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Count Johann Anton Pergen's Memorandum to Austrian Co-Regent Joseph II on "the Value of the Imperial Crown" to the House of Austria (1766)

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Your Imperial Majesty, who now gloriously reigns, has already won great fame through Your well-known love of justice and passion for the well-being of the fatherland. Your steadfast behavior has drawn the attention and esteem of all the empire and has cleared the way for the pursuit of great things.

Should the greatness of a Roman Emperor be regarded in light of those opportunities to obtain advantages for his own house, besides the associated eminence and fame, [and if] so:

4to: what kind of essential advantages are to be obtained for his own house?

Ad 4tum: it can be presented with validity, that extraordinarily many, yes, the essential and most important factors in the expansion of the power of the house of Austria are dependent upon possession of the Imperial crown, in part through notable damage done to its enemies, in part through the efficacious demand for support.

Certainly it is worthy of attention that:

First, the Most Serene Arch-Ducal House always has the means and the opportunity, as it pleases, to draw into its dynastic wars and affairs, if not the whole empire, then at least great parts of it, primarily the Catholic parts, and furthermore that:

Second, the Imperial crown provides the greatest imaginable ease in acquiring men and money for a war against the Pforte [the Ottoman Turks], and that:

Third, a Roman Emperor from the Most Serene Arch-Ducal House in wartime has the means and ways to receive voluntary taxes from the clergy, with evidence thereof being provided by recent memories of the tithes offered by the German clergy and the gift of a hundred thousand gulden voluntarily offered by the Archbishopric of Fulda at the beginning of the last war, and that:

Fourth, in emergencies, a Roman Emperor can deploy the Imperial military levy and use it for his purposes, to some extent, if it is managed correctly. That:

Fifth, with skill, he can steer the affairs at the Imperial diet and the circle diets to the advantage of his ducal house, and by withholding his ratification he can hinder them, so that disadvantageous Imperial bills cannot become law. That:

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