Thomas Riis

Kreuz und quer durch Europa. Von Krieg, Politik, Kultur und Religion.

The Diary of the Habsburg Diplomat and Landsknecht Leader Erich Lassota von Steblau (1573 - 1594).

The Austrian diplomat Erich Lassota von Steblau (died 1616) left behind a comprehensive manuscript in the form of a diary. His notes describe his training trip to Italy in 1573-1576, his participation in the Spanish conquest of Portugal as a recruited officer in 1579-1584, and three diplomatic missions under Habsburg instructions. The first took him to Poland (1585-1589), the second to Russia and Swedish captivity (1590-1593), and the last to the Zaporog Cossacks in Ukraine (1594).
Lassota’s diary contains travel, situation and environment descriptions, which provide important insights into the reality of a diplomat, mercenary and spy at that time for cultural-historical as well as historical research.
The version of the diary already published in 1866 by Reinhold Schottin was compared with the original manuscript for the present edition and corrected in places. Furthermore, a text-critical apparatus and comprehensive commentaries were added to the new edition.


1st edition, hardcover, thread binding, approx. 500 pages.

Language: German
ISBN: 978-3-943025-60-6
74.00 €


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Emperor Rudolf II / Archduke Maximilian of Austria / Philip II of Spain / Portugal / Poland / Hungary / Ukraine / Sweden / Russia / Silesian nobility / War diary / Diplomat / Mercenary / Spy / 16th century / Habsburgs / Zaporozhian Cossacks

Christoph Augustynowicz: Rezension, in: Mitteilungen des Instituts für Österreichische Geschichtsforschung, Bd. 130, Teil 2/2022, S. 428-429.

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Thomas Riis was born in Copenhagen in 1941 and completed his history studies there with a habilitation in 1977. He taught at the European University Institute in Florence from 1977 to 1980, as a Carlsberg Research Fellow at the University of St. Andrews from 1981 to 1984, and as Professor of the History of Schleswig-Holstein at the Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel from 1994 to 2008. Riis was also co-editor of the Diplomatarium Danicum from 1985 to 1993. His research interests include economic and social history, urban history, and the history of poverty.


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