Wednesday, 20 October 2010

A Forgotten World

Reading quite a bit about Austria-Hungary recently . It strikes me that , un-enlightened though some of it's authoritarian methods were , Central Europe is and was immeasurably poorer for the collapse of this monarchy . Ask the Germans of Budweis and Klausenburg , the Magyars of Komarom , the Italians of Istria and Dalmatia or the Jews anywhere .

Here's their national anthem "Gott erhalte Franz den Kaiser"

Words here .

A window on a world utterly , utterly gone .

Sad .


Edward Spalton said...

If you go onto youtube and enter
"Beerdigung ihrer Majestaet Zita" you will get a longish clip of the funeral on the last Austrian Empress in Vienna in 1989 - Otto von Habsburg's mother.

You would not think the Habsburgs had ever left. Their influence is still present. Otto von Habsburg was an MEP in Germany. When I last heard him on US radio, he described himself as "Hungarian". I believe that one of his sons is quite high in the Hungarian foreign ministry - something which would make me very nervous, if I were a Serb. For all its many good features, it was not the nasty nationalists but the bone-headed, supra national, highly civilised ministers of Austria Hungary who - quite deliberately - started the First World War.

Otto, who appears in the film next to the most heavily veiled lady, was a real enthusiast for bombarding Belgrade in 1999. Some things, it seems, don't change. And, of course, he is a great proponent of the EU and erstwhile leader of the Pan Europa movement, an Empire I wish we were outside of.

That said, there were many positive things about the Dual Monarchy which might have developed more happily - if its ministers had not been arrogant bastards and decided to go for broke.

The Young Oligarch said...

Interesting clip , Edward .

I remember Otto von Habsburg in the EU Parliament snatching away a poster or placard from Ian Paisley during his peaceful protest against Pope John Paul's visit .

His petulant gesture and the jeers of the other EU monkeys assembled convinced me at that time that this was a foreign and hostile organisation which we had joined , contemptuous of our British liberty .

I must disagree with your analysis of the start of the First World War , however .

My own superficial reading of the history of the summer of 1914 has convinced me that the Serbs were to blame . Apis , the Black Hand , their recent disgusting murder of their royal family ; all of these point to a violent nationalist clique within the armed forces which was outwith anyone's control .

I can't disagree about the imperial ministers , though .

Thanks for commenting in such a informed manner . It makes a change .

Dark Lochnagar said...

I wish our lot were gone too!

The Young Oligarch said...

Is that the Magyars or the Jews , DL ?