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Nobles and Nation in Central Europe : Free Imperial Knights in the Age of Revolution, 1750-1850 - William D. Godsey, Jr.

Nobles and Nation in Central Europe

Free Imperial Knights in the Age of Revolution, 1750-1850


Published: 6th December 2004
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This is a study of Central European nobles in revolution. As one of Germany's richest, most insular and most autonomous nobilities, the Free Knights in Electoral Mainz represented the early modern noble ideal of pure bloodlines and cosmopolitan loyalties in the old society of orders. But this world came to an end with the outbreak of the revolutionary wars in 1792. Quite apart from the social, economic and political dislocations and loss, the era from 1789 to 1815 also meant a cultural reorientation for the nobility. William D. Godsey, Jr. here explores how nobles in post-revolutionary Germany gradually abandoned their old self-understanding and assimilated with the new cultural 'nation' while aristocrats in the Habsburg Empire, which had taken in many emigres from Mainz, moved instead towards supranationalism. This is a major contribution to debates about the relationship between identity, cultural nationalism, supranationalism and religion in Germany and the Habsburg Empire.

"William Godsey has written a highly insightful portrayal of the Holy Roman Empire's imperial nobility during its crucial century of outward decline. Specialists will be pleased that this volume is no mere historiographical digest of recent works. Rather, it is the product of exhaustive research conducted in nearly two dozen public and private archives within Austria, the Czech Republic and Germany. For this reason, Godsey consistently offers his readers not only fresh perspectives, but also fresh material." - H-German, Todd Berryman, Department of History, Hendrix College "the book will interset specialists in the history of the nobility and more tentatively, historians of nationalism." - Kelly McFall, Bethany College "A fascinating work that demonstrates the importance of the Holy Roman Empire and its end for the development of modern Germany, Nobles and Nation in Central Europe is a model historical mongraph, one of many that Cambridge has recently published in its series, 'New Studies in European History'." - Jonathan Sperber, University of Missouri "...provides an important contribution to the question of noble identity in Central Europe." -Rita Krueger, Austrian History Yearbook

Wealth and noble autonomy: the free imperial knights in Maine on the eve of revolution
Nobles becoming Germans: the transformation of a concept
Nobles becoming Germans: the destruction of a 'geo-cultural landscape'
Between destruction and survival: knights on the Middle Rhine 1750-1850
The past recaptured: knights in the Habsburg Empire 1792-1848
From cathedral canons to priests: the Coudenhoves and the 'Catholic revival'
The beginnings of conservative German nationalism: the 'naturalization' of Baron Carl vom und zum Stein (1757-1831)
Appendix: Families of Free Imperial Knights (1797)
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521836180
ISBN-10: 0521836182
Series: New Studies in European History
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 320
Published: 6th December 2004
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 23.3 x 15.5  x 2.5
Weight (kg): 0.64