Universitatea „Lucian Blaga” din Sibiu, Facultatea de Teologie / Lucian Blaga University of Sibiu, Faculty of Theology
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The Last Five Weeks of Hasburg Imperial Austria (October – November)
In just five weeks’ time, the imperial Habsburg Austria underwent a quick dissolution process and ceased to exist. The Slavs in the south started this process aiming to create Yugoslavia, but the Czechs contributed significantly to it in their attempt to create Czechoslovakia. In both cases, Hungarian territories were also targeted. Under these circumstances, the Imperial Court in Vienna initiated negotiations with Hungarian politicians to gain their support for an administrative reform to be enforced throughout the monarchy. Hungarian politicians refused with obstinately, so that ultimately the planned reform could only cover the territories of the former dualist Austria. While the imperial Manifesto dated October 16, but issued on October 18, stipulated the federalisation of Austria, the Hungarian Parliament voted Hungary’s independence from Austria. However, four independent states were simultaneously established on 19 October in Zagreb, Prague, Vienna and Lviv: Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia, Austrian and Ukrainian, all with territorial claims on Hungary and with Ukrainian claims on Bucovina. In October 27, Romanians in Cernăuți organised themselves and decided to unite with Romania. Three days later, an Austrian government was set up in Vienna, so between October 31 and November 11 there were two parallel governments, one for the establishment of the new Austrian state and the other for the winding-up of the old Austrian state. On November 11, since he was left with neither territory under his rule nor subjects, Emperor Karl I signed in pencil his declaration of renouncing the exercise of his prerogatives, refusing to use the term abdication.
Keywords: the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia, Ukraine, Zagreb, Lviv, Bucovina, Constantin Isopescu – the Greek, the Romanian constituent assembly of Bucovina.
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