What stood behind Maria Theresa's forestry policy?

What stood behind Maria Theresa's forestry policy?


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Maria Theresa of Austria established laws that determined how many trees you have to plant for every cut-down tree. Why?

Did the industry need so many trees because of the industrial revolution?


The industrial revolution obviously had nothing to do with it. Maria Theresa reigned from 1740 to 1780; the Industrial Revolution only began in Britain from around the 1760s and didn't come to Central Europe until much later.

Her laws on forestry were enacted over a period of decades. The measures you cited were clearly motivated by a concern for sustainability, which was a common theme in Habsburg forestry laws at the time.

In 1755, Maria Theresia placed the Viennese Forest into the ownership of the state. Nevertheless, the forest was managed in the same was as before. Forest laws of this time [were published] to avoid, generally, forest destruction and forest devastation.

-Johann, E. "17 Shaping the Landscape: Long-term Effects of the Historical Controversy about the Viennese Forest (Wienerwald)." *The Conservation of Cultural Landscapes (CABI, 2006): 242.

Maria Theresa issued similar laws in both Bohemia and Hungary, For example, her famous ordinances for the Carniola forests in 1771:

The Carniolan forest ordinance issued by the Empress Maria Theresa in 1771, represents a major progress in formal development and practice of sustained forest. Not only does it express a concern for public interest in sustainable forestry, it is also an interesting silvicultural guideline dealing - among other matters - with rejuvenation, reflecting the general spirit of the times.

- News of Forest History, Issue 13-21, 1984

This was by no means a suddenly new development. As early as 1565, Emperor Maximilian issued the landmark Constitutio Maximiliana which attempted to regulate forestry. However, it was under Maria Theresa's rule that population boom and environmental changes necessitated a more concerted effort to conserve and regenerate the forests of the Habsburg domains.

The forestry problem became a really pressing one only in the XVIIIth century, when the draining of the swamps deprived the soil of much of its humidity and the rapid increase of the population was followed by wholesale destruction of forests.

- International Bulletin of Agricultural Law, 1940.


It was the British (and later European) Agricultural Revolution of the 1700s, not the Industrial Revolution, that brought about this result.

The development of new seeding, hoeing, and weeding technologies made it far more possible to grow crops in "marginal" lands such as forests and swamps. The result was that after stagnating for four centuries from 1300-1700 (the Black Death, Hundred Year's War, various wars between the Hapsburgs and France, including the 30 Years' War), Europe's population resumed its growth in the 18th century.

The resulting use of "non-traditional" land for agriculture threatened the survival of the forests. A way to combat this threat was to require the planting of new trees for each one cut down; both "restoration" and a disincentive to cutting down trees.


Mother Teresa

Nun and missionary Mother Teresa, known in the Catholic church as Saint Teresa of Calcutta, devoted her life to caring for the sick and poor. Born in Macedonia to parents ofਊlbanian-descentਊnd having taught in India for 17 years, Mother Teresa experienced her "call within a call" in 1946. Her order established a hospice centers for the blind, aged and disabled and a leper colony. 

In 1979, Mother Teresa received the Nobel Peace Prize for her humanitarian work. She died in September 1997 and was beatified in October 2003. In December 2015, Pope Francis recognized a second miracle attributed to Mother Teresa, clearing the way for her to be canonized on September 4, 2016.

Mother Teresa at a hospice for the destitute and dying in Kolkata (Calcutta), India, 1969.

Photo: Terry Fincher/Hulton Archive/Getty Images


Political situation

On 20 October 1740, Emperor Charles VI of the Holy Roman Empire died, leaving his daughter Maria Theresa as sole heiress of his Habsburg dominions. This was in line with the Pragmatic Sanction of 1713 in which Charles had attempted to ensure his territories could be inherited by a daughter if he died without a son.

But several major European powers disputed the succession, seeing this as an opportunity to gain territories and influence at Austria’s expense. The struggle that followed is remembered as the War of the Austrian Succession (1740-48).

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King George II at the Battle of Dettingen, 1743

King George II at the Battle of Dettingen, 1743


Mommie Dearest

In 2003, Pope John Paul II approved the beatification of Mother Teresa. At the time, Christopher Hitchens called Mother Teresa “a fanatic, a fundamentalist, and a fraud,” arguing that “even more will be poor and sick if her example is followed.” On Sept. 4, 2016, Pope Francis will canonize Mother Teresa. Hitchens’ original essay is republished below.

