“Angels of the New Republic”: The American Founding and the Habsburg Monarchy, 1776–89
This absence of official relations between the early United States and the Habsburg Monarchy has obscured our true understanding of the American Founding in Europe. This paper seeks to re-examine our conception of the American Revolution and its influence in Europe by exploring this neglected and seemingly nugatory connection between two distant transatlantic regions. In doing so it will challenge the ‘Atlantic World’ paradigm which has yet to include this Danubian hotbed of interest for the American cause. At the same time this paper will also consider the different receptions of the American Revolution within various social groups in Central Europe from the official level of Habsburg policy-makers to aristocratic courtiers and academics to the public sphere. By considering these examples, we will gain a fuller insight into how certain individuals transcended national boundaries even in the epitome of autocratic Europe during the Age of Revolutions. Ultimately, through the lens of US-Habsburg connections, this paper will present both a geographically and socially redefined vision of the American founding in Central Europe.
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