Eastern Europe; key historical events

Includes Austria (see also Germany); excludes Poland, Russia, Yugoslavia

Page last modified 6/2/2019


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Click here for map of Budapest 1905.


Albania from 1910 – see Appendix 1

Austria from 1859 – see Appendix 2

Bulgaria from 1861 – see Appendix 3

Czechia and Slovakia from 1867 – see Appendix 4

Hungary from 1867 – See Appendix 5.

Romania and Moldova from 1812 – see Appendix 6


Colour key:


Austro-Hungary war 1848-67

Seven Years War 1756-63


See appendices below for events in eastern Europe after 1876

10/7/1859, The Treaty of Villafranca was signed.

24/6/1859, At the Battle of Solferino, Lombardy, Italy, the French under Napoleon III defeated the Austrians.

4/6/1859, The Battle of Magenta. France defeated Austrian forces and captured Milan.

30/5/1859, Battle of Palestro; Austria defeated by Piedmont.

20/5/1859, Italian Wars of independence, Austria defeated by Piedmont.

See Italy for War of Italian Independence against Austria

3/5/1859. France declared war on Austria.

5/1/1858, Joseph Radedtsky, Austrian Field-Marshal and national hero, died in Milan aged 91.

2/12/1854, Austria formed a strategic alliance with Britain and France.

24/6/1852, Viktor Adler, Austrian politician (died 12/11/1918) was born.

13/8/1849, The Hungarian General, Gorgey, surrendered unconditionally to the Russian Commander in Chief, Field Marshall Paskevic. The Hungarian leader, Kossuth, who had urged the continuation of the conflict right up to the end, escaped to Turkey.

28/7/1849, Hungary’s Diet passed the Nationalities Law, granting the non-Magyar peoples of Hungary substantial rights in the use of their native languages, also regional autonomy. This was a last-ditch effort by the Diet to win over the loyalty of the peasants and make them more willing to fight against Austria; a string of Hungarian defeats, and the entry of Russia on Austria’s side, had demoralised the Hungarian Army and created a shortage of recruits.

17/6/1849, Russian troops invaded Hungary.

21/5/1849, Buda Castle was stormed by Austrian forces.

13/4/1849, The Hungarian Diet proclaimed a Republic, with Lajos Kossuth as President.

5/1/1849, Franz Joef’s Austrian troops arrived in Buda, to occupy Buda and Pest, and suppress the Hungarian Revolution.

2/12/1848, Emperor Ferdinand I of Austria abdicated in favour of his nephew, Francis Joseph.

7/9/1848. The Congress in Vienna, which opened on 22/7/1848, abolished serfdom, and the feudal system of land tenure. This greatly benefited the Czechs, who since the Battle of the White Mountains, 1620, had become a peasant nation, with only the beginnings of a middle class by 1800. After serfdom was abolished, the system of peasant ownership of land allowed national wealth to be built up, and personal liberty enabled an educational system to be established.

23/3/1848. Hungary proclaimed its independence from Austria.  On 5/1/1849 Budapest surrendered to the Austrians.

15/3/1848, The Hungarian revolution began in Budapest.

6/11/1846. Following uprisings in March 1846, the small republic of Cracow was annexed to Austrian-controlled Galicia, losing its independence.

2/3/1835, Francis II, last Holy Roman Emperor, died. He was succeeded, as Emperor of Austria only, by his 4-year-old son, Ferdinand I.

18/8/1830, Birth of Franz-Joseph I, Emperor of Austria who invaded Serbia, ultimately starting World War One.

10/7/1819, Alfred Arneth, Austrian historian, was born in Vienna (died 1897).

20/2/1811, Austria declared itself bankrupt.

14/10/1809. Austria signed the Peace of Schonbrunn, ceding its Illyrian provinces to France.  Austria lost Galicia, Salzburg, and Istria.

8/10/1809, Metternich was appointed Austrian Foreign Minister.

26/12/1805. Austria abandoned the Third Coalition by signing the Peace of Pressburg with France.  Austria was forced to surrender Venetia to the Kingdom of Italy, newly founded by Napoleon.  Austria also surrendered Tyrol to Bavaria and its remaining Swabian lands to Wurttemberg and Baden.

See France-Germany for more events of Napoleonic Wars

20/10/1805. The outnumbered French army of Napoleon defeated an Austrian army at Ulm. Napoleon had already realised he cold not gain control of the English Channel, or overcome British naval supremacy, so before the Battle of Trafalgar he had directed his forces eastwards, against Austria. Austria had to submit to the Treaty of Pressburg, by which Venetia was ceded to the French Kingdom of Italy and the States of the Lower Rhine were forced into the Confederation of the Rhine, a French dependency. The Electors of Bavaria and Wurttemberg became Kings independent of Austria, and Austria had to pay Napoleon a war contribution of 40 million francs.

29/11/1780. Maria Theresa, Empress of Austria, died in Vienna.

13/5/1779, At the Peace of Teschen, Austria made peace with Frederick of Prussia.  Austria received a small part of Bavaria, the Innvertiel, and renounced all claims to the Bavarian inheritance.

2/11/1766, Joseph Radetsky, Austrian Field Marshal, was born in Trebnitz, near Tabor.

15/2/1763, Austria, seeing hope for a decisive victory over Prussia recede with peace between Russia and Prussia, made peace with Prussia at Hubertusberg this day.  Frederick evacuated Saxony but retained Silesia.  Austria had failed to destroy Prussia before Prussian power was consolidated.

10/2/1763. The end of the Seven Years War. France ceded Canada to Britain at the Treaty of Paris. See 26/7/1758 and 13/9/1759. The same treaty gave Florida to Britain in exchange for Britain returning Cuba, which it had invaded on 12/8/1762, to Spain; Spain also regained Louisiana and the Philippines. Britain gained all of America east of the Mississippi. Britain also gained Minorca, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, Tobago, St Vincent, Grenada, Dominica, and Senegal, as well as becoming pre-eminent in India; Britain therefore became the world’s major colonising power. Frederick of Prussia retained Silesia, which set Prussia on the road to also becoming a major European power.

29/10/1762, The Austrians were defeated at the Battle of Freiburg.  The war was making Austria bankrupt and Austria was questioning whether the war was worth it for the recovery of one province.  Austria and Prussia agreed on an armistice on 24/11/1762  for the winter of 1762/3.

See also France-Germany for Seven Years War

9/10/1762, The Austrians under Daun were defeated by Prussia at Schweidnitz.

16/8/1762, The Austrians under Daun were defeated by Prussia at Reichenbach.

21/7/1762, The Austrians under Daun were defeated by Prussia at Burkersdorf.

22/5/1762, Peace was formally agreed between Russia and Prussia (Treaty of Hamburg). Russian forces began to return home.

16/12/1761 The Russians under Pyotr Aleksandrovitch Rumyantsev captured the Prussian port and fort of Kolberg. It had been a bad year for Frederick of Prussia, with French forces making progress eastwards in south western Germany, and the Austrians under Laudon capturing Schweidnitz on 1/10/1761, ensuring they could over-winter in Silesia. Frederick had failed to prevent the Russian Army, 50,000 strong, joining up with the 72,000-strong Austrian Army on 23/8/1761. Frederick’s biggest concern was that since the change of monarch and the resignation of Pitt in Britain, he could no longer rely on British support. Without a major change of fortune, Prussia faced certain defeat in 1762.

3/11/1760 Frederick of Prussia won the Battle of Torgau against the Austrians but failed to follow up this success and achieve his objective of capturing Dresden.

25/10/1760, George II died suddenly at 8am, in Kensington, London, aged 76. His successor George III was inclined to concentrate on British, not Hanoverian, interests, and disliked William Pitt, Earl of Chatham, who had promoted the Anglo-Prussian Alliance. Without British help, Prussia could not continue fighting.

26/7/1760, The Austrians under Laudon captured Glatz from Prussia.

23/6/1760, The Austrians under Laudon defeated the Prussians at Landshut.

14/9/1759, The Austrians under Daun took Dresden from the Prussians.

19/8/1759, The Battle of Lagos. Choiseul had managed to extricate France from much of its commitment to support Austria, so the French could commit more resources to fighting Britain. Choiseul planned an invasion, with landings from London to Scotland. To transport this invasion the French Mediterranean fleet was ordered to sail from Toulon to join the Atlantic fleet at Brest. On its way northwards past Portugal, the French fleet was attacked by Admiral Edward Boscawen off Lagos, Portugal, and scattered. Meanwhile Edward Hawke was blockading the French port of Brest (see 9/11/1759).

12/8/1759, Frederick, who had been unable to prevent the Austrians under Daun and the Russians under Saltykov joining forces, was heavily defeated by them at Kunersdorf. Frederick lost 18,000 men in six hours. The Russians did not capitalise on this victory, but Daun then marched on Dresden.

