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Synopsis

The Peace of Westphalia was a series of peace treaties signed between May and October of 1648 in Osnabrück and Münster. These treaties ended the Thirty Years' War (16181648) in the Holy Roman Empire, and the Eighty Years' War (15681648) between Spain and the Dutch Republic.The Westphalia treaties involved the Holy Roman Emperor, Ferdinand III of the House of Habsburg, the Kingdoms of Spain, France, Sweden, the Dutch Republic, the Princes of the Holy Roman Empire, and sovereigns of the Free imperial cities and can be denoted by two major events. The signing of the Peace of Münster between the Dutch Republic and the Kingdom of Spain on 30 January 1648, officially ratified in Münster on 15 May 1648. The signing of two complementary treaties on 24 October 1648, namely: The Treaty of Münster (Instrumentum Pacis Monasteriensis, IPM), concerning the Holy Roman Emperor and France and their respective allies. The Treaty of Osnabrück (Instrumentum Pacis Osnabrugensis, IPO), concerning the Holy Roman Emperor, the Empire and Sweden and their respective allies.The treaties resulted from the first modern diplomatic congress, thereby initiating a new system of political order in central Europe, later called Westphalian sovereignty, based upon the concept of a sovereign state governed by a sovereign. The Peace of Westphalia also set the precedent for similar attempts at peacemaking, including at Vienna after Napoleon Bonapartes defeat, and for the peace treaties that would end the world wars.

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