Bentheim County from the Beginning to the Present : The Hanoverian Pledge 1752 and 1753 

When count Friedrich Karl came into his inheritance in 1746, the finances of the land were hopelessly in shambles; he decided to mortgage his territory. Negotiations with Prussia and the Dutch Republic, who as neighbors were interested in acquiring the county, disintegrated. In 1752, the count pledged his county to the king of England in whose capacity as Elector of Braunschweig-Lüneburg against the transfer of debts and a yearly amount in cash for 30 years with all sovereign and usage rights, except for the trade in stone. The Bentheim county, which up until then had been subordinate only to the Emperor, lost its independence.

The mortgage contract of May 22 1752 handed the county over to King George of Hannover "with all of its accessories ...". At the same time, the king pledged not to change anything in the makeup of the Bentheimer country - neither in religious nor in political aspects - but to keep everything in "status quo and according to local customs".

With the county, the king took over a political territory with an "estate constitution", whose statutes were the "Concordat" of 1680 between the respective counts and his status. The "Laudum Regium" of 1701 confirmed and completed this.

The king's proclamation of the acquisition of the county followed on May 24, 1753. For Hannover, this step meant a significant expansion of it's influence toward the west - across Osnabrück, Münster and Prussian territory to the Dutch border.

The "Royal British and Electoral Brunswick-Lüneburg government" began its administration of the mortgaged Bentheim county.
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