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The War of the Spanish Succession (1701–1714) was an early-18th-century European war, triggered by the death in November 1700 of the childless
Charles II of Spain Charles II of Spain ( es, Carlos II; 6 November 1661 – 1 November 1700), known as the Bewitched ( es, El Hechizado, links=no), was the last Habsburg The House of Habsburg (), alternatively spelled Hapsburg in English (german: Haus Habsburg ...

Charles II of Spain
. It established the principle that dynastic rights were secondary to maintaining the balance of power between different countries. Related conflicts include the 1700–1721
Great Northern War The Great Northern War (1700–1721) was a conflict in which a coalition led by the Tsardom of Russia The Tsardom of Russia or Tsardom of Rus' (russian: Русское царство, ''Russkoye tsarstvo''; later changed to: , ''Rossiyskoy ...

Great Northern War
,
Rákóczi's War of Independence Rákóczi's War of Independence (1703–11) was the first significant attempt to topple the rule of the over . The war was conducted by a group of noblemen, wealthy and high-ranking progressives and was led by and resigned soldiers and peasan ...
in Hungary, the
Camisard Camisards were Huguenot Huguenots ( , also , ) were a Religious denomination, religious group of French people, French Protestantism, Protestants. Huguenots were French Protestants who held to the Reformed, or Calvinist, tradition of Protes ...
revolt in southern France,
Queen Anne's War Queen Anne's War (1702–1713) was the second in a series of French and Indian Wars fought in North America involving the colonial empires of Great Britain, France, and Spain; it took place during the reign of Anne, Queen of Great Britain Ann ...
in North America and minor struggles in
colonial India Colonial India was the part of the Indian subcontinent that was under the jurisdiction of European colonial powers during the Age of Discovery The Age of Discovery, or the Age of Exploration (sometimes also, particularly regionally, Age of Co ...
. Although weakened by over a century of continuous conflict, in 1700 the
Spanish Empire The Spanish Empire ( es, link=no, Imperio Español), also known as the Hispanic Monarchy ( es, link=no, Monarquía Hispánica) or the Catholic Monarchy ( es, link=no, Monarquía Católica) during the Early Modern period, was a colonial empire ...

Spanish Empire
remained a global power with its vast dominions including the
Spanish Netherlands Spanish Netherlands es, Países Bajos Españoles; nl, Spaanse Nederlanden; french: Pays-Bas espagnols; german: Spanische Niederlande. (historically in Spanish: ''Flandes'', the name "Flanders" was used as a ''pars pro toto ''Pars pro toto'' (, ...

Spanish Netherlands
, large parts of
Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of a peninsula delimited by the Alps The Alps ; german: Alpen ; it, Alpi ; rm, Alps; sl, Alpe ) are the highest ...

Italy
, the
Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Republika kan Filipinas * ceb, Republika sa Pilipinas * cbk, República de Filipinas * hil, Republ ...

Philippines
and much of the Americas. Charles's closest heirs were members of the
Austrian HabsburgsThe term Habsburg Austria may refer to the lands ruled by the Austrian branch of the Habsburgs, or the historical Austria. Depending on the context, it may be defined as: * The Duchy of Austria, after 1453 the Archduchy of Austria * The ''Erblande'', ...
or
French Bourbons
French Bourbons
; acquisition of an undivided Spanish Empire by either threatened the European balance of power. Attempts by
Louis XIV of France Louis XIV (Louis Dieudonné; 5 September 16381 September 1715), also known as Louis the Great () or the Sun King (), was from 14 May 1643 until his death in 1715. His reign of 72 years and 110 days is the of any monarch of a sovereign country in ...

Louis XIV of France
and
William III of England William III (William Henry; ; 4 November 16508 March 1702), also widely known as William of Orange, was the sovereign Prince of Orange from birth, Stadtholder of County of Holland, Holland, County of Zeeland, Zeeland, Lordship of Utrecht, Utrecht, ...

William III of England
to partition the empire in 1698 and 1700 were rejected by the Spanish. Instead, Charles named
Philip of Anjou
Philip of Anjou
, a grandson of Louis XIV, as his heir; if he refused, the alternative was
Archduke Charles Archduke Charles Louis John Joseph Laurentius of Austria, Duke of Teschen (german: link=no, Erzherzog Karl Ludwig Johann Joseph Lorenz von Österreich, Herzog von Teschen; 5 September 177130 April 1847) was an Austrian Empire, Austrian field-mars ...
, younger son of
Leopold I, Holy Roman Emperor Leopold I (Leopold Ignaz Joseph Balthasar Felician; hu, I. Lipót; 9 June 1640 – 5 May 1705) was Holy Roman Emperor The Holy Roman Emperor, originally and officially the Emperor of the Romans ( la, Imperator Romanorum, german: Kaise ...
. Having accepted, Philip was proclaimed king of an undivided Spanish Empire on 16 November 1700. The proclamation led to war, with France and Spain on one side and the Grand Alliance on the other to maintain the separation of the Spanish and French thrones. The French held the advantage in the early stages, but were forced onto the defensive after 1706; however, by 1710 the Allies had failed to make any significant progress, while Bourbon victories in Spain had secured Philip's position as king. When Emperor Joseph I died in 1711, Archduke Charles succeeded his brother as emperor, and the new British government initiated peace talks. Since only British subsidies kept their allies in the war, this resulted in the 1713
Treaty of Utrecht The Peace of Utrecht was a series of peace treaties A peace treaty is an agreement between two or more hostile parties, usually countries or government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized commun ...

Treaty of Utrecht
, followed by the 1714 Treaties of Rastatt and
Baden__notoc__ Baden (; ) is a historical territory in South Germany Southern Germany () as a region has no exact boundary but is generally taken to include the areas in which Upper German dialects are spoken. This corresponds roughly to the hi ...
. Philip was confirmed as king of Spain in return for accepting its permanent separation from France; the Spanish Empire remained largely intact, but ceded territories in Italy and the Low Countries to Austria and Savoy. Britain retained
Gibraltar ) , anthem = "God Save the Queen" , song = "Gibraltar Anthem" , image_map = Gibraltar location in Europe.svg , map_alt = Location of Gibraltar in Europe , map_caption = United Kingdom shown in pale green , mapsize = 290px , image_map2 = ...

Gibraltar
and
Menorca Menorca or Minorca (from la, Insula Minor, , smaller island, later ''Minorica'') is one of the Balearic Islands located in the Mediterranean Sea belonging to Spain. Its name derives from its size, contrasting it with nearby Mallorca. Its large ...

Menorca
which it captured during the war, acquired significant trade concessions in the Spanish Americas, and replaced the Dutch as the leading maritime and commercial European power. The Dutch gained a strengthened defence line in what was now the
Austrian Netherlands The Austrian Netherlands nl, Oostenrijkse Nederlanden; french: Pays-Bas Autrichiens; german: Österreichische Niederlande; la, Belgium Austriacum. was the larger part of the Southern Netherlands between 1714 and 1797. The period began with the ...
; although they remained a major commercial power, the cost of the war permanently damaged their economy. France withdrew backing for the exiled
Jacobites Jacobite may refer to: Religion * Jacobites, Jacob Baradaeus (died 578). Churches in the Jacobite tradition and sometimes called Jacobite include: ** Jacobite Syrian Christian Church, autonomous branch of the Syriac Orthodox Church in Kerala, Ind ...
and recognised the
Hanoverians The House of Hanover (german: Haus Hannover), whose members are known as Hanoverians, is a German royal house that ruled Hanover Hanover (; german: Hannover ; nds, Hannober) is the capital and largest city of the German States of Germany ...
as heirs to the British throne; ensuring a friendly Spain was a major achievement, but left them financially exhausted. The decentralisation of the
Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire ( la, Sacrum Romanum Imperium; german: Heiliges Römisches Reich) was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in Western Western may refer to: Places *Western, Nebraska, a village in the US *Western, New York, a town i ...
continued, with
Prussia Prussia, , Old Prussian Distribution of the Baltic tribes, circa 1200 CE (boundaries are approximate). Old Prussian was a Western Baltic language belonging to the Balto-Slavic branch of the Indo-European languages The Indo-Europ ...
,
Bavaria Bavaria (; German German(s) may refer to: Common uses * of or related to Germany * Germans, Germanic ethnic group, citizens of Germany or people of German ancestry * For citizens of Germany, see also German nationality law * German language ...
and
Saxony Saxony (german: Sachsen ; Upper Saxon Upper Saxon (german: Obersächsisch, ; ) is an East Central German East Central German (german: Ostmitteldeutsch) is the eastern, non-Franconian languages, Franconian Central German language, part o ...
increasingly acting as independent states. Combined with victories over the
Ottomans The Ottoman Turks or Osmanlı Turks ( tr, Osmanlı Türkleri), were the Turkic people The Turkic peoples are a collection of ethnic groups of Central Asia, Central, East Asia, East, North Asia, North and West Asia as well as parts of Europe and ...
, this meant the Austrian Habsburgs increasingly switched their focus to
southern Europe Southern Europe is the southern region In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, features, inhabitants, and phenomena of the Earth a ...

southern Europe
.


