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Portal:Austria

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The Austria Portal

Topographical map of Austria
Topographical map of Austria
The Republic of Austria, commonly just Austria, is a country in the southern part of Central Europe, lying in the Eastern Alps. It is a federation of nine states, one of which is the capital, Vienna, the most populous city and state. A landlocked country, Austria is bordered by Germany to the northwest, the Czech Republic to the north, Slovakia to the northeast, Hungary to the east, Slovenia and Italy to the south, and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the west. The country occupies an area of 83,871 km2 (32,383 sq mi) and has a population of 9 million.

Austria emerged from the remnants of the Eastern and Hungarian March at the end of the first millennium. Originally a margraviate of Bavaria, it developed into a duchy of the Holy Roman Empire in 1156 and was later made an archduchy in 1453. In the 16th century, Vienna began serving as the empire's administrative capital and Austria thus became the heartland of the Habsburg monarchy. After the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806, Austria established its own empire, which became a great power and the dominant member of the German Confederation. The empire's defeat in the Austro-Prussian War of 1866 led to the end of the Confederation and paved the way for the establishment of Austria-Hungary a year later.

After the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in 1914, Emperor Franz Joseph declared war on Serbia, which ultimately escalated into World War I. The empire's defeat and subsequent collapse led to the proclamation of the Republic of German-Austria in 1918 and the First Austrian Republic in 1919. During the interwar period, anti-parliamentarian sentiments culminated in the formation of an Austrofascist dictatorship under Engelbert Dollfuss in 1934. A year before the outbreak of World War II, Austria was annexed into Nazi Germany by Adolf Hitler, and it became a sub-national division. After its liberation in 1945 and a decade of Allied occupation, the country regained its sovereignty and declared its perpetual neutrality in 1955.

Austria is a parliamentary representative democracy with a popularly elected president as head of state and a chancellor as head of government and chief executive. Major cities include Vienna, Graz, Linz, Salzburg, and Innsbruck. Austria is consistently listed as one of the richest countries in the world by GDP per capita and one of the countries with the highest standard of living; it was ranked 25th in the world for its Human Development Index in 2021. (Full article...)

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  • Image 1Henry in full regalia (depicted in the 11th-century Evangelion of Saint Emmeram's Abbey)Henry IV (German: Heinrich IV; 11 November 1050 – 7 August 1106) was Holy Roman Emperor from 1084 to 1105, King of Germany from 1054 to 1105, King of Italy and Burgundy from 1056 to 1105, and Duke of Bavaria from 1052 to 1054. He was the son of Henry III, Holy Roman Emperor—the second monarch of the Salian dynasty—and Agnes of Poitou. After his father's death on 5 October 1056, Henry was placed under his mother's guardianship. She made grants to German aristocrats to secure their support. Unlike her late husband, she could not control the election of the popes, thus the idea of the "liberty of the Church" strengthened during her rule. Taking advantage of her weakness, Archbishop Anno II of Cologne kidnapped Henry in April 1062. He administered Germany until Henry came of age in 1065.Henry endeavoured to recover the royal estates that had been lost during his minority. He employed low-ranking officials to carry out his new policies, causing discontent in Saxony and Thuringia. Henry crushed a riot in Saxony in 1069 and overcame the rebellion of the Saxon aristocrat Otto of Nordheim in 1071. The appointment of commoners to high office offended German aristocrats, and many of them withdrew from Henry's court. He insisted on his royal prerogative to appoint bishops and abbots, although the reformist clerics condemned this practice as simony (a forbidden sale of church offices). Pope Alexander II blamed Henry's advisors for his acts and excommunicated them in early 1073. Henry's conflicts with the Holy See and the German dukes weakened his position and the Saxons rose up in open rebellion in the summer of 1074. Taking advantage of a quarrel between the Saxon aristocrats and peasantry, he forced the rebels into submission in October 1075. (Full article...)
    Heinrich 4 g.jpg
    Henry in full regalia (depicted in the 11th-century Evangelion of Saint Emmeram's Abbey)

    Henry IV (German: Heinrich IV; 11 November 1050 – 7 August 1106) was Holy Roman Emperor from 1084 to 1105, King of Germany from 1054 to 1105, King of Italy and Burgundy from 1056 to 1105, and Duke of Bavaria from 1052 to 1054. He was the son of Henry III, Holy Roman Emperor—the second monarch of the Salian dynasty—and Agnes of Poitou. After his father's death on 5 October 1056, Henry was placed under his mother's guardianship. She made grants to German aristocrats to secure their support. Unlike her late husband, she could not control the election of the popes, thus the idea of the "liberty of the Church" strengthened during her rule. Taking advantage of her weakness, Archbishop Anno II of Cologne kidnapped Henry in April 1062. He administered Germany until Henry came of age in 1065.

