Maximilian of Bavaria. Born Apr. 17, 1573, in Munich; died Sept. 27, 1651, in Ingolstadt. Bavarian duke (from 1597); elector (from 1623). Member of the Wittelsbach family. Active in the Catholic reaction in Germany.
Heading the Catholic League of 1609, Maximilian I made use of it not only for the struggle against Protestantism but also to elevate the Wittelsbachs, the Hapsburgs’ political rivals in Germany. Toward these same ends he took part in the Thirty Years’ War of 1618-48. For suppressing the Bohemian uprising of 1618-20 he received from the emperor the title of elector and acquired the Upper Palatinate (confirmed by the Treaty of Westphalia of 1648). The policies implemented by Maximilian I in Upper Austria (pledged to him by the emperor) led to the Peasant War of 1626.