History of the Austro-Hungarian Empire

by Jack Guy

Dec 20, 2018

Salzburg, Austria © Dennis Dolkens | Dreamstime.com

Trends / History

Precede by the Austrian Empire (1804–1867), the dual monarchy known as the Austro-Hungarian Empire lasted 1867–1918.

The ruling Habsburg dynasty of Austria reached a deal with the Hungarians that resulted in the formation of a huge country that covered Austria, Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Yugoslavia.

To rule over such a huge amount of territory, there were parliaments in both Austria and Hungary. In theory, the monarch had absolute power over the territories and was tasked with making sure these two parliaments worked together, but, in practice, the royals had little influence.

For decades the empire underwent rapid economic development, but things were to come crumbling down in the early 20th century. When monarch Franz Ferdinand visited Serbia in 1914 he was assassinated by militants, sparking a conflict that turned into World War I. By 1918, the Allied powers won the war and various countries started to declare independence from the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

It might have been short-lived as empires go, but Austria-Hungary played a huge role in European history. To this day you can see some of the immense palaces built during the Imperial age when you visit national capitals such as Vienna, Budapest

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