Background

In 1665,
Charles II of Spain Charles II of Spain ( es, Carlos II; 6 November 1661 – 1 November 1700), known as the Bewitched ( es, El Hechizado, links=no), was the last Habsburg The House of Habsburg (), alternatively spelled Hapsburg in English (german: Haus Habsburg ...

Charles II of Spain
succeeded his
father A father is the male Male (♂) is the sex of an organism that produces the gamete known as sperm. A male gamete can fuse with a larger female gamete, or ovum, in the process of fertilization. A male cannot sexual reproduction, reproduce sex ...

father
at the age of four. However, as he suffered from ill-health all his life, Charles II's own death was anticipated almost from birth, and the issue of his successor a matter of diplomatic debate for decades. In 1670, England agreed to support the rights of Louis XIV to the Spanish throne in the
Treaty of Dover The Treaty of Dover, also known as the Secret Treaty of Dover, was a treaty between England and France signed at Dover Dover () is a town and major ferry port in Kent, South East England. It faces France across the Strait of Dover, the narro ...
, while the terms of the 1688 Grand Alliance committed England and the Dutch Republic to back Leopold. In 1700, the
Spanish Empire The Spanish Empire ( es, link=no, Imperio Español), also known as the Hispanic Monarchy ( es, link=no, Monarquía Hispánica) or the Catholic Monarchy ( es, link=no, Monarquía Católica) during the Early Modern period, was a colonial empire ...

Spanish Empire
included possessions in
Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of a peninsula delimited by the Alps The Alps ; german: Alpen ; it, Alpi ; rm, Alps; sl, Alpe ) are the highest ...

Italy
, the
Spanish Netherlands Spanish Netherlands es, Países Bajos Españoles; nl, Spaanse Nederlanden; french: Pays-Bas espagnols; german: Spanische Niederlande. (historically in Spanish: ''Flandes'', the name "Flanders" was used as a ''pars pro toto ''Pars pro toto'' (, ...

Spanish Netherlands
, the
Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Republika kan Filipinas * ceb, Republika sa Pilipinas * cbk, República de Filipinas * hil, Republ ...
and the
Americas The Americas (also collectively called America) is a landmass comprising the totality of North America, North and South America. The Americas make up most of the land in Earth's Western Hemisphere and comprise the New World. Along with th ...

Americas
, and though no longer the dominant great power, it remained largely intact. Since acquisition by either the Austrian
Habsburgs The House of Habsburg (), alternatively spelled Hapsburg in English (german: Haus Habsburg ; es, Casa de Habsburgo ; hu, Habsburg-család), also known as the House of Austria (german: link=no, Haus Österreich; es, link=no, Casa de Austria), ...
or French
Bourbons The House of Bourbon (, also ; ) is a European dynasty A dynasty (, ) is a sequence of rulers from the same family,''Oxford English Dictionary'', "dynasty, ''n.''" Oxford University Press Oxford University Press (OUP) is the unive ...

Bourbons
would change the balance of power, its inheritance led to a war that involved most of Europe. The 1700–1721
Great Northern War The Great Northern War (1700–1721) was a conflict in which a coalition led by the Tsardom of Russia The Tsardom of Russia or Tsardom of Rus' (russian: Русское царство, ''Russkoye tsarstvo''; later changed to: , ''Rossiyskoy ...

Great Northern War
is considered a connected conflict, for it impacted the involvement of states such as
Sweden Sweden ( sv, Sverige ), officially the Kingdom of Sweden ( sv, links=no, Konungariket Sverige ), is a Nordic country The Nordic countries, or the Nordics, are a geographical and cultural region In geography, regions are areas that ...

Sweden
,
Saxony Saxony (german: Sachsen ; Upper Saxon Upper Saxon (german: Obersächsisch, ; ) is an East Central German East Central German (german: Ostmitteldeutsch) is the eastern, non-Franconian languages, Franconian Central German language, part o ...
,
Denmark–Norway Denmark–Norway (Danish Danish may refer to: * Something of, from, or related to the country of Denmark * A national or citizen of Denmark, also called a "Dane", see Demographics of Denmark * Danish people or Danes, people with a Danish ancestr ...
and
Russia Russia ( rus, link=no, Россия, Rossiya, ), or the Russian Federation, is a country spanning Eastern Europe Eastern Europe is the eastern region of . There is no consistent definition of the precise area it covers, partly because th ...
. During the 1688–1697
Nine Years' War The Nine Years' War (1688–1697), often called the War of the Grand Alliance or the War of the League of Augsburg, was a conflict between France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a ...
, armies grew from an average of 25,000 in 1648 to over 100,000 by 1697, a level unsustainable for pre-industrial economies. The 1690s also marked the lowest point of the
Little Ice Age The Little Ice Age (LIA) was a period of cooling that occurred after the Medieval Warm Period The Medieval Warm Period (MWP) also known as the Medieval Climate Optimum, or Medieval Climatic Anomaly was a time of warm climate Climate is the ...
, a period of colder and wetter weather that drastically reduced crop yields across Europe. It is estimated the Great Famine of 1695–1697 killed 15–25% of the population in present-day Scotland, Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Norway, and Sweden, plus another two million in France and Northern Italy. The 1697
Treaty of Ryswick The Peace of Ryswick, or Rijswijk, was a series of treaties signed in the Dutch city of Rijswijk between 20 September and 30 October 1697. They ended the 1688 to 1697 Nine Years' War between France France (), officially the French Republi ...
was the result of mutual exhaustion and Louis' acceptance France could not achieve its objectives without allies. Since the succession was left unresolved, Leopold signed only with extreme reluctance in October 1697; it was clear Charles would never produce an heir and a resumption of hostilities appeared inevitable.


Partition treaties

Unlike France or Austria, the Spanish crown could be inherited through the female line. This allowed Charles' sisters Maria Theresa (1638–1683) and Margaret Theresa (1651–1673) to pass their rights onto the children of their respective marriages with Louis XIV and
Emperor Leopold Leopold I (full name: ''Leopold Ignaz Joseph Balthasar Felician''; hu, I. Lipót; 9 June 1640 – 5 May 1705) was Holy Roman Emperor The Holy Roman Emperor, originally and officially the Emperor of the Romans ( la, Imperator Romanorum ...
. Louis sought to avoid conflict over the issue through direct negotiation with his main opponent
William III of England William III (William Henry; ; 4 November 16508 March 1702), also widely known as William of Orange, was the sovereign Prince of Orange from birth, Stadtholder of County of Holland, Holland, County of Zeeland, Zeeland, Lordship of Utrecht, Utrecht, ...

