October and a month later (November 7, 1705) Carlos was proclaimed King in Barcelona, after swearing the laws of the Principality in the Cortes of Catalonia. Similarly, he/she was proclaimed King after the arrival of anglo-portugueses allies Madrid, forcing Felipe V retire to Fuencarral 20 June 1706. Immediately the Archduke brought together councils and courts ordered coin with his name, but the Madrileños revolted on 4 August and from plaza mayor made public its commitment to Felipe.

In 1706 the fate of the war began to lean on the side of Felipe V. Victory felipista of Almansa (25 April 1707) was a tremendous coup against the cause of the Archduke and opened the process of conquest of the kingdoms of Valencia and Aragon. In return the allies conquered Menorca and in 1710 took advantage of the crisis of the French Crown, which decreased its contribution to the war, to beat at Almenara troops life (13 June 1710). The Bourbon retreated to Zaragoza, leaving open the path of Madrid, which was tapped by the Archduke to enter the capital (September 28). However, before the cold reception he/she received in the city, withdrew back to Catalonia. From this moment the consecutive victories of the life in Brihuega and Villaviciosa de Tajuña reduced Austrian resistance in Catalonia. Girona fell into the hands of the Bourbon in January 1711, and with it the entire province. Came then the death of the Emperor José I, brother of the Archduke, who forced Carlos to leave Barcelona in November 1711 to take charge of the Imperial Throne. In the months following Felipe V easily seized throughout the Spanish territory with the exception of Catalonia, which remained loyal to the now Emperor Carlos VI to defend the privileges which it had granted to the Principality. However the signing of the treaties of Utrecht (13 July 1713) ended definitively to the war of the Spanish succession.

Carlos VI, Emperor

As soon he/she arrived in Germany, Carlos was crowned in Frankfurt as Carlos VI and received also the Crown of Bohemia (December 22, 1711). The following year he/she received in Prague the Crown of Hungary (May). In July 1712 France and England signed peace separately, but Carlos VI insisted on maintaining its claims to the Spanish throne and continued the war along with his Dutch allies. In summer the Emperor deployed a large offensive against France and took Le Quesnoy and Landrecies, advancing towards Paris; but the unexpected victory of the French at the battle of Denain improved the position of Luis XIV and left Carlos VI without allies. On August 18 was signed in Paris a truce between Spain, France and Great Britain, to which later were added Portugal and Savoy, eliminating any chance of the emperor to occupy the throne of Spain. During the following two years were the negotiations which would lead to the signing of the treaties of Utrecht, negotiations which were directed by Luis XIV and which both Austria as Spain were excluded. The Emperor negotiated peace since the winter of 1713 in the German city of Rastadt. The final agreement was reached March 6, 1714 (Treaty of Rastadt vezase). Carlos VI would receive sovereignty over the Spanish Netherlands, the Kingdom of Naples, the Milan and squares of Tournai, Ypres, Furnes; in Exchange he/she renounced his rights to the Spanish throne, and returned to France Landau. The ratification of these agreements, which sat the peace between France and Austria, took place in the Swiss city of Baden the 7 September 1714. The firm included recognition for Holland's right to maintain Dutch garrisons in the Austrian Flanders.

But neither Utrecht and Rastadt had put an end to the war between Austria and Spain. In Catalonia Carlos still counting with many faithful and refused to evacuate his troops; demanded, without success, the sovereignty over Catalonia and then proposed to turn the Principality into an independent Republic. England supported this project, but the refusal of Felipe V forced the signing of the Armistice and the evacuation of the imperial troops, leaving the Catalan austracists at the mercy of their enemies Bourbon.