I think it was Macaulay who said that the Roman Catholic Church deserved great credit for, and owed its longevity to, its ability to handle and contain fanaticism. This rather oblique compliment belongs to a more serious age. What is so striking about the “beatification” of the woman who styled herself “Mother” Teresa is the abject surrender, on the part of the church, to the forces of showbiz, superstition, and populism.

It’s the sheer tawdriness that strikes the eye first of all. It used to be that a person could not even be nominated for “beatification,” the first step to “sainthood,” until five years after his or her death. This was to guard against local or popular enthusiasm in the promotion of dubious characters. The pope nominated MT a year after her death in 1997. It also used to be that an apparatus of inquiry was set in train, including the scrutiny of an advocatus diaboli or “devil’s advocate,” to test any extraordinary claims. The pope has abolished this office and has created more instant saints than all his predecessors combined as far back as the 16 th century.

As for the “miracle” that had to be attested, what can one say? Surely any respectable Catholic cringes with shame at the obviousness of the fakery. A Bengali woman named Monica Besra claims that a beam of light emerged from a picture of MT, which she happened to have in her home, and relieved her of a cancerous tumor. Her physician, Dr. Ranjan Mustafi, says that she didn’t have a cancerous tumor in the first place and that the tubercular cyst she did have was cured by a course of prescription medicine. Was he interviewed by the Vatican’s investigators? No. (As it happens, I myself was interviewed by them but only in the most perfunctory way. The procedure still does demand a show of consultation with doubters, and a show of consultation was what, in this case, it got.)

According to an uncontradicted report in the Italian paper L’Eco di Bergamo, the Vatican’s secretary of state sent a letter to senior cardinals in June, asking on behalf of the pope whether they favored making MT a saint right away. The pope’s clear intention has been to speed the process up in order to perform the ceremony in his own lifetime. The response was in the negative, according to Father Brian Kolodiejchuk, the Canadian priest who has acted as postulator or advocate for the “canonization.” But the damage, to such integrity as the process possesses, has already been done.

During the deliberations over the Second Vatican Council, under the stewardship of Pope John XXIII, MT was to the fore in opposing all suggestions of reform. What was needed, she maintained, was more work and more faith, not doctrinal revision. Her position was ultra-reactionary and fundamentalist even in orthodox Catholic terms. Believers are indeed enjoined to abhor and eschew abortion, but they are not required to affirm that abortion is “the greatest destroyer of peace,” as MT fantastically asserted to a dumbfounded audience when receiving the Nobel Peace Prize.* Believers are likewise enjoined to abhor and eschew divorce, but they are not required to insist that a ban on divorce and remarriage be a part of the state constitution, as MT demanded in a referendum in Ireland (which her side narrowly lost) in 1996. Later in that same year, she told Ladies Home Journal that she was pleased by the divorce of her friend Princess Diana, because the marriage had so obviously been an unhappy one …

This returns us to the medieval corruption of the church, which sold indulgences to the rich while preaching hellfire and continence to the poor. MT was not a friend of the poor. She was a friend of poverty. She said that suffering was a gift from God. She spent her life opposing the only known cure for poverty, which is the empowerment of women and the emancipation of them from a livestock version of compulsory reproduction. And she was a friend to the worst of the rich, taking misappropriated money from the atrocious Duvalier family in Haiti (whose rule she praised in return) and from Charles Keating of the Lincoln Savings and Loan. Where did that money, and all the other donations, go? The primitive hospice in Calcutta was as run down when she died as it always had been—she preferred California clinics when she got sick herself—and her order always refused to publish any audit. But we have her own claim that she opened 500 convents in more than a hundred countries, all bearing the name of her own order. Excuse me, but this is modesty and humility?