William III of England
, while excluding the Spanish. Maria Antonia (1669–1692), daughter of Leopold and Margaret, married
Maximillian Emanuel of Bavaria
Maximillian Emanuel of Bavaria
in 1685, and on 28 October 1692, they had a son, Joseph Ferdinand. Under the October 1698 Treaty of the Hague between France, Britain and the Dutch Republic, five-year old Joseph was designated heir to Charles II; in return, France and Austria would receive parts of Spain's European territories. Charles refused to accept this; on 14 November 1698, he published a will leaving an undivided Spanish monarchy to Joseph Ferdinand. However, the latter's death from smallpox in February 1699 undid these arrangements. In 1685, Maria Antonia passed her claim to the Spanish throne onto Leopold's sons,
Joseph Joseph is a common masculine given name, derived from the Hebrew Yosef (יוֹסֵף). The form "Joseph" is used mostly in English, French and partially German-speaking (alongside "Josef") countries. This spelling is also found as a variant in th ...

Joseph
and Archduke Charles. Her right to do so was doubtful, but Louis and William used this to devise the 1700 Treaty of London. Archduke Charles became the new heir, while France,
Savoy Savoy (; frp, Savouè ; french: Savoie is a cultural-historical region in the Western Alps it, Alpi occidentaligerman: Westalpen , photo=Mont Blanc from Punta Helbronner, 2010 July.JPG , photo_caption=Mont Blanc Mont Blanc (french: Mont ...

Savoy
and Austria received territorial compensation; however, since neither Leopold or Charles agreed, the treaty was largely pointless. By early October 1700, Charles was clearly dying; his final will left the throne to Louis XIV's grandson
Philip, Duke of Anjou
Philip, Duke of Anjou
; if he refused, the offer would pass to his younger brother the
Duke of Berry Duke of Berry (french: Duc de Berry) or Duchess of Berry (french: Duchesse de Berry) was a title in the Peerage of France that was created several times for junior members of the French royal family. It was frequently granted to women, either memb ...
, followed by Archduke Charles. Charles died on 1 November 1700, and on the 9th, Spanish ambassadors formally offered the throne to Philip. Louis briefly considered refusing; although it meant the succession of Archduke Charles, insisting William help him enforce the Treaty of London meant he might achieve his territorial aims without fighting. However, his son the Dauphin rejected the idea; French diplomats also advised Austria would fight regardless, while neither the British or Dutch would go to war for a settlement intended to avoid war. Louis therefore accepted on behalf of his grandson, who was proclaimed Philip V of Spain on 16 November 1700.


Prelude to war

With most of his objectives achieved by diplomacy, Louis now made a series of moves that combined to make war inevitable. The
Tory A Tory () is a person who holds a political philosophy Political philosophy or political theory is the philosophical Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundamental questions, such as those about reason, existence, ...
majority in the English
Parliament In modern politics and history, a parliament is a legislative A legislature is an assembly Assembly may refer to: Organisations and meetings * Deliberative assembly A deliberative assembly is a gathering of members (of any kind of ...
objected to the Partition Treaties, chiefly the French acquisition of Sicily, an important link in the lucrative Levant trade. However, a foreign diplomat observed their refusal to become involved in a European war was true 'only so long as English commerce does not suffer.' Louis either failed to appreciate this or decided to ignore it and his actions gradually eroded Tory opposition. In early 1701, Louis registered Philip's claim to the French throne with the Paris
Parlement A ''parlement'' (), under the French Ancien Régime The '' Storming of the Bastille'' on 14 July 1789, later taken to mark the end of the ''Ancien Régime''; watercolour by Jean-Pierre Houël The Ancien Régime (; ; literally "old rul ...

Parlement
, raising the possibility of union with Spain, contrary to Charles' will. In February, the Spanish-controlled Duchies of
Milan Milan (, , Milanese: ; it, Milano ) is a city in northern Italy, capital of Lombardy, and the List of cities in Italy, second-most populous city proper in Italy after Rome. The city proper has a population of about 1.4 million, while its ...
and
Mantua Mantua ( ; it, Mantova ; Lombard language, Lombard and la, Mantua) is a city and ''comune'' in Lombardy, Italy, and capital of the Province of Mantua, province of the same name. In 2016, Mantua was designated as the Italian Capital of Culture ...
in Northern Italy announced their support for Philip and accepted French troops. Combined with efforts to build an alliance between France and Imperial German states in
Swabia upThe coat of arms of Baden-Württemberg: ''Or, three lions passant sable'', the arms of the Duchy of Swabia, in origin the coat of arms of the House of Hohenstaufen. Also used for Swabia (and for Württemberg-Baden during 1945–1952) are ...

Swabia
and
Franconia Franconia (german: Franken, ; Franconian dialect: ''Franggn'' ; bar, Frankn) is a region In geography Geography (from Ancient Greek, Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study ...

Franconia
, these were challenges Leopold could not ignore. Helped by the Viceroy,
Max Emanuel of Bavaria
Max Emanuel of Bavaria
, French troops replaced Dutch garrisons in the 'Barrier' fortresses in the Spanish Netherlands, granted at Ryswick. It also threatened the monopoly over the
Scheldt The Scheldt ( ; french: Escaut ; wa, Escô; nl, Schelde ) is a river that flows through northern France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a country primarily located in Western Eur ...

Scheldt
granted by the 1648
Peace of Münster The Peace of Münster was a treaty A treaty is a formal, legally binding written agreement between actors in international law International law, also known as public international law and law of nations, is the set of rules, norms, a ...
, while French control of
Antwerp Antwerp (; nl, Antwerpen ; french: Anvers ) is a city in Belgium and the capital of Antwerp (province), Antwerp province in the Flemish Region. With a population of 520,504,
Antwerp
and
Ostend Ostend ( nl, Oostende, ; french: link=no, Ostende ; german: link=no, Ostende ; vls, Ostende) is a coastal city and Municipalities in Belgium, municipality, located in the Provinces of Belgium, province of West Flanders in the Flemish Region of ...
would allow them to blockade the
English Channel The English Channel,, "The Sleeve"; nrf, la Maunche, "The Sleeve" (Cotentinais Cotentinais is the dialect The term dialect (from Latin , , from the Ancient Greek word , , "discourse", from , , "through" and , , "I speak") is used in two ...

English Channel
at will. Combined with other French actions that threatened English trade, this produced a clear majority for war and in May 1701, Parliament urged William to negotiate an anti-French alliance. On 7 September, Leopold, the Dutch Republic and Britain signed the Treaty of The Hague renewing the 1689 Grand Alliance. Its provisions included securing the Dutch Barrier in the Spanish Netherlands, the Protestant succession in England and Scotland and an independent Spain but did not refer to placing Archduke Charles on the Spanish throne. When the exiled
James II of England James II and VII (14 October 1633Old Style and New Style dates, O.S.16 September 1701) was King of England and King of Ireland as James II, and King of Scotland as James VII from the death of his elder brother, Charles II of England, Charles II ...

James II of England
died on 16 September 1701, Louis reneged on his recognition of the Protestant
William III
William III
as king of England and Scotland and supported the claim of James' son,
James Francis Edward Stuart James Francis Edward Stuart (10 June 16881 January 1766), nicknamed the Old by , was the son of King of , and , and his second wife, . He was from July 1688 until, just months after his birth, his father was deposed and exiled i ...
. War became inevitable and when William himself died in March 1702, his successor
Queen Anne Queen Anne often refers to: * Anne, Queen of Great Britain (1665–1714), queen of England, Scotland and Ireland (1702–1707) and of Great Britain (1707–1714) **Queen Anne style architecture, an architectural style from her reign, and its revival ...

Queen Anne
confirmed her support for the Treaty of the Hague. The Dutch did the same and on 15 May the Grand Alliance declared war on France, followed by the
Imperial DietImperial Diet means the highest representative assembly in an empire, notably: * Imperial Diet (Holy Roman Empire), general assembly of the Imperial Estates of the Holy Roman Empire (962–1806) * Diet of Japan, Has been going on since 1889 (1889 ...
on 30 September.


General strategic drivers

The importance of trade and economic interests to the participants is often underestimated; contemporaries viewed Dutch and English support for the Habsburg cause as primarily driven by a desire for access to the American markets. Modern economists generally assume a constantly growing market, but the then-dominant theory of
Mercantilism Mercantilism is an economic policy The economic policy of government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Li ...

