Styria, Ger. Steiermark, province (1991 pop. 1,184,593), 6,324 sq mi (16,379 sq km), central and SE Austria. Graz is the capital. Bordering on Slovenia in the south, Styria is predominately mountainous, with many forests, pastures, and meadowlands. The province is drained by the Mur, Enns, and Raab rivers. It is the chief Austrian mining district (iron ore, lignite, salt, graphite, gypsum, talc, and magnesite) and has a well-developed metals industry, particularly in the north, near the Erzberg. The province also produces paper, cellulose, chemicals, leather, textiles, and food products. Graz is a center of motor-vehicle assembly. Cattle, horses, and poultry are raised, and forestry is an important occupation. There are many Alpine resorts, and tourism is a major source of revenue