    Henry endeavoured to recover the royal estates that had been lost during his minority. He employed low-ranking officials to carry out his new policies, causing discontent in Saxony and Thuringia. Henry crushed a riot in Saxony in 1069 and overcame the rebellion of the Saxon aristocrat Otto of Nordheim in 1071. The appointment of commoners to high office offended German aristocrats, and many of them withdrew from Henry's court. He insisted on his royal prerogative to appoint bishops and abbots, although the reformist clerics condemned this practice as simony (a forbidden sale of church offices). Pope Alexander II blamed Henry's advisors for his acts and excommunicated them in early 1073. Henry's conflicts with the Holy See and the German dukes weakened his position and the Saxons rose up in open rebellion in the summer of 1074. Taking advantage of a quarrel between the Saxon aristocrats and peasantry, he forced the rebels into submission in October 1075. (Full article...)
  • Image 2Topographic map of the battleThe Battle of Winterthur (27 May 1799) was an important action between elements of the Army of the Danube and elements of the Habsburg army, commanded by Friedrich Freiherr von Hotze, during the War of the Second Coalition, part of the French Revolutionary Wars. The small town of Winterthur lies 18 kilometers (11 mi) northeast of Zürich, in Switzerland. Because of its position at the junction of seven roads, the army that held the town controlled access to most of Switzerland and points crossing the Rhine into southern Germany. Although the forces involved were small, the ability of the Austrians to sustain their 11-hour assault on the French line resulted in the consolidation of three Austrian forces on the plateau north of Zürich, leading to the French defeat a few days later.By mid-May 1799, the Austrians had wrested control of parts of Switzerland from the French as forces under the command of Hotze and Count Heinrich von Bellegarde pushed them out of the Grisons. After defeating Jean-Baptiste Jourdan's 25,000-man Army of the Danube at the battles of Ostrach and Stockach, the main Austrian army, under command of Archduke Charles, crossed the Rhine at the Swiss town of Schaffhausen and prepared to unite with the armies of Hotze and Friedrich Joseph, Count of Nauendorf, on the plains surrounding Zürich. (Full article...)
    Topographic map of Battle of Winterthur 1799.svg
    Topographic map of the battle

    The Battle of Winterthur (27 May 1799) was an important action between elements of the Army of the Danube and elements of the Habsburg army, commanded by Friedrich Freiherr von Hotze, during the War of the Second Coalition, part of the French Revolutionary Wars. The small town of Winterthur lies 18 kilometers (11 mi) northeast of Zürich, in Switzerland. Because of its position at the junction of seven roads, the army that held the town controlled access to most of Switzerland and points crossing the Rhine into southern Germany. Although the forces involved were small, the ability of the Austrians to sustain their 11-hour assault on the French line resulted in the consolidation of three Austrian forces on the plateau north of Zürich, leading to the French defeat a few days later.

    By mid-May 1799, the Austrians had wrested control of parts of Switzerland from the French as forces under the command of Hotze and Count Heinrich von Bellegarde pushed them out of the Grisons. After defeating Jean-Baptiste Jourdan's 25,000-man Army of the Danube at the battles of Ostrach and Stockach, the main Austrian army, under command of Archduke Charles, crossed the Rhine at the Swiss town of Schaffhausen and prepared to unite with the armies of Hotze and Friedrich Joseph, Count of Nauendorf, on the plains surrounding Zürich. (Full article...)
  • Image 3A Prussian infantry advance during the Battle of Hohenfriedberg, as depicted by Carl RöchlingThe Second Silesian War (German: Zweiter Schlesischer Krieg) was a war between Prussia and Austria that lasted from 1744 to 1745 and confirmed Prussia's control of the region of Silesia (now in south-western Poland). The war was fought mainly in Silesia, Bohemia, and Upper Saxony and formed one theatre of the wider War of the Austrian Succession. It was the second of three Silesian Wars fought between Frederick the Great's Prussia and Maria Theresa's Austria in the mid-18th century, all three of which ended in Prussian control of Silesia. The conflict has been viewed as a continuation of the First Silesian War, which had concluded only two years before. After the Treaty of Berlin ended hostilities between Austria and Prussia in 1742, the Habsburg monarchy's fortunes improved greatly in the continuing War of the Austrian Succession. As Austria expanded its alliances with the 1743 Treaty of Worms, Prussia entered a renewed alliance with Austria's enemies in the League of Frankfurt and rejoined the war, hoping to prevent a resurgent Austria from taking back Silesia. (Full article...)
    Hohenfriedeberg - Attack of Prussian Infantry - 1745.jpg
    A Prussian infantry advance during the Battle of Hohenfriedberg, as depicted by Carl Röchling

    The Second Silesian War (German: Zweiter Schlesischer Krieg) was a war between Prussia and Austria that lasted from 1744 to 1745 and confirmed Prussia's control of the region of Silesia (now in south-western Poland). The war was fought mainly in Silesia, Bohemia, and Upper Saxony and formed one theatre of the wider War of the Austrian Succession. It was the second of three Silesian Wars fought between Frederick the Great's Prussia and Maria Theresa's Austria in the mid-18th century, all three of which ended in Prussian control of Silesia.

