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La coexistence confessionnelle en France et en Europe germanique et orientale

 | 
Catherine Maurer
, 
Catherine Vincent

Modalités de la coexistence : débats, confessionnalisation, conversions

« … With his example many might move »

Princely Conversions in the xviith and xviiith centuries

Matthias Schnettger

Texte intégral

  • 1 « Col suo esempio molti si potrebbero movere ». Nuncio Albergati to the cardinal-nephew of Pope Pau (...)
  • 2 Cornel Zwierlein, « “convertire tutta l’Alemagna” - Fürstenkonversionen in den Strategiedenkrahmen (...)

1Since the late xvith century, the Curia saw princely conversions as a starting point for regaining those territories lost by the Church of Rome due to the Reformation. The conversion of a reigning prince seemed to give the opportunity of winning the subjects together with the prince, « whose example might move many others’ »1, as argued the nuncio of Cologne in 1612, on the occasion of the conversion of the Count Palatine Wolfgang Wilhelm of Neuburg. This was a very common view in Rome and remained important for the Curia’s policy towards protestant princes throughout the early modern period - even though it virtually never bore any fruit2.

  • 3 Matthias Schnettger, « Die römische Kurie und die Fürstenkonversionen - Wahrnehmung und Handlungsst (...)

2As a matter of fact, in the Holy Roman Empire, the Peace of Westphalia, with its fixing of the standard year (Normaljahr) 1624, put a stop to any further attempts towards the forceful conversion of subjects. Nevertheless, the hoped-for example given by a converted ruler remained one of the key elements rendering princely conversions desirable to the papal see: it was expected that, even without forceful measures, one could partly re-catholicize affected territories3.

  • 4 Armin Kohnle, « Von der Rijswijker Klausel zur Religionsdeklaration von 1705: Religion und Politik (...)
  • 5 Among others, the Roman Curia adopted the theory of Barthel and tried to establish the Simultaneum (...)

3The same expectations existed with inverted, negative connotations on the protestant side. In this respect, a most terrifying example was that of the Electorate Palatine where the accession of the Catholic house of Pfalz-Neuburg caused a serious threat to the position of the Calvinists who had dominated the Palatinate until then4. It is not surprising that with such examples in mind, the elites in a protestant country disturbed by princely conversion (Saxony, Württemberg and Hessen-Kassel, for example) worked vehemently to erect boundaries as tightly as possible for Catholic religious practices and especially to prevent the introduction of simultaneums: The Westphalian Peace would only allow the personal conversion of princes and the introduction of a court mass5.

4In this paper, some arguments and problems which were crucial to the relation of princes converted to Catholicism and their Protestant subjects, will be presented, using Württemberg as a case-study. After a cursory look at the general context, particular attention will be paid to the installation of the Catholic court service and its restrictions and to the role of the princess-consort, which needs to be reassessed. The following pages will deal with Catholic service and welfare beyond the court and with the place of Catholics in a society with a Lutheran majority. The conclusion will summarize why princely conversions affected early modern state and society in many ways and therefore deserve further investigation.

The example of Württemberg

  • 6 For the general context, Hermann Ehmer, « Württemberg », in Anton Schindling, Walter Ziegler (ed.), (...)
  • 7 Hermann Tüchle, Die Kirchenpolitik des Herzogs Karl Alexander von Württemberg (1733- 1737), Würzbur (...)

5The Duchy of Württemberg was one of the main regions of German Lutheranism. A major role in protecting the strict Lutheran confession in Württemberg belonged to the estates, the so-called Landschaft. The nobility was absent from Württemberg’s estates. They were dominated by the so-called Ehrbarkeit, consisting of prelates and the third estate. Since the treaty of Tubingen (1514), the Landschaft had a certified right of participation in important matters of state6. Almost no Catholics lived in Württemberg after the Reformation. But there existed a number of Catholic enclaves in the duchy, such as the possessions of Imperial Knights like Hofen, Öffingen and Neuhausen. At court, Catholic nobles and professionals were received7.

  • 8 For the biography of Karl Alexander: H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 20-32. In spite (...)

6In the case of Württemberg, it was not the reigning prince who converted to Catholicism, but the descendant of a branch line, Karl Alexander of Württemberg-Winnental. At the time of his conversion in 1712, Karl Alexander was a general of the imperial army. Therefore he counts among the many princely converts who changed faith under the influence of the Imperial court. In 1727, he married Maria Augusta of Thurn and Taxis (1706-1756), princess of a family notoriously Catholic and devoted to the Emperor8. Karl Alexander’s succession to the throne was imminent when Prince Friedrich Ludwig, the only legitimate son of the reigning Duke Eberhard Ludwig, died in 1731.

  • 9 H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 36-44; for the struggle for the Religionsreversalien(...)
  • 10 Gudrun Emberger (ed.), Die Quellen sprechen lassen: Der Kriminalprozess gegen Joseph Süß Oppenheime (...)

7So as not to jeopardize his succession after the death of Eberhard Ludwig (1733), he signed the so-called Religionsreversalien, an extensive confirmation of the political and religious constitution, dated the 17th of December 17339. During Karl Alexander’s short reign, harsh conflicts arose with the Landschaft though. After his sudden death in 1737, the Landschaft spread rumours of a Catholic conspiracy aiming to overturn the religious and political constitution, and took bloody revenge on the Jewish Secret Financial Councillor Joseph Süß Oppenheimer, who was executed after a show trial (1738)10.