1/8/1759, At the Battle of Minden (Seven Years War), six British-Allied army regiments defeated a larger French force, in north-west Germany.

23/7/1759. 70,000 Russians under Saltykov defeated 26,000 Prussians under von Wedel at Zullichau.

9/7/1759, The French, under the Duc de Broglie, took Minden on the River Weser.

13/4/1759, Ferdinand of Brunswick, who had enjoyed success against the French in southwest Germany, was defeated at Bergen, near Frankfurt am Main, by the Duc de Broglie.

14/10/1758, The Austrians under Daun launched an unexpected counter-attack against the Prussians at Hochkirk; Prussian losses were 9,500 against 7,500 for the Austrians. Daun began an advance on Dresden, but fell back to Pirna when he heard of Frederick’s march on Lusatia. However the Austrian victory at Hochkirk raised French morale; they had been inclined to abandon the war against Prussia.

25/8/1758, Frederick of Prussia moved around Fermor’s east flank and his 36,000 men attacked the Russians at Zorndorf (Sarbinowo). Prussian losses were 13,500, against Russian casualties of 42,000 (21,000 killed). Frederick now left Christoph von Dohna to pursue the defeated Russians; Frederick moved south to assist his brother, Prince Henry, against the Austrians under Daun at Dresden.

20/8/1758, Frederick’s forces arrived at Frankfurt on Oder, ready to attack the Russians besieging Kustrin.

15/8/1758, Russian forces under Fermor began a siege of the Prussians at Kustrin.

23/6/1758, Emmerlich’s Anglo-Hanoverian army, 40,000-strong, defeated 70,000 men under the Comte de Clermont at Krefeld. This victory enabled Emmerlich to hold all of northern Germany against France, despite French victories further south in Hesse and Thuringia.

16/4/1758, Frederick of Prussia defeated the Austrians at Schweidnitz, Silesia.

27/3/1758, An Anglo-Hanoverian force under Ferdinand of Brunswick crossed the Rhine at Emmerlich, near the Dutch frontier (see 23/6/1758).

22/1/1758, William Fermor, Scottish emigrant to Russia who had taken the place of Apraksin (see 30/8/1757) in September 1757, took the East Prussian capital, Konigsberg (Kaliningrad) from Prussia. However a spring thaw melted the snow and made the roads impassable, temporarily immobilising Fermor.

5/12/1757, Frederick of Prussia, now confronted by an Austrian army which had invaded Silesia and seized Breslau, defeated them this day at Leuthen and recovered Breslau, capital of Silesia. Frederick’s 43,000 men attacked the 72,000 Austrians under Charles of Lorraine with a sudden cavalry charge followed by a heavy artillery bombardment. Frederick’s losses amounted to 6,000, against 22,000 lost by Charles, including 12,000 taken prisoner. Meanwhile the Swedes, who had invaded Prussian Pomerania in September 1757 (without Russian approval), were also forced back into Swedish Pomerania, where they held against the Prussians at Stralsund. With the Russians under Apraksin also having retreated (see 30/8/1757), the was began to turn in Prussia’s favour.

22/11/1757, In Silesia, Austria took Breslau (Wroclaw) from Prussia.

11/11/1757, In Silesia, Austria took Schweidnitz (Swidnica) from Prussia.

5/11/1757, Frederick, faced by a French Army advancing from Thuringia towards Berlin, won a major victory against them at Rossbach. 21,000 Prussian troops faced 41,000  French and allied men but the cautious tactics of the French commander Soubise were at odds with his more aggressive ally Saxe-Hildburghausen, and the Prussian cavalry forces were more mobile, under the leadership of Friedrich Wilhelm von Seydlitz. In two hours fighting, the Prussian lost 550 men against allied losses of 7,000. Encouraged by this victory the British repudiated Klosterzeven (see 26/7/1757) and sent troops to reinforce the Hanoverians.

7/9/1757, Prussian forces under Fredrick Francis of Brunswick-Bevern were defeated at Moys (Zgorzelec) in Silesia by the Austrians.

30/8/1757, A Russian army of 90,000, having crossed Poland and entered Prussia, heavily defeated the Prussians under Hans von Lehwaldt at Gross-Jagersdorf, west of Gumbinnen. Unexpectedly the Russian commander, Apraksin, then withdrew. The health of the Russian Empress Elizabeth, who hated Prussia, was becoming uncertain and her successor, the future Peter III, liked Frederick and opposed the fight against Prussia. Therefore Apraksin risked the displeasure of his future master if he continued his aggression in Prussia.

26/7/1757, A French Army of 100,000 defeated the Hanoverian, Prussian and British allied forces under William Augustus, Duke of Cumberland, a younger son of King George II of England. This was at Hastenbeck, south west of Hanover. On 8/9/1757 the French forced Cumberland to sign the Convention of Klosterzeven, which stipulated the disbandment of Cumberland’s forces in Germany.

18/6/1757, Frederick, ruler of Prussia, sought to turn back an advancing Austrian army, 50,000 strong under von Daun, but was heavily defeated at Kolin this day.  Frederick had to give up Bohemia and raise the siege of Prague.

6/5/1757, The Battle of Prague. Frederick’s Prussian Army of 64,000 routed an Austrian Army of 66,000 under Browne and Prince Charles of Lorraine. This defeat came before the Austrians could be reinforced by more troops under Leopold Joseph, Graf von Daun. 14,000 Austrians were killed, 16,000 escaped to join von Daun, and the rest fled into Prague itself where they were besieged by Frederick.

1/5/1757, Austria and France signed the Second Treaty of Versailles, allying themselves for an offensive against Prussia. Under this Treaty, Austria would regain Silesia (from Prussia) but would cede the Austrian Netherlands (to be divided between King Louis XV of France and his Spanish Bourbon cousin Philip Duke of Parma). Philip’s Italian possessions would revert to Austrian rule. France would garrison 105,000 of its troops in Prussia, in addition to supplying 30,000 men to the Austrian Army (increased from an earlier figure of 24,000). France would provide an annual subsidy to Austria of 12,000,000 livres. Meanwhile on 11/1/1757 France had concluded a secret treaty with Russia whereby France agreed to help Russia in the event of any attack on Russia by Turkey (contravening a long-standing detente between France and Turkey). In return for this Russia would supply 80,000 men against Prussia. Allparties swore not to make separate peaces with Prussia, which was to be partitioned between the Allies.

16/10/1756, The army of Saxony capitulated to Frederick of Prussia at the fortress of Pirma.  See 18/4/1857. Most of the Saxon Army joined with Prussia.

1/10/1756, The Battle of Lobositz (midway between Dresden and Prague).  The Prussians defeated the Austrians. Russia would have marched to help Austria against Prussia, but this would entail Russian troops crossing Poland. Although France would nominally have welcomed this, as it would relieve the French from helping Austria, and Poland was allied to France, in secret the French would not welcome any Russian influence upon Poland.

10/9/1756, Frederick entered the Saxon capital, Dresden, with his army of70,000. The Saxon Army, 20,000, fell back to Pirna to the south east. Prussia assured Poland of it’s good intentions but was not believed; Poland was also friendly with France. Meanwhile an Austrian army under Ulysses von Browne, of 32,000 men, was moving from Bohemia to unite with the Saxons. To counter this threat, Frederick moved into Bohemia, towards Lobositz (see 1/10/1756).

29/8/1756. Frederick II of Prussia invaded Saxony, setting off a European war. Britain was allied with Prussia, against Austria and France, see 16/1/1756, and 1/7/1756. Austria wanted to regain its province of Silesia,  taken by Frederick II of Prussia during the War of the Austrian Succession (1740-48). Frederick , believing in attacking first, invaded Saxony to detach it from the Franco-Austrian alliance.

1748, Comclusion of the War of the Austrian Succession (1740-48). On the sudden death of Emperor Charles VI, Bavaria, Saxony and Spain, backed by France, refused to recognise the Pragmatic Sanction and invaded Bohemia and Upper Austria. Prussia put in a claim, and then invaded Silesia (Second Silesian War ended 1745). Bavaria withdrew its claim, and under the 1748 Treaty of Aachen the Hapsburgs retained all their dominions, excepting Silesia.

25/12/1745, The Peace of Dresden concluded the Second Silesian War.  Frederick of Prussia retained Silesia, and recognised Francis as ruler of Austria.

15/12/1745, Frederick invaded Bohemia, and occupied most of Saxony.  On this day his chief general, Leopold of Anhalt-Dessau, defeated the Austrians and Saxons at Kesselsdorf, near Dresden.

4/6/1745, The Austrians attacked Silesia, allied with troops from Saxony,  but were defeated by Prussia at Hohenfriedburg.