    The conflict has been viewed as a continuation of the First Silesian War, which had concluded only two years before. After the Treaty of Berlin ended hostilities between Austria and Prussia in 1742, the Habsburg monarchy's fortunes improved greatly in the continuing War of the Austrian Succession. As Austria expanded its alliances with the 1743 Treaty of Worms, Prussia entered a renewed alliance with Austria's enemies in the League of Frankfurt and rejoined the war, hoping to prevent a resurgent Austria from taking back Silesia. (Full article...)
  • Image 4Der Überfall bei Hochkirch am 14. Oktober 1758, Hyacinthe de la PegnaThe Battle of Hochkirch took place on 14 October 1758, during the Third Silesian War (part of the Seven Years' War). After several weeks of maneuvering for position, an Austrian army of 80,000 commanded by Lieutenant Field Marshal Leopold Josef Graf Daun surprised the  Prussian army of 30,000–36,000 commanded by Frederick the Great. The Austrian army overwhelmed the Prussians and forced a general retreat. The battle took place in and around the village of Hochkirch, 9 kilometers (6 mi) east of Bautzen, Saxony.Historians generally consider the battle as among Frederick's greatest blunders. Contrary to the advice of his subordinates, he refused to believe that the typically cautious Austrian commander Leopold von Daun would bring his troops into battle. The Austrian force ambushed his army in a pre-dawn attack. Over 30% of Frederick's army was defeated; five generals were killed and he lost his artillery park and a vast quantity of supplies. Although Daun had scored a complete surprise, his attempt to pursue the retreating Prussians was unsuccessful. The escaped force united with another corps in the vicinity, and regained momentum over the winter. (Full article...)
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    Der Überfall bei Hochkirch am 14. Oktober 1758, Hyacinthe de la Pegna

    The Battle of Hochkirch took place on 14 October 1758, during the Third Silesian War (part of the Seven Years' War). After several weeks of maneuvering for position, an Austrian army of 80,000 commanded by Lieutenant Field Marshal Leopold Josef Graf Daun surprised the Prussian army of 30,000–36,000 commanded by Frederick the Great. The Austrian army overwhelmed the Prussians and forced a general retreat. The battle took place in and around the village of Hochkirch, 9 kilometers (6 mi) east of Bautzen, Saxony.

    Historians generally consider the battle as among Frederick's greatest blunders. Contrary to the advice of his subordinates, he refused to believe that the typically cautious Austrian commander Leopold von Daun would bring his troops into battle. The Austrian force ambushed his army in a pre-dawn attack. Over 30% of Frederick's army was defeated; five generals were killed and he lost his artillery park and a vast quantity of supplies. Although Daun had scored a complete surprise, his attempt to pursue the retreating Prussians was unsuccessful. The escaped force united with another corps in the vicinity, and regained momentum over the winter. (Full article...)
  • Image 5A painting of SMS Körös bombarding Belgrade in 1914SMS Körös (pronounced [ˈkørøʃ]) was the name ship of the Körös-class river monitors built for the Austro-Hungarian Navy. Completed in 1892, the ship was part of the Danube Flotilla, and fought various Allied forces from Belgrade down the Danube to the Black Sea during World War I. After brief service with the Hungarian People's Republic at the end of the war, she was transferred to the newly created Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes (later Yugoslavia), and renamed Morava. She remained in service throughout the interwar period, although budget restrictions meant she was not always in full commission.During the World War II German-led Axis invasion of Yugoslavia in April 1941, Morava was the flagship of the 2nd Mine Barrage Division, and operated on the River Tisza. She fought off attacks by the Luftwaffe, and shot down one enemy aircraft, but was forced to withdraw to Belgrade. Due to high river levels and low bridges, navigating monitors was difficult, and she was scuttled by her crew on 11 April. Some of her crew tried to escape cross-country towards the southern Adriatic coast, but most surrendered on 14 April. The remainder made their way to the Bay of Kotor, which was captured by the Italian XVII Corps on 17 April. She was later raised by the Navy of the Independent State of Croatia, an Axis puppet state, and continued in service as Bosna until June 1944, when she struck a mine and sank. (Full article...)
    colour painting of a ship steaming on a river with splashes in the water and a mountain on the distant shoreline
    A painting of SMS Körös bombarding Belgrade in 1914

    SMS Körös (pronounced [ˈkørøʃ]) was the name ship of the Körös-class river monitors built for the Austro-Hungarian Navy. Completed in 1892, the ship was part of the Danube Flotilla, and fought various Allied forces from Belgrade down the Danube to the Black Sea during World War I. After brief service with the Hungarian People's Republic at the end of the war, she was transferred to the newly created Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes (later Yugoslavia), and renamed Morava. She remained in service throughout the interwar period, although budget restrictions meant she was not always in full commission.

