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Wallenstein

Wallenstein (properly, Waldstein), Albrecht Wenzel Eusebius Von (1583-1634), was born in Bohemia. After studying at the universities of Altdorf, Bologna, and Padua, and distinguishing himself in battle against the Turks, he married a widow whose wealth and estates raised him to a high position amongst his countrymen. He was appointed quartermaster-general under Tilly in Bohemia (1620), and in 1621 and 1623 rendered important services against Bethlen Gabor in Moravia. In 1625 he was made Duke of the new principality of Friedland. Early in the following year he raised an army of 30,000 men, which he placed entirely at the Emperor's disposal, and co-operated with Tilly, conducted a brilliant campaign against Count Mansfeld. The two generals were equally successful against Christian IV. in 1627, and the Duchy of Mecklenburg, which Wallenstein had seized, was handed over to him as a reward for his services. He was baffled in his attempt to make Ferdinand supreme in the Baltic by his failure before Stralsund (1628), but the hostility of Denmark was brought to an end by the Peace of Lubeck (1629). The jealousy of the nobles, who regarded him as an arrogant upstart, led to his temporary disgrace in 1630, but the early successes of Gustavus Adolphus and the death of Tilly rendered his recall imperative, and in the spring of 1632 he was placed at the head of an army which owed obedience to him alone. After expelling the Saxons from Bohemia he marched against the Swedes and repelled the attack on his entrenched camp near Nuremberg, but was defeated at Lutzen (q.v.), the battle at which Gustavus lost his life. After resuming hostile operations in Lusatia he withdrew at the close of 1633 into Bohemia, and took up his quarters at Pilsen. In January a secret patent was issued depriving him of his command, and a few weeks later another was published at Prague, in which he was openly charged with treason. He hurried to Eger in Western Bohemia, hoping to find a protector in Bernhard of Saxe-Weimar, but immediately on his arrival he was murdered by Colonel Butler and Captain Devereux.

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