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By Patrick Pasture

In 2012, the Nobel Peace Prize Committee conferred its so much prestigious award to the ecu. This booklet takes this prize as a kick off point to study the organization of Europe's quest for peace with plans and beliefs approximately eu cohesion, the oldest of which might be traced again way back to the center a long time. however the demand harmony was once not just inspired via peace and prosperity. It used to be additionally, and unusually even as much as the Nineteen Fifties, grounded in a craving to take care of Europe's colonial dominance on the planet. old research also unearths a deep eager for homogeneity and an abhorrence of range, rooted within the early heritage of Western Christendom.

This ebook doesn't inform the standard tale of a growing to be ecu self-consciousness. as an alternative, it deals a multifaceted background that takes in account the ambivalences and divergences of the ecu mind's eye in an international context.

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Gradually, then, but also very firmly, the concepts of territorial sovereignty and fixed borders did begin to impose themselves by the eighteenth century, although other political structures continued. Also very important was the relationship between church and state, which changed substantially. Quite obviously the Pope had lost his authority in Protestant lands, and in the new Lutheran and Reformed states – as well as in Britain – the churches became subordinate to the state: the princes and monarchs either became heads of the churches or at least obtained important powers of control over them, even if a separation of their sphere of influence was respected.

France and the Ottoman Empire, for example, constituted a lasting alliance in 1536 that bound the two empires together until Napoleon’s invasion of Egypt in 1798, while the British, after the excommunication of Elizabeth I in 1570, equally entertained a centuries-long relationship of cordiality with the Sublime Porte. 47 Gradually the terrain was paved for more concrete (yet still quite utopian) ideas about the organization of Christendom. The King of Bohemia, George of Podiebrad, himself a Hussite and hence, in the eyes of Catholics, a heretic, proposed the creation of a federation of Christian lands in his famous Tractatus of 1464, declaring the need to establish an effective counterweight to the ‘abominable Turk’ who had conquered Constantinople in 1453 and threatened to move even further to the west.

The Dutch Republic, France, Britain and several Italian city-states saw no impediment to concluding treaties of friendship with the Ottomans. France and the Ottoman Empire, for example, constituted a lasting alliance in 1536 that bound the two empires together until Napoleon’s invasion of Egypt in 1798, while the British, after the excommunication of Elizabeth I in 1570, equally entertained a centuries-long relationship of cordiality with the Sublime Porte. 47 Gradually the terrain was paved for more concrete (yet still quite utopian) ideas about the organization of Christendom.

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