Royal Hungary

The Kingdom of Hungary between 1526 and 1867 was part of the lands of the Habsburg Monarchy, while outside the Holy Roman Empire, and formally part of its successor, the Austrian Empire. After the Battle of Mohács, the country was ruled by two crowned kings (John I and Ferdinand I). Initially the exact territory under Habsburg rule was disputed because both rulers claimed the whole kingdom. This unsettled period lasted until 1570 when John Sigismund Zápolya abdicated as King of Hungary in Emperor Maximilian II’s favor. In the early stages, the lands that were ruled by the Habsburg Hungarian kings were regarded both as “the kingdom of Hungary” and “Royal Hungary”. Royal Hungary was the symbol of the continuity of formal law after the Ottoman occupation, because it could preserve its legal traditions. however in general it was de facto a Habsburg province. The Hungarian nobility forced Vienna to admit that Hungary was a special unit of the Habsburg lands and had to be ruled in conformity with her own special laws. Although, Hungarian historiography positioned Transylvania in a direct continuity with Medieval Kingdom of Hungary in pursuance of the advancement of Hungarian interests. Under the terms of the Treaty of Karlowitz, which ended the Great Turkish War in 1699, the Ottomans ceded nearly all of Ottoman Hungary. The new territories were united with the territory of Kingdom of Hungary, and, although its powers were mostly formal, a Diet seated in Pressburg ruled these lands. The kingdom was only formally part of Empire of Austria. It was regnum independens, a separate Land as Article X of 1790 stipulated. After the cessation of the Holy Roman Empire (Kingdom of Hungary was not part of it) the new title of the Habsburg rulers (Emperor of Austria) did not in any sense affect the laws and the constitution of Hungary according to the Hungarian Diet and the proclamation of Francis I in a rescript, thus the country was part of the other Lands of the empire largely through the monarch. Two major Hungarian rebellions as the Rákóczi’s War of Independence in the beginning of the 18th century and the Hungarian Revolution of 1848 marked important shifts in the evolution of the polity. The kingdom became a dual monarchy in 1867 known as the Austro-Hungarian Empire.