Mercantilism
viewed it as relatively static. Increasing one's share implied taking it from someone else, and the government's role was to restrict foreign competition by attacking merchant ships and colonies. This expanded the war to
North America North America is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, up to seven geographical regions are commonly regarded as continen ...

North America
,
India India, officially the Republic of India (Hindi Hindi (Devanagari: , हिंदी, ISO 15919, ISO: ), or more precisely Modern Standard Hindi (Devanagari: , ISO 15919, ISO: ), is an Indo-Aryan language spoken chiefly in Hindi Belt, ...

India
, and other parts of Asia, with tariffs used as a policy weapon. From 1690 to 1704, English import duties on foreign goods increased by 400%, and the 1651–1663
Navigation Acts The Navigation Acts, or more broadly the Acts of Trade and Navigation, was a long series of English laws that developed, promoted, and regulated English ships, shipping, trade, and commerce between other countries and with its own colonies. The la ...
were a major factor in the
Anglo-Dutch Wars The Anglo–Dutch Wars ( nl, Engels–Nederlandse Oorlogen) were a series of conflicts mainly fought between the Dutch Republic The United Provinces of the Netherlands, or United Provinces (officially the Republic of the Seven United N ...
. On 6 September 1700, France banned the import of English manufactured goods such as cloth, and imposed prohibitive duties on a wide range of others. Armies of the
Nine Years' War The Nine Years' War (1688–1697), often called the War of the Grand Alliance or the War of the League of Augsburg, was a conflict between France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a ...
often exceeded 100,000 men, levels unsustainable for pre-industrial economies; those of 1701–1714 averaged around 35,000 to 50,000. Dependence on water-borne transport for supplying these numbers meant campaigns were focused on rivers like the
Rhine ), Surselva Surselva Region is one of the eleven administrative districts Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subnational entity, first-level subdivision, as well as many s ...

Rhine
and
Adda Adda or ADDA may refer to: People Given name * Adda Husted Andersen (1898–1990), Danish-born American Modernist jeweler, silversmith, metalsmith, and educator * Adda Angel, Cambodian songwriter and music producer * Adda bar Ahavah, two Jewi ...
, which limited operations in poor areas like Northern Spain. Better logistics, unified command, and simpler internal lines of communication gave Bourbon armies an advantage over their opponents.


Strategic objectives by participant


Britain (England and Scotland pre-1707)

British foreign policy was based on three general principles, which remained consistent from the 16th through the 20th centuries. First and overriding all others, preserve a balance of power in Europe, which was threatened by French expansion under Louis XIV. Second, prevent the
Low Countries The term Low Countries, also known as the Low Lands ( nl, de Lage Landen, french: les Pays-Bas) and historically called the Netherlands ( nl, de Nederlanden), Flanders, or Belgica, refers to a coastal lowland region in Northwestern Europe ...
being controlled by a hostile power or one stronger than Britain; this included both the Spanish Netherlands and the Dutch Republic, whose deep harbours and prevailing winds made her a natural embarkation point for an attack on England, as demonstrated in 1688. Third, maintain a navy strong enough to protect British trade, control her waters and launch attacks on her enemies' commercial routes and coastal areas. Alignment on reducing the power of France and securing the Protestant succession for the British throne masked differences on how to achieve them. In general, the Tories favoured a mercantilist strategy of using the
Royal Navy The Royal Navy (RN) is the United Kingdom's naval warfare Naval warfare is combat Combat ( French for ''fight'') is a purposeful violent conflict meant to physically harm or kill the opposition. Combat may be armed (using weapon A ...
to attack French and Spanish trade while protecting and expanding their own; land commitments were viewed as expensive and primarily of benefit to others. The Whigs argued France could not be defeated by seapower alone, making a Continental strategy essential, while Britain's financial strength made it the only member of the Alliance able to operate on all fronts against France.


Dutch Republic

Although the English
Duke of Marlborough General (United Kingdom), General John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough, 1st Prince of Mindelheim, 1st Count of Nellenburg, Prince of the Holy Roman Empire, (26 May 1650 – 16 June 1722 Old Style and New Style dates, O.S.) was an Englis ...

Duke of Marlborough
was Allied commander in the
Low Countries The term Low Countries, also known as the Low Lands ( nl, de Lage Landen, french: les Pays-Bas) and historically called the Netherlands ( nl, de Nederlanden), Flanders, or Belgica, refers to a coastal lowland region in Northwestern Europe ...
, the Dutch provided much of the manpower, and strategy in this theatre was subject to their approval. The 1672 to 1678
Franco-Dutch War The 1672 to 1678 Franco-Dutch War, also known as the Dutch War (french: Guerre de Hollande; nl, Hollandse Oorlog), was fought between France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a Li ...
showed the Spanish could not defend the Southern Netherlands, and so the 1697
Treaty of Ryswick The Peace of Ryswick, or Rijswijk, was a series of treaties signed in the Dutch city of Rijswijk between 20 September and 30 October 1697. They ended the 1688 to 1697 Nine Years' War between France France (), officially the French Republi ...
allowed the Dutch to place garrisons in eight key cities. They hoped this
barrier A barrier or barricade is a physical structure which blocks or impedes something. Barrier may also refer to: Places * Barrier, Kentucky, a community in the United States * Barrier, Voerendaal, a place in the municipality of Voerendaal, in southeas ...
would provide the
strategic depth Strategic depth is a term in military literature that broadly refers to the distances between the front line A front line (alternative forms: front-line or frontline) in military terminology is the position(s) closest to the area of conflict of ...
needed to protect their commercial and demographic heartlands around Amsterdam against attack from the south. In the event, they were quickly over-run in 1701, then later in
1748 Events January–March * January 12 Events Pre-1600 * – Julius crosses the Rubikon at the head of the 13th Legion. Civil war between the former allies, Caesar and , is now inevitable. * – is forced to flee hi ...
, and modern historians consider the idea fundamentally flawed. However, Dutch priorities were to re-establish and strengthen the Barrier fortresses, retain control of the economically vital Scheldt estuary, and gain access to trade in the Spanish Empire.


Austria / Holy Roman Empire

Despite being the dominant power within the Holy Roman Empire, Austrian and Imperial interests did not always coincide. The Habsburgs wanted to put
Archduke Charles Archduke Charles Louis John Joseph Laurentius of Austria, Duke of Teschen (german: link=no, Erzherzog Karl Ludwig Johann Joseph Lorenz von Österreich, Herzog von Teschen; 5 September 177130 April 1847) was an Austrian Empire, Austrian field-mars ...
on the throne of an undivided Spanish Monarchy, while their Allies were fighting to prevent either the Bourbons or the Habsburgs from doing so. This divergence and Austria's financial collapse in 1703 meant the campaign in Spain was reliant on Anglo-Dutch naval support and after 1706, British funding. Particularly during the reign of Joseph I, the priority for the Habsburgs was to secure their southern borders from French intervention in northern Italy and suppress
Rákóczi's War of Independence Rákóczi's War of Independence (1703–11) was the first significant attempt to topple the rule of the over . The war was conducted by a group of noblemen, wealthy and high-ranking progressives and was led by and resigned soldiers and peasan ...
in Hungary. Much of the Spanish nobility resented what they considered to be the arrogance of the Austrians, a key factor in the selection of Philip as their preferred candidate in 1700. In return for British support, Charles agreed to major commercial concessions within the Empire, as well as accepting British control of
Gibraltar ) , anthem = "God Save the Queen" , song = "Gibraltar Anthem" , image_map = Gibraltar location in Europe.svg , map_alt = Location of Gibraltar in Europe , map_caption = United Kingdom shown in pale green , mapsize = 290px , image_map2 = ...

Gibraltar
and
Menorca Menorca or Minorca (from la, Insula Minor, , smaller island, later ''Minorica'') is one of the Balearic Islands located in the Mediterranean Sea belonging to Spain. Its name derives from its size, contrasting it with nearby Mallorca. Its large ...