  • 11 P. Wilson, « Women », op. cit. (n. 8), p. 242-244.

8These events took place during the minority of Karl Alexander’s son and successor, Karl Eugen (1737/44-1793). Against the father’s wishes, the regency council was headed by the Protestant agnates, first Karl Rudolf von Württemberg-Neuenstadt (until 1738) and then Karl Friedrich von Württemberg-Oels (until 1744), and not by the prince’s mother and the prince-bishop of Bamberg and Würzburg, Friedrich Karl von Schönborn11.

  • 12 For Karl Eugen: Karlheinz Wagner, Herzog Karl Eugen von Württemberg: Modernisierer zwischen Absolut (...)

9During his reign, Karl Eugen continued his father’s power-conscious politics. This led to a violent and sensational conflict with the Landschaft ( « Württembergischer Ständekonflikt »). After the intervention of the imperial institutions and the European powers, Karl Eugen had to confirm the position of the estates with the so-called « Erbvergleich » (1770). After 1770, his reign was marked by enlightened reforms. He founded, for example, the Hohe Karlsschule, which was confirmed as university by Emperor Joseph II in 178112.

10Since Karl Eugen had no legitimate sons, he was succeeded by his brothers Ludwig Eugen (1793-1795) and Friedrich Eugen (1795-1797). The latter’s sons were brought up as Protestants; and so, in 1797, the line of Catholic Dukes of Württemberg came to an end with the accession of Duke Friedrich II who became the first King of Württemberg in 1806.

The catholic court service

  • 13 « Herzog Karl Alexanders Versicherung der Landes- und Kirchenverfassung », 1733 XII 17, A [ugust] L (...)

11With the Religionsreversalien of 1733, Duke Karl Alexander was allowed literally only a private service in the residence towns of Stuttgart and Ludwigsburg. The Landschaft promised to provide funds for a Catholic chapel in Stuttgart, while the existing chapel had to be preserved for the Lutherans13.

  • 14 H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 59-61, 63. The fathers were payed by the princely Ki (...)
  • 15 H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 62; J. Brüser, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 190. We don’t kno (...)

12Therefore mass was not held in the existing palace-chapel in the old palace, but in another room decorated for religious service. During the duke’s absence, the Oberhofmarschall refused access to this room to the court chaplains. Since the 4th of April 1734, the court chaplains regularly held a solemn mass with a sermon on Sundays and holidays by the duchess’s order. The duchess decreed furthermore that daily rosary prayers and litanies be performed14. At first, no one made an effort to build a Catholic court chapel in Stuttgart. The duke’s request to use the existing chapel simultaneously was rejected by the Landschaft. The 250.000 Gulden promised in the Religionsreversalien for the construction of a Catholic chapel were however transferred by the estates until November 1735. But the chapel was never built15.

  • 16 Ute Esbach, Die Ludwigsburger Schloßkapelle. Eine evangelische Hofkirche des Barock. Studien zu ihr (...)

13In Ludwigsburg, Karl Alexander went further than in Stuttgart. In December 1734 he asked for the keys to the palace-chapel, which meant its de facto closure for Protestant service. The first Catholic service there to be held was then the Requiem for Karl Alexander in May 1737. Catholic taking possession of the chapel was also - from the duke’s point - very important for another reason, since beneath it laid the new princes’ vault, where Karl Alexander wanted to be buried, too. During the memorial service, it was stressed that the Catholic service was a private affair, thus the priests were only allowed to hold their rites in the Chamber of the Order and the palace-chapel, while their participation in the funeral procession was rejected. The chapel was not relinquished to the Protestants, though, but Duke Karl Eugen allowed instead the establishment of a new Protestant chapel16.

  • 17 In his renunciation of further processions, the duke explicitly declared his observation of the Pea (...)
  • 18 U. ESBACH, op. cit. (n. 16), vol. 1, p. 157-158, 170, with the sources in vol. 2, Q 352-353, 355-35 (...)

14An altercation happened in Ludwigsburg in 1749, when Karl Eugen had Corpus Christi celebrated with military participation: two bands played and 350 canon-salutes were fired. This major push into the public realm led to strong reactions, which forced Karl Eugen to desist from such processions in the future17. On the other hand, the struggle of the Protestant elites against the bells of the now Catholic palace-chapel in Ludwigsburg lasted for decades. Only after the Erbvergleich of 1770 were the bells and the small bell-tower removed18.

  • 19 See (obviously with a certain self-legitimizing intention) Benedikt Maria Werkmeister, « Geschichte (...)
  • 20 Ernst von Ziegesar (ed.), Tagebuch des Herzoglich Württembergischen Generaladjutanten Freiherrn von (...)
  • 21 P. Sauer, op. cit. (n. 19), vol. 3, p. 291.
  • 22 U. Esbach, op. cit. (n. 16), vol. 1, p. 159-160.

