Austrian Circle

The Austrian Circle (German: Österreichischer Reichskreis) was an Imperial Circle of the Holy Roman Empire. It was one of the four Imperial Circles created by decree after the 1512 Diet at Cologne, twelve years after the original six Circles were established in the course of the Imperial Reform. It roughly corresponds to present-day Austria (except for Salzburg and Burgenland), Slovenia and the Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol region of Northern Italy, but also comprised the Further Austrian territories in the former Swabian stem duchy.

Austrian Circle
Österreichischer Reichskreis
Austria Est Imperare Orbi Universo
"It is Austria's destiny to rule the whole world"
Location of Österreichischer Reichskreis
The Austrian Circle as at the beginning of the 16th century within the Holy Roman Empire
 •  Established 1512
 •  Disestablished 1806
Today part of Austria Austria
Croatia Croatia
Czech Republic Czech Republic
France France
Germany Germany
Italy Italy
Slovenia Slovenia
Switzerland Switzerland


The Austrian Circle was largely coterminous with the "Hereditary Lands" (Erblande) of the Habsburg Monarchy, dominated by the Archduchy of Austria. Beside the Habsburg lands, it included the Prince-Bishoprics of Trent and Brixen, which, however, were largely ruled within the Habsburg lands of Tyrol.

The Circle's territory was again enlarged with the acquisition of the Bavarian Innviertel according to the 1779 Treaty of Teschen, as well as the Electorate of Salzburg and the Berchtesgaden Provostry by the German mediatisation in 1803. Nevertheless, the Austrian Circle was dissolved when Emperor Francis II resigned on 6 August 1806.


The circle was made up of the following states:

Name Type of entity Comments
An der Etsch Bailiwick Established about 1260, an administrative grouping of lands held by the Teutonic Knights in Tyrol
Austria Archduchy March of Austria established in 976 by Emperor Otto II, raised to duchy by Emperor Frederick I Barbarossa in 1156, to Habsburg in 1278, self-bestowed "Archduchy" since 1358
Austria Bailiwick An administrative grouping of lands held by the Teutonic Order in Austria
Brixen Prince-Bishopric Established in 1027 by Emperor Conrad II, Prince-Bishopric since 1179
Carinthia Duchy Established in 976 by Emperor Otto II, held by the Archdukes of Austria since 1457, part of Inner Austria 1564–1619
Carniola Duchy March of Carniola established in 1040 by Emperor Henry III, raised to duchy in 1364, held by the Archdukes of Austria since 1457, part of Inner Austria 1564–1619
Chur Prince-Bishopric Established in the 4th century, prince-bishopric since 1170, territory held by the League of God's House since 1367
Gorizia County Separated from the Patriarchate of Aquileia about 1127, held by the Archdukes of Austria from 1500, part of Inner Austria 1564-1619, merged into Gorizia and Gradisca in 1747
Istria March Established in 1040 by Emperor Henry III, major part to Venice in 1291, remaining territory around Pazin (Mitterburg) to Gorizia, held by the Archdukes of Austria since 1374
Styria Duchy March of Styria established about 970 by Emperor Otto I, raised to a duchy in 1180, held by the Dukes of Austria since 1192, part of Inner Austria 1564-1619
Tarasp Lordship Held by the Archdukes of Austria since 1464
Trent Prince-Bishopric Established in 1027 by Emperor Conrad II
Trieste City Held by the Archdukes of Austria since 1382
Tyrol County Established about 1140, held by the Archdukes of Austria since 1363, raised to "Princely County" in 1504, to Further Austria 1564-1665
An der Etsch

An der Etsch und im Gebirge (German for 'On the Etsch and in the Mountains') was a bailiwick (Ballei) of the Teutonic Order, created about 1260 and headquartered in Bolzano (Bozen), now in the Italian province of South Tyrol, comprising several commandries in the former County of Tyrol and the adjacent Bishopric of Trent.

One of the Teutonic provinces within the Holy Roman Empire, An der Etsch held the feudal status of Imperial immediacy as a registered Imperial State. Its commandries were subordinate to a Landkomtur (commendator provincialis), who himself was answerable to the Deutschmeister commander of all bailiwicks in Germany and Italy, at times directly to the Grand Master.