28/7/1742, Maria Theresa of Austria made peace with Prussia; ceding control of all of Silesia to Prussia.

11/6/1742, The Peace of Breslau concluded the First Silesian War.  Austria ceded most of Silesia along with Glatz to Prussia, retaining only the principalities of Troppau and Teschen.  In return Frederick promised his neutrality.

17/5/1742, The Prussian cavalry defeated the Austrians at the Battle of Chotusitz.

10/4/1741, The German Emperor crossed the Silesian frontier, advanced as far as Breslau, and this day defeated an Austrian Army near Mollwitz.  This was during the War of the Austrian Succession.

8/2/1741. Neisse and Brieg still held out but the Prussians stormed and occupied Glogau on 9/3/1741. At the Battle of Mollwitz, 10/4/1741, the Prussians narrowly won the day. Europe realised that Prussia was now a major military power and France sent an envoy, Marshal Belleisle, to negotiate an alliance with Frederick.  The ‘Silesian adventure’ now became the War of the Austrian Succession. France supported the Elector of Bavaria. Sweden was supposed to stop Russia attacking Prussia but on 3/9/1742 the Swedes were heavily defeated by the Russians at Wilmanstrand, and Sweden capitulated in 1742 at Helsingfors, the Swedish capital. At the Peace of Dresden, 25/12/1745 Frederick recognised the Elector of Bavaria as ruler of Austria in return for his acquiring Silesia. The war of the Austrian Succession ended on 18/10/1748 with the Peace of Aachen (Aix la Chapelle).

16/12/1740. Without a declaration of war. Frederick II of Prussia invaded Silesia, an Austrian province. He occupied Silesia quite easily, besieging the few towns of Glogau, Breig, and Neisse still held by the Austrians. In February 1741 Austria prepared to reconquer Silesia.

See also events in Germany

20/10/1740, Emperor Charles VI died unexpectedly. Maria Theresa, aged 23, became ruler of Austria. Frederick II of Prussia, taking advantage of Austria having a young female ruler, prepared to invade the wealthy Austrian provoince of Silesia. Meanwhile Bavaria and Saxony also had claims on Austrian lands (their claims supported by France), and Spain wanted the Italian provinces of Austria. Hungary supported Austria.

22/8/1717. Austrian forces took Belgrade from the Ottoman Turks.

13/5/1717, Maria Theresa, Empress of Austria, was born in Vienna.

30/4/1711, The Peace of Szatmar effected a reconciliation between the absolutist Hapsburg Austrian monarchy and the Hungarians.

6/7/1686. The Austrians took Buda from the Ottoman Turks and annexed Hungary.

11/9/1683. The conquering armies of Islam under Vizier Kara Mustafa were defeated at the gates of Vienna. The Turks had been besieging Vienna since July 1683. Relief came under Poland’s King John III and Charles, Duke of Normandy. The Ottoman Sultan ordered Mustafa to commit suicide.

1/4/1683, Poland made a treaty of mutual defence with the Holy Roman Emperor Leopold I, against the threat from Ottoman Turkey

14/3/1647, The Treaty of Ulm. Elector Maximillian I of Bavaria made an agreement with France to end his alliance with Ferdinand III, Holy Roman Emperor.

6/3/1645, Battle of Jankow, Bohemia.

9/6/1642, Battle of Schweidnitz, Moravia.

30/5/1635, The Peace of Prague was signed, ending the Thirty Years War.

8/11/1620, Protestant Bohemian forces were defeated by the Catholics under Maximillian  at the Battle of the White Mountain (Thirty Years War)

3/7/1620, The Treaty of Ulm was signed.

5/8/1619, In the Thirty Years War, Bohemian forces defeated the Austrians at the Battle of Vestonice.

10/6/1619, In the Thirty Years War, Protestant forces were defeated at the Battle of Zablati.

23/5/1618, The defenestration of Prague.  Rebel nobles hurled the Holy Roman Emperor’s  advisers from the windows of Hradcany Castle (they survived due to landing in a refuse heap), triggering the Thirty Years War (Reformation). Rebel Protestant Bohemian nobles were in protest against their Catholic King, who had been elected as Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand II. The conflict this started spread to involve other European powers, who were eager to cash in on the weakened state of a severely-split Germany.

6/5/1600, Prince Sigismund Bathory of Transylvania lost the city of Suceava to Michael the Brave of Hungary.  The districts of Transylvania, Moldovia, and Wallachia became united for the first time as Romania, but the union dissolved a year later when Michael the Brave was killed.

29/8/1526, The Battle of Mohacs.  The Turkish army under Suleiman I defeated the Hungarians under King Loius II, who was killed whilst retreating.  Suleiman took Buda, whilst Archduke Ferdinand of Austria and John Zapolya, Prince of Transylvania, disputed over the succession. As a result of this dispute, Dubrovnik achieved independence, although it recognised Turkish overlordship. The Hapsburgs now ruled Bohemia and Hungary.

1516, Prince Durad V Crnojevic of Montenegro handed over power to a Christian Orthodox Bishop and retired to Venice. This conversion of Montenegro to a Christian theocracy was intended to preserve its autonomy in the face of Ottoman expansion into SE Europe. As bishops were supposed to be celibate, the hereditary inheritance of Montenegro’s rule passed from uncle to nephew. This arrangement lasted until 1816 when princes began ruling again.

6/4/1490, Matthias Corvinus, King of Hungary, died suddenly, aged 50. He was succeeded by Ladislas II of Bohemia.

17/6/1462, Vlad the Impaler, or Dracula, massacred an Ottoman army, killing 15,000, near Targoviste, capital of Wallachia.

22/7/1456,  John Hunyadi, King of the Hungarians, defeated an invading Ottoman Turkish army at Belgrade. This halted the ambitions of Sultan Mahomet II to occupy Vienna and then Rome, which Mahomet regarded as still the ‘capital of Europe’.

27/3/1443, Matthius Corvinus, King of Hungary, second son of John Hunyadi, was born.

27/10/1439. Death of King Albert II of Hungary at Langendorf, from dysentery, whilst fighting the Turks. Born in 1397, he reigned less than two years and spent this in the defence of Hungary against the Turks.

10/8/1397, Albert II, King of Bohemia and Hungary (died 27/10/1439) was born.

20/12/1355. Stephen Urosh of Serbia died whilst on route to attack Constantinople. Under his reign Serbia had expanded greatly, conquering Macedonia, Epirus, and Thessaly, as well as maintaining his father’s conquest of Bulgaria. However, see 15/6/1389.

26/8/1346. John the Blind, King of Bohemia, was killed at Crecy whilst assisting the French. Born on 10/8/1296, son of Count Henry III of Luxembourg (later Emperor Henry III), he married (1310) the heiress of the Kingdom of Bohemia, thereby becoming its King in 1311. He acquired Silesia from Poland. In 1334 he married Beatrix of the House of Bourbon, thereby allying with France. He had been blind from 1340.

1/11/1339, Rudolf IV, Duke of Austria, was born.

10/8/1296, John the Blind, King of Bohemia, was born, see 26/8/1346.

10/7/1290, Ladislaus IV, King of Hungary, was murdered.

25/8/1278, Ottokar II, King of Bohemia, was killed in the Battle of Durnkrut. Ottokar II had previously lost a battle with Rudolf I of Hapsburg (Habichtsburg, or Hawk’s castle, a town now in Switzerland) in 1276; refusing to accept this defeat, he prepared to attack again. However Rudolf launched a pre-emptive strike, with 2,000 horsemen, and the support of Ladislav of Hungary. This battle paved the way for the rise of the Hapsburg Dynasty.

6/8/1272, Stephen V, King of Hungary, died.

1257, End of the Asen Dynasty of kings of Bulgaria (began 1187).

11/4/1241, The Mongols defeated King Bela IV of Hungary at Mohi.

9/4/1241. The Mongols defeated an army of Teutonic Knights at the Battle of Liegnitz, Silesia.

2/2/1207, Terra Mariana, comprising present-day Estonia and Latvia, was established as a principality of the Holy Roman Empire.

1155, The Margravate of Austria was made a Duchy after 180 years of rule by the Babenberg family

28/9/990. King Wenceslas of Bohemia, the Good King Wenceslas of the Christmas carol, died in Stara Boleslav.

976, The start of modern-day Austria, as a Margravate on the Danube granted by Holy Roman Emperor Otto II to the Franconian Count Leopold (Luipold); Leopold’s Babenberg family ruled the Margravate until 1246.

925, Start of the Kingdom of Croatia.

4/7/907. The Bavarians suffered a disastrous defeat by the Hungarians.

2/5/907, King Boris I of Bulgaria died.

9/4/809, The Bulgars captured Sofia.


3,500 BCE, Earliest copper mines sunk, in Yugoslavia and Bulgaria.


