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Christian of Anhalt

Christian of Anhalt, 1568–1630, prince of Anhalt (1603–30). He was a firm Calvinist and a skilled diplomat. As adviser to Frederick IV, elector palatine, he sought to build a strong Protestant alliance against the Catholic states and achieved limited success with the formation (1608) of the Protestant Union. Christian guided Frederick's son and successor, Frederick V (Frederick the Winter King) and arranged his election (1619) to the Bohemian throne in place of the Roman Catholic king, Ferdinand II, also Holy Roman emperor. Supported by the Catholic League under Elector Maximilian I of Bavaria, Ferdinand sent an army to subdue the Bohemian rebels. When military aid that Christian counted on was not forthcoming, Christian was utterly defeated at the battle of the White Mountain. He was put under the imperial ban, but was pardoned in 1624.

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