15In the last years of Karl Eugen, there took place an enlightened reform of the palace service in Württemberg. For this, the young court chaplains - such as Benedikt Maria Werkmeister - borrowed obviously from Protestants, with the ultimate aim of a union of confessions. That this Catholic court mass generated a strong, positive interest even among the Protestant majority of the people might be related to its changed forms and the circulation of enlightened ideas of tolerance19. Furthermore, there were trust-evoking measures taken by Werkmeister and his brethren, because in contrast to their predecessors, they had friendly relations with educated Württembergers, such as the professors of the Hohe Karlsschule, and refrained from all offences against state laws. At that time Duke Karl Eugen’s occasional visits to Protestant services and his show of respect for the state religion had a calming effect, too20. Last but not least, it was clear that after Karl Eugen’s and his brothers’ death, a Lutheran duke would rule again. After the death of Duke Friedrich Eugen, the Catholic court service was disbanded in Stuttgart (1798)21. Symbolic meaning held the Protestant reestablishment of the palace-chapel in Ludwigsburg in 179922.

  • 23 In the Electorate of Saxony, the Catholic court-service achieved ceremonial pre-eminence over the P (...)

16All in all, the catholic court service in Württemberg was of only limited reach. Only in the second residence Ludwigsburg, where the court’s influence was higher than in the established capital Stuttgart, it was possible to remove the Protestant court service from first place, along with the control of the existing court chapel and the princes’ vault23.

The princess’s role

  • 24 Only after the death of his mother (1717) did Friedrich August I publish the conversion of his son (...)
  • 25 Friedrich August Forwerk, Geschichte und Beschreibung der königlichen katholischen Hof- und Pfarrki (...)

17A rarely studied aspect of princely conversions is the role of princesses, but for the permanent establishment of a Catholic dynasty and presence in a protestant territory they were of major importance. This is especially obvious with the Saxon example. While after the conversion of Friedrich August I (August der Starke) of Saxony to Catholicism, his mother Anna Sophia of Denmark and his wife Christiane Eberhardine of Brandenburg-Culmbach hindered the establishment of Catholicism in the first place24, the situation changed entirely with prince Friedrich August’s (II) marriage with the Austrian Archduchess Maria Josepha in 1719. The many children from this union not only secured the continuity of the Catholic electoral house of Saxony. Furthermore, the Habsburg princess - brought up in the spirit of the Pietas Austriaca - showed herself to be a vigorous supporter of Catholic interests25.

  • 26 H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 56-61, 66.
  • 27 R. Kofler, op. cit. (n. 9), p. 75, 78; J. Brüser, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 232-235. The dowager duchess (...)
  • 28 In 1748, Karl Eugen married Elisabeth Friederike Sophie of Brandenburg-Bayreuth. The marriage was d (...)

18Duchess Maria Augusta of Thurn and Taxis behaved in a similar fashion as wife of Karl Alexander in Württemberg. She was in correspondence with the nuncio in Vienna, acted as protector of the court chaplains, provided them with liturgical cloth and equipment, and arranged for mass to be held regularly at court. She was also engaged with Catholic pastoral care beyond the court, and, in this, she did not avoid provocations towards the Protestant majority of the people. In April 1734, by the duchess’s order, Father Joseph Richmut celebrated a home christening while the ducal band played outside26. It is thus not surprising that the criticism of the Protestant elites in Württemberg concentrated on Maria Augusta. Contrary to her husband’s testament, she was not allowed to administer the duchy or to act as senior regent for the under-age Duke Karl Eugen. She had eventually to be content to participate in the guardianship by agreement with the Landschaft27. Maria Augusta was the last Catholic duchess of Württemberg. It was not the least reason why Catholic rulership in Württemberg ended with Duke Friedrich Eugen in 179728.

Catholic service and pastoral care beyond the court

  • 29 The quotation continues: « So solle auch in allen Kirchen und Schulen besagt Unsers Hertzogthums, u (...)

19From Rome’s point of view, court mass and a re-catholicized court had ultimately to function as a nucleus, from which further Catholic parishes should develop. This was exactly what the protestant elites tried to prevent. Hence Duke Karl Alexander of Württemberg had to guarantee in his reversals that « no other than the protestant confession may be introduced or permitted in our duchy »29.

  • 30 H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 60-61; P. Sauer, op. cit. (n. 19), vol. 3, p. 289, n (...)

20Especially in the first years after the Catholic line of the family came to power in Württemberg, there were instances of crossing the boundaries set by the reversals, and particularly spectacular with the above-mentioned home christening in Stuttgart in April 1734. After this baptism, the clergy were reproached by the Oberhofmarschall. They should be allowed to visit the sick, but even for this, they had to ask for permission to make it clear that those sickbed visits were not conducted « ex jure », but « ex privilegio »30.

  • 31 H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 7-10, 108-109. Very probably, the action of the Priv (...)
  • 32 « Erbvergleich zwischen Herzog Karl Eugen und der württembergischen Landschaft », 1770 II 27/III3, (...)

21In Ludwigsburg, Catholics had the right to celebrate mass since the time of Duke Eberhard Ludwig. Despite the repeatedly renewed protests of Privy Council, consistory and synod, mass was - with only temporary interruptions - held in the « Frisonian garden house » built for this purpose. With the reversals, Duke Karl Alexander had to reduce Catholic services to the level of an exercitium privatum, but he did nothing in that respect during his first year in office. On Christmas Eve 1734, the Privy Council forbade the Catholics of Ludwigsburg to hold mass. When the duke, who stayed in Wildbad at the time, heard of this, he reinstituted the pre-existing conditions31. The de facto parish service for Ludwigsburg in the Frisonian garden house only ceased definitively following the hereditary settlement of 177032.