Appendix 1 – Albania from 1910

7/3/1997. Albania dissolved into chaos, and military firearms depots were looted.

31/3/1991, Albania had its first multi-party elections.

9/3/1991. Albanian troops fired on 4,000 people trying to board a boat to flee to Italy. In Yugoslavia, a crowd of at least 70,000 fought with riot police in Belgrade. The crowd was demanding an end to Communist control of the media. One 18 year old youth was killed by a rubber bullet and over 70 others were injured. Police used live ammunition and water cannon as well as rubber bullets. The crowd marched on parliament and the television centre.

20/2/1991, The President of Albania, Ramiz Alia, dismissed the government headed by Prime Minister of Albania Adil Carcani in an effort to stem prodemocracy protests. Fatos Nano was sworn in as Prime Minister on 22/2/1991.

7/1/1991, 5,000 Albanians of Greek ethnicity fled to Greece as chaos mounted in Albania.

1/1/1991, Albanian President Ramiz Alia promised that elections would soon be held, ending 43 years of Communist dictatorship.

13/7/1990, 4,500 Albanian refugees arrived at the Italian port of Brindisi.

15/9/1987, West Germany established diplomatic relations with Albania.

11/4/1985. In Albania, Communist leader Enver Hoxha died, aged 78,after 41 years in power. He was succeeded as Head of the Albanian Communist Party by Ramiz Alia.

22/11/1982, Ramiz Alia became new Head of State in Albania, succeeding Haxhi Lleshi/

1967, Albania declared itself an atheist State; most churches and mosques were closed.

30/5/1950. Yugoslavia and Albania severed relations.

11/1/1946. General Enver Hoxha’s “Democratic Front” won 95% of the vote in Albania and proclaimed a People's Republic. King Zog of Albania had been deposed on 2/1/1946. See 7/4/1939.

2/1/1946. King Zog of Albania was deposed in his absence. He was born Ahmed Bey Zogu, a member of the Zogolli family. The Zogolli led a powerful Moslem faction in the mountains of Albania, so when in 1912 Zog joined the powerful anti-Turkish movement, pressing for Albanian independence, Muslims abandoned traditional religious ties in a push for national freedom. Under King William, Zog achieved high office and in 1922 became Prime Minister. He was forced to flee abroad in 1924 but returned to Albania in 1925 to become President of Albania. He played off various opposing factions within the religiously divided state and gathered enough personal power to have himself declared King in 1928. However he was unable to withstand Mussolini in Italy and had to allow the Italians to invade in 1939 to prepare to invade Greece. His credibility ruined, Zog was easily ousted by the Communists in 1946.

10/11/1945, The Communist Enver Hoxha established a Republican government in Albania, recognised by the UK, USA, and the USSR.

15/10/1944, Sali Berisha, President of Albania, was born.

For more events of World War Two in Europe see France-Germany

10/1942, In Albania the Balli Kombetar,the national resistance movement to Axis occupation, was formed. Led by Ali Klissura and Midhat Frasheri, it was a liberal-Communist organisation. It wished to include Kosovo in a future independent Albania; however the other A;lbanian resistance movement, the Communist resistance (under pressure from their Yugloslav backers) did not desire Kosovo to be part of Albania. Under Allied insoistence these two resistance groups joined forces in 1943. After World War Two ended the leaders of Balli Kombetar were mostly purged as Enver Hoxha strove to eliminate all internal dissent to his regime.

1/9/1928. Zogu was proclaimed King Zog I of Albania.

24/12/1924. Albania was declared a republic.

4/6/1924, Anti-government forces in Albania took Shkoder.

30/5/1913. Turkey signed a peace treaty with the Balkan League (the Treaty of London), ending their war.  Under this Treaty Salonika was formally assigned to Greece. The Great Powers formally recognised Albanian sovereignty.

25/12/1912, Italy sent troops to Albania to suppress unrest there.


Appendix 2 – Austria from 1859

15/10/2017, Elections in Austria produced gains for the far-right party, over issues of immigration.

22/5/2016, In Austrian Presidential elections, Mr Norbert Hofer of the far-Right lost to Mr Alexander Van der Bellen of the Greens by the narrow margin of 0.6%. The result was connected to rising concern about migration into Europe from Asia and Africa.

26/4/2008, Police arrested Josef Fritzl in Amstetten, Austria, after he held women and children for years in a dungeon below his home. He was jailed for life in March 2009.

20/2/2006, British historian David Irving was sentenced to three years in prison by an Austrian court for Holocaust denial.

11/11/2000, A fire on a funicular railway in the Austrian ski resort of Kaprun killed 155 holidaymakers.

8/7/1992, Thomas Klestil became President of Austria

21/1/1987, In Austria, a coalition government under Dr Franz Ranitzky took office.

8/6/1986, Kurt Waldheim was elected president of Austria, amid controversy over his alleged collaboration with the Nazis in World War Two.  He was inaugurated on 8/7/1986.

18/11/1977, Kurt von Schuschnigg, Austrian politician, died.

21/12/1975, Left wing terrorists, including Carlos The Jackal, kidnapped delegates of an OPEC conference in Vienna. They killed three hostages, extorted US$ 3 million, and vanished into the Middle East.

1/3/1970, Socialists won an unexpected victory in Austrian general elections.

22/6/1956, In Austria, following the general election of 13/5/1956, Julius Raab formed a coalition government of the People’s Party and the Socialists.

15/5/1955. Austria became de jure an independent state within its 1937 borders under the Austrian State Treaty, signed by the USA, USSR, France, and Britain (see 7/1/1946). All the four-power occupation forces were withdrawn by 25/10/1955. On 5/11/1955 Austria declared itself constitutionally to be permanently neutral.

30/12/1954, Archduke Eugen, Austrian field marshal, died aged 91.

7/1/1946. Austria was established as a de facto independent state, divided into four zones of military occupation, as was Germany. See 15/5/1955. Vienna was also divided into four zones, apart from the Innere Stadt district which was occupied jointly by all four powers (Britain, France, the USA, and the USSR).

For more events of World War Two in Europe see France-Germany

11/8/1939, The Axis Conference opened at Salzburg.

22/4/1937. The Austrian Chancellor, Schuschnigg, met Mussolini.

21/5/1936, In Austria, Kurt Schusnigg was made leader of the Fatherland Front, the only permitted Party.

1/4/1936. Austria introduced conscription.

4/7/1935, Austria, encouraged by Mussolini, abolished anti-Hapsburg laws and restored some imperial property.

14/3/1935, Anton Rintelen was sentenced to life imprisonment for his involvement in the July Putsch.

30/4/1934, Chancellor Dollfuss became dictator of Austria.

17/2/1934. A Socialist revolt in Austria was brutally crushed.

30/1/1934. All Austrian political parties were banned except the 'Fatherland Front'. 

10/11/1933. Dollfuss declared martial law in Austria.

29/3/1933, Austrian Nazis staged a large demonstration, in defiance of Chancellor Dollfuss. Meanwhile Germany instituted a punitive 1,000 Mark tourist tax on any German visiting Austria, which severely damaged the Austrian tourist industry.

7/3/1933. Chancellor Dollfuss suspended the Austrian Parliament.

27/7/1932, Archduchess Gisela of Austria died, aged 76.

20/5/1932, Engelbert Dolfuss, Austrian Chancellor, formed a coalition government of Christian Socialists and Agrarians.

13/9/1931, In Austria, an attempted Fascist coup by the Heimwehr under Dr Pfrimer failed.

9/11/1930. Social Democrats won elections to the Austrian Parliament.

30/4/1929, Ernst Streeruwitz was appointed Chancellor of Austria.

5/12/1928, Wilhelm Miklas was elected President of Austria, succeeding Michael Hainish.

15/7/1927. Vienna faced a General Strike as Socialists rioted. The left wing was upset that Austrian courts were much more lenient on offences committed by right-wing offenders, even up to murder.

15/10/1926, Ignaz Seipel formed a Christian Socialist Government in Austria, replacing Rudolf Ramek.

9/12/1920, Michael Hainish elected first President of Austria.

10/9/1919, The Treaty of St Germain was signed by the Allies with Austria at the Paris Peace Conference. Austria had to pay large reparations to the Allies, and recognise the independence of Yugoslavia, Poland, Czechoslovakia and Hungary.

10/6/1919, Austria protested against the terms of the Paris Peace Conference.

11/5/1919, The population of Vorarlberg, the westernmost province of Austria, voted for union with Switzerland by a large majority.  However this transfer was not supported by the Allies or the Swiss Government, and Vorarlberg became one of the nine Austrian Bundeslander.

12/11/1918, The Republic of Austria was declared, ending the Hapsburg Dynasty, as Emperor Charles abdicated.

For main European events of World War One see France-Germany

21/11/1916. Emperor Franz Josef, ruler of the Austro-Hungarian Empire since 1848, died. He was succeeded by his 29-year old grandson, Charles I.

