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M TOURS BLED / HISTORY IN BRIEF


EARLY INHABITANANTS

The area of present-day Slovenia and its surrounding borders has been settled since the Palaeolithic age. Tools made of bone dating back between 100 000 - 60 000 BC have been found in a cave at Mt. Olševa . During the Copper Age (2000 BC) marsh dwellers farmed and raised cattle in the area south of present day Ljubl jana . The Ljubl jana Marsh people were overwhelmed around the year 700 BC by Illyrian tribes that came from the south. They were followed by Celtic tribes who arrived in this country in about 400 BC. They started mixing with local population and together found the first "state" on Slovenian soil The Noric Kingdom.


THE ROMANS

In 181 BC the Romans established the colony of Aquileia on the Gulf of Trieste . Among its visitors was Julius Caesar, for whom the Julian Alps are named. In the second decade AD, the Romans annexed the Noric kingdom developed some major important towns: Emona (today Ljubl jana ), Poetovio (Ptuj), Celeia (Celje). Out of these all had sophisticated fortifications, housing, baths and temples. Many reminders have been preserved in Ljubl jana , Ptuj and Celje.


THE EARLY SLAVS

The ancestors of today's Slovenes arrived from the Carpathian Basin in the 6th century and settled in the Drava, Sava and Mura river valleys and the eastern Alps . The Slavs were peaceful people, living in forests or along lakes, breading cattle and farming by slash and burn methods. As a social group they made no class distinctions, which is why they say this was the reason Slavs never succeeded in establishing their own state kingdom. A leader was selected only in times of great danger, however the docile nature of these people changed during the migratory periods and they became more warlike.
In the early 8th century Slovene territory fell under the Duchy of Carantania - the first Slavic state and in the second half of 8th century Carinthia was incorporated by the Frankish empire which was the first attempt to convert population to Christianity. This also presents the end of the first Slavic state Carantania. It took more than 1100 years before Slovene people got their independence back.


EARLY HABSBURG RULE

The Austrian Habsburg Empire held control over Slovenian territory from the early 14th century until the end of W. W. I. It dominated local population in every sense. The history of the middle-ages is coloured with peasant uprisings and attacks by the Otoman Turks, who were on their way to Vienna . The reformation and introduction to Protestant religion gave the Slovene nation its first books written in Slovene language, these then presented the foundation of Slovene culture and national identity. The second big wave of reforms came in the 18th century, they were introduced by the Empress Maria Theresa. This period was when the first schools were built, agricultural production improved, etc.


NAPOLEON & ILLYRIAN PROVINCES

After the defeat of the Austrians by the French in 1809, Napoleon cut the Habsburg Empire off at the Adriatic Sea . Slovene territory then fell under Napoleon's rule and even though it was only for a short period of time it did cause some major changes like equality before the law and the usage of Slovene language in schools. This caused national awakening and the first appearance of a Slovene political arena. The United Slovenia political programme, which appeared after the 1848 revolution, called for the unification of all Slovene regions within an autonomous unit of the Austrian monarchy.


THE KINGDOM OF SERBS , CROATS & SLOVENES

In 1918 Slovenes, Croats and Serbs banded together and declared themselves to be an independent state with the capital being in Zagreb . The peace treaties signed at Paris and Rapallo had given large amounts of Slovenia n territory to Italy , Austria and Hungary and almost half a million Slovenes now lived in those countries. In the time of SHS, Slovenia did enjoy a cultural and linguistic autonomy plus the economic progress was rapid. In 1929 king Alexander seized absolute power abolished the constitution and proclaimed the Kingdom of Yugoslavia .


SECOND WORLD WAR

Yugoslavia avoided getting involved in the war but was invaded in 1941, the Yugoslav army was capitulated in less then two weeks, the King ran away to London and Slovenia was split up between Germany, Italy and Hungary. Soon afterwards a " Liberation Front " was formed and joined with the Yugoslav Partisan Army for a free Slovenia within a new country of Yugoslavia. In 1946 a treaty was signed in Paris and in 1954 Trieste with both a Slovene and Italian population became the Italian province.


SOCIALIST YUGOSLAVIA

After the end of the war Tito had been elected the head of Yugoslavia and although he distanced himself from Stalin and domination by the Soviet Union , the creation of a Communist/Socialist country continued into the mid-50s. Industry was nationalized, the private ownership of agricultural land was limited to 20 hectares and a central economy installed. The isolation from the markets of the Soviet block soon forced Tito to look to the West. The country progressed until Tito's death in 1980 and by that time Slovenia was the most advanced republic in Yugoslavia.


INDEPENDANCE - REPUBLIC OF SLOVENIA

In April 1990 Slovenia became the first Yugoslav republic to hold free elections. In the summer of 1990, after Serbia had rejected Slovenia n and Croatian proposals for confederation, Slovenia scheduled a date for a referendum on the question of independence. On the 23 December 1990 89% of Slovene voted for an independent republic to be effective within six months, 25 June 1991 Slovenia pulled out of the Yugoslav federation for good. On the 27 June the Yugoslav army began marching on Slovenia but met great resistance and within several days the federal army began disintegrating and normal life was re-established under the slogan: "Tomorrow is a new day."


Chronological summary of Slovene history

• 6th century Slavs began settling valleys of Sava, Drava and Mura rivers
• 7th century an alliance was formed with the Slavic Duchy of Carantania
• 745 AD Carantania became a part of Frankish empire
• 9th century with the growing influence of Christianity the Slav language was first used
• 14th - 16th century Habsburg monarch included Slovene regions in it's empire
• 1584 the bible was translated in Slovene
• 1848 a United Slovenia programme was formed
• 1918 Slovenia joined the SHS kingdom
• 1929 state changed it's name to Yugoslavia
• 1941 the Liberation Front was organised
• 1945-1953 Private land and companies were transferred to the state
• 1948 Tito rebelled against Stalin's political supremacy
• 23. December 1990 88 % of the people voted for an independent state
• 25 June 1991 The Republic of Slovenia became independent
• 6 March 1995 Slovenia began negotiations for membership of the European Union
• 1 st May 2004 The Republic of Slovenia becames a new star of Europe.