Maximilian III Joseph, Elector of Bavaria

Maximilian III Joseph, Elector Of Bavaria

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Maximilian III Joseph, Elector of Bavaria

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Maximilian III Joseph (28 March 1727 – 30 December 1777) was Prince-elector of the Holy Roman Empire and Duke of Bavaria from 1745 to 1777.

Biography

Born in Munich, Maximilian was the eldest son of Emperor Charles VII and his wife Marie Amalie, Archduchess of Austria. His maternal grandparents were Emperor Joseph I and Wilhelmina Amalia of Brunswick-Lüneburg.Upon his father's death in January 1745, he inherited a country in the process of being invaded by Austrian armies (see War of the Austrian Succession). The 18-year-old Maximilian Joseph wavered between the Peace-party, led by his mother Maria Amalia of Austria and Army Commander Friedrich Heinrich von Seckendorff and the War-party, led by Foreign Minister General Ignaz Count of Törring and the French envoy Chavigny. After the decisive defeat in the Battle of Pfaffenhofen on April 15 Maximilian Joseph quickly abandoned his father's imperial pretenses and made peace with Maria Theresa in the Treaty of Füssen, in which he agreed to support her husband, Grand Duke Francis Stephen of Tuscany, in the upcoming imperial election. During the Seven Years' War Bavarian forces then fought on Habsburg's side.Maximilian Joseph's sister Maria Josepha of Bavaria was married in 1765 with Maria Theresa's son Emperor Joseph II.

Maximilian Joseph was a progressive and enlightened ruler who did much to improve the development of his country. The elector encouraged agriculture, industries and the exploitation of the mineral wealth of...
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