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"Distribution of Races in Austria-Hungary", showing the areas inhabited by Slavic peoples (in the Historical Atlas by William R. Shepherd, 1911)

Austro-Slavism was a political concept and program aimed to solve problems of Slavic peoples in the Austrian Empire.

It was most influential among Czech liberals around the middle of the 19th century. First proposed by Karel Havlíček Borovský in 1846, as an opposition to the concept of pan-Slavism, it was further developed into a complete political program by Czech politician František Palacký. [1] Austroslavism also found some support in other Slavic nations in the Austrian Empire, especially the Slovenes and Croats.

The program[edit]

Austroslavism envisioned peaceful cooperation of the smaller Slavic nations of Central Europe within the Habsburg Monarchy not dominated by German-speaking elites. Palacký proposed a federation of 8 national regions, with significant self-governance. After the suppression of the Czech revolution in Prague in June 1848, the program became irrelevant. [1] The Austrian Empire transformed into Austria-Hungary (1867), honouring Hungarian, but not Slavic demands as part of the Ausgleich. This further weakened the position of Austroslavism.

As a political concept, Austroslavism persisted until the fall of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire in 1918. It was exhibited in several proposals, lacking in influence, to federalise Austria-Hungary, for example that of Aurel Popovici (see United States of Greater Austria).

Prominent supporters of Austroslavism[edit]


  1. ^ a b Magcosi, Robert; Pop, Ivan, eds. (2005), "Austro-Slavism", Encyclopedia of Rusyn History and Culture, Toronto: University of Toronto Press, p. 21 

See also[edit]