    During the World War II German-led Axis invasion of Yugoslavia in April 1941, Morava was the flagship of the 2nd Mine Barrage Division, and operated on the River Tisza. She fought off attacks by the Luftwaffe, and shot down one enemy aircraft, but was forced to withdraw to Belgrade. Due to high river levels and low bridges, navigating monitors was difficult, and she was scuttled by her crew on 11 April. Some of her crew tried to escape cross-country towards the southern Adriatic coast, but most surrendered on 14 April. The remainder made their way to the Bay of Kotor, which was captured by the Italian XVII Corps on 17 April. She was later raised by the Navy of the Independent State of Croatia, an Axis puppet state, and continued in service as Bosna until June 1944, when she struck a mine and sank. (Full article...)
  • Gustav Mahler, photographed in 1907 by Moritz Nähr at the end of his period as director of the Vienna Hofoper
    Gustav Mahler, photographed in 1907 by Moritz Nähr at the end of his period as director of the Vienna Hofoper
  • Image 7Kafka in 1923Franz Kafka (3 July 1883 – 3 June 1924) was a German-speaking Bohemian novelist and short-story writer, widely regarded as one of the major figures of 20th-century literature. His work fuses elements of realism and the fantastic. It typically features isolated protagonists facing bizarre or surrealistic predicaments and incomprehensible socio-bureaucratic powers. It has been interpreted as exploring themes of alienation, existential anxiety, guilt, and absurdity. His best known works include the short story "The Metamorphosis" and novels The Trial and The Castle. The term Kafkaesque has entered English to describe absurd situations, like those depicted in his writing.Kafka was born into a middle-class German-speaking Czech Jewish family in Prague, the capital of the Kingdom of Bohemia, then part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, today the capital of the Czech Republic. He trained as a lawyer and after completing his legal education was employed full-time by an insurance company, forcing him to relegate writing to his spare time. Over the course of his life, Kafka wrote hundreds of letters to family and close friends, including his father, with whom he had a strained and formal relationship. He became engaged to several women but never married. He died in obscurity in 1924 at the age of 40 from tuberculosis. (Full article...)
    Franz Kafka, 1923.jpg
    Kafka in 1923

    Franz Kafka (3 July 1883 – 3 June 1924) was a German-speaking Bohemian novelist and short-story writer, widely regarded as one of the major figures of 20th-century literature. His work fuses elements of realism and the fantastic. It typically features isolated protagonists facing bizarre or surrealistic predicaments and incomprehensible socio-bureaucratic powers. It has been interpreted as exploring themes of alienation, existential anxiety, guilt, and absurdity. His best known works include the short story "The Metamorphosis" and novels The Trial and The Castle. The term Kafkaesque has entered English to describe absurd situations, like those depicted in his writing.

    Kafka was born into a middle-class German-speaking Czech Jewish family in Prague, the capital of the Kingdom of Bohemia, then part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, today the capital of the Czech Republic. He trained as a lawyer and after completing his legal education was employed full-time by an insurance company, forcing him to relegate writing to his spare time. Over the course of his life, Kafka wrote hundreds of letters to family and close friends, including his father, with whom he had a strained and formal relationship. He became engaged to several women but never married. He died in obscurity in 1924 at the age of 40 from tuberculosis. (Full article...)
  • Image 8Miniature, c. 1188Empress Matilda (c. 7 February 1102 – 10 September 1167), also known as the Empress Maude, was one of the claimants to the English throne during the civil war known as the Anarchy. The daughter of King Henry I of England, she moved to Germany as a child when she married the future Holy Roman Emperor Henry V. She travelled with her husband to Italy in 1116, was controversially crowned in St Peter's Basilica, and acted as the imperial regent in Italy. Matilda and Henry V had no children, and when he died in 1125, the imperial crown was claimed by his rival Lothair of Supplinburg.Matilda's younger and only full brother, William Adelin, died in the White Ship disaster of 1120, leaving Matilda's father and realm facing a potential succession crisis. On Emperor Henry V's death, Matilda was recalled to Normandy by her father, who arranged for her to marry Geoffrey of Anjou to form an alliance to protect his southern borders. Henry I had no further legitimate children and nominated Matilda as his heir, making his court swear an oath of loyalty to her and her successors, but the decision was not popular in the Anglo-Norman court. Henry died in 1135, but Matilda and Geoffrey faced opposition from Anglo-Norman barons. The throne was instead taken by Matilda's cousin Stephen of Blois, who enjoyed the backing of the English Church. Stephen took steps to solidify his new regime but faced threats both from neighbouring powers and from opponents within his kingdom. (Full article...)
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    Miniature, c. 1188