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.

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 Austrian ruler, 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.

The Archduchy's history as an Imperial State ended with the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation in 1806. It was replaced with the Lower and Upper Austria crown lands of the Austrian Empire.

Bishop of Chur

The Bishop of Chur (German: Bischof von Chur) is the ordinary of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Chur, Grisons, Switzerland (Latin: Dioecesis Curiensis).


Breisgau is an area in southwest Germany between the Rhine River and the foothills of the Black Forest. Part of the state of Baden-Württemberg, it centers on the city of Freiburg im Breisgau. The district Breisgau-Hochschwarzwald, which partly consists of the Breisgau, is named after the Black Forest area. Parts of the Breisgau are also situated in the political districts of Freiburg im Breisgau and Emmendingen.

Coats of arms of the Holy Roman Empire

Over its long history, the Holy Roman Empire used many different heraldic forms, representing its numerous internal divisions.

County of Gorizia

The County of Gorizia (Italian: Contea di Gorizia, German: Grafschaft Görz, Slovene: Goriška grofija, Friulian: Contee di Gurize), from 1365 Princely County of Gorizia, was a State of the Holy Roman Empire. Originally mediate Vogts of the Patriarchs of Aquileia, the Counts of Gorizia (Meinhardiner) ruled over several fiefs in the area of Lienz and in the Friuli region of northeastern Italy with their residence at Gorizia (Görz).

In 1253 the Counts of Gorizia inherited the County of Tyrol, from 1271 onwards ruled by the Gorizia-Tyrol branch which became extinct in the male line in 1335. The younger line ruled the comital lands of Gorizia and Lienz until its extinction in 1500, whereafter the estates were finally acquired by the Austrian House of Habsburg.

County of Tyrol

The (Princely) County of Tyrol was an estate of the Holy Roman Empire established about 1140. Originally a jurisdiction under the sovereignty of the Counts of Tyrol, it was inherited by the Counts of Gorizia in 1253 and finally fell to the Austrian House of Habsburg in 1363. In 1804 the Princely County of Tyrol, unified with the secularised Prince-Bishoprics of Trent and Brixen, became a crown land of the Austrian Empire in 1804 and from 1867 a Cisleithanian crown land of Austria-Hungary.

Today the territory of the historic crown land is divided between the Italian autonomous region of Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol and the Austrian state of Tyrol. Both parts are today associated again in the Tyrol–South Tyrol–Trentino Euroregion.

Duchy of Carinthia

The Duchy of Carinthia (German: Herzogtum Kärnten; Slovene: Vojvodina Koroška) was a duchy located in southern Austria and parts of northern Slovenia. It was separated from the Duchy of Bavaria in 976, and was the first newly created Imperial State after the original German stem duchies.

Carinthia remained a State of the Holy Roman Empire until its dissolution in 1806, though from 1335 it was ruled within the Austrian dominions of the Habsburg dynasty. A constituent part of the Habsburg Monarchy and of the Austrian Empire, it remained a Cisleithanian crown land of Austria-Hungary until 1918. By the Carinthian Plebiscite in October 1920, the main area of the duchy formed the Austrian state of Carinthia.

Duchy of Carniola

The Duchy of Carniola (Slovene: Vojvodina Kranjska, German: Herzogtum Krain, Hungarian: Krajna) was a State of the Holy Roman Empire, established under Habsburg rule on the territory of the former East Frankish March of Carniola in 1364. A hereditary land of the Habsburg Monarchy, it became a constituent land of the Austrian Empire in 1804 and part of the Kingdom of Illyria until 1849. A separate crown land from 1849, it was incorporated into the Cisleithanian territories of Austria-Hungary from 1867 until the state's dissolution in 1918. Its capital was Ljubljana (German: Laibach).

Duchy of Styria

The Duchy of Styria (German: Herzogtum Steiermark; Slovene: Vojvodina Štajerska; Hungarian: Stájer Hercegség) was a duchy located in modern-day southern Austria and northern Slovenia. It was a part of the Holy Roman Empire until its dissolution in 1806 and a Cisleithanian crown land of Austria–Hungary until its dissolution in 1918.

