Was the Habsburg Empire on the point of collapse by 1914

1344 WordsSep 23, 20136 Pages
Was the Habsburg Empire on the point of collapse by 1914? During the late 19th Century it can be argued that the Habsburg Empire was weakening and by 1914 during the dawn of the First World War it was on the point of collapse this could be due to several intertwining factors such as nationalism or politics. However some historians disagree this view and they would argue that the Empire was indeed becoming stronger. This essay will explore why the Habsburg Empire was on the brink of collapsing by 1914. The first and possibly the most important reason why the Habsburg Empire was on the point of collapsing is because its weak nature was highlighted when in 1905 the Hungarian Independence Party won the election and as the historians…show more content…
Also possibly a more hostile event was when the “Croats in the Empire increasingly looked to Serbia for leadership against the Empire which gave some credence to the belief, widely held in the Austrian government that Serbia was planning on seizing Croatia.” As outlined by Wolfson and Laver, this is also a significant event because Croatia was looked towards a hostile nation for leadership because they were largely ignored by the Austro-Hungarian governments. In this case Wolfson and Laver is more reliable because whilst Armour primarily focuses on Austria with little mention of Hungary, Wolfson and Laver give evidence of crises which affected both nations not just one or the other. However there are some Historians that are not convinced that the Habsburg Empire would have collapsed by 19414 and they give several reasons for this one of them being Nationalism. The Magyars wanted to control the other nationalities in Hungary, they mainly did this through Magyarisation where they set out that everyone in Hungary must have a basic knowledge in Magyar and was made compulsory in school the Aponyi Law of 1907 made teachers liable to dismissal if their pupils did not know Magyar. The Magyars realised that this would be easier to if they remained part of the Empire and as a result this stabilised the empire as a whole. Also much of the empire’s population were illiterate farmers
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