    Empress Matilda (c. 7 February 1102 – 10 September 1167), also known as the Empress Maude, was one of the claimants to the English throne during the civil war known as the Anarchy. The daughter of King Henry I of England, she moved to Germany as a child when she married the future Holy Roman Emperor Henry V. She travelled with her husband to Italy in 1116, was controversially crowned in St Peter's Basilica, and acted as the imperial regent in Italy. Matilda and Henry V had no children, and when he died in 1125, the imperial crown was claimed by his rival Lothair of Supplinburg.

    Matilda's younger and only full brother, William Adelin, died in the White Ship disaster of 1120, leaving Matilda's father and realm facing a potential succession crisis. On Emperor Henry V's death, Matilda was recalled to Normandy by her father, who arranged for her to marry Geoffrey of Anjou to form an alliance to protect his southern borders. Henry I had no further legitimate children and nominated Matilda as his heir, making his court swear an oath of loyalty to her and her successors, but the decision was not popular in the Anglo-Norman court. Henry died in 1135, but Matilda and Geoffrey faced opposition from Anglo-Norman barons. The throne was instead taken by Matilda's cousin Stephen of Blois, who enjoyed the backing of the English Church. Stephen took steps to solidify his new regime but faced threats both from neighbouring powers and from opponents within his kingdom. (Full article...)
  • Image 9Johann, Count von Klenau, 1801.Johann Josef Cajetan Graf von Klenau, Freiherr von Janowitz (Czech: Jan hrabě z Klenové, svobodný pán z Janovic; 13 April 1758 – 6 October 1819) was a field marshal in the Habsburg army. Klenau, the son of a Bohemian noble, joined the Habsburg military as a teenager and fought in the War of Bavarian Succession against Prussia, Austria's wars with the Ottoman Empire, the French Revolutionary Wars, and the Napoleonic Wars, in which he commanded a corps in several important battles.In the early years of the French Revolutionary Wars, Klenau distinguished himself at the Wissembourg lines, and led a battle-winning charge at Handschuhsheim in 1795.  As commander of the Coalition's left flank in the Adige campaign in northern Italy in 1799, he was instrumental in isolating the French-held fortresses on the Po River by organizing and supporting a peasant uprising in the countryside. Afterward, Klenau became the youngest lieutenant field marshal in the history of the Habsburg military. (Full article...)
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    Johann, Count von Klenau, 1801.

    Johann Josef Cajetan Graf von Klenau, Freiherr von Janowitz (Czech: Jan hrabě z Klenové, svobodný pán z Janovic; 13 April 1758 – 6 October 1819) was a field marshal in the Habsburg army. Klenau, the son of a Bohemian noble, joined the Habsburg military as a teenager and fought in the War of Bavarian Succession against Prussia, Austria's wars with the Ottoman Empire, the French Revolutionary Wars, and the Napoleonic Wars, in which he commanded a corps in several important battles.

    In the early years of the French Revolutionary Wars, Klenau distinguished himself at the Wissembourg lines, and led a battle-winning charge at Handschuhsheim in 1795. As commander of the Coalition's left flank in the Adige campaign in northern Italy in 1799, he was instrumental in isolating the French-held fortresses on the Po River by organizing and supporting a peasant uprising in the countryside. Afterward, Klenau became the youngest lieutenant field marshal in the history of the Habsburg military. (Full article...)
  • Image 10August Meyszner wearing the rankof SS-Oberführer in 1938August Edler von Meyszner (3 August 1886 – 24 January 1947) was an Austrian Gendarmerie officer, right-wing politician, and senior Ordnungspolizei (order police) officer who held the post of Higher SS and Police Leader in the German-occupied territory of Serbia from January 1942 to March 1944, during World War II. He has been described as one of Reichsführer-SS Heinrich Himmler's most brutal subordinates.Meyszner began his career as an officer in the Gendarmerie, served on the Italian Front during World War I and reached the rank of Major der Polizei by 1921. He joined the Austrian Nazi Party in September 1925 and became a right-wing parliamentary deputy and provincial minister in the Austrian province of Styria in 1930. Due to his involvement with the Nazis, Meyszner was forcibly retired in 1933 and arrested in February 1934, but released after three months at the Wöllersdorf concentration camp. That July, he was rearrested following an attempted coup, but escaped police custody and fled to Nazi Germany, where he joined the Ordnungspolizei (Orpo) and then the Allgemeine SS. After police postings in Austria, Germany and occupied Norway, Himmler appointed Meyszner as Higher SS and Police Leader in Serbia in early 1942. He was one of few Orpo officers to be appointed to such a role. (Full article...)
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    August Meyszner wearing the rank
    of SS-Oberführer in 1938

    August Edler von Meyszner (3 August 1886 – 24 January 1947) was an Austrian Gendarmerie officer, right-wing politician, and senior Ordnungspolizei (order police) officer who held the post of Higher SS and Police Leader in the German-occupied territory of Serbia from January 1942 to March 1944, during World War II. He has been described as one of Reichsführer-SS Heinrich Himmler's most brutal subordinates.