  • 33 R. Kofler, op. cit. (n. 9), p. 133, 136, 139-140. For example, the burial of the merchant Pironi wa (...)
  • 34 There were a couple of exceptions, but some of them occurred mistakenly and caused a stir afterward (...)
  • 35 P. Sauer, op. cit. (n. 19), vol. 3, p. 288.
  • 36 P. Sauer, op. cit. (n. 19), vol. 3, p. 291. From 1806 onwards the Catholics were allowed to use the (...)

22The conflicts regarding Catholic services continued under the rule of Karl Eugen. There were several home christenings, weddings and funeral services that gave cause for complaint33. Catholic funerals mostly took place in the Catholic village of Hofen. In Stuttgart, Catholics could be laid to rest quietly in the infirmary’s cemetery since the second half of the xviiith century34. Restrictions were placed on spiritual attendance on Catholics sentenced to death. Catholic priests could only visit the delinquent in his cell, while in public two Protestant ministers accompanied him to the place of execution35. The Protestant elites were successful in limiting Catholic services, especially and particularly in banning it from the public sphere and undermining the establishment of its parish organisation. The Catholic parishes of Stuttgart and Ludwigsburg were sufficiently consolidated that they survived after the end of Catholic court service in 1797/179836.

The place of Catholics in the society of Lutheran majority

  • 37 « Herzog Karl Alexanders Versicherung der Landes- und Kirchenverfassung », 1733 XII 17, Reyscher, o (...)
  • 38 H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 119.
  • 39 Remchingen was the son of the councillor of the prince-bishop of Augsburg Franz Karl von Remchingen (...)
  • 40 But Remchingen did not participate in the sessions of the « Konferenzministerium », a small council (...)
  • 41 After his imprisonment had been reduced to house arrest in 1739, Remchingen managed to escape. A fe (...)

23Even before Duke Karl Alexander’s accession there were Catholics in Württemberg. This Catholic presence was a particular thorn in the flesh of some Lutheran ministers. But they became a real problem only when the rule of a Catholic prince threatened to infringe upon the - until that time - unrestricted Protestant dominance. At that point, the confessional contrast merged with a latent or open conflict between prince and elites. The Landschaft suspected - not without foundation - that a power-conscious ruler like Karl Alexander could change the constitutional arrangements in his favour, and would be supported by foreigners if he did. The established elites also had no interest in being replaced in their positions by outsiders, who enjoyed the sovereign’s protection. Therefore, the Religionsreversalien of 1733 were also intended to exclude Catholics from all leading positions in Württemberg. Furthermore the regulation that converts were to lose their appointments was aimed to diminish the attraction of conversions37. When in 1734 there was a rumour that the duke was planning to introduce the previous chancellor of Zweibrücken, Hauenmüller, a Catholic, into the privy council, the Landschaft protested vehemently and successfully. And by the end of 1735 the Count Simonetti, a servant of the Duchess, resigned because of the hostility towards him and returned to Italy38. There were naturally still Catholics at court, and also in the military. They even held leading positions in politics. For example, Franz Joseph Eustach of Remchingen was made general de chef of Württemberg’s troops and senior major-domo of the Landprinz in late 1735, early 1736. He later became chairman of the newly created Generalkriegsdirektorium39. The court chaplain father Joseph Richmut even claimed that he had in fact become the prime minister40. Remchingen was however arrested after Karl Alexander’s death in March 173741.

  • 42 R. Kofler, op. cit. (n. 9), p. 135. Another high Catholic dignitary was the general von Fürstenberg (...)
  • 43 « Erbvergleich zwischen Herzog Karl Eugen und der württembergischen Landschaft », 1770 II 27/III 3, (...)

24Karl Eugen’s reign, which was full of conflicts, has to this day not been examined with the focus on confessional strife. But the Landschaft’s claims against the duke include the accusation that Karl Eugen would elevate Catholics to the highest rank, such as the minister of cabinet and president of the Privy Council, Friedrich Samuel, count of Montmartin42. The Erbvergleich of 1770 confirmed the exclusion of Catholics from all offices, and from gaining civil rights in Württemberg43.

  • 44 J. B. Sägmüller, op. cit. (n. 19), p. 34, 184. This can be concluded from the students’ lists of th (...)

25When Catholics were accepted in the newly founded Karlsschule and educated together with protestant pupils, the Major Deputation (Größerer Ausschuss) of the Landschaft regarded this as an action leading to the hated simultaneum, as on Sundays and holidays, mass would de facto be celebrated publicly. On top of this, ill pupils would be brought to the orphanage of Stuttgart, which was reserved for (Lutheran!) natives of Württemberg. The duke agreed only in 1776 to discontinue the teaching of Catholics in the Karlsschule, but he did not keep his promise thereafter44.

Conclusion

  • 45 For a more detailed version of this paper cf Matthias Schnettger, « “... keine andere, als die Evan (...)

26Eighteenth-century Württemberg was at no time threatened by radical revolution in its confessional conditions in favour of Catholicism or of the duke as a follower of the old faith, who intended to instigate such changes. Is it however possible to say that the Curia’s hopes as well as the Protestants’ fears built upon princely conversions were simple illusions? Without any doubt, in the case of Württemberg and in many other cases, positive and negative expectations were substantially exaggerated. The prince and his Catholic relations however became the centre for, and protection of Catholic congregations. The rule of a converted prince created a specific state of conflict, because he, whose subjects owed him obedience and loyalty, was then outside of the territorial church. He belonged to a religious denomination with few rights in the territory he governed by divine and hereditary right, was restricted in his religious services by conditions that were more or less detrimental to his own honour, and was in some way generally under suspicion of wanting to change the situation. At times certain measures were taken to alter circumstances in favour of his own confession; in this the offensive was mostly taken by the prince, while the Protestant elites were trying to deny any public character to the Catholic confession. This resulted in a highly unstable, ambiguous situation, which repeatedly required further negotiations between the different political actors of society and state45.

