Central European History


Count Beust and Germany, 1866–1870: Reconquest, Realignment, or Resignation?*

Hans A. Schmitta1

a1 New York University

On August 22, 1866, a month and a half after the disaster of Sadowa, Francis Joseph I of Austria wrote to his mother: “If you have the whole world against you and absolutely no friends, chances of success are few, but we must resist as long as we can, do our duty until the last, and finally perish honorably.” To his council of ministers he put it less dramatically and less plaintively on September I: For a long time to come Austria would have to eschew war in all forms and for all purposes.


* This article constitutes an amended version of a paper read at the annual meeting of the American Historical Association in New York on December 28, 1966. The necessary research was made possible by a grant from the Faculty Research Council of Tulane University which enabled the writer to spend the academic year 1965–66 in the Haus-, Hof- und Staatsarchiv in Vienna as well as provincial archives in Hanover, Marburg, and Wiesbaden.