    Meyszner began his career as an officer in the Gendarmerie, served on the Italian Front during World War I and reached the rank of Major der Polizei by 1921. He joined the Austrian Nazi Party in September 1925 and became a right-wing parliamentary deputy and provincial minister in the Austrian province of Styria in 1930. Due to his involvement with the Nazis, Meyszner was forcibly retired in 1933 and arrested in February 1934, but released after three months at the Wöllersdorf concentration camp. That July, he was rearrested following an attempted coup, but escaped police custody and fled to Nazi Germany, where he joined the Ordnungspolizei (Orpo) and then the Allgemeine SS. After police postings in Austria, Germany and occupied Norway, Himmler appointed Meyszner as Higher SS and Police Leader in Serbia in early 1942. He was one of few Orpo officers to be appointed to such a role. (Full article...)
  • Image 11 Karl Aloys zu Fürstenberg (26 June 1760 – 25 March 1799) was an Austrian military commander. He achieved the rank of Field Marshal and died at the Battle of Stockach. The third son of a cadet branch of the House of Fürstenberg, at his birth his chances of inheriting the family title of Fürst zu Fürstenberg were slight; he was prepared instead for a military career, and a tutor was hired to teach him the military sciences. He entered the Habsburg military in 1777, at the age of seventeen years, and was a member of the field army in the short War of the Bavarian Succession (1778–79). His career progressed steadily during the Habsburg War with the Ottoman Empire. In particular he distinguished himself at Šabac in 1790, when he led his troops in storming the fortress on the Sava river. (Full article...)
  • Image 12Present-day view of the battlefieldAt the Battle of Schliengen (24 October 1796), the French Army of the Rhine and Moselle under the command of Jean-Victor Moreau and the Austrian army under the command of Archduke Charles of Austria both claimed victories. The village of Schliengen lies in the present-day Kreis Lörrach close to the border of present-day Baden-Württemberg (Germany), the Haut-Rhin (France), and the Canton of Basel-Stadt (Switzerland).During the French Revolutionary Wars, Schliengen was a strategically important location for the armies of both Republican France and Habsburg Austria. Control of the area gave either combatant access to southwestern German states and important Rhine crossings. On 20 October Moreau retreated from Freiburg im Breisgau and established his army along a ridge of hills. The severe condition of the roads prevented Archduke Charles from flanking the French right wing. The French left wing lay too close to the Rhine to outflank, and the French center, positioned in a 7-mile (11 km) semi-circle on heights that commanded the terrain below, was unassailable. Instead, he attacked the French flanks directly, and in force, which increased casualties for both sides. (Full article...)
    BW41 Schliengen.jpg
    Present-day view of the battlefield

    At the Battle of Schliengen (24 October 1796), the French Army of the Rhine and Moselle under the command of Jean-Victor Moreau and the Austrian army under the command of Archduke Charles of Austria both claimed victories. The village of Schliengen lies in the present-day Kreis Lörrach close to the border of present-day Baden-Württemberg (Germany), the Haut-Rhin (France), and the Canton of Basel-Stadt (Switzerland).

