A Concise History of Switzerland

Despite its position at the heart of Europe and its quintessentially European nature, Switzerland’s history is often overlooked.

This comprehensive and engaging history of Switzerland traces this fascinating country’s historical and cultural development from the end of the Dark Ages up to the present.

The authors focus on the initial Confederacy of the Middle Ages; the religious divisions which threatened it after 1500 and its surprising survival amongst Europe’s monarchies; the turmoil following the French Revolution and conquest, which continued until the Federal Constitution of 1848; the testing of the Swiss nation through the late nineteenth century and then two World Wars and the Depression of the 1930s; and the unparalleled economic and social growth and political success of the post-war era.

The book concludes with a discussion of the contemporary challenges, often shared with neighbours, that shape the country today.

Clive H. Church, Randolph C. Head, A Concise History of Switzerland, Cambridge 2013.