Further Austria

Further Austria, Outer Austria or Anterior Austria (German: Vorderösterreich, formerly die Vorlande (pl.)) was the collective name for the early (and later) possessions of the House of Habsburg in the former Swabian stem duchy of south-western Germany, including territories in the Alsace region west of the Rhine and in Vorarlberg.

While the territories of Further Austria west of the Rhine and south of Lake Constance (except Konstanz itself) were gradually lost to France and the Swiss Confederacy, those in Swabia and Vorarlberg remained under Habsburg control until the Napoleonic Era.

History of Tyrol

The history of Tyrol, a historical region in the middle alpine area of Central Europe, dates back to early human settlements at the end of the last glacier period, around 12,000 BC. Sedentary settlements of farmers and herders can be traced back to 5000 BC. Many of the main and side valleys were settled during the early Bronze Age, from 1800 to 1300 BC. From these settlements, two prominent cultures emerged: the Laugen-Melaun culture in the Bronze Age, and the Fritzens-Sanzeno culture in the Iron Age.

The region was conquered by the Romans in 15 BC. The northern and eastern areas were incorporated into the Roman Empire as the provinces of Raetia and Noricum, leaving deep impressions on the culture and language, with the Rhaeto-Romance languages. Following the conquest of Italy by the Goths, Tyrol became part of the Ostrogothic Kingdom in the fifth and sixth centuries. In 553, southern Tyrol was incorporated into the Lombards' Kingdom of Italy, northern Tyrol came under the influence of the Bavarii, and western Tyrol became part of Alamannia—the three areas meeting at present-day Bolzano.

In 774, Charlemagne conquered the Lombards, and as a consequence, Tyrol became an important bridgehead to Italy. In the eleventh century, the Emperors of the Holy Roman Empire granted the counties of Trento, Bolzano, and Vinschgau to the Bishopric of Trent, and the county of Norital and Puster Valley to the Bishopric of Brixen—effectually placing the region under the control of the Emperors.

In the coming centuries, the counts residing in Tirol Castle near Merano extended their territory over the region. Later counts would hold much of their territory directly from the Holy Roman Emperor. The Meinhardinger family, originating in Gorizia, controlled the Tyrol, Gorizia, and the Duchy of Carinthia. By 1295, the "county and reign of Tyrol" had established itself firmly in the "Land on the Adige and Inn", as the region was then called. When the Meinhardiner dynasty died out in 1369, the Tyrol was ceded to the House of Habsburg, who ruled over the region for the next five and a half centuries, with a brief period of control in the early nineteenth century by the Bavarians during the Napoleonic Wars.

At the conclusion of World War I, the Treaty of Saint-Germain-en-Laye of 1919 ceded the southern part of Tyrol to the Kingdom of Italy, including present day-South Tyrol with its large German-speaking majority. The northern part of Tyrol was retained by the First Austrian Republic. The historical region is formed by the present-day Austrian State of Tyrol and the Italian provinces of South Tyrol and Trentino. The boundaries of this Tyrol–South Tyrol–Trentino Euroregion correspond to the former Habsburg County of Tyrol, which gave this historical region its name.

Imperial Circle

During the Early Modern period the Holy Roman Empire was divided into Imperial Circles (Latin: Circuli imperii, German: Reichskreise; singular Circulus imperii, Reichskreis), administrative groupings whose primary purposes were the organization of common defensive structure and the collection of imperial taxes. They were also used as a means of organization within the Imperial Diet and the Imperial Chamber Court. Each circle had a Circle Diet, although not every member of the Circle Diet would hold membership of the Imperial Diet as well.

Six Imperial Circles were introduced at the Diet of Augsburg in 1500. In 1512, three more circles were added, and the large Saxon Circle was split into two, so that from 1512 until the collapse of the Holy Roman Empire in the Napoleonic era, there were ten Imperial Circles. The Crown of Bohemia, the Swiss Confederacy and Italy remained unencircled, as did various minor territories which held imperial immediacy.

Jakob Dont

Jakob Dont, Jacob Dont (March 2, 1815 – November 17, 1888) was an Austrian violinist, composer, and teacher.

He was born and died in Vienna.