23/7/1914. Austria determined that the government of Serbia was involved in the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand on 28/6/1914, and sent an ultimatum to the President of Serbia, Narodna Odbrana, drafted so as to prepare for war with Serbia. The terms were designed to be too humiliating for Serbia to accept. In fact Serbia accepted most of the terms, but insisted that an Austro-Serbian judicial enquiry into the assassination would be subject to Serbian law, and Austria rejected this condition. See 28/7/1914. Austria’s real issue with Serbia was that it blocked potential Austrian territorial expansion southwards into the Balkans, to give Austria domination of the Aegean Sea.

5/12/1912, Italy, Germany and Austria renewed their Triple alliance for a further six years.

15/11/1908. Austria sent troops to the Serbian frontier.

7/10/1908. Austria annexed Bosnia-Herzegovina, taking advantage of instability within the Ottoman Empire. Though formally part of the Ottoman Empire, its Serb-Croat population favoured union with Serbia. Other European countries were shocked at Austria’s move. Serbia was especially angry that Serbs in the region had not got autonomy. However Russia agreed with Austria not to oppose this annexation in return for Austria supporting the opening of the Dardanelles to Russian warships. Turkey accepted cash compensation for the loss of Bosnia and Hercegovina on 12/1/1909. See 1/12/1908.

10/1/1907, Austria passed a Bill giving the vote to all males aged 24 and over.

16/9/1903, Franz Joseph of Austria proposed to bring Hungarian Army regiments in under a unified military command. This provoked opposition from the Magyars.

23/6/1902. Germany, Austro-Hungary, and Italy renewed the Triple Alliance.

14/12/1897, Kurt Schusnigg, Austrian politician, was born.

4/10/1892, Engelbert Dolfuss, Austrian dictator, was born.

6/5/1891. The Triple Alliance between Germany, Austria, and Italy was renewed.

20/5/1882. Austria formed a Triple Alliance with Germany and Italy; this threatened Russia.

8/7/1876. The Austrian and Russian foreign Ministers, Andrassy and Gorchakov, met at the Reichstadt in Bohemia to discuss the future of the Balkans on the conclusion of the current conflict.

15/3/1867. Austria and Hungary buried their differences and agreed to joint rule, sharing defence, foreign, and financial matters but with separate parliaments. However the Czechs, annoyed by the minor role they were given in this arrangement, walked out of the Parliament on 22/8/1868.

8/2/1867, As Prussia became increasingly powerful under Prime Minister Otto von Bismarck and King Wilhelm I, political differences between Germany and the Hapsburgs of Austria, who had ruled Austria since 1278. This weakened Austria to the point where Hungary threatened to break away, and to save the unity of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Austria was forced to agree to a Dual Monarchy, where each State had a separate government and a convoluted system of joint Ministers to oversee the Empire. However this in turn alienated ethnic minorities within Austro-Hungary, ultimately sparking off demands for Serbian independence and the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand that led to World War One.

3/10/1866, A peace treaty was concluded between Austria and Italy.  Austria surrendered Venetia to Italy. 

23/8/1866. The Treaty of Prague was signed, ending the war between Austria and Prussia.

24/6/1866, The Italians fighting the Austrians were defeated at Custozza.

14/6/1866, The brief Austro-Prussian War began, over a dispute between Prussia and Austria over the Duchies of Schleswig and Holstein.

10/11/1859, A peace treaty signed at Zurich ended the war between France, allied to Piedmont, and Austria. The effects of the treaty were crucial in the unification of Italy. Under its terms, Lombardy passed from Austria to Piedmont, with the exception of the Quadrilateral forts (see 24/6/1859) which were retained by Austria. Piedmont compensated France 60 million lire for the cost of the war with Austria. Plebiscites were held in various territories to determine which State they would join.


Appendix 3 – Bulgaria from 1861

19/1/1992, Zhelyu Zhelev was elected President of Bulgaria.

14/10/1991 Communist rule ended in Bulgaria.

15/12/1989, In Bulgaria, 50,000 demonstrators outside Parliament demanded the end of Communist rule.

26/11/1989. The Bulgarian government voted to disband the secret police.

3/11/1989. Political unrest in Bulgaria.

1/2/1950, In Bulgaria, Viko Chervenkov became Prime Minister on the death of Vasil Kolarov

21/11/1946, Bulgarian Communist Georgi Dimitrov returned from Moscow to become President of Bulgaria.

16/9/1946, King Simeon and the Queen Mother left Bulgaria.

15/9/1946, The Bulgarian People’s Republic was proclaimed.

10/9/1946, A referendum in Bulgaria gave a 92% vote in favour of a Republic. 

8/9/1946. Communists took control in Bulgaria. 

For more events of World War Two in Europe see France-Germany

28/8/1943, Boris III, Tsar of Bulgaria, died.

2/9/1940, To bring Bulgaria onto the Axis side, Germany awarded it the Southern Dobruja, from Romania.  See 1/3/1941.

15/9/1939, Bulgaria declared its neutrality and attempted to remain out of the Second World War.

19/5/1934. In Bulgaria, Fascists seized power in a coup aided by King Boris.

1930, The Balkan Entente was set up. It included Greece, Romania, Turkey and Yugoslavia; it was essentially a defensive alliance against the expansionist aims of Bulgaria, which was seeking to regain territories lost to Greece and Yugoslavia under the Treaty of Neuilly (1919). In the 1930, as authoritarian regimes gained power in all members of the Balkan Entente, the entire region moved politically closer to Germany and Italy.

13/1/1928. Allied military control in Bulgaria ended.

4/1/1926, In Bulgaria a moderate Government took power, and offered an amnesty to all political prisoners except Communists.

14/6/1923, ex-Prime Minister Stamboliski of Bulgaria was shot whilst trying to ‘escape’. On 9/6/1923 he had been ejected in a coup, after his policies had antagonised the military.

27/11/1919. Bulgaria signed the Treaty of Neuilly, recognising the independence of Yugoslavia.  Western Thrace was ceded to Greece, thereby cutting off Bulgaria from the Mediterranean, and two small regions were ceded to Yugoslavia.  The southern Dobruja was  retained by Romania.  Bulgaria was liable to pay reparations and its army limited to 20,000 men.

3/10/1918, Tsar Ferdinand of Bulgaria abdicated, following the defeat of the Bulgarian Army the previous month in Macedonia. He was succeeded by his 22-year-old son, Boris I.

17/10/1915. Russia and Italy followed Britain and France in declaring war on Bulgaria.

16/10/1915. The Allies blockaded Bulgarian ports.  France declared war on Bulgaria.

15/10/1915. Britain declared war on Bulgaria. France declared war on Bulgaria on 16/10/1915.

14/10/1915. Bulgaria and Serbia each declared war on the other.

12/10/1915. The UK government broke off relations with Bulgaria.

22//9/1915. Bulgaria mobilised its army and declared war on Serbia.

For main European events of World War One see France-Germany

16/9/1915, Bulgaria formed an alliance with Germany.

6/9/1915. Bulgaria signed a military accord with Germany and Austria.  Bulgaria was seeking territory held by Greece and Serbia that it felt should be Bulgarian, see 10/8/1913.  See 15/9/1915.

29/6/1913. Bulgaria signed a defensive pact with Austro-Hungary.

13/2/1912, Bulgaria and Serbia signed an agreement forming the Balkan League.

21/2/1909, Ferdinand I of Bulgaria visited Russia to obtain the financial aid he needed to pay Ottoman Turkey an indemnity for Bulgarian independence.

22/9/1908, Bulgaria declared its independence from Ottoman Turkey.

18/9/1885, Eastern Rumelia, formerly a province of Turkey, proclaimed its unity with Bulgaria to its north.

3/1/1879, Sofia was designated the capital of Bulgaria.

4/1/1878, Sofia was captured by Russian troops from the Ottoman Empire.

26/2/1861, Ferdinand I, King of Bulgaria, was born.


Appendix 4 – Czechia and Slovakia from 1867

21/10/2017, Elections in the Czech Republic produced gains for the Populist Right.

26/9/2000, Anti-globalisation protests in Prague.  Some 15,000 protestors turned violent during the IMF and World Bank Summits.

26/1/1993. Vaclav Havel became the first president of the new Czech Republic. He was a centre-right candidate, opposed by Communists and the extreme-right Republican Party.

1/1/1993.  Czechoslovakia split into the Czech and Slovak Republics, in a ‘velvet divorce’.

25/11/1992, The Czechoslovak National Assembly voted for the country to split into the Czech Republic and Slovakia, on 1 January 1993.

20/7/1992, Vaclav Havel resigned as President of Czechoslovakia. This was after a proclamation of sovereignty by Slovakia, which was to split the country in two.

