National Geographic : 1918 Dec
THE NATIONAL GEOi In habits and purpose they are in sharp con trast to the Croats and Slavonians, their near kin. Constantly intermarrying with Germans, Hungarians and Italians, they have seemed until very recently little affected by racial con cerns. They are industrious, pliant, little in clined to resist or complain. Perhaps in con sequence the Austrians treated them with a moderation shown to no other subject Slavs. They number about 1,350,ooo, are Roman Catholics and use the Latin alphabet. THE SLAVONIANS The Slavonians, people who have appro priated the ethnic name of their race are neighbors of the Croats on the north. Ii- 4o the Hungarians imposed the Magyar on bhtii the official language, whereupon the smouTl ing hatred for all things Hungarian burst into flame. Everywhere insurrection broke out, After 1868 the Croatian-Slavonians enjoyed the empty honor of being entitled the King dom of Croatia-Slavonia. Controlled directly by Hungary, their Ban or King was appointed by the Hungarian Premier and was subject to instant dismissal by him. The National As sembly was limited to strictly local affairs, but its every enactment required the approval of the Iungarian minister for Croatia-Slavonia who was himself a member of the Hungarian cabinet. This device of "The Kingdom of Croatia-Slavonia" was most dexterous for soothing the pride and dictating the action of a subject people. Temporarily successful, in the end it enraged the inhabitants, as they real ized how plausibly they had been duped. CZECHO-SLOVAKIA * The Austro-Hungarian Monarchy was an anomaly, both as to its system and as to the ethnical composition of its inhabitants. A ref erence to its method will throw some light upon present and future conditions. Austria-Hungary consisted of two equal and independent parts, Austria and Iungary. In Austria in 1910 there were 9,950,000. Austrian Germans as against 18,243,000 non-Germans of various races, mainly Slav. In Hungary in 1910 there were 1,051,oooo Magyars as against 10.836,000 non-Magyars of various races. The Germans, though but one-third the popu lation in the one, were dominant there and the Magyars (see page 497), though less than half the population in the other, were dominant there. To maintain this ascendancy of these two minorities summed up all the internal policy and determined most of the foreign policy of Austria-Hungary. The Austrian-Germans and the Magyars al ways disliked each other. The Austrian was a foreigner at Buda-Pest and the Magyar at * See also, in NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGA ZINE, "The Land of Contrast" (Austria-Hun gary), by D. W . and A. S . Iddings (December, 1912), and "Hungary, a Land of Shepherd Kings," by C. Townley Fullam (October, 1914). GRAPHIC MAGAZINE 489 Vienna. But each recognized that his own po litical salvation depended largely on alliance with the other. To the Austrian especially it was an absolute necessity. The ascendancy of each was to be ascribed in part to long monop oly of power and to superior cleverness in manipulation. But always it could count on jealousies and divisions among the Slavic subjects, a condi tion always encouraged. More than once the hopes of some one of its subject Slavic peo ples have approached realization, only to be thwarted by the opposition of other Slavs or by its own dissensions. The disruption of the Austro-Hungarian Empire left the Magyars in much the same position as before, but broke Austria into frag ments. The Austrian Germans still formed a compact body, but each of the subject Slavic peoples sprang to a realization of the national idea. The Germans inhabit a large territory, ex tending from Switzerland south of Bavaria to a little east of Vienna; also a belt of German population almost surrounds the Czechs, and German enclaves are dotted like islands in the midst of neighboring Magyars and Slavs. Despite frequent usage, it must not be for gotten that the word Austrian never was iden tified with or represented a nation. It is a ,convenient distinguishing term, as in saying *that the Austrian Germans have strong sym pathies with the Germans in the former Ger man Empire and will ultimately unite with them. The former South Slav, or Jugo-Slav, sub jects of Austria-Hungary, the Bosnians, Hel vats, Croats, Slavonians, Dalmatians, and Slovenes, were described among the races of Jugo-Slavia, where they are placed by geogra phy. The other Slavic peoples, former subjects of Austria, are the Czechs, Moravians, Slovaks, and Ruthenians. The Czechs, together with the Slovaks and Moravians, are now recognized by the United States and the Entente Allies as forming the independent Czecho-Slovak nation. On the map one remarks the broad area, inhabitated by Germans and Magyars, which separates the Czecho-Slovaks from the Jugo-Slavs. THE CZECHS * The Czechs or Bohemians are the farthest west, surrounded except on the east by a Ger man population. Bohemia, Czech in Slavic, de rives its name from the Boii, a Celtic people who once occupied the country and who were succeeded by various German tries. Long afterward the Czechs took possession, prob ably during the great Slavic invasion of the sixth century. The Czech nobles or land-proprietors soon adopted German ways and spoke only German. Christianized by Saint Methodius, the middle * See also, in NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGA. ZINE, "Bohemia and the Czechs," by Ales Hrdlicka (February, 1917).