Mansfeld, Ernst

Mansfeld, Ernst

 

Born 1580 in Luxembourg; died Nov. 29, 1626, in Rakovica, Bosnia. Count; German military leader.

Mansfeld was a leader of mercenaries in the Spanish service, but after the emperor deprived him of his father’s lands in the Netherlands in 1610, he went over to the side of the Protestant Union of 1608. At the beginning of the Thirty Years’ War (1618-48) he fought as head of the Czech rebels and then became one of the military leaders of the Prostestants. In 1622 he won a series of major victories over the forces of the Catholic League of 1609. In 1623 he entered the Dutch service and took West Friesland. In 1625, after recruiting soldiers in England, he operated against the imperial troops in the lower Elbe region. In April 1626 he was beaten by A. von Wallenstein at Dessau. After this, he and his army, which had been recruited with French money, fought in Hungary in alliance with Prince G. Bethlen. He subsequently set out for Venice but died en route.

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