The Roman Empire and Romanization
Lousonna and Lausanne
19 July 2022
Situated on the shores of Lake Geneva, Lacus Lemannus, the small gallo-roman settlement of Lousonna boasted 1500 to 1200 inhabitants, mostly merchants, fishermen and craftsmen. Its commercial prosperity was due to the priviliged situation between the lake and overland routes connecting the Rhine and Rhone networks. From the end of the 1st century BC through … Read more » “Lousonna and Lausanne”
The United Nations of Europe and Switzerland
Introduction The citizens of Switzerland rejected closer (institutional) cooperation with the EU in 1992 (50.3%) and 2001 (71%). In 2015, the Swiss National Bank finished collaborating with the European Central Bank (ECB). In 2016, the government withdrew its application to join the EU, around 80%-85% will reject membership of this EU. On 26 May 2021, … Read more » “The United Nations of Europe and Switzerland”
The Middle Ages, Arts and State Building
Swabians become Swiss
8 November 2021
Thurgau was first mentioned as a region in the Duchy of Swabia in the 9th century. After the extinction of the Counts of Kyburg in 1264, the Habsburgs inherited the rights. Medieval Thurgau was not yet a clearly defined region and it included large parts of the present-day cantons of St. Gallen, Zurich and the … Read more » “Swabians become Swiss”
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The long nineteenth century 1815-1918
Unrest and Unrueh in Switzerland
22 January 2023
Switzerland is not known as a country of revolutionary change. Yet it is often at the forefront of scientific, industrial, democratic, ethical or social developments. One of these aspects was the foundation of the first democratic (for men only) Federation with three officially recognised languages in 1848. In addition, the country was a refuge for … Read more » “Unrest and Unrueh in Switzerland”
Swiss Constitution 1848-2023
1 February 2023
Switzerland has had a democratic Constitution since 1848. This Constitution still influences daily life in direct and indirect ways. Over time, the Constitution has evolved and adapted to new social, societal and political realities. On its 175th anniversary, the National Museum Zurich presents its history, especially fundamental rights, personal freedom and political rights and duties.
Multicultural, Cosmopolitan and European Switzerland
Romansh or German-speaking Communes?
11 January 2023
Available in German and Dutch
The Swiss Confederation was a functioning composite polity, but it was not a state and of course, it was not a monarchy. Yet the Confederation embraced territories that retained a feudal-hierarchical structure, albeit only as associated members (the abbacies of Engelberg and St. Gallen, the prince-bishopric of Basel, the county of Neuchâtel). How, therefore, did the Confederation survive?
Before the Burgundian Wars (1474-1477) no one gave the Confederation much chance of survival. Yet these wars did help to create a sense of collective identity manifest not in institutions but in patriotic narratives of Swiss valour and heroism of city-led republic. This vision was shattered in the Swiss wars of religion, but in the end, pragmatism and flexibility ensured that the discord did not lead to disaster. Ultimately, aggression yielded to accommodation. (T. Scott, The Swiss and Their Neighbours 1460-1560. Between Accommodation and Aggression, Oxford 2017).