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Pillnitz (pĭlˈnĭts) [key], district of Saxony, E central Germany, on the Elbe River. It is the site of an 18th-century castle, formerly a royal residence, that today houses an art collection. In the castle in Aug., 1791, Emperor Leopold II and King Frederick William II of Prussia met to discuss the problems arising out of the French Revolution and issued a declaration stating that if all other European powers would join them (a condition that could not be fulfilled, owing to England's position at the time that French domestic affairs did not concern England), they were prepared to restore Louis XVI to his full authority as king of France, by force if necessary. French émigrés made much of the statement in order to provoke armed conflict, and the declaration could not help but stir the French Revolutionaries. It thus helped to bring on the French Revolutionary Wars.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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