Menorca
. These made him widely unpopular at all levels of Spanish society, and he was never able to sustain himself outside the coastal regions, which could be supplied by the Royal Navy. The
Wittelsbach The House of Wittelsbach () is the Kingdom of Bavaria, Royal Bavarian dynasty from Germany, with branches that have ruled over territories including Bavaria, the Palatinate, Holland and Zeeland, Sweden (with Denmark and Norway), Hungary (with ...
-controlled states of
Bavaria Bavaria (; German German(s) may refer to: Common uses * of or related to Germany * Germans, Germanic ethnic group, citizens of Germany or people of German ancestry * For citizens of Germany, see also German nationality law * German language ...
,
Liège Liège ( , , ; wa, Lidje ; nl, Luik ; german: Lüttich ; lat, Leodium) is a major City status in Belgium, city and Municipalities in Belgium, municipality of Wallonia and the capital of the Belgium, Belgian Liège Province, province of Liège ...
,
Cologne Cologne ( ; german: Köln ; ksh, Kölle ) is the largest city of Germany, Germany's most populous States of Germany, state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) and the List of cities in Germany by population, fourth-most populous city and one of t ...
allied with France, but the vast majority of the Empire remained neutral, or limited their involvement to the supply of mercenaries. Like Bavaria, the larger entities pursued their own policies; his claim to the Polish crown meant Augustus of Saxony focused on the
Great Northern War The Great Northern War (1700–1721) was a conflict in which a coalition led by the Tsardom of Russia The Tsardom of Russia or Tsardom of Rus' (russian: Русское царство, ''Russkoye tsarstvo''; later changed to: , ''Rossiyskoy ...

Great Northern War
, while
Frederick IFrederick I may refer to: * Frederick of Utrecht or Frederick I (815/16–834/38), Bishop of Utrecht. * Frederick I, Duke of Upper Lorraine (942–978) * Frederick I, Duke of Swabia (1050–1105) * Frederick I, Count of Zollern ...

Frederick I
made his support dependent on Leopold recognising Prussia as a kingdom and making it an equal member of the Grand Alliance. Since George, Elector Hanover was also heir to the British throne, his support was more reliable, but the suspicion remained the interests of Hanover came first.


France

Under Louis XIV, France was the most powerful state in Europe with revenue-generating capacities that far exceeded its rivals. Its geographical position provided enormous tactical flexibility; unlike Austria, it had its navy, and as the campaigns of 1708–1710 proved, even under severe pressure it could defend its borders. The Nine Years' War had shown France could not impose its objectives without support but the alliance with Spain and Bavaria made a successful outcome far more likely. Apart from denying an undivided Spanish Monarchy to others, Louis's objectives were to secure his borders with the Holy Roman Empire, weaken Austria and increase French commercial strength through access to the trade of the Americas.


Spain

In 1700, Spain remained a great power in terms of territory controlled, while recent research shows imports of bullion from the Americas actually reached their highest level between 1670 and 1700. However, this concealed major structural weaknesses; the vast majority of these imports were used to fund debt or pay foreign merchants. When the new Bourbon administration took over in 1701, they found the Empire bankrupt and effectively defenceless, with fewer than 15,000 troops in Spain itself and a navy consisting of 20 ships in total. Almost constant warfare during the 17th century made the economy subject to long periods of low productivity and depression, and largely reliant upon others for its prosperity. In many ways, the continued existence of the Empire was not due to Spanish strength but to maintain a balance between the powers competing for a share of its markets. Despite fighting a series of wars against Spain from 1667 to 1697, France was also its most significant economic partner, supplying labour and controlling a large proportion of its foreign trade. This consideration was an important factor in the decision to name Philip heir. Its dependence on others was illustrated in 1703; despite the presence of an invading Allied army, the French ambassador urged Louis to allow Dutch and English merchants to purchase wool from Spanish farmers, "otherwise the flocks cannot be maintained". Enacting political or economic reform was extremely complex since Habsburg Spain was a personal union between the Crowns of
Castile
Castile
and
Aragon Aragon ( or , Spanish and an, Aragón , ca, Aragó ) is an autonomous community eu, autonomia erkidegoa ca, comunitat autònoma gl, comunidade autónoma oc, comunautat autonòma an, comunidat autonoma ast, comunidá autónoma , alt_n ...
, each with very different political cultures. Most of Philip's support came from the Castilian elite. The Spanish Netherlands had been governed by Bavaria since 1690, while links with Italy, traditionally the major source of Spanish recruits and funding, had been weakened by decades of neglect and heavy taxation. It was widely, if reluctantly, accepted in Madrid that preserving an independent Spanish empire required comprehensive reforms, including elimination of the privileges or ''
Fuero confirming the ''fueros'' of Biscay at Guernica (town), Guernica in 1476 ''Fuero'' (), ''Fur'' (), ''Foro'' () or ''Foru'' () is a Spain, Spanish legal term and concept. The word comes from Latin ''Forum (Roman), forum'', an open space used as a ...

Fuero
s'' held by the Aragonese states. It was no coincidence Archduke Charles had strong support in areas which were part of the Crown of Aragon, including Catalonia and
Valencia Valencia ( va, València) is the capital of the Autonomous communities of Spain, autonomous community of Valencian Community, Valencia and the Municipalities of Spain, third-largest city in Spain after Madrid and Barcelona, surpassing 800,000 ...
.


Savoy

Over the course of the 17th century, the
Savoyard state The Savoyard state is a term of art used by historians to denote collectively all of the states ruled by the counts and dukes of Savoy from the Middle Ages to the formation of the Kingdom of Italy. History The multi-century history of Savoy inc ...
, generally known as Savoy, sought to replace Spain as the dominant power in
Northern Italy Northern Italy ( it, Italia settentrionale, it, Nord Italia, label=none, it, Alta Italia, label=none or just it, Nord, label=none) is a geographical and cultural region In geography, regions are areas that are broadly divided by physical cha ...
. Savoy consisted of two main geographic segments;
Piedmont Piedmont ( ; it, Piemonte, ; Piedmontese language, Piedmontese, Lombard language, Lombard, Occitan language, Occitan and frp, Piemont, , , french: Piémont) is a region in northwest Italy, one of the regions of Italy, 20 regions of the country. ...
, which contained the capital
Turin Turin ( , Piedmontese Piedmontese (autonym: or , in it, piemontese) is a language spoken by some 700,000 people mostly in Piedmont it, Piemontese , population_note = , population_blank1_title = , population_blank1 = ...

Turin
, and the
Duchy of Aosta __NOTOC__ 150px, Coat of arms of the Duchy of Aosta The Duchy of Aosta, originally the County of Aosta, was a realm ruled by the House of Savoy The House of Savoy ( it, Casa Savoia) is a royal dynasty A dynasty (, ) is a sequence of rul ...
on the Italian side of the
Alps The Alps ; german: Alpen ; it, Alpi ; rm, Alps; sl, Alpe ) are the highest and most extensive mountain range A mountain range is a series of mountains ranged in a line and connected by high ground. A mountain system or mountain belt ...

Alps
, with the
Duchy of Savoy From 1416 to 1847, the Duchy of Savoy ( it, Ducato di Savoia, french: Duché de Savoie) was a country in Western Europe Western Europe is the region of Europe Europe is a continent A continent is one of several large landmasse ...

Duchy of Savoy
and
County of Nice The County of Nice (french: Comté de Nice / Pays Niçois, it, Contea di Nizza/Paese Nizzardo, Niçard oc, Contèa de Niça/País Niçard) is a historical region of France located around the southeastern city of Nice Nice ( , ; Niçard ...

County of Nice
in Transalpine France. The latter were almost impossible to defend and combined with the anti-Habsburg policy pursued by Louis XIV and his predecessors, this meant Savoy generally sided with France. However, Piedmont provided foreign powers access to the restive southern French provinces of the
Dauphiné The Dauphiné (, ; ; oc, Daufinat or ; frp, Dôfenât or ; former English name: Dauphiny) is a former province in Southeastern France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a List of ...