18/11/1991, Gustav Husak, former President of Czechoslovakia and Communist Party leader, who crushed the Prague Spring in 1968, died in Prague aged 78.

15/2/1991, The Visegrad Agreement was signed; the leaders of Czechoslovakia, Hungary, and Poland agreed to move towards free-market systems.

10/6/1990, In Czechoslovakia, Vaclav Havel’s Civic Forum Party and its Slovak allies won 170 out of the 300 seats. Tough economic reforms lay ahead.

29/12/1989, (1) The Czechs elect playwright Vaclav Havel as President.

(2) Alexander Dubcek, the reformist leader sacked in 1968 was elected leader of Czechoslovakia’s federal assembly.

10/12/1989, Czechoslovakia convened a ‘Government of National Understanding; Gustav Husak was removed from the office of President.

5/12/1989, Czechoslovakia opened its border with the West.

24/11/1989, Czechoslovak General Secretary Gustav Husak resigned.

20/11/1989, Major anti-government demonstrations in Czechoslovakia.

17/11/1989, In Czechoslovakia, students protesting peacefully in Prague were severely beaten by riot police. This sparked a revolution which toppled the Communist government on 29/12/1989. Protestors grew from 200,000 on 19/11/1989 to an estimated 500,000 on 20/11/1989.

14/11/1989. Czechoslovakia lifted travel restrictions.

27/9/1969, Purge of reformers in Czechoslovak Government.

17/5/1989, The Communist Government of Czechoslovakia freed playwright Vaclav Havel after he served just three months of a nine month sentence.

21/2/1989. Czech writer Vaclav Havel was jailed for anti-government demonstrations.

19/1/1989, Police in Prague used tear gas and water cannon to break up a large demonstration commemorating te 20th anniversary of the death of Jan Palach, a student who burnt himself to death in protest at the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968. The 1989 protests were led by Vaclav Havel, a dissident writer who led the Charter 77 human rights movement.

17/12/1987, Gustav Husak resigned as General Secretary of the Czechoslovak Communist Party; succeeded by Milos Jakes.

23/12/1979. In Czechoslovakia, playwright Vaclav Havel was convicted of subversion.

13/3/1977, Czech secret police tortured to death the leader of the Charter 77 Movement, Jan Potocka.

7/1/1977, Civil Rights campaigners in Czechoslovakia published their Charter 77, following the signing by the Czechoslovak Government of the International Convention on Human Rights in 1976. In practice, many civil rights such as freedom of expression had been suppressed following the ‘normalisation’ that followed the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968. The Charter’s signatories included Jiri Hajek, who was Czechoslovak Foreign Minister in 1968, and the writer Vaclav Havel. The signatories were greatly harassed by the Communist administration, but the Charter contributed to the downfall of Communism in Czechoslovakia in 1989, when Havel became President.

28/1/1975, Antonin Novotkny, Czechoslovak politician, died aged 70.

26/6/1970, Dubcek was expelled from the Czech Communist Party.

15/12/1969. Dubcek was made Czechoslovak Ambassador to Turkey. He was expelled from the Czech Communist party on 26/6/1970.

17/4/1969, Alexander Dubcek was replaced as First Secretary of the Czech Communist Party.

19/1/1969, A 21-year-old student, Jan Palach, set himself on fire in Wenceslas Square, Prague, in protest at the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia.

16/10/1968, The Czechoslovak Government signed, under duress, an agreement that Warsaw Pact troops would remain in the country indefinitely.

13/9/1968, Press censorship was reimposed in Czechoslovakia.

27/8/1968. Russian patrols watched the streets of Prague after a failed anti – Communist uprising. Tanks had first entered Czechoslovakia on 20/8/1968. The Soviets overthrow President Dubcek, and 175,000 troops, mostly Russian, occupied the major cities of Czechoslovakia. Prague was put under curfew. 20 people were reported dead and at least 200 injured, many of them students, after the anti-Soviet protests.

22/8/1968, Soviet tanks entered Prague.

21/8/1968, President Dubcek was arrested and taken to Moscow. He returned to Czechoslovakia on 27/8/1968, having agreed to Soviet demands.

20/8/1968. (+8,505) Russia sent tanks into Czechoslovakia. Dubcek had said on 18/7/1968 he would not go back on his progressive policies, see 5/4/1968.

29/7/1968, President Dubcek met with Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev in the village of Cierna nad Tisou (on the Czech-USSR border). Brezhnev agreed that Czechoslovakia could follow ‘its own road to Socialism’ and Dubcek promised ‘Socialist solidarity’. The meeting closed on 1/8/1968.

18/7/1968, Dubcek said he would not go back on his progressive policies, see 20/8/1968.

16/7/1968, Other Warsaw Pact leaders, from East Germany, Hungary, Poland and Bulgaria, declared the Czechoslovak reforms unacceptable.

14/7/1968, Soviet troops failed to leave Czechoslovakia after Warsaw Pact exercises.

9/7/1968, Czechoslovakia rejected a demand by Russia for a meeting of Communist Party leaders.

27/6/1968, The Czechoslovak National Assembly passed laws abolishing censorship and rehabilitating political prisoners.

19/4/1968, Josef Smirnovsky, chairman of the Czechoslovak National Assembly, promised freedom of press, assembly and religion.

8/4/1968, New Czechoslovak government took office, under Oldrich Cernik.

5/4/1968, In Czechoslovakia, Dubcek began a programme of reform which was to lead to a measure of political democracy and restoration of personal freedoms, see 5/1/1968 and 20/8/1968.

23/3/1968, President Dubcek was summoned to an emergency Warsaw Pact meeting to try and stop his liberal policies in Czechoslovakia.

13/3/1968. Dubcek abolished press censorship in Czechoslovakia.

5/1/1968. Alexander Dubcek became the Czech leader, replacing Novotkny.  Czech discontent at oppressive government from Prague and economic exploitation by the USSR led to criticism of the Communist leader of Czechoslovakia, Novotny (see 25/2/1948), at a Workers Union Congress in June 1967, and to student demonstrations in October 1967.  See 5/4/1968.

21/9/1963, Vilian Siroky, Czechoslovak Prime Minister, was dismissed. Jozef Lenart became Prime Minister. Lenart was a pragmatic reformer who succeeded in boosting the Czechoslovak economy. However he became less in favour of political reform and was dismissed when the 1968 Prague Spring began.

29/11/1954, General Elections in Czechoslovakia. All candidates were Communist-controlled.

28/5/1953, In Soviet Czechoslovakia, a law was passed introducing short term conscription of labour. Citizens were required to work ‘voluntarily’ for 12 days a year, at weekends or during holidays. ‘Volunteers’ who declined could be imprisoned.

3/9/1948, Eduard Benes, Czech President until the Communist take-over, died.  See 6/6/1948.

6/6/1948,  In Prague, President Benes resigned.  He had been attempted to maintain a neutral government in Czechoslovakia but the Communist, Klement Gottwald succeeded in introducing a Russian-oriented political system.  Benes died three months later (3/9/1948), a broken man.

10/3/1948, Ian Masaryk, Czech politician, died in Prague under suspicious circumstances after the Communists gained control.

25/2/1948. Communists seized power in Czechoslovakia.  In Czech elections in May 1946 the Communists, under Gottwald, secured 114 of the 300 seats and became leader of a coalition government.  However by 1948 the Communists were losing popularity in Czechoslovakia, because Gottwald had declined Marshall Aid and because he was appointing his own supporters to senior positions in the police force.  A new Czech election was due in May 1948; before this could take place Gottwald organised what was effectively a Communist Revolution, backed by the workers militia and the police; there were no Soviet troops in Czechoslovakia at this time.  Gottwald died in March 1953 and was succeeded as Communist dictator by Novotny, who ruled until early 1968.  See 5/1/1968.

18/4/1947, Tiso was executed, see 22/5/1945.

26/5/1946. The Communists gained power in Czechoslovakia.

22/5/1945, Tiso, President of ‘Slovakia’, was arrested whilst in hiding in Austria.  He was tried for wartime collaboration in a Czechoslovak court and sentenced to death in April 1947.  Some Czechoslovaks pressed for a reprieve but the national government wanted the death sentence and he was executed, see 26/10/1939 and 18/4/1947.

For main European events of World War One see France-Germany

29/8/1939, Jozef Tiso declared martial law in Slovakia. Articles were posted ordering Slovaks to accept German currency and furnish food to the German soldiers "here to protect our young state against the threatening Polish danger.

16/3/1939, Slovakia became a German protectorate.

14/3/1939, Josef Tiso proclaimed the independent people’s republic of Slovakia, see 26/10/1939.

8/10/1938. Ruthenia granted autonomy.