    During the French Revolutionary Wars, Schliengen was a strategically important location for the armies of both Republican France and Habsburg Austria. Control of the area gave either combatant access to southwestern German states and important Rhine crossings. On 20 October Moreau retreated from Freiburg im Breisgau and established his army along a ridge of hills. The severe condition of the roads prevented Archduke Charles from flanking the French right wing. The French left wing lay too close to the Rhine to outflank, and the French center, positioned in a 7-mile (11 km) semi-circle on heights that commanded the terrain below, was unassailable. Instead, he attacked the French flanks directly, and in force, which increased casualties for both sides. (Full article...)
  • Image 13A Haflinger mare and foalThe Haflinger, also known as the Avelignese, is a breed of horse developed in Austria and northern Italy (namely Hafling in South Tyrol region) during the late 19th century. Haflinger horses are relatively small, are always chestnut with flaxen mane and tail, have distinctive gaits described as energetic but smooth, and are well-muscled yet elegant. The breed traces its ancestry to the Middle Ages; several theories for its origin exist. Haflingers, developed for use in mountainous terrain, are known for their hardiness. Their current conformation and appearance are the result of infusions of bloodlines from Arabian and various European breeds into the original native Tyrolean ponies. The foundation sire, 249 Folie, was born in 1874; by 1904, the first breeders' cooperative was formed. All Haflingers can trace their lineage back to Folie through one of seven bloodlines. World Wars I and II, as well as the Great Depression, had a detrimental effect on the breed, and lower-quality animals were used at times to save the breed from extinction. During World War II, breeders focused on horses that were shorter and more draft-like, favored by the military for use as packhorses. The emphasis after the war shifted toward animals of increased refinement and height.In the postwar era, the Haflinger was indiscriminately crossed with other breeds and some observers feared the breed was in renewed danger of extinction. However, starting in 1946, breeders focused on producing purebred Haflingers and a closed stud book was created. Interest in the breed increased in other countries, and between 1950 and 1974, the population grew, even while the overall European horse population decreased. Population numbers continued to increase steadily, and as of 2005, almost 250,000 Haflingers existed worldwide. Breeding farms are in several countries, although most of the breeding stock still comes from Austria. In 2003, a Haflinger became the first horse to be cloned, resulting in a filly named Prometea. (Full article...)
    Haflinger Westfalensonne und Almfee.JPG
    A Haflinger mare and foal

    The Haflinger, also known as the Avelignese, is a breed of horse developed in Austria and northern Italy (namely Hafling in South Tyrol region) during the late 19th century. Haflinger horses are relatively small, are always chestnut with flaxen mane and tail, have distinctive gaits described as energetic but smooth, and are well-muscled yet elegant. The breed traces its ancestry to the Middle Ages; several theories for its origin exist. Haflingers, developed for use in mountainous terrain, are known for their hardiness. Their current conformation and appearance are the result of infusions of bloodlines from Arabian and various European breeds into the original native Tyrolean ponies. The foundation sire, 249 Folie, was born in 1874; by 1904, the first breeders' cooperative was formed. All Haflingers can trace their lineage back to Folie through one of seven bloodlines. World Wars I and II, as well as the Great Depression, had a detrimental effect on the breed, and lower-quality animals were used at times to save the breed from extinction. During World War II, breeders focused on horses that were shorter and more draft-like, favored by the military for use as packhorses. The emphasis after the war shifted toward animals of increased refinement and height.

    In the postwar era, the Haflinger was indiscriminately crossed with other breeds and some observers feared the breed was in renewed danger of extinction. However, starting in 1946, breeders focused on producing purebred Haflingers and a closed stud book was created. Interest in the breed increased in other countries, and between 1950 and 1974, the population grew, even while the overall European horse population decreased. Population numbers continued to increase steadily, and as of 2005, almost 250,000 Haflingers existed worldwide. Breeding farms are in several countries, although most of the breeding stock still comes from Austria. In 2003, a Haflinger became the first horse to be cloned, resulting in a filly named Prometea. (Full article...)
  • Image 14Taking one of the redoubts of Kehl by throwing rocks, 24 June 1796, Frédéric RegameyIn the Rhine campaign of 1796 (June 1796 to February 1797), two First Coalition armies under the overall command of Archduke Charles outmaneuvered and defeated two French Republican armies. This was the last campaign of the War of the First Coalition, part of the French Revolutionary Wars.The French military strategy against Austria called for a three-pronged invasion to surround Vienna, ideally capturing the city and forcing the Holy Roman Emperor to surrender and accept French Revolutionary territorial integrity. The French assembled the Army of Sambre and Meuse commanded by Jean-Baptiste Jourdan against the Austrian Army of the Lower Rhine in the north. The Army of the Rhine and Moselle, led by Jean Victor Marie Moreau, opposed the Austrian Army of the Upper Rhine in the south. A third army, the Army of Italy, commanded by Napoleon Bonaparte, approached Vienna through northern Italy. (Full article...)
    Kehl june 1796.jpg
    Taking one of the redoubts of Kehl by throwing rocks, 24 June 1796, Frédéric Regamey

    In the Rhine campaign of 1796 (June 1796 to February 1797), two First Coalition armies under the overall command of Archduke Charles outmaneuvered and defeated two French Republican armies. This was the last campaign of the War of the First Coalition, part of the French Revolutionary Wars.