Dauphiné
and
VaunageThe Vaunage is an area of southern France made up of the plain and the small hills around Nages-et-Solorgues, Nages. It is known for its oppidum. The Vaunage area is located between Languedoc and Provence and between Sommières and Nîmes. It is nor ...
, former
Huguenot The Huguenots ( , also , ) were a Religious denomination, religious group of French people, French Protestantism, Protestants who held to the Reformed, or Calvinist, tradition of Protestantism. The term, which may be derived from the name of a ...

Huguenot
strongholds with a long history of rebellion. This provided
Victor Amadeus II , house = House of Savoy, Savoy , father = Charles Emmanuel II, Duke of Savoy , mother = Marie Jeanne Baptiste of Nemours , religion = Roman Catholicism 'Amadeus II (Vittorio Amedeo Francesco; 14 May 166631 Oct ...

Victor Amadeus II
with a degree of leverage, allowing him to manoeuvre between opposing parties in order to expand his territories. During the Nine Years' War in 1690, Savoy joined the Grand Alliance before agreeing a
separate peace A separate peace is a nation's agreement to cease military hostilities with another even though the former country had previously entered into a military alliance A military alliance is an international agreement concerning national security ...
with France in 1696. The accession of Philip V in 1701 led to a reversal of long-standing strategic policy, with France now supporting the Spanish position in Lombardy, rather than seeking to weaken it, and Austria doing the opposite. While Victor Amadeus initially allied Savoy with France, his long-term goal was the acquisition of
Duchy of Milan The Duchy of Milan was an Italian state located in northern Italy Northern Italy ( it, Italia settentrionale, it, Nord Italia, label=none, it, Alta Italia, label=none or just it, Nord, label=none) is a geographical and cultural region in th ...
, which neither the Bourbons or Habsburgs would relinquish voluntarily. In fact, as discussed elsewhere in this article, securing his borders in Italy was of greater concern to Emperor Leopold than Spain itself. This meant Britain was the only power inclined to help Victor Amadeus achieve this objective and he changed sides in 1703 after the Royal Navy won control of the Western Mediterranean.


Military campaigns 1701–1708


Italy

The war in Italy primarily involved the Spanish-ruled Duchies of Milan and Mantua, considered essential to the security of Austria's southern borders. In 1701, French troops occupied both cities and
Victor Amadeus II , house = House of Savoy, Savoy , father = Charles Emmanuel II, Duke of Savoy , mother = Marie Jeanne Baptiste of Nemours , religion = Roman Catholicism 'Amadeus II (Vittorio Amedeo Francesco; 14 May 166631 Oct ...

Victor Amadeus II
, Duke of Savoy, allied with France, his daughter Maria Luisa marrying Philip V. In May 1701, an Imperial army under
Prince Eugene of Savoy Prince Eugene Francis of Savoy–Carignano, (18 October 1663 – 21 April 1736) better known as Prince Eugene, was a Generalfeldmarschall, field marshal in the army of the Holy Roman Empire and of the Austrian Habsburg dynasty during the 17th an ...

Prince Eugene of Savoy
moved into Northern Italy; by February 1702, victories at
Carpi Carpi may refer to : Places * Carpi, Emilia-Romagna, a large town in the province of Modena, central Italy * Carpi (Africa), a city and former diocese of Roman Africa, now a Latin Catholic titular bishopric People * Carpi (people), an ancie ...
, Chiari and
Cremona Cremona (, also ; ; lmo, label=Cremunés, Cremùna; egl, Carmona) is a city and ''comune'' in northern Italy, situated in Lombardy, on the left bank of the Po (river), Po river in the middle of the ''Pianura Padana'' (Po Valley). It is the capi ...
forced the French behind the
Adda Adda or ADDA may refer to: People Given name * Adda Husted Andersen (1898–1990), Danish-born American Modernist jeweler, silversmith, metalsmith, and educator * Adda Angel, Cambodian songwriter and music producer * Adda bar Ahavah, two Jewi ...
river.
Vendôme Vendôme (, ) is a subprefecture of the department of Loir-et-Cher, France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a country primarily located in Western Europe, consisting of metropolitan ...
, one of the best French generals, took command and was substantially reinforced; Prince Eugene managed a draw at the
Battle of Luzzara The Battle of Luzzara took place in Lombardy Lombardy ( ; it, Lombardia ; lmo, Lombardia, , ) is one of the twenty administrative regions of Italy, in the Northwest Italy, northwest of the country, with an area of . About 10 million people li ...
but the French recovered most of the territory lost the year before. In October 1703, Victor Amadeus declared war on France; by May 1706, the French held most of Savoy except Turin while victories at Battle of Cassano (1705), Cassano and Calcinato forced the Imperialists into the Trentino, Trentino valley. However, in July 1706 Vendôme and any available forces were sent to reinforce France's northern frontier after the defeat at Battle of Ramillies, Ramillies. Reinforced by German auxiliaries led by Leopold I, Prince of Anhalt-Dessau, Leopold of Anhalt-Dessau, Prince Eugene broke the Siege of Turin in September; despite a minor French victory at Battle of Castiglione (1706), Castiglione, the war in Italy was over. To the fury of his allies, in the March 1707 Convention of Milan Emperor Joseph gave French troops in Lombardy free passage to Southern France. A combined Savoyard-Imperial attack on the French base of Toulon planned for April was postponed when Imperial troops were diverted to seize the Spanish Bourbon Kingdom of Naples. By the time they besieged Battle of Toulon (1707), Toulon in August, the French were too strong, and they were forced to withdraw. By the end of 1707, fighting in Italy ceased, apart from small-scale attempts by Victor Amadeus to recover Nice and Savoy.


Low Countries, Rhine and Danube

The first objective for the Grand Alliance in this theatre was to secure the Dutch frontiers, threatened by the alliance between France, Bavaria, and Joseph Clemens of Bavaria, ruler of Liège and Electorate of Cologne, Cologne. During 1702, the Barrier fortresses were retaken along with Kaiserswerth, Venlo, Roermond and Liège. The 1703 campaign was marred by Allied conflicts over strategy; they failed to take
Antwerp Antwerp (; nl, Antwerpen ; french: Anvers ) is a city in Belgium and the capital of Antwerp (province), Antwerp province in the Flemish Region. With a population of 520,504,
Antwerp
, while the Dutch defeat at Battle of Ekeren, Ekeren in June led to bitter recriminations. On the Upper Rhine, Imperial forces under Louis William, Margrave of Baden-Baden, Louis of Baden remained on the defensive, although they took Siege of Landau (1702), Landau in 1702. Throughout 1703, French victories at Friedlingen, First Battle of Höchstädt, Höchstädt and Speyerbach with the capture of Siege of Kehl (1703), Kehl, Breisach and Landau directly threatened Vienna. In 1704, Franco-Bavarian forces continued their advance with the Austrians struggling to suppress Rákóczi's War of Independence, Rákóczi's revolt in Hungary. To relieve the pressure, Marlborough marched up the Rhine, joined forces with Louis of Baden and Prince Eugene, and crossed the Danube on 2 July. Allied victory at Battle of Blenheim, Blenheim on 13 August forced Bavaria out of the war and the Treaty of Ilbersheim placed it under Austrian rule. Allied efforts to exploit their victory in 1705 foundered on poor co-ordination, tactical disputes and command rivalries, while the ruthless rule of Leopold's successor Joseph in Bavaria caused a brief but vicious Bavarian People's Uprising, peasant revolt. In May 1706, an Allied force under Marlborough shattered a French army at the Battle of Ramillies and the Spanish Netherlands fell to the Allies in under two weeks. France assumed a defensive posture for the rest of the war; despite the loss of strongpoints like Siege of Lille (1708), Lille, they prevented the Allies from making a decisive breach in their frontiers. By 1712, the overall position remained largely unchanged from 1706.