The rich world has a poor conscience, and many people liked to alleviate their own unease by sending money to a woman who seemed like an activist for “the poorest of the poor.” People do not like to admit that they have been gulled or conned, so a vested interest in the myth was permitted to arise, and a lazy media never bothered to ask any follow-up questions. Many volunteers who went to Calcutta came back abruptly disillusioned by the stern ideology and poverty-loving practice of the “Missionaries of Charity,” but they had no audience for their story. George Orwell’s admonition in his essay on Gandhi—that saints should always be presumed guilty until proved innocent—was drowned in a Niagara of soft-hearted, soft-headed, and uninquiring propaganda.

Correction, Oct. 21, 2003: This piece originally claimed that in her Nobel Peace Prize lecture, Mother Teresa called abortion and contraception the greatest threats to world peace. In that speech Mother Teresa did call abortion “the greatest destroyer of peace.” But she did not much discuss contraception, except to praise “natural” family planning.


Art and architecture

According to Schmidt, to our modern eyes, Versailles is a perfect example of baroque and rococo architecture. But, said Gudek Snajdar, the French of the time would not have considered it baroque. "And it's understandable why," she said. "It's very different from, for example, Italian baroque architecture, which served as an inspiration for other European countries during that time."

Having his palace evoke Italian baroque architecture would have angered Louis XIV. It would have gone against his sense of absolutism, said Gudek Snajdar, the belief that he is at the center of everything. In fact, Louis XIV fired a famous Italian architect hired to work on the Louvre Palace, which was built not long before Versailles.

Some art historians now call the style of the Louvre and Versailles "French classicism." They possess somewhat different features than Italian baroque architecture, including the emphasis on symbols of power and timeless domination. Other types of baroque architecture featured symbolic art, but not necessarily with the emphasis on divine right, kingly power and timeless rule.

"Everything in the Versailles of Louis XIV had a symbolic meaning," said Schmidt. "The ceilings are adorned with illustrations of Roman gods with Louis XIV himself painted as Apollo, the Sun God. Throughout the palace you will find the intertwined L's of his name. It all serves as a constant reminder that he is the king and all power comes from him by the grace of God."

The decoration also emphasized the achievements of the king. "The 'Hall of Mirrors' and the adjacent Salons of War and Peace were decorated with the history of the king," said Gudek Snajdar. The Hall of Mirrors has 30 tableaux that depict an epic story of Louis XIV's achievements and aspirations. Victory in battle features prominently in these narratives, with one example showing Louis with his army crossing the Rhine River in 1672. He is dressed in Roman clothes, his long hair flows behind him, and he holds a thunderbolt like a projectile. He sits like a god in a chariot that is being pushed by none other than Hercules himself.


Causes of deforestation

Farming, grazing of livestock, mining, and drilling combined account for more than half of all deforestation. Forestry practices, wildfires and, in small part, urbanization account for the rest. In Malaysia and Indonesia, forests are cut down to make way for producing palm oil, which can be found in everything from shampoo to saltines. In the Amazon, cattle ranching and farms—particularly soy plantations—are key culprits.

Logging operations, which provide the world’s wood and paper products, also fell countless trees each year. Loggers, some of them acting illegally, also build roads to access more and more remote forests—which leads to further deforestation. Forests are also cut as a result of growing urban sprawl as land is developed for homes.

Not all deforestation is intentional. Some is caused by a combination of human and natural factors like wildfires and overgrazing, which may prevent the growth of young trees.


Discover the true history of the world

"That day, the human race remembered the terror of being dominated by them, and the shame of being held captive in a birdcage. " — Over 100 years ago, a natural predator of humanity appeared: the Titans, giant humanoid but mindless monsters whose sole purpose of existence seemed to be to devour humans. There was an insurmountable gap in power between them and mankind, and as a result, humanity was rapidly exterminated to the brink of extinction. The survivors responded by constructing three concentric walls: Wall Maria, Wall Rose and Wall Sina, which graced them with a century of peace. However, one day a Colossal Titan far larger than any other seen before breached the outer wall, allowing the smaller Titans to invade the human territory and forcing the survivors to retreat to the inner walls. Eren Jaeger, a boy whose mother was eaten during the invasion, vowed to wipe every last Titan off the face of the Earth, and joined the military determined to exact his revenge.

Pieck ( ピーク  Pīku ? ) is an Eldian who serves as one of Marley's Warriors and is the current inheritor of the Cart Titan.