Notes

1 « Col suo esempio molti si potrebbero movere ». Nuncio Albergati to the cardinal-nephew of Pope Paul V Borghese. Cologne 1612 XI 4, Wolfgang Reinhard (ed.), Nuntiaturberichte aus Deutschland. Nebst ergänzenden Aktenstücken. Die Kölner Nuntiatur, vol. 5: Nuntius Antonio Albergati, 1: 1610 Mai-1614 Mai, part 2, Paderborn et al., Schöningh, 1972, n° 738, p. 718-719, p. 719.

2 Cornel Zwierlein, « “convertire tutta l’Alemagna” - Fürstenkonversionen in den Strategiedenkrahmen der römischen Europapolitik um 1600: Zum Verhältnis von “Machiavellismus” und “Konfessionalismus” », in Ute Lotz-Heumann et al. (ed.), Konversion und Konfession in der Frühen Neuzeit, Gütersloh, Gütersloher Verlags-Haus 2007, p. 63-105; Eric-Oliver Mader, « Die Konversion Wolfgang Wilhelms von Pfalz-Neuburg. Zur Rolle von politischem und religiös-theologischem Denken für seinen Übertritt zum Katholizismus », Ibid., p. 107-146; Idem, « Fürstenkonversionen zum Katholizismus in Mitteleuropa im 17. Jahrhundert. Ein systematischer Ansatz in fallorientierter Perspektive », Zeitschrift für Historische Forschung, 2007, 34, p. 404-438. For a general overview on princely conversions during the 17th and 18th centuries and the consequences for the respective territories: Günter Christ, « Fürst, Dynastie, Territorium und Konfession. Beobachtungen zu Fürstenkonversionen des ausgehenden 17. und beginnenden 18. Jahrhunderts », in Ludwig Hüttl, Rainer Salzmann (ed.), Studien zur Reichskirche der Frühneuzeit. Festgabe zum Sechzigsten, Stuttgart, Steiner, 1989, p. 111-131 (first in: Saeculum, 1973, 24, p. 367-387; Idem, « Hof - Territorium - Untertanen. Beobachtungen zur Stellung zum Katholizismus konvertierter Fürsten im 17. und 18. Jahrhundert », Rottenburger Jahrbuch für Kirchengeschichte, 1994, n° 13, p. 25-61.

3 Matthias Schnettger, « Die römische Kurie und die Fürstenkonversionen - Wahrnehmung und Handlungsstrategien », in Ricarda Matheus et al. (ed.), Barocke Bekehrungen. Konversionsszenarien im Rom der Frühen Neuzeit, Bielefeld, transcript, 2013, p. 117-148.

4 Armin Kohnle, « Von der Rijswijker Klausel zur Religionsdeklaration von 1705: Religion und Politik in der Kurpfalz um die Wende zum 18. Jahrhundert », Archiv für mittelrheinische Kirchengeschichte, 2010, 62, p. 155-174; Christoph Flegel, « Die kurpfälzische Religionsdeklaration von 1705: Entstehung und Folgen », Blätter für pfälzische Kirchengeschichte und religiöse Volkskunde, 2006, 73, p. 17-35; Renate Adam, « Pfalz-Zweibrücken im pfälzischen Religionsstreit 1719-1725: Konfessionskonflikte und Reichsverfassung im 18. Jahrhundert », in Frank Konersmann, Hans Ammerich (ed.), Historische Regionalforschung im Aufbruch: Studien zur Geschichte des Herzogtums Pfalz-Zweibrücken anlässlich seines 600. Gründungsjubiläums, Speyer, Verlag der Pfälzischen Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Wissenschaften, 2010, p. 299-319.

5 Among others, the Roman Curia adopted the theory of Barthel and tried to establish the Simultaneum as a part of imperial and international law: Helmut Neumaier, « Simultaneum und Religionsfrieden im Alten Reich. Zu Phänomenologie und Typologie eines umkämpften Rechtsinstituts », Historisches Jahrbuch, 2008, 128, p. 137-176; Christoph Schäfer, Das Simultaneum. Ein staatskirchenrechtliches, politisches und theologisches Problem des alten Reiches, Frankfurt a.M. et al., Lang, 1995; Johannes Burkhardt, Abschied vom Religionskrieg. Der Siebenjährige Krieg und die päpstliche Diplomatie, Tübingen, Niemeyer, 1985, p. 234-237.

6 For the general context, Hermann Ehmer, « Württemberg », in Anton Schindling, Walter Ziegler (ed.), Die Territorien des Reichs im Zeitalter der Reformation und Konfessionalisierung. Land und Konfession 1500-1650, vol. 5: Der Südwesten, Münster, Aschendorff, 1993, p. 168-192.

