Foreign Service in the Age of Absolute Monarchy: Louis XIV and his Forces Étrangères

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10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In the period after the Thirty Years War central state organization of armies went hand in hand with the hiring of foreigners for military service. This article sets out the importance of foreign soldiers for Louis XIV’s military power, and outlines how they were incorporated under the aegis of the French state after 1663. It proposes a fresh typology of foreign recruitment and service, moving beyond simple categories such as mercenary, auxiliary, and entrepreneur, and in the process it further reveals the complexity of Louis XIV’s international dealings. The French government had multiple motivations for setting up foreign units, and this article aims to pave the way for more profound exploration of the Soldatenhandel as it related to western Europe in the period after 1648.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)141-165
Number of pages25
JournalWar in History
Volume17
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2010

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