Archduchy of Austria

The Archduchy of Austria (German: Erzherzogtum Österreich) was a major principality of the Holy Roman Empire and the nucleus of the Habsburg monarchy. With its capital at Vienna, the archduchy was centered at the Empire's southeastern periphery.

Archduchy of Austria
Erzherzogtum Österreich (German)
Motto: Alles Erdreich ist Österreich untertan
"All the world is subject to Austria"[1]
Full coat of arms with decorations:[2]
The Archduchy of Austria within the Habsburg hereditary lands (orange), 1477
StatusState of the Holy Roman Empire (1453–1806)
Crown land of the Habsburg monarchy (from 1526)
Common languagesCentral Bavarian, German
Roman Catholic
Ladislaus the Posthumous
(first formal archduke)
Francis I a
Charles I
Historical eraEarly modern period
 Duke Rudolf IV forged Privilegium Maius
 Emperor Frederick III acknowledged archducal title
6 January 1453
 Joined Austrian Circle
 Ferdinand I regent according to Worms agreement
28 April 1521
 Austrian Empire proclaimed
11 August 1804
 Holy Roman Empire dissolved
6 August 1806
30 August 1867
18 November 1918
ISO 3166 codeAT
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Duchy of Austria
Republic of German-Austria
^a The title "Archduke of Austria" remained part of the official grand title of the rulers of Austria until 1918.

Its present name originates from the Frankish term Oustrich - Eastern Kingdom (east of the Frankish kingdom). The Archduchy developed out of the Bavarian Margraviate of Austria, elevated to the Duchy of Austria according to the 1156 Privilegium Minus by Emperor Frederick Barbarossa. The House of Habsburg came to the Austrian throne in Vienna in 1282 and in 1453 Emperor Frederick III, also the ruler of Austria, officially adopted the archducal title. From the 15th century onwards, all Holy Roman Emperors but one were Austrian archdukes and with the acquisition of the Bohemian and Hungarian crown lands in 1526, the Habsburg hereditary lands became the centre of a major European power.[3]

The Archduchy's history as an imperial state ended with the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806. It was replaced with the Lower and Upper Austria crown lands of the Austrian Empire.[4][5]

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