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Olivares as military trainer

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Chapter Summary

The renewal of the war with the Dutch Republic in the summer of 1621 brought into sharp focus the internal problems of the Army of Flanders. A new King, Philip IV, had just begun his reign. His two major advisors don Baltasar de Zuniga and his nephew don Gaspar de Guzman, Count-Duke of Olivares, were advocates of broad reform for all of the monarchy's institutions including its largest and most expensive, the Army of Flanders. Their express aim was, to restore everything to the state it was during the reign of Philip II and to abolish the large number of abuses introduced under the recent government. In his program of reform, the Army of Flanders would become Spain's major instrument of glory. Consequently, the recruitment, education, training and promotion of proper leaders became one of the central concerns of Olivares reform program and the key objectives of his entire administration.

Keywords: Army of Flanders; Count-Duke of Olivares; military reforms; Olivares reform program; Spanish monarchy



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