Five years into the mission to reclaim the Founding Titan, Pieck journeys to Paradis Island with Zeke Jaeger and a contingent of Marleyan soldiers, using her Cart Titan to carry supplies for them. She is present as Zeke and the soldiers transform the inhabitants of a small village into Titans.
Pieck is one of the Warriors brought by Zeke to engage the Scout Regiment in Shiganshina District in the year 850. During the night before the Scouts' arrival, Pieck keeps watch for their movement in the desolate regions of Wall Maria south of Trost District. Upon seeing the advancing soldiers, she returns to the ruins of Shiganshina and informs Zeke, Reiner Braun, and Bertholdt Hoover of their approach.

Eren Yeager ( エレン・イェーガー  Eren Yēgā ? ) was a former member of the Survey Corps. He was the main protagonist of Attack on Titan. He lived in Shiganshina District with his parents until the fall of Wall Maria, where he impotently witnessed his mother being eaten by a Titan.

After Eren is woken from a nightmare by Mikasa, the two walk home through Shiganshina. They are harassed by Hannes, who begins teasing Eren for having apparently cried in his sleep. Eren is annoyed to see that Hannes and his friends are slacking off on the job and refuses to be placated by their claims that the Titans will never breach Wall Maria. Ώ] Leaving Hannes behind, the children stop again to watch the Survey Corps return from an expedition and Eren is crestfallen to see that the Corps has returned defeated.
Upon returning home, Mikasa reveals to Eren's mother that he wants to join the Survey Corps. Carla forbids him from joining due to the Corps' high mortality rate and begs Grisha to talk some sense into his son. Grisha ignores her objections and instead announces that he will be leaving for a few days on a trip, promising Eren that when he gets back he will show the boy what he has hidden in the basement of their home. Enthralled, Eren joins his mother and Mikasa in waving him off. Carla reminds him that she will not allow him to join the Survey Corps, and they exchange a heated argument before he runs off.

Above and Below ( 天地  Tenchi ? ) is the 75th episode of the Attack on Titan anime. It was produced by MAPPA.

Floch Forster, Hange Zoë, and a number of Jaegerists are traveling to a Forest of Giant Trees when they hear the explosion caused by Zeke Jaeger triggering a Thunder Spear. As Zeke succumbs to his wounds, a Titan crawls up to him and tears open its belly, stuffing his body inside.

Meanwhile, Yelena has Dot Pyxis and other dissenting members of the military assembled in Shiganshina District. Eren Jaeger goes to meet with the imprisoned Gabi Braun, to have her send out a distress call to Marley in exchange for saving Falco Grice. However, a disguised Pieck approaches Eren and claims she wishes to help him destroy Marley. As a proof of her intentions, she offers to show Eren the location of her fellow spies in Paradis Island.

Toward the Tree on That Hill ( あの丘の木に向かって  Ano Oka no ki ni Mukatte ? ) is the 139th chapter of the Attack on Titan manga, written and illustrated by Hajime Isayama.

After Eren Yeager's death at the hands of Mikasa Ackerman, many of his former comrades from Paradis Island begin recalling memories of him visiting them that were erased due to the power of the Founding Titan. Armin Arlert recalls how they discussed Eren being responsible for killing a vast majority of humanity during the Rumbling and reveals his true feelings about Mikasa, wishing to be able to live with her and the others in peace.

In the present, Armin notices his Titan form dissolving into steam and spots Mikasa approaching with Eren's head. He mourns his best friend's death and while Mikasa leaves to bury his remains, Armin approaches the Marleyan troops with the other Eldians and claims responsibility for the death of Eren. Several years pass and peace talks have begun between those living in Marley and the island of Paradis, which has begun mobilizing an army for the time when Marley and the other countries seek their revenge. As Mikasa sits beneath the tree where Eren is buried, she thinks about him and notices a bird flying to her. The bird picks at her scarf and adjusts it before flying away.

Episode #75 "Above and Below" has been released! Watch it legally at Crunchyroll or Funimation, and discuss it on Discussions, or Discord server.

Chapter #139 "Toward the Tree on That Hill" has been released! Read it legally at Amazon, comiXology or Crunchyroll, and discuss it on Discussions, or Discord server.

Happy birthday, Yui Ishikawa!

Episode #75 (March 29th, 2021)

Chapter #139 (April 11th, 2021)


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