7 Hermann Tüchle, Die Kirchenpolitik des Herzogs Karl Alexander von Württemberg (1733- 1737), Würzburg, Triltsch, 1937, p. 5-19; Id., Von der Reformation bis zur Säkularisation. Geschichte der katholischen Kirche im Raum des späteren Bistums Rottenburg-Stuttgart, Ostfildern, Schwabenverlag, 1981, p. 183-184; Joachim Brüser, Herzog Karl Alexander von Württemberg und die Landschaft (1733-1737). Katholische Konfession, Kaisertreue und Absolutismus, Stuttgart, Kohlhammer, 2010, p. 174-175.

8 For the biography of Karl Alexander: H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 20-32. In spite of its decidedly pro-Catholic and pro-curial perspective Tüchle’s study still has to be acknowledged as fundamental for Karl Alexander’s church policy. For Maria Augusta von Thurn und Taxis: Peter H. Wilson, « Women and imperial politics. The Württemberg consorts 1674-1757 », in Clarissa Campbell Orr (ed.), Queenship in Europe, 1660-1815. The role of the consort, Cambridge et al., Cambridge University Press, 2004, p. 221-251, at p. 240-245.

9 H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 36-44; for the struggle for the Religionsreversalien Rainer Kofler, Der Summepiskopat des katholischen Landesfürsten in Württemberg, Stuttgart, Müller & Gräff, 1972, p. 54-71.

10 Gudrun Emberger (ed.), Die Quellen sprechen lassen: Der Kriminalprozess gegen Joseph Süß Oppenheimer 1737/38, Stuttgart, Kohlhammer, 20132 ; Peter H. Wilson, « Der Favorit als Sündenbock: Joseph Süß Oppenheimer, 1698-1738 », in Andreas Pečar, Michael Kaiser (ed.), Der zweite Mann im Staat: Oberste Amtsträger und Favoriten im Umkreis der Reichsfürsten in der Frühen Neuzeit, Berlin, Duncker & Humblot, 2003, p. 155-176.

11 P. Wilson, « Women », op. cit. (n. 8), p. 242-244.

12 For Karl Eugen: Karlheinz Wagner, Herzog Karl Eugen von Württemberg: Modernisierer zwischen Absolutismus und Aufklärung, Stuttgart, Deutsche Verlagsanstalt, 2001; Gabriele Haug-Moritz, Württembergischer Ständekonflikt und deutscher Dualismus: Ein Beitrag zur Geschichte des Reichsverbands in der Mitte des 18. Jahrhunderts, Stuttgart, Kohlhammer, 1992; Robert Uhland, « Karl Eugen », in Neue Deutsche Biographie, 1977, 11, p. 267-269, URL: http://www.deutsche-biographie.de/pnd118560158.html (19 07 2013).

13 « Herzog Karl Alexanders Versicherung der Landes- und Kirchenverfassung », 1733 XII 17, A [ugust] L [udwig] Reyscher (ed.), Vollständige, historisch und kritisch bearbeitete Sammlung der württembergischen Gesetze, vol. 2, Stuttgart and Tübingen, Cotta, 1829, p. 460-469, at p. 467; H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 44-49; J. Brüser, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 164-170.

14 H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 59-61, 63. The fathers were payed by the princely Kirchenkasten, Ibid.

15 H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 62; J. Brüser, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 190. We don’t know exactly why the Catholic chapel was not built.

16 Ute Esbach, Die Ludwigsburger Schloßkapelle. Eine evangelische Hofkirche des Barock. Studien zu ihrer Gestalt und Rekonstruktion ihres theologischen Programms, 3 vol., Worms, Werner, 1991, at vol. 1, p. 150-156, with the sources in vol. 2, Q 299-313, 318-326, 328- 336; J. Brüser, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 176-177, 191 and 228.

17 In his renunciation of further processions, the duke explicitly declared his observation of the Peace of Westphalia and of the Religionsreversalien. He would not have intended any interference towards the Lutheran church. « Erklärung Herzog Karl Eugens bezüglich der Prozession in Ludwigsburg », Bayreuth 1750 V 30, A. L. Reyscher, op. cit. (n. 13), vol. 8.1, p. 658-659. H. Tüchle, Reformation, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 275-276; R. Kofler, op. cit. (n. 9), p. 131-132. On the other hand, Karl Eugen did not want to provoke his Lutheran subjects unnecessarily when he visited Rome in 1753. Obviously this visit as such shocked the Protestants of Württemberg (though travels of Protestant princes to Rome were not at all). But Karl decidedly refused the established kissing the feet of Pope Benedict XIV and by doing so avoided sowing further suspicions of his church policy. Wolfgang Uhlig, Johannes Zahlten (ed.), Die großen Italienreisen Herzog Carl Eugens von Württemberg, Stuttgart, Kohlhammer, 2005, p. XXVIII-XXIX. The duke’s privy councillor Friedrich August von Hardenberg explained to Cardinal Albani that the duke « ein protestantisches Land regirten und also den Sentiments der Protestanten inhaeriren müsten », Ibid., p. 115 (Diary of Hardenberg). When visiting Rome a second time, in 1775, Karl Alexander seems to have kissed the Pope’s feet without hesitation (Ibid., p. XXXVI).

18 U. ESBACH, op. cit. (n. 16), vol. 1, p. 157-158, 170, with the sources in vol. 2, Q 352-353, 355-356, 358, 366-370; R. Kofler, op. cit. (n. 9), p. 130-131.