6/10/1938. Slovakia granted autonomy. In Britain 30 Tory MPs protested at Chamberlain’s appeasement, uneasy that one country had been allowed to win by force against another.

14/9/1937, Thomas Masaryk, the first president of Czechoslovakia when that country was formed in 1918, died aged 87.

5/10/1936. Vaclav Havel, Czech playwright, human rights campaigner, and President, was born.

14/12/1935, Thomas Masaryk, first President of Czechoslovakia, resigned aged 85. He was succeeded by Edward Benes.

5/11/1935, In Czechoslovakia, Milan Hodza, Agrarian Party, formed a government.

16/2/1933, Fearing German aggression, Czechoslovakia, Romania and Yugoslavia formed the Little Entente, with a Permanent Council,

27/10/1929, Elections in Czechoslovakia were won by the Republican Party of Agricultural and Smallholder Peoples.

27/5/1927, Tomas Masaryk was re-elected President of Czechoslovakia.

3/2/1926. Czech became the official language of Czechoslovakia.

27/11/1921, Alexander Dubcek, Czechoslovak politician, was born in Uhrovek.

23/4/1921, Czechoslovakia and Romania formed an alliance.

22/1/1919, Czechoslovakia occupied Teschen (Tesin).

14/11/1918. Tomas Masaryk was elected first President of Czechoslovakia.

30/10/1918. The Czechoslovak Republic was proclaimed.  It was led by Jan Masaryk and Eduard Benes.

28/10/1918, Czechoslovakia declared its independence.

14/10/1918, The Czechoslovak National Council, meeting in Paris, organised a provisional Government headed by Thomas Masaryk as President.

30/9/1918. Slovak Nationalist parties in Hungary voted to join with Czechoslovakia.  However the Slovaks soon found the Czech government more centralist than they expected, or desired, and pressure grew for Slovak separation from Czechoslovakia.

16/9/1916. A provisional ‘government of Czechoslovakia’ was recognised by Britain and France.

For main European events of World War One see France-Germany

28/5/1884, Eduard Benes, Czech politician and founder of modern Czechoslovakia, was born in Kozlany, Bohemia.

7/3/1850, Thomas Masaryk, the first President of Czechoslovakia in 1918, was born in Hodonin, Moravia.

15/3/1867. Austria and Hungary buried their differences and agreed to joint rule, sharing defence, foreign, and financial matters but with separate parliaments. However the Czechs, annoyed by the minor role they were given in this arrangement, walked out of the Parliament on 22/8/1868.


Appendix 5 – Hungary from 1867

16/6/1991. The Soviet Army finally left Hungary after 47 years.

15/2/1991, The Visegrad Agreement was signed; the leaders of Czechoslovakia, Hungary, and Poland agreed to move towards free-market systems.

26/2/1990. Soviet troops began withdrawing from Hungary. By July 1991, all 73,500 should have gone.

7/10/1989. The Hungarian Communist party changed its name to the Socialist Party.

27/9/1989. Hungary abolished its restrictive emigration laws.

16/9/1989. Hungary opened its border with Austria to refuges fleeing the East on 11/9/1989. At least 16,000 East German refugees cross from Hungary into Austria.

10/9/1989, Hungary began accepting many refugees from East Germany. Hungary opened its border with Austria, providing a route to the West. The East German Government condemned the move as ‘treachery’.

23/8/1989, Hungary removed all border restrictions with Austria.

15/3/1989. 15,000 Hungarians marched in Budapest, calling for democracy.

11/2/1989, Political Parties were allowed in Hungary.

17/6/1958. Ex-Hungarian Prime Minister Imre Nagy was executed after a secret trial, two years after the suppressed Hungarian Revolution.

10/12/1956,  Martial law was declared in Hungary.

9/11/1956. The UN told the USSR to leave Hungary.

4/11/1956, 16 Soviet divisions moved into Hungary, with 2,000 tanks, to suppress the Hungarian Revolution.

28/10/1956, Imre Nagy ordered a cease fire by security forces.

27/10/1956, Prime Minister Imre Nagy formed a new Hungarian Government, see 5/11/1956.

25/10/1956. In Poland, thousands demonstrated in favour of the new regime in Hungary. Hungarian security forces fired on demonstrators near the Hungarian Parliament, killing some 600 people.

24/10/1956, The Hungarian Government declared martial law and Soviet tanks appeared in Budapest.

23/10/1956. Anti Communist uprising began in Hungary, see 5/11/1956. Protests were against the pro-Soviet regime which had replaced the reforming regime of Imre Nagy. Stalin's statue in Budapest was torn down and the return of Nagy only served to inflame matters further. The uprising was crushed on 26/10/1956.

5/7/1953, In Hungary, Matyas Rakosi was replaced as Prime Minister by Imre Nagy. This led to a more relaxed regime.

14/8/1952, In Hungary, Matyas Rakosi, Secretary of the |Hungarian Workers Party, was also appointed Prime Minister.

7/9/1950. All religions were dissolved in Hungary.

26/12/1948, In Hungary, the Protestant and Jewish communities accepted compensation payments for the government nationalisation of their religious schools. However the Hungarian Catholic Church, under the authority of Cardinal Jozsef Mindszenty, refused to accept this measure. On this day Mindszenty was arrested, and on 8/2/1949 sentenced to life imprisonment.

14/6/1948, In Hungary the Social Democrats, under force-majeure, reluctantly agreed to merge with the Communists to form the Hungarian Workers Party.

31/8/1947. The Communists won Hungarian elections.

1/2/1946. Hungary declared itself a republic.

21/1/1945, Russia and Hungary signed an armistice. Hungarian borders were returned to their position at 31/12/1937, renouncing the Vienna Awards.

4/11/1945. General election in Hungary. Communists won just 17% of the vote, with the Smallholders Party winning with 60% of the vote. Zoltan Tildy of the Smallholders Party formed a coalition government.

24/10/1945. In Hungary, key industries and the banking sector were nationalised, as part of the Kosice Programme.

18/6/1945, In Hungary, as part of the Kosice Programme, the expulsion of all Germans and Magyars who had not been anti-Fascists was ordered. They had mostly left by the end of 1946. Large Hungarian estates were expropriated and converted into State farms.

8/5/1945, The Second World War officially ended in Europe, at one minute past midnight. Some 400,000 Hungarians had been killed, and excesses such as rapes by Soviet troops, summary arrests, and deportations to Soviet labour camps continued after this date. Total property damage at 22 billion pre-War Pengo amounted to five times national income for 1938 and about 40% of the country’s total wealth. All bridges over the rivers Danube and Tisza had been destroyed. A quarter of Hungary’s housing stock had been damaged or destroyed, along with half its industrial buildings. Half of all agricultural livestock and a third of agricultural machinery was lost; along with radical Soviet land reform that caused the 1945 harvest to be just 30% of per-War levels. The economy collapsed amidst rampant inflation, with food obtainable only by bartering objects likely to retain some value.

11/4/1941. Hungary regained the Bacska region from Yugoslavia.

30/8/1940, The Second Vienna Award restored the territory of Northern Transylvania to Hungary, from Romania. However Hungary, although succeeding in breaking the power of the ‘Little Entente’ against it (the nations of Czechoslovakia, Romania, Serbia), had only managed to regain some of its lost territories (from the pre-World War One era) by becoming almost totally dependent on the Nazi economy and politics of Germany.

11/4/1939. Hungary left the League of Nations.

4/4/1939, Hungary annexed further territory in eastern Slovakia, giving it a common frontier with Poland.

16/3/1939, Hungary annexed Ruthenia, another part of Czechoslovakia.

24/2/1939, Hungary joined the Anti-Comintern Pact.

2/11/1938, The First Vienna Award returned 12,000 square kilometres of Slovakia, a strip along the Hungarian-Slovakian frontier, to Hungarian rule (see 20/9/1938). There was, however, disappointment in Hungary that a common frontier with Poland had not been attained.

20/9/1938, The Hungarian leaders, Imredy and Kanya, were summoned to Germany. Hitler told them he had no objections to Hungary’s desires to regain Slovakia and Ruthenia, so long as Hungary actively took part in the destruction of Czechoslovakia.

16/10/1937. Fascists formed a Nazi party in Hungary.

4/2/1934, Hungary established diplomatic relations with the USSR.

5/4/1927, Hungary signed a ‘Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation’ with the Italian leader, Mussolini. Hungary needed allies, and Italy strengthened its influence in the Danube Basin.

1/1/1927. Hungary reformed its currency with a new unit, the Pengo, equivalent to 12,500 paper Crowns. The country had suffered rampant inflation in the early 1920s, and the League of Nations now helped with economic reconstruction.

31/1/1923, Hungary was admitted to the League of Nations.

18/9/1922. Hungary applied to join the League of Nations.

1/4/1922, Ex-Emperor Charles of Hungary died in Madeira (see 29/10/1921).

