History Files

Please help the History Files

Contributed: 175

Target: 400

Totals slider

The History Files still needs your help. As a non-profit site, it is only able to support such a vast and ever-growing collection of information with your help, and this year your help is needed more than ever. Please make a donation so that we can continue to provide highly detailed historical research on a fully secure site. Your help really is appreciated.

European Kingdoms

Eastern Europe



Styria is situated in the eastern-central of modern-day Austria, between Ostmark and Salzburg. Prior to the arrival of the Romans in the region, it was occupied chiefly by the Celtic Ambidravi and Ambisontes tribes. The Romans incorporated the region into the Noricum province, and following Roman collapse the area was subsequently controlled much the same as its neighbours, by frequent changes of ownership between shifting tribes and kingdoms. In the seventh century AD parts of Styria belonged to the Slav principality of Khorushka. The Germanic Holy Roman empire eventually offered Central Europe some stability. Styria was initially centred on Traungau when the region was elevated to a margraviate in the late ninth century.

Margraves of Styria (Carinthian March / Hungarian March)

880 - 907


Also ruled Austria.

907 - c.925

Ottokar I

c.925 - 930


930 - 965

Ottokar II


With the accession of the Saxon king, Otto I, the power of the Germanic Roman empire is confirmed. Otto is quite vigorous in establishing new counties and border areas within and without the empire's borders. The county of Ardennes under Sigfried gains the stronghold of Lucilinburhuc (the later Luxemburg), Arnulf I the Elder is restored in Flanders, and the March of Austria is formed (or confirmed) from territory which has already been captured from the early Hungary (around 960).

Map of Germany AD 962
Germany in AD 962 may have had its new emperor to govern those territories which are shown within the dark black line, but it was still a patchwork of competing interests and power bases (click or tap on map to view full sized)

At the same time, Saxony gains Hermann Billung as its duke, charged with maintaining the duchy's eastern borders and expanding them further to the east, alongside the recently-created North March. Perhaps as a reaction to this or as the culmination of a process that is already heading that way, the duchy of Poland is formed around the same time.

965 - 970


970 - 993

Ottokar III


Henry the Quarrelsome, grandson of Henry I of Germany, rebels against Holy Roman Emperor Otto II. As a result, Henry is deprived of his Bavarian title and possessions. Otto I, duke of Swabia is created duke of Bavaria in his place, easily done as Swabia and Bavaria neighbour each other. Carinthia is formally separated from Bavaria by Otto II and made a duchy in its own right - one of many large-scale reorganisations of German lands which also involves the creation of the stem duchies. The border area along Carinthia's eastern edge now becomes the new Carinthian March or Hungarian March until it is re-categorised as the March of Styria.

fl c.1030

Ottokar IV

Died 1038.

1038? - 1047


1047 - 1080

Ottokar V

Died 1083.

1083 - 1084


1084 - 1122

Ottokar VI



Henry II of Carinthia, also Henry II of Eppenstein, dies without having produced an heir. With him dies the family of Eppenstein in the male line. Only his sister, Hedwig, survives him. Her son, Henry, becomes the next ruling duke of Carinthia through this relationship whilst also holding the title count of Spanheim thanks to his father, Count Engelbert I.

However, at the same time as Henry is acceding to the title, Carinthia is again sub-divided. Initially a substantial border territory between Germany and the Slavs to the east, it has become progressively Germanised and brought under control. With competing dynastic interests and stronger imperial control, various minor seats can be paired off as titles that are subservient directly to the emperor rather than leaving them all under Carinthia's control. Now a large proportion of the former Eppensteiner lands in Upper Styria (on the eastern edge of Carinthia) pass to Ottokar VI. Unfortunately Ottokar is only briefly able to enjoy his expanded domains. He dies in November of the same year.

1122 - 1129

Leopold the Strong


1129 - 1164

Ottokar VII


1164 - 1192

Ottokar VIII


The margraviate passes to the Babenburg-controlled duchy of Austria and remains a permanent possession. The duchy of Austria, however, is prone to change hands - from the Babenburgs to the Zahringens to the Przemyslid, and finally to the Habsburgs, who use it as a title for junior members of the dynasty. In December 1282, as Holy Roman Emperor, Rudolph of Habsburg gives the duchies of Habsburg Austria and Styria to his sons, Albert and Rudolf II respectively.

Images and text copyright © all contributors mentioned on this page. An original king list page for the History Files.