His father Joseph Valentin Dont (1776, Niedergeorgenthal (Dolní Jiřetín), Obergeorgenthal (Horní Jiřetín), Bz.Brüx, Royal Bohemia, Austria (Austrian Circle incl. Archduc.Austria) – 1833, Vienna) was a noted cellist from North Bohemia, and son of Georg Wenzel Dont (Jiří Václav Dont). His mother was Theresia Pitschmann (1776, Vienna – 1847, Vienna).

Jakob was a student of Josef Böhm (Hungarian: Böhm József Mihály, 1795–1876) and of Georg Hellmesberger (1800–73). At the age of sixteen, he became a member of the Hofburgtheater orchestra and in 1834 entered service at the Vienna Hofkapelle. During this time Dont appeared frequently as a soloist. Despite his success, he decided against a career as a soloist. In 1853 he became a professor at the Pädagogisches Institut in Vienna. From 1871, Dont was employed at the Wiener Konservatorium. He would eventually leave this post as the use of his own instructional compositions was forbidden. Dont's compositions are mainly limited to innovative teaching material. His 24 Etudes and Caprices Gradus ad parnassum Op. 35 and the 24 Exercises Preparatory to the Studies of R. Kreutzer and P. Rode Op. 37 are considered some of the most important technical studies for the violin.

Among his students was Leopold Auer. See: List of music students by teacher: C to F#Jakob Dont.

Marko Gerbec

Marko Gerbec (24 October 1658 – 9 March 1718; Latinized: Marcus Gerbezius) was a Carniolan physician and scientist, notable as the founder of modern medicine among the Slovenes and for the first description of Adams–Stokes syndrome. It was published in 1717 and 44 years after its publication quoted by Giovanni Battista Morgagni.

Mozart's nationality

This article discusses the nationality of the composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756–1791).

The two main labels that have been used to describe Mozart's nationality are "Austrian" and "German". However, in Mozart's own time, these terms were used differently from the way they are used today, because the modern nation states of Austria and Germany did not yet exist. Any decision to label Mozart as "Austrian" or "German" (or neither) involves political boundaries, history, language, culture, and Mozart's own views. Editors of modern encyclopedias and other reference sources differ in how they assign a label to Mozart (if any) in light of conflicting criteria.

Prince-Bishopric of Brixen

The Prince-Bishopric of Brixen (German: Hochstift Brixen, Fürstbistum Brixen, Bistum Brixen) was an ecclesiastical principality of the Holy Roman Empire in the present-day Italian province of South Tyrol. It should not be confused with the larger Catholic diocese, over which the prince-bishops exercised only the ecclesiastical authority of an ordinary bishop. The bishopric in the Eisack/Isarco valley was established in the 6th century and gradually received more secular powers. It gained imperial immediacy in 1027 and remained an Imperial Estate until 1803, when it was secularised to Tyrol. The diocese however existed until 1964, and is now part of the Diocese of Bolzano-Brixen.

Princely County of Gorizia and Gradisca

The Princely County of Gorizia and Gradisca (German: Gefürstete Grafschaft Görz und Gradisca; Italian: Principesca Contea di Gorizia e Gradisca; Slovene: Poknežena grofija Goriška in Gradiščanska) was a crown land of the Habsburg dynasty within the Austrian Littoral on the Adriatic Sea, in what is now a multilingual border area of Italy and Slovenia. It was named for its two major urban centers, Gorizia and Gradisca d'Isonzo.


Tarasp is a former municipality in the district of Inn in the Swiss canton of Graubünden. Its eleven settlements are situated within the Lower Engadin valley along the Inn River, at the foot of the Sesvenna Range. On 1 January 2015 the former municipalities of Ardez, Guarda, Tarasp, Ftan and Sent merged into the municipality of Scuol.Originally a Romansh language area, the majority of the population today speaks High Alemannic German. Unlike the surrounding municipalities, the Tarasp parish is mainly Catholic.

Holy Roman Empire Austrian Circle of the Holy Roman Empire
Flag of the Habsburgs Habsburg lands
Coat of arms of the Teutonic Order Teutonic bailiwicks
Created in 1500
Created in 1512

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