Spain and Portugal

British involvement was driven by safeguarding their trade routes in the Mediterranean, while by putting Archduke Charles on the Spanish throne, they hoped to gain commercial privileges within the Spanish Empire. The Habsburgs viewed Northern Italy and suppressing the Hungarian revolt as higher priorities, while after 1704 the Dutch focused on Flanders. As a result, this theatre was largely dependent on British naval and military support; high casualties from disease made it a heavy drain on resources, for little apparent benefit. Spain was a union between the Crowns of
Castile
Castile
and
Aragon Aragon ( or , Spanish and an, Aragón , ca, Aragó ) is an autonomous community eu, autonomia erkidegoa ca, comunitat autònoma gl, comunidade autónoma oc, comunautat autonòma an, comunidat autonoma ast, comunidá autónoma , alt_n ...
, which was divided into the Principality of Catalonia, plus the Kingdoms of Kingdom of Aragon, Aragon,
Valencia Valencia ( va, València) is the capital of the Autonomous communities of Spain, autonomous community of Valencian Community, Valencia and the Municipalities of Spain, third-largest city in Spain after Madrid and Barcelona, surpassing 800,000 ...
, Kingdom of Majorca, Majorca, Kingdom of Sicily, Sicily, Kingdom of Naples, Naples and Kingdom of Sardinia, Sardinia. In 1701, Majorca, Naples, Sicily, and Sardinia declared for Philip, while a mixture of anti-Castilian and anti-French sentiment meant the others supported Archduke Charles, the most important being Catalonia. Allied victory at Battle of Vigo Bay, Vigo Bay in October 1702 persuaded Peter II of Portugal to switch sides, giving them an operational base in this area. Archduke Charles landed at Lisbon in March 1704 to begin a land campaign, while the British-Dutch capture of Gibraltar was a significant blow to Bourbon prestige. An attempt to retake it was defeated Battle of Vélez-Málaga, in August, with a land siege being abandoned in April 1705. The 1705 'Pact of Genoa' between Catalan representatives and Britain opened a second front in the north-east; the loss of Siege of Barcelona (1705), Barcelona and Valencia left Toulon as the only major port available to the Bourbons in the Western Mediterranean. Philip tried to retake Barcelona in May 1706 but was repulsed, while his absence allowed an Allied force from Portugal to enter Madrid and Saragossa. However, lack of popular support and logistical issues meant the Allies could not hold territory away from the coastline, and by November, Philip controlled Castile, Region of Murcia, Murcia, and parts of Valencia. Allied efforts to regain the initiative ended with defeat at Battle of Almansa, Almansa in April 1707, followed by failure to take Siege of Toulon (1707), Toulon in August. The Capture of Menorca (1708), capture of Menorca in 1708, combined with possession of Gibraltar, gave the British control of the Western Mediterranean, which many considered their primary objective.


War beyond Europe and related conflicts

The close links between war and trade meant conflict extended beyond Europe, particularly in North America, where it is known as
Queen Anne's War Queen Anne's War (1702–1713) was the second in a series of French and Indian Wars fought in North America involving the colonial empires of Great Britain, France, and Spain; it took place during the reign of Anne, Queen of Great Britain Ann ...
, and the West Indies, which produced sugar, then a hugely profitable commodity. Also, there were minor trade conflicts in South America, India, and Asia; the financial strains of war particularly affected the Dutch East India Company, as it was a huge drain on scarce naval resources. Related conflicts include
Rákóczi's War of Independence Rákóczi's War of Independence (1703–11) was the first significant attempt to topple the rule of the over . The war was conducted by a group of noblemen, wealthy and high-ranking progressives and was led by and resigned soldiers and peasan ...
in Hungary, which was funded by France and a serious concern for the Habsburgs throughout the war. In South-Eastern France, Britain funded the
Huguenot The Huguenots ( , also , ) were a Religious denomination, religious group of French people, French Protestantism, Protestants who held to the Reformed, or Calvinist, tradition of Protestantism. The term, which may be derived from the name of a ...

Huguenot
Camisard, 1704–1710 Camisard rebellion; one objective of the 1707 campaign in Northern Italy and Southern France was to support this revolt, one of a series that began in the 1620s.


No peace without Spain; 1709–1713

By the end of 1708, the French had withdrawn from Northern Italy, while the Maritime Powers controlled the Spanish Netherlands, and secured the borders of the Dutch Republic; in the Mediterranean, Britain's Royal Navy had achieved naval supremacy, and acquired permanent bases in Gibraltar and Menorca. However, as Marlborough himself pointed out, the French frontiers remained largely intact, their army showed no signs of being defeated, while Philip proved far more popular with the Spanish than his rival. Many of the objectives set out by the Grand Alliance in 1701 had been achieved, but success in 1708 made them overconfident.


Diplomacy

France viewed the Dutch as the most likely to favour a quick end to the war; Ramillies removed any direct military threat to the Republic, while highlighting differences with Britain on the Spanish Netherlands. Initial peace talks broke down since the Allies had agreed to negotiate jointly, but could not agree terms. Louis re-opened talks after the Great Frost of 1709, severe winter of 1708/1709 caused widespread famine in France and Spain, and in May 1709, the Allies presented him with the 'Preliminaries of Hague'. Philip was given two months to cede his throne to Archduke Charles, while France was required to remove him by force if he did not comply. The terms seriously underestimated France's ability to continue the war, assumed Philip would abdicate on request, and required the Spanish to accept Archduke Charles as king, which they were clearly unwilling to do. While Louis was willing to abandon his ambitions in Spain, making war on his grandson was unacceptable; when made public, the terms were considered so offensive that they strengthened French resolve to fight on. Marlborough's 1709 offensive in Northern France resulted in the Battle of Malplaquet on 11 September; although technically an Allied victory, their casualties were appalling with around 24,500 out of 86,000 killed or wounded. The result increased war-weariness in Britain and the Dutch Republic, and showed the fighting abilities of the French army remained intact. Combined with Spanish victories at Siege of Alicante, Alicante in April, and Battle of La Gudina, La Gudina in May, chances of a military solution now appeared remote. Shortly after, the Dutch discovered they had been excluded from a commercial agreement signed by Archduke Charles which granted Britain exclusive trading rights in Spanish America. This deepened divisions between the Allies, while increasing Spanish opposition to having the Archduke as their king. When the Whig government in London tried to compensate the Dutch by agreeing concessions in the Spanish Netherlands, they were opposed by their Tory opponents as detrimental to British commerce. The Whigs won the 1708 British general election by arguing military victory was the quickest road to peace, but failure in France was mirrored in Spain. Archduke Charles re-entered Madrid in 1710 after victories in the Battle of Almenar and Battle of Saragossa, but the Allies could not hold the interior and were forced to retreat. 3,500 British troops surrendered at Battle of Brihuega, Brihuega on 8 December, and the Battle of Villaviciosa on 10 December confirmed Bourbon control of Spain. At the same time, costs continued to spiral; the Dutch were close to bankruptcy while Austrian troops were almost entirely funded by Britain. In 1709, Parliament of Great Britain, Parliament approved expenditures of £6.4 million, up from £5.0 million in 1706; by the end of 1710, these had nearly doubled to £12.9 million, despite minimal gains.


Negotiations

When negotiations resumed in March 1710 at Geertruidenberg, it was clear to the French the mood in Britain had changed. This was confirmed when the pro-peace Tories won a landslide victory in the October 1710 British general election, although they confirmed their commitment to the war to prevent a credit crisis. Despite the capture of Siege of Bouchain, Bouchain in September, a decisive victory in Northern France continued to elude the Allies, and an expedition against Quebec Expedition, Quebec in French North America ended in disaster. When Emperor Joseph died in April 1711, Archduke Charles was elected Emperor; continuing the war now seemed pointless since the union of Spain with Austria was as unwelcome as one with France. The British secretly negotiated peace terms directly with France, leading to the signing of the Preliminary Articles of London on 8 October 1711. They included French acceptance of the Act of Settlement and a guarantee the French and Spanish crowns would remain separate; France undertook to ensure Spain ceded Gibraltar and Menorca, while giving Britain a thirty year monopoly on the ''Asiento de Negros'', the right to import slaves into their American colonies. Despite their resentment at being excluded from these negotiations, the Dutch were financially exhausted by the enormous cost of the war, and could not continue without British support. Charles VI initially rejected the idea of a peace conference; he reluctantly agreed once the Dutch decided to support it, but Habsburg opposition to the treaty continued.


