Inner Austria 1619-1740

In 1619 Emperor Matthias died, and he was succeeded by Ferdinand II., hitherto Archduke of Styria etc. Thus Inner Austria again was integrated into the complex of Habsburg Austrian territories. For a while, Graz continued to function as residence - Eggenberg palace was constructed from 1625 onward.
The policy of Counterreformation was continued; staunch Lutherans were forced to emigrate (among them, in 1628-1630 alone, c.750 nobles and a good number of hammerworks masters).
During the Thirty Years' War (1618-1648), Inner Austria saw little action. After, the Habsburg Dynasty chose Vienna as their main residence; the Inner Austrian territories were reduced to provinces, securely under the control of the central administration.
While the ducal bureaucracy and the Catholic church succeeded in disempowering the territorial estates and the city councils, and caused staunch Lutherans to emigrate, they also had created an economy which produced little revenue, the cities stagnating. Despite their impressive collection of territories, the Habsburg budget was chronically deficitary.
Throughout the 17th century, the Habsburgs did not have much of an economic policy. Rather they attempted to domesticize the nobility by granting huge sums to pro-Habsburg, explicitly Catholic nobles who served the state/dynasty and by permitting the nobles to exploit the peasants, leaving little incen- tive to the latter to maximize their crops.
The Habsburg-Ottoman Wars of 1663-1664 and of 1683-1699 again affected Inner Austria; after 1684 the Ottoman menace was banned, and with it Inner Austria's function as a defensive bulwork of the Empire. Styria, however, was affected by the Hungarian Kuruc Rebellion (1703-1711).
Early in the 18th century a mercantilist (cameralist) policy was pursued; Triest and Fiume (Rijeka) were declared free ports; a road, the Karolina, was constructed (1726) better facilitating trade between Vienna and Triest. This road caused the city of Maribor (Marburg) in Lower Styria (modern Slovenia) to develop. In 1715 the customs border separating Inner Austria from Croatia was abolished.
During the later 17th and early 18th century, the Austrian Habsburgs were almost constantly involved in fighting major wars, which again cused a heavy burden on their subjects. In 1713 the peasants around Tolmein in Gorizia rose in rebellion, a rebellion which was easily suppressed.

Zeitafel Kärnten (Timeline Carinthia), Steiermark (Timeline Styria), posted by Archiv Verlag, in German, detailed
Biography of Ferdinand II., from BBKL, in German
Radkersburg, from Walled Towns
REFERENCE Arnold Suppan, Zwischen Adria und Karawanken, Deutsche Geschichte im Osten Europas (Between Adria and Karawanken Mts., German History in Europe's East), Berlin : Siedler 1998, in German

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First posted on August 29th 2004, last revised on November 12th 2004

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