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Austrian Silesia

 

Contents

Flag

Meaning/Origin of the Flag

Coat of Arms

Meaning/Origin of the Coat of Arms

Map of the former crown lands of Austria-Hungary (to 1918)

Map of Silesia

Numbers and Facts

History

Origin of the Country's Name



Flag

Flagge Fahne flag Flag of the country Colours of the country colours colors Herzogtum Duchy Österreichisch-Schlesien Austrian Silesia
Flag of the country (Colours of the country),
ratio = 2:3,
Source, by: Flags of the World



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Meaning/Origin of the Flag

The country had – like all the other crown lands of the Austrian crown – its own colours (Landesfarben), which were used amongst others on horizontally two- or three-striped flags. The colours (Landesfarben) were very often taken from the respective coat of arms of the country or were supplemented by another colour, which not appears in the coat of arms, or they went back to older models of the coat of arms (e.g. Carniola). Officially, the colours had never been regulated or stipulated, so that their sequence varied in practice or even the colors deviated. The Austrian heraldist Hugo Gerard Ströhl (1851–1919) was probably the first to take care of it and asked for the colors (Landesfarben) on the flags at the respective state authorities around 1890 and compiled them. Austrian Silesia used as colours of the country a flag which showed two horizontal stripes in gold and black. The colours descend from the coat of arms of Silesia: black eagle upon gold. The colours appear heraldical wrong – because gold is above – probably to make possible a differentiation to the then Austrian national flag.

Source: Österreichisch-Ungarische Wappenrolle, Flags of the World, Volker Preuß

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Coat of Arms


Wappen blazon coat of arms Herzogtum Duchy Österreichisch-Schlesien Austrian Silesia
Escutcheon of Austrian Silesia,
Source, by: Österreichisch-Ungarische Wappenrolle


Wappen coat of arms Königreich Galizien Lodomerien Kingdom Galicia Lodomeria Galicja
Coat of arms of Austrian Silesia,
Source, by: Ströhl, Wappenrolle Österreich-Ungarns, 1890, via Wikipedia (D)


Wappen blazon coat of arms blazon coat of arms Tschechoslowakei Czechoslovakia
1920–1939, 1945–1960,
Middle coat of arms of Czechoslovakia,
Source, by: See page for author / CC BY-SA


Wappen blazon coat of arms blazon coat of arms Tschechei Tschechien Czechia
today's Coat of arms of Czechia,
Source, by: unknown, convert to SVG Tlusťa / Public domain


Wappen coat of arms blazon Tschechisch Schlesien Czech Silesia
today's heraldry of Czech Silesia,
Source, by: unknown, convert to SVG Tlusťa / Public domain

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Meaning/Origin of the Coat of Arms

The coat of arms of Silesia shows a crowned, golden armed, black eagle on golden ground. The eagle is covered with a silver crescent ending in clover stems, which has a cross in the middle. The Silesian eagle appeared still until 1960 in the coat of arms of Czechoslovakia. Since 1992 appears the eagle again in the coat of arms of Czechia.

Source: Österreichisch-Ungarische Wappenrolle, Volker Preuß

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The crown lands of Austria-Hungary (to 1918)

Map ca. 1910:
interaktive Landkarte – interactive Map
Source: Volker Preuß

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Map of Silesia


Source: F. W. Putzgers Historischer Schul-Atlas, modyfied by: Volker Preuß

The historical map shows Prussian Silesia between 1806 and 1815 as bright red area. The yellow areas in the Northeast have been ceded by Saxony to Prussia in 1815 and became connected to Silesia. Austrian Silesia (1742-1918) appears in a dark yellow outline. In the year 1919 Prussian Silesia became divided into two provinces, Upper Silesia (bright red outline) and Lower Silesia (bright blue outline).

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Numbers and Facts

Area: 1.987 square miles

Inhabitants: 757.000 (1910), thereof 43% Germans, 31% Polish, 24% Czechs, Moravians, Slovaks

Density of Population: 381 inh./sq.mi. (1910)

Capital: Troppau (Czech: Opava), 26.750 inh. (1900), 56.638 inh. (2019)

Languages (to 1910): German, Polish, Czech

Currency: to 1918 Austrian currency, since 1918 Czechoslovak currency, since 1938 German currency, since 1945 Czechoslovak currency, since 1992 Czech currency

Time Zone: GMT + 1 h

Source: Wikipedia (D)

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History

1st century B.C. · settlement by Teutonic tribes

2nd and 3rd cent. · settlement by the teutonic tribes of the Burgunders und Vandals

ca. 300 · settlement by Slavic tribes

1137 · Silesia comes from Bohemia to the Polish Piast dynasty, division into many duchies

1163 · establish of the Silesian Duchies of Breslau and Ratibor

1241 · Mongol Invasion, 80% of the inhabitants of Silesia are killed, the loss becomes compensated by planned colonization by Germans

1289 · the first Silesian Duchy (Cosel-Beuthen) subordinates itself voluntarily as fiefdom under the Bohemian crown (House of Luxembourg), to 1342 follow all the other duchies

1335 · Polish King Casimir III. waives all claims in Silesia

1348 · King Karl IV. of Bohemia incorporates the Silesian duchies in the Bohemian Crown, thus they become part of the Holy Roman Empire of German Nation

1526 · death of the Bohemian King Ludwig II. in the Battle of Mohács, the legacy of the Luxemburgs goes to the House of Habsburg (Austria), the Habsburgs become in this way Kings of Bohemia and Dukes of Silesia

1675 · death of the last Piast duke, Georg Wilhelm of Liegnitz, the Electorate of Brandenburg lays claim to the duchies of Georg Wilhelm, Prussia under Friedrich II. extends the claims over whole Silesia

1740–1742 · First Silesian War (Prussia against Habsburg)

1742 · because of the victory of Prussia over Habsburg comes Lower Silesia, a large part of Upper Silesia and the County of Glatz to Prussia, small areas of Silesia around Troppau, Jaegerndorf, Teschen und Bielitz remain until 1918 as Crown Land of Austrian Silesia of the Habsburg monarchy

1848/1849 · revolution in Vienna, Franz Joseph I. of Habsburg becomes new Emperor, new constitution: the titular hereditary territories of the Habsburgs in the Austrian Empire become converted to crown lands with their own Landtag (parliament), Austrian Silesia becomes in this way a crown land of the Austrian Empire

28th of October 1918 · the Czechoslovakia separates from Austria-Hungary (on 10th of September 1919 recognized by Austria), Austrian Silesia becomes affiliated to Czechoslovakia

10th of October 1938 · Munich Agreement, Czechoslovakia has to cede all the in majority by Germans inhabited territories to the German Empire. The former Austrian Silesia becomes summarized with other territories in the Gau of Sudetenland

1945 · soviet conquest and occupation of the former Austrian Silesia, re-affiliation to Czechoslovakia, expulsion of the in the country remained German population

1992 · disintegration of Czechoslovakia in Czechia (Bohemia, Moravia and former Austrian Silesia) and Slovakia

Source: Atlas zur Geschichte, Wikipedia (D), RetroLib Retrobibliothek, Discovery '97, Volker Preuß

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Origin of the Country's Name

The name of the country goes back to the Vandal tribe of the Silings, who settled here in the second and third century. Also the Sleza River (German: Lohe) – an affluent of the Oder River – counts as source of the name of the country Silesia.

Source: Handbuch der geographischen Namen

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Further Austria pages (historical flags and coats of arms):

Empire of the Austrian Habsburgs (to 1804)

Empire of Austria (1814–1867)

Austria-Hungary (1867–1918)

Republic of Austria (since 1918)


 

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