Peace of Utrecht

Within weeks of the conference opening, events threatened the basis of the peace agreed between Britain and France. First, the French presented proposals awarding the Spanish Netherlands to Max Emmanuel of Bavaria and a minimal Barrier, leaving the Dutch with little to show for their huge investment of money and men. Second, a series of deaths left Louis XIV's two-year-old great-grandson, the future Louis XV of France, Louis XV as heir, making Philip next in line and his immediate renunciation imperative. The Dutch and Austrians fought on, hoping to improve their negotiating position but Henry St John, 1st Viscount Bolingbroke, Bolingbroke issued 'Restraining Orders' to Marlborough's replacement, the James Butler, 2nd Duke of Ormonde, Duke of Ormonde, instructing him not to participate in offensive operations against the French. These orders caused fury then and later, with Whigs urging Hanoverian military intervention; those George considered responsible, including Ormonde and Bolingbroke were driven into exile after his succession, and became prominent Jacobites. Prince Eugene captured Le Quesnoy in June and besieged Landrecies but was defeated at Battle of Denain, Denain on 24 July; the French went on to recapture Le Quesnoy and many towns lost in previous years, including Marchines, Douai, and Bouchain. This showed the French retained their fighting ability, while the Dutch finally reached the end of their willingness and ability to continue the war. On 6 June, Philip confirmed his renunciation of the French throne, and the British offered the Dutch a revised Barrier Treaty, replacing that of 1709 which they rejected as overly generous. A significant improvement on the 1697 Barrier, it was subject to Austrian approval; although the final terms were less beneficial, it was sufficient for the Dutch to agree peace terms. Charles withdrew from the Conference when France insisted he guarantee not to acquire Mantua or Mirandola; he was supported in this by George, Elector of Hanover, who wanted France to withdraw support for the Stuart heir James Francis Edward Stuart, James Francis. As a result, neither Austria nor the Empire signed the
Treaty of Utrecht The Peace of Utrecht was a series of peace treaties A peace treaty is an agreement between two or more hostile parties, usually countries or government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized commun ...

Treaty of Utrecht
of 11 April 1713 between France and the other Allies; Spain made peace with the Dutch in June, then Savoy and Britain on 13 July 1713.


Treaties of Rastatt and Baden

Fighting continued on the Rhine, but Austria was financially exhausted, and after the loss of Landau and Freiburg in November 1713, Charles finally made peace on 7 March 1714. In the Treaty of Rastatt, the Habsburg Monarchy acceded to the terms of Utrecht, which confirmed their gains in Southern Italy, returned Breisach, Kehl, and Freiburg, ended French support for the Hungarian revolt and agreed on terms for the Dutch Barrier fortresses. Charles abandoned his claim to Strasbourg and Alsace and agreed to the restoration of the Wittelsbach Electors of Bavaria and Cologne, Max Emmanuel, and Joseph Clemens. Article XIX of the treaty transferred sovereignty over the Spanish Netherlands to Austria. On 7 September, the Holy Roman Empire joined the agreement by the Treaty of Baden (1714), Treaty of Baden; although Catalonia and Majorca were not finally subdued by the Bourbons until June 1715, the war was over.


Aftermath

Article II of the Peace of Utrecht included the stipulation "because of the great danger which threatened the liberty and safety of all Europe, from the too-close conjunction of the kingdoms of Spain and France,... the same person should never become King of both kingdoms." Some historians view this as a key point in the evolution of the modern nation-state; Randall Lesaffer argues it marks a significant milestone in the concept of collective security. Britain is usually seen as the main beneficiary of Utrecht, which marked its rise to becoming the dominant European commercial power. It established naval superiority over its competitors, acquired the strategic Mediterranean ports of Gibraltar and Menorca and trading rights in Spanish America. France accepted the Protestant succession, ensuring a smooth inheritance by George I in August 1714, while agreeing to end support for the Stuarts in the Anglo-French Alliance (1716–1731), 1716 Anglo-French Treaty. Although the war left all participants with unprecedented levels of government debt, only Britain was able to finance it efficiently, providing a relative advantage over its competitors. Philip was confirmed as King of Spain, which retained its independence and the majority of its empire, in return for ceding the Spanish Netherlands, most of their Italian possessions, as well as Gibraltar and Menorca. These losses were deeply felt; Naples and Sicily were regained in 1735 and Menorca in 1782, although Gibraltar is still held by Britain, despite numerous attempts to regain it. The 1707 ''Nueva Planta'' decrees centralised power in Madrid, and abolished regional political structures, although Catalonia and Majorca remained outside the system until 1767. Their economy recovered remarkably quickly, while the House of Bourbon remains the Spanish Royal Family to this day. Despite failure in Spain, Austria secured its position in Italy and Hungary and acquired the bulk of the Spanish Netherlands; even after reimbursing the Dutch for the cost of their Barrier garrisons, the increased revenues funded a significant expansion of the Austrian army. The shift of Habsburg focus away from Germany and into Southern Europe continued with victory in the Austro-Turkish War of 1716–18. Their position as the dominant power within the Holy Roman Empire was challenged by Bavaria, Hanover, Prussia, and Saxony, who increasingly acted as independent powers; in 1742, Charles VII, Holy Roman Emperor, Charles of Bavaria became the first non-Habsburg Emperor in over 300 years. The Dutch Republic ended the war effectively bankrupt, while the barrier that cost so much proved largely illusory. The forts were quickly overrun in 1740, with Britain's promise of military support against an aggressor proving far more effective. The economy was permanently affected by the damage inflicted by the war on their merchant navy, and while they retained their position in the Far East, Britain replaced them as the pre-eminent commercial and maritime power. Louis XIV died on 1 September 1715, his five-year-old great-grandson reigning as Louis XV until 1774; on his deathbed, he is alleged to have admitted, "I have loved war too well". True or not, while the final settlement was far more favourable than the Allied terms of 1709, it is hard to see what Louis gained that he had not already achieved through diplomacy by February 1701. Since 1666, Louis had based his policies on the assumption of French military and economic superiority over their rivals; by 1714, this was no longer the case. Concern over the expansion of British trade post-Utrecht, and the advantage provided over its rivals, was viewed by his successors as a threat to the balance of power, and a major factor behind French participation in the 1740 to 1748 War of the Austrian Succession. Wider implications include the rise of Prussia and Savoy while many of the participants were involved in the 1700–1721
Great Northern War The Great Northern War (1700–1721) was a conflict in which a coalition led by the Tsardom of Russia The Tsardom of Russia or Tsardom of Rus' (russian: Русское царство, ''Russkoye tsarstvo''; later changed to: , ''Rossiyskoy ...

Great Northern War
, with Russia becoming a major European power for the first time as a result. Finally, while colonial conflicts were relatively minor and largely confined to the North American theatre, the so-called
Queen Anne's War Queen Anne's War (1702–1713) was the second in a series of French and Indian Wars fought in North America involving the colonial empires of Great Britain, France, and Spain; it took place during the reign of Anne, Queen of Great Britain Ann ...
, they were to become a key element in future wars. Meanwhile, maritime unemployment brought on by the war's end led to the third stage of the Golden Age of Piracy, as many sailors formerly employed in the navies of the warring powers turned to piracy for survival.


Claims to the Spanish throne


Footnotes


References


Sources

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Navarro i Soriano, Ferran (2019). Harca, harca, harca! Músiques per a la recreació històrica de la Guerra de Successió (1794-1715). Editorial DENES. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


Further reading

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External link

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