    The French military strategy against Austria called for a three-pronged invasion to surround Vienna, ideally capturing the city and forcing the Holy Roman Emperor to surrender and accept French Revolutionary territorial integrity. The French assembled the Army of Sambre and Meuse commanded by Jean-Baptiste Jourdan against the Austrian Army of the Lower Rhine in the north. The Army of the Rhine and Moselle, led by Jean Victor Marie Moreau, opposed the Austrian Army of the Upper Rhine in the south. A third army, the Army of Italy, commanded by Napoleon Bonaparte, approached Vienna through northern Italy. (Full article...)
  • Image 15Storming of the breach by Prussian grenadiers, Carl RöchlingThe Battle of Leuthen was fought on 5 December 1757 and involved Frederick the Great's Prussian Army using maneuver warfare and terrain to rout a larger Austrian force completely, which was commanded by Prince Charles of Lorraine and Count Leopold Joseph von Daun. The victory ensured Prussian control of Silesia during the Third Silesian War, which was part of the Seven Years' War.The battle was fought in the town of Leuthen (now Lutynia, Poland), 10 km (6 mi) northwest of Breslau, (now Wrocław, Poland), in Prussian (formerly Austrian) Silesia. By exploiting the training of his troops and his superior knowledge of the terrain, Frederick created a diversion at one end of the battlefield and moved most of his smaller army behind a series of low hillocks. The surprise attack in oblique order on the unsuspecting Austrian flank baffled Prince Charles, who took several hours to realize that the main action was to his left, not his right. Within seven hours, the Prussians had destroyed the Austrians and erased any advantage that the Austrians had gained throughout the campaigning in the preceding summer and autumn. Within 48 hours, Frederick had laid siege to Breslau, which resulted in the city's surrender on 19–20 December. (Full article...)
    Battle of Leuthen 2.jpg
    Storming of the breach by Prussian grenadiers, Carl Röchling

    The Battle of Leuthen was fought on 5 December 1757 and involved Frederick the Great's Prussian Army using maneuver warfare and terrain to rout a larger Austrian force completely, which was commanded by Prince Charles of Lorraine and Count Leopold Joseph von Daun. The victory ensured Prussian control of Silesia during the Third Silesian War, which was part of the Seven Years' War.

    The battle was fought in the town of Leuthen (now Lutynia, Poland), 10 km (6 mi) northwest of Breslau, (now Wrocław, Poland), in Prussian (formerly Austrian) Silesia. By exploiting the training of his troops and his superior knowledge of the terrain, Frederick created a diversion at one end of the battlefield and moved most of his smaller army behind a series of low hillocks. The surprise attack in oblique order on the unsuspecting Austrian flank baffled Prince Charles, who took several hours to realize that the main action was to his left, not his right. Within seven hours, the Prussians had destroyed the Austrians and erased any advantage that the Austrians had gained throughout the campaigning in the preceding summer and autumn. Within 48 hours, Frederick had laid siege to Breslau, which resulted in the city's surrender on 19–20 December. (Full article...)

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Schönbrunn Palace from the front side (1758)
Schönbrunn Palace from the front side (1758)

Schönbrunn Palace (German: Schloss Schönbrunn [ʃøːnˈbʁʊn]) is a former imperial summer residence in Vienna. One of the most important cultural monuments in the country, since the 1960s it has been one of the major tourist attractions in Vienna. The palace and gardens illustrate the tastes, interests, and aspirations of successive Habsburg monarchs.

The name Schönbrunn (meaning "beautiful spring"), has its roots in an artesian well from which water was consumed by the court.

UNESCO catalogued Schönbrunn Palace together with its gardens on the World Heritage List in 1996, as a remarkable Baroque ensemble and example of synthesis of the arts (Gesamtkunstwerk). The whole Schönbrunn complex with Tiergarten Schönbrunn, Palmenhaus, Wüstenhaus and the Wagenburg, accounted for more than five million visitors in 2010.

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Melk Abbey in Lower Austria
Melk Abbey in Lower Austria

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Statue of Athena outside the Austrian Parliament

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The Kiss by Gustav Klimt
The Kiss by Gustav Klimt

Gustav Klimt (July 14, 1862 – February 6, 1918) was a symbolist painter and one of the most prominent members of the Vienna Secession movement. His major works include paintings, murals, sketches, and other art objects. Klimt's primary subject was the female body, and his works are marked by a frank eroticism—nowhere is this more apparent than in his numerous drawings in pencil. One of his most famous paintings is The Kiss.

Klimt's work is often distinguished by elegant gold or coloured decoration, spirals and swirls, and phallic shapes used to conceal the more erotic positions of the drawings upon which many of his paintings are based. One of the most common themes Klimt used was that of the dominant woman, the femme fatale.

Art historians note an eclectic range of influences contributing to Klimt's distinct style, including Egyptian, Minoan, Classical Greek, and Byzantine inspirations. Klimt was also inspired by the engravings of Albrecht Dürer, late medieval European painting, and Japanese Rimpa school. His mature works are characterized by a rejection of earlier naturalistic styles, and make use of symbols or symbolic elements to convey psychological ideas and emphasize the "freedom" of art from traditional culture.

Klimt's work had a strong influence on the paintings of Egon Schiele, whom he would collaborate with to found the Kunsthalle (Hall of Art) in 1917.

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