Seven Weeks’ War

   Provoked by Prussian Minister of State Otto von Bismarck, the conflict was designed to end the influence of the Habsburg monarchy in the German Confederation. It was, indeed, a humiliating defeat for Emperor Franz Joseph. Heat, fog, and logistic snarls plagued both sides, but the new Prussian needle gun, which allowed troops to load and fire while lying down, so intimidated some Habsburg units that they refused to attack. On the other hand, Habsburg forces performed well against Italy, which had allied itself with Prussia to acquire some north Italian territories still under Habsburg control.
   Beginning in June, the war effectively ended with the battle of Königgrätz (Czech.: Hradec Králové) in the kingdom of Bohemia on 3 July. Bismarck, however, was not eager to punish Austria excessively. The Treaty of Prague, signed in August, required the Habsburg Empire to hand over Venetia to Italy and to pay a modest amount of reparations to Prussia. The German Confederation was dissolved, with a North German Confederation under Prussian leadership taking its place.

Historical dictionary of Austria. . 2014.

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