History of SlovakiaSlovakia



From the 11th until the early 20th century, present-day Slovakia was under Hungarian rule. The Slovak national revival was begun in the 19 century by intellectuals seeking to revive the Slovak language and culture. The formation of the Czechoslovak Republic in 1918 following World War I satisfied the common aspirations of Czechs and Slovaks for independence from the Habsburg Empire. Although Czechoslovakia was the only east-central European country to remain a parliamentary democracy from 1918 to 1938, it was plagued with minority problems, the most important of which concerned the country's large German population. In 1938, the Allies concluded the Munich agreement which forced Czechoslovakia to cede the predominantly German region known as Sudetenland to Germany.

Then, in March 1939 Germany invaded what remained of Bohemia and Moravia and established a German protectorate. Slovakia had already declared its independence on March 14, 1939, and had become a Nazi German puppet state led by Jozef Tiso. On August 29, 1944, 60,000 Slovak troops organized by the underground rose up against the Nazis and the Tiso regime in what became known as the Slovak National Uprising. Although ultimately unsuccessful, this act of resistance became an important historical landmark for the Slovaks.

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