In 1714 the Ottoman danger materialized in Austria with the arrival of a Turkish army of 150,000 men, who was close to Peterwarden. August 5, 1716 the Austrians achieved a brilliant victory against the door at Karlowitz, beating more than 30,000 Turks and capturing 250 artillery pieces. The peace that was signed in July 1718 between Carlos VI and Mahmud I in Passarowitz meant the annexation by Austria of Temesvár, Serbia, Western Wallachia and northern Bosnia. At the same time that the peace was signed, Felipe V of Spain made an attempt to regain the Emperor Italian possessions lost in 1713, prompting the formation of a quadruple Alliance against the King of Spain. The signing of the peace of the Hague (1720) respected the letter of Passarowitz, but it gave to Carlos Sicilia, in Exchange for delivering Sardinia to Savoy.

The biggest concern of Carlos VI was to secure the inheritance of the imperial Crown to his daughter María Teresa. The pragmatic sanction issued by Emperor 19 April 1713 paving the ground in this respect after the death of his eldest son, Leopoldo (1716). Even so, Carlos still had to get the renouncement of his daughters and their husbands, the accession of their different States and the guarantee of the European powers. In return, Carlos had to make many concessions, especially to the Hungarians, and contracted a series of commitments that led you to costly wars. The first nation that adhered to the text of the pragmatic was Spain (1725), to which Russia, Prussia, Sweden, Denmark and many German States joined later. In 1729 Spain departed from the previous Treaty and signed another with England and France; the war was avoided thanks to the intervention of the Pope and England finally agreed to the pragmatic with the condition that María Teresa could not contract marriage with no Bourbon. Holland joined as a condition then putting the emperor to withhold the Ostend company, causing great damages to Dutch trade.

However, remaining Nations by recognizing the text pragmatics, in particular France, which led to Carlos VI to participate in a series of wars. The first of them was the war of Polish succession, in which the emperor was involved by its agreement with the elector Augustus of Saxony, husband of his niece María Josefa. When King Augustus II of Poland died in 1733 the Polish nobles elected successor to Stanislaw Leczinski, candidate supported by France and its ally, Spain. The election of Stanislaus did react to Russia, which installed the son of the previous King, with the name of Augustus IIIon the throne. The emperor supported the Russians and the war that followed (1733-1738), as that of Spain, returned to fight different European powers.

France encouraged the King Carlos Emmanuel of Sardinia that Carlos Emmanuel rebels against Austria, and in 1733 occupied all the Austrian Lombardy with the exception of Mantua. 60,000 Austrians were sent to reinforce the garrison of Mantua and the 29 June 1735 the Austrians of the count of Merci were defeated by the Sardinians and French in Parma, with more than 10,000 casualties in the imperial army. At the same time, Spaniards and Frenchmen captured Naples and a French army of 100,000 soldiers marched towards the Rhine, to meet the army of Saboya Eugenio. In 1735, in the preliminaries of the peace of Vienna, Carlos VI should give up Naples, Sicily, and part of Lombardy, yielding also Lorraine to France. In return it received Parma and Florence and the full recognition of the pragmatic sanction, which was its main objective in the background. In February 1736 the heiress, María Teresa, married the Duke of Lorraine Francisco Esteban ; as a condition to this marriage and at the end of the war between Austria and France, Francisco Esteban changed his Duchy of Lorraine King Estanislao I of Poland in Exchange for Tuscany. Peace was reached with the Treaty of Vienna (1738), which forced the emperor to transfer to Spain, Naples and Sicily, receiving in Exchange Parma and Piacenza. One of the clauses of the Treaty of Vienna was the recognition of the pragmatic sanction of 1713.

The Alliance with the Russians also led to Carlos VI to a new war against Turkey, which lost in Wallachia and Serbia (1739), i.e., almost all cattle at Passarowitz. The contest began in 1738 with the taking of the Turks of the fortress of Orsova, in Wallachia, and the site of Belgrade, which killed more than 3,000 Austrians. The emperor sent to Belgrade to the general Wallis, who was defeated July 21, 1739, with more than 7,000 casualties of the Imperial ranks.

Carlos VI was a cultured and intelligent, albeit with few political skills and obstinate character. The Germans always would cast him in face that you sacrifice the interests of the Protestant States of the House of Habsburg.


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