On 27th September 2016 Dr. Mark Whelan, a Teaching Fellow at Royal Holloway, part of the University of London, gave a very lively lecture at the Slovak Embassy London about the context and consequences of the 1620 Battle of the White Mountain (a hill outside Prague) in which the forces of the Catholic Hapsburg Emperor Ferdinand the Second routed those of the Calvinist King Frederick the Fifth, who had been elected as their king by the Bohemian nobility.

Ferdinand thus secured the throne of Bohemia for himself, and Dr. Whelan explained how this drew most of Central Europe into what became known as the Thirty Years' War, and what profound changes resulted from Ferdinand’s crushing victory. Bohemia and Moravia were re-catholicised, with Protestants being offered a choice of converting or emigrating. Twenty-seven leading nobles were publicly executed in Prague and large areas of land were confiscated and handed over to Ferdinand’s supporters of various nationalities. The administration of the Bohemia and Moravia was transferred from Prague to Vienna and the Czech lands did not recover their independence for three centuries.

 Organised with the cooperation of the Embassy of the Slovak Republic.