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The Fate of Austria and Hungary

This map is part of a series of 19 animated maps showing the history of Europe and nations, 1918-1942.

The fate of Austria and Hungary was embedded in the Treaties of Saint-Germain-en-Laye in September 1919 and Trianon in June 1920. The constituent nations of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, created in 1867, were now split into two countries covering a much smaller territory: Austria was reduced to 83,000 sq. km., while Hungary was left with 93,000 sq. km.

-Galicia was transferred to Poland.

-Bohemia, Moravia and Slovakia were brought together to create Czechoslovakia.

-Trentino and Trieste were handed to Italy.

-Transylvania became part of Romania, while Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Vojvodina were integrated into the new state of Yugoslavia.

-Finally, the Burgenland and its German-speaking population became part of Austria.    

The peace treaties were not merely a source of strong feelings of humiliation; they also created a number of serious problems. Three million Hungarians now lived outside the borders of Hungary and were reduced to being a minority group in Romania, in Southern Czechoslovakia, and Northern Yugoslavia.

In addition, both countries were now landlocked and their economic future was far from certain since the new frontiers blocked access to the principal markets for Austria’s industry and Hungary’s agriculture. Under the circumstances, these post-war parliamentary regimes looked very vulnerable.