14/12/1921, A (somewhat dubious) plebiscite resulted in the retention by Hungary of the Sopron district, which would otherwise have gone to Austria.

29/10/1921, Ex-Emperor Charles was expelled from Hungary after he mounted a further failed coup bid; he moved to Madeira where he died on 1/4/1922.

7/3/1921, In Hungary, ex-Emperor Charles attempted a coup.

4/6/1920. At Versailles, the Treaty of Trianon cut Hungary to 25% of its former size. See maps at  http://www.dvhh.org/history/1900s/Trianon-index.htm

The population of Hungary was cut from 21 million in 1914 to under 8 million after this Treaty.

1/3/1920, Nicholas Horthy was elected Regent of Hungary, pending a possible restoration of the monarchy.

14/11/1919, Romanian forces withdrew from Budapest, Hungary, which they had occupied since 4/8/1919.

For main European events of World War One see France-Germany

7/11/1919, The Allied War Council demanded the withdrawal of Romanian troops from Hungary.

1/8/1919, In Hungary, the Socialist regime of Bela Kun was overthrown.

22/3/1919. Bela Kun declared Hungary a Soviet Republic.

24/11/1918, The Communist Party of Hungary (Kommunistik Magyarorszagi Partja) was founded, and soon after, started publishing its own newspaper, Voros Ujsag (Red News)

16/11/1918, Hungary was proclaimed an independent Republic.

13/11/1918, Charles, the former Austro-Hungarian Emperor, formally renounced any participation in the Government of Hungary.

17/10/1918. Hungary declared its independence from Austria.

10/1/1913, Gustav Husak, First Secretary of the Hungarian Communist Party, was born.

7/6/1896, Imre Nagy, Prime Minister of Hungary 1953-55 and 1956, was born.

1/1/1873, The cities of Pest, Buda and Obuda were merged to form Budapest.

8/6/1867, The Hapsburg Emperor, Francis Joseph I, was crowned Apostolic King of Hungary at Buda.

15/3/1867. Austria and Hungary buried their differences and agreed to joint rule, sharing defence, foreign, and financial matters but with separate parliaments. However the Czechs, annoyed by the minor role they were given in this arrangement, walked out of the Parliament on 22/8/1868.


Appendix 6 – Romania and Moldova from 1812

2/2000, Former Communists won 70% of the seats in the Moldovan Duma (Parliament) in elections.

6/3/1994, A referendum in Moldova showed the electorate opposed to possible unification with Romania.

26/12/1990, Exiled King Michael of Romania, who fled his country in 1947 at gunpoint for Switzerland, attempted to return to Romania. He landed at Bucharest Airport in a private jet with his wife and daughter. However he was stopped by police who disputed the validity of his travel documents, and sent back to Geneva. The Romanian authorities did not wish to see a Royalist revival, and said Michael could return after the forthcoming elections.

18/11/1990, In Romania the Socialist Party of Labour, a recreated Communist Party, was launched.

28/10/1990. In Moldavia, troops kept ethnic Moldavians and Gaugaz Turks apart.

2/9/1990, Transdnistria declared its independence from the Moldovan SSR; no other country recognised this. Transdnistria has many ethnic Russians and Russia retains a small military force there (2015).

14/6/1990, In Bucharest, Romania, street battles erupted between students demanding democracy and miners supporting the interim regime of Ilescu.

21/5/1990, Ion Iliescu elected President of Romania, in Romania’s first post-Communist free elections.

18/2/1990, Demonstrators in Romania stormed the headquarters of the provisional government, demanding the resignation of President Ion Iliescu and Prime Minister Petre Roman.

2/1/1990. All 40 members of the Romanian Politburo were arrested.

1/1/1990, A week after the death of the Ceausescus, Romania officially abolished the death penalty

25/12/1989, President Ceausescu and his wife were tried and shot. On 27/12/1989 the Romanian press was freed.

22/12/1989. A Romanian revolution overthrew President Nicolae Ceausescu. Ceausescu’s son Nicu was arrested, and the Queen cancelled Nicolae’s honorary knighthood. Ion Iliescu took over as President.

20/12/1989. President Nicolae Ceausescu declared a state of emergency. His last public appearance with his wife Elena was in Bucharest on 21/12/1989. As he addressed the crowd of 100,000, in University Square, there were catcalls of ‘murderers of Timisoara’. Ceausescu was hustled back indoors and Romanian television ceased broadcasting the event. This was the signal for a general uprising that afternoon, and the Securitate began firing indiscriminately into the crowd. Many were wounded or killed but the crowd sensed the army was now with them, except for diehard factions of the Securitate.

17/12/1989. In the town of Timisoara, in Transylvania, Romania, troops fired on 10,000 demonstrators, killing 2,000. Ethnic Hungarians within Romania were protesting against the suppression of the Hungarian language in schools, also books in Hungarian.

24/11/1989. President Ceausescu was re-elected as leader of Romania. However in Czechoslovakia the Communist leadership resigned.

14/4/1988, President Caesescu of Romania announced plans to demolish 8,000 villages and forcibly resettle their population in urban areas.

9/12/1967. Nicolae Ceausescu became President of Romania.

1964, Construction work began on the Iron Gates Dam on the Danube, between Yugoslavia and Romania.

24/9/1952, Romania adopted a revised Constitution, making the Workers Party the only legitimate one.

18/3/1950, Former engine factory foreman Nicolae Ceausescu, the protege of Romanian General Secretary Gheorghe Gheorghiu-Dej, was made a Major General of the Romanian Army, despite having no prior military experience. Ceausescu would continue his rise to power and succeed Gheorghiu-Dej in 1965.

13/4/1948, The Romanian Constitution was redrafted, on Soviet lines.

30/12/1947. King Michael of Romania abdicated, and a Communist republic was set up.

28/7/1947, In Romania the National Peasant Party, the most popular Party, was dissolved.

1/6/1946. Antonescu was shot as a war criminal, see 23/8/1944.

2/3/1945, At Soviet insistence, Petru Groza was appointed Prime Minister of Romania and formed a pro-Soviet government.

23/8/1944. Following a coup d’etat in Bucharest, in which pro-Nazi dictator General Ion Antonescu was overthrown (born 1882, acceded 1940), Romania changed sides and declared war on Germany and Soviet troops entered Rumania as allies. Germans had entered Bucharest as allies in September 1940, after Antonescu seized power, forcing King Carol II into exile after Carol had surrendered Romanian territory to Hungary, Bulgaria and Russia. Romania then supported Germany when it invaded Russia in June 1941, and assisted in the Nazi capture of Odessa, which was then renamed ‘Antonescu’, with areas of south-west Ukraine annexed to Romania. However the Soviets began to force back the Romanians, and other Axis forces, in the winter in 1942/3. On this day, 23/8/1944, Carol II’s 23-year-old son, King Michael, had Antonescu arrested. Antonescu was subsequently charged with war crimes in May 1946 and on 1/6/1946, after a brief trial, was condemned to death and shot. Meanwhile, French forces took Marseilles, then advanced up the Rhone Valley.

For more events of World War Two in Europe see France-Germany

7/9/1940, The Germans imposed the Treaty of Craiova on Romania, by which southern Dobruja was ceded to Bulgaria.  This frontier was reconfirmed by Treaty in February 1947.

6/9/1940, King Carol II of Romania abdicated in favour of his son Michael, by pro-Nazi Ion Antonescu.

18/7/1938, Marie, Queen of Romania, died.

16/2/1933, Fearing German aggression, Czechoslovakia, Romania and Yugoslavia formed the Little Entente, with a Permanent Council,

8/6/1930, King Carol II returned from exile to take the throne of Romania.

20/7/1927, King Ferdinand of Romania died, aged 61. He was succeeded by his nephew, 5-year old Michael I.

25/10/1921, King Michael of Romania was born, son of King Carol II.

23/4/1921, Czechoslovakia and Romania formed an alliance.

3/3/1921, Poland signed an alliance with Romania. This resulted in a decline in previously-close Hungarian-Polish relations.

4/8/1919, Romanian forces occupied Budapest, Hungary (until 14/11/1919).

11/1/1919. Romania annexed Transylvania.

26/1/1918, Nicolae Ceausescu, dictator of Romania, was born (died 1989).

6/12/1915. Germany occupied Bucharest, capital of Rumania, ending Rumania’s war effort against Germany. See 30/11/1918.

For main European events of World War One see France-Germany

3/1907, Romania brutally suppressed a revolt in Moldova.

20/7/1868, Miron Cristea, Prime Minister of Romania, was born.

23/12/1861, The two states of Moldavia and Walachia (the Danubian Principalities) were united as Romania.

1857, Oil was first struck near Ploesti.

28/5/1812, The Treaty of Bucharest was signed.


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