19 See (obviously with a certain self-legitimizing intention) Benedikt Maria Werkmeister, « Geschichte der ehemaligen katholischen Hofkapelle in Stuttgart von 1733-1797 », Jahrschrift für Theologie und Kirchenrecht der Katholiken, 1830, 6, p. 458-567, especially at p. 481-482; with a harsh attack on the Catholic Enlightenment: Johann Baptist Sägmüller, Die kirchliche Aufklärung am Hofe des Herzogs Karl Eugen von Württemberg (1744-1793). Ein Beitrag zur Geschichte der kirchlichen Aufklärung, Freiburg im Breisgau, Herder, 1906; briefly H. Tüchle, Reformation, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 276-277; Paul Sauer, Geschichte der Stadt Stuttgart, vol. 3: Vom Beginn des 18. Jahrhunderts bis zum Abschluß des Verfassungsvertrags für das Königreich Württemberg 1819, Stuttgart, Kohlhammer, 1995, p. 290-291.

20 Ernst von Ziegesar (ed.), Tagebuch des Herzoglich Württembergischen Generaladjutanten Freiherrn von Buwinghausen-Wallmerode über die « Land-Reisen » des Herzogs Karl Eugen von Württemberg in der Zeit von 1767 bis 1773, Stuttgart, Bonz, 1911, p. 228: « Den 4. Nov. 1770. Tübingen. War der “Carls”- und Nahmens-Tag des Herzogs, welcher en Galla celebriret wurde […]. Vorm. um 10 Uhr fuhren der Herzog en Galla in die Evangelische Kirche und hörten daselbst die Rectors. Predig von Herrn Dr. Sartorius ». On the 12th of May 1771 the Duke participated in a protestant service in Urach; later he went to Mass. (Ibid, p. 245).

21 P. Sauer, op. cit. (n. 19), vol. 3, p. 291.

22 U. Esbach, op. cit. (n. 16), vol. 1, p. 159-160.

23 In the Electorate of Saxony, the Catholic court-service achieved ceremonial pre-eminence over the Protestant service in 1733: Gerhard Poppe, « Repräsentation und Kontemplation. Gottesdienstliches Leben am sächsischen Hof im 18. und frühen 19. Jahrhundert », in Ulrich Rosseaux, Gerhard Poppe (ed.), Konfession und Konflikt. Religiöse Pluralisierung in Sachsen im 18. und 19. Jahrhundert, Münster, Aschendorff, 2012, p. 127-139, at p. 134.

24 Only after the death of his mother (1717) did Friedrich August I publish the conversion of his son carried out secretly in 1712: Bernhard Duhr, « Die Konversion des Kurprinzen Friedrich August von Sachsen (1712-1717) », Stimmen der Zeit, 1926, 111, p. 104-117.

25 Friedrich August Forwerk, Geschichte und Beschreibung der königlichen katholischen Hof- und Pfarrkirche zu Dresden. Nebst einer kurzen Geschichte der katholischen Kirche in Sachsen vom Religionswechsel des Churfürsten Friedrich August I. an bis auf unsere Tage, Dresden, Janssen, 1851, Reprint Dresden, Hille, 2001, p. 18-19, 21, 24-28.

26 H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 56-61, 66.

27 R. Kofler, op. cit. (n. 9), p. 75, 78; J. Brüser, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 232-235. The dowager duchess renounced participation in the administration and carried out the guardianship of the princes in co-operation with the administrator Karl Rudolf. The Privy Council participated in the guardianship, too. In 1750, Maria Augusta had a vehement argument with her son Karl Eugen and was confined in the castle of Göppingen, where she died in 1756: P. Wilson, « Women », op. cit. (n. 8), p. 245.

28 In 1748, Karl Eugen married Elisabeth Friederike Sophie of Brandenburg-Bayreuth. The marriage was dissolved in 1772, and after Elisabeth Friederikes Sophie’s death (1780), the duke concluded a morganatic marriage with Franziska von Hohenheim. Both women were Protestant, and probably the curia’s opposition to the second marriage was inspired by the hope for a Catholic duchess and heir to the throne. Karl Eugen had many illegitimate children, but (apart from a daughter who died young) no descendants from his wives. Friederike Dorothea Sophia von Brandenburg-Schwedt, the wife of his youngest brother Friedrich Eugen, was Protestant, too, as was the morganatic wife of Ludwig Eugen, Sophie Albertine von Beichlingen. Only Princess Auguste Elisabeth married a Catholic, Karl Anselm von Thurn und Taxis.

29 The quotation continues: « So solle auch in allen Kirchen und Schulen besagt Unsers Hertzogthums, und aller darzu gehörigen Landen, allein erwehnte Evangelische Lutherische Religion gelehret, keine Catholische Kirchen, Capellen, Altäre, Bilder, etc. etc. weder Neu erbauet und aufgerichtet, noch etwan Alte und ungebrauchte darzu apliret, auch keine Catholische Processionen, Wahlfahrten, Kirchhöffe, in dem Land gelitten, das Venerabile weder bey Providirung der Krancken, noch in andern Fällen, nicht öffentlich getragen, auch nirgends das, in dem Heyligen Römischen Reich bißhero so viel Unruhe erregte Simultaneum Catholicum […] niemahlen in Unserm Hertogthum eingeführet, und überhaupt der allergeringste Actus eines Catholischen Gottesdienstes, ausser was Unsern Privat Gottesdienst […] betreffen mag, in dem gantzen Land nicht exerciret werden ». « Herzog Karl Alexanders Versicherung der Landes- und Kirchenverfassung », 1733 XII 17, Reyscher, op. cit. (n. 13), vol. 2, p. 465-466.

30 H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 60-61; P. Sauer, op. cit. (n. 19), vol. 3, p. 289, names a couple of Catholics who arranged acts of worship in their homes in 1734 and by doing so provoked the irritation oft he Lutheran public: the Generalfeldmarschallleutnant von Phull and the Brentano family.

31 H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 7-10, 108-109. Very probably, the action of the Privy Council was a response to the closing of the Protestant palace-chapel in Ludwigsburg, too.

32 « Erbvergleich zwischen Herzog Karl Eugen und der württembergischen Landschaft », 1770 II 27/III3, A. L. Reyscher, op. cit. (n. 13), vol. 2, p. 550-609, at p. 568. R. Kofler, op. cit.

33 R. Kofler, op. cit. (n. 9), p. 133, 136, 139-140. For example, the burial of the merchant Pironi was censured, because it didn’t take place at night or at dawn, but the funeral procession from Stuttgart to the Catholic cemetery of Hofen started only at 7: 30 a.m. Furthermore there was criticism of the height of the crucifix put on the coffin.

34 There were a couple of exceptions, but some of them occurred mistakenly and caused a stir afterwards when, for example, the daughter of a Catholic grenadier à cheval was buried at the Hoppenlaufriedhof in 1775: P. Sauer, op. cit. (n. 19), vol. 3, p. 287-288.

35 P. Sauer, op. cit. (n. 19), vol. 3, p. 288.

36 P. Sauer, op. cit. (n. 19), vol. 3, p. 291. From 1806 onwards the Catholics were allowed to use the garrison church: Joachim Köhler, « Katholiken in Stuttgart », in Otto Borst (ed.), Minderheiten in der Geschichte Südwestdeutschlands, Stuttgart, Silberburg-Verlag, 1996, p. 118-127, at p. 120. In Ludwigsburg, too, Catholics were allowed to share the use of the garrison church.

37 « Herzog Karl Alexanders Versicherung der Landes- und Kirchenverfassung », 1733 XII 17, Reyscher, op. cit. (n. 13), vol. 2, p. 464-465; R. Kofler, op. cit. (n. 9), p. 63.

38 H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 119.

39 Remchingen was the son of the councillor of the prince-bishop of Augsburg Franz Karl von Remchingen: H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 67.

40 But Remchingen did not participate in the sessions of the « Konferenzministerium », a small council re-established in 1735/36 and responsible only to the duke, even though he had been invited by Karl Alexander to do so: H. Tüchle, Kirchenpolitik, op. cit. (n. 7), p. 119-121.

41 After his imprisonment had been reduced to house arrest in 1739, Remchingen managed to escape. A few months later he was condemned to lifelong banishment from Württemberg and to a high fine. Landesarchiv Baden-Württemberg, Hauptstaatsarchiv Stuttgart, Teilbestand A 48/11: Prozess gegen den General Franz Joseph von Remchingen, Einleitung, URL: https://www2.landesarchiv-bw.de/ofs21/olf/einfueh.php?bestand=21347 (14 09 2012); R. Kofler, op. cit. (n. 9), p. 76, n. 86.

42 R. Kofler, op. cit. (n. 9), p. 135. Another high Catholic dignitary was the general von Fürstenberg. Ibid., p. 131.

43 « Erbvergleich zwischen Herzog Karl Eugen und der württembergischen Landschaft », 1770 II 27/III 3, A. L. Reyscher, op. cit. (n. 13), vol. 2, p. 550-609, at p. 566-567.

44 J. B. Sägmüller, op. cit. (n. 19), p. 34, 184. This can be concluded from the students’ lists of the Hohe Karlsschule. 19,2 % of the students whose confessions are known were Catholics (282 of 1471). All of them belonged to the « Eleven », i.e. the students that did not come from Stuttgart. Probably most of the « Oppidianer », the students from Stuttgart, were Lutherans. So it can be supposed that, on the whole, the percentage of the Catholics was lower, but was still considerable: Werner Gebhardt, Die Schüler der Hohen Karlsschule. Ein biographisches Lexikon, Stuttgart, Kohlhammer, 2011, p. 29, 65-71.

45 For a more detailed version of this paper cf Matthias Schnettger, « “... keine andere, als die Evangelische Religion, in Unsern Herzogthum eingeführet, noch geduldet werden darff”. Das lutherische Herzogtum Württembrg und seine katolischen Landesherren (1733- 1797) », in Johannes Paulmann, Matthias Schnettger, Thomas Weller (ed.), Unversöhnte Verschiedenheit. Verfahren zur Bewältigung religiös-konfessioneller Differenz in der europäischen Neuzeit, Göttingen, Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2015, p. 65-89.

Auteur

Professeur d’Histoire moderne à l’Université Johannes Gutenberg de Mayence (Allemagne). Il a notamment publié « Principe sovrano » oder « civitas imperialis » ? Die Republik Genua und das Alte Reich in der Frühen Neuzeit (1556-1797) (2006) et Der Spanische Erbfolgekrieg. 1701 – 1713/14 (2014). Il est membre de la rédaction des revues en ligne Sehepunkte et Zeitenblicke.

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