“Only the dead have seen the end of war.”

–Anonymous (though frequently 

attributed to Plato)

On 24th October 1648, the Treaty of Westphalia was signed that ended the Thirty Years’ War. The so-called war needs to be seen as a series of wars that the European nations fought against each other for various reasons. However, the first and most significant factor behind the wars was the attempt of the king of Bohemia to impose Catholicism across his domains. This move was not acceptable to the Protestant nobles. They rebelled. The flames of rebellion spread in most of Europe. And by the 1630s the whole continent was at war.

Nonetheless, there were other crucial factors as well that played a key role in the spread of war. Dynastic, territorial and commercial rivalries among the European nations served the purpose of catalysts in spreading the war across the continent. This war is considered as one of the most destructive wars in European history. Worth noting is the fact that the treaty of Westphalia was a result of various peace efforts that started since 1644. With this treaty signed by all the participants arose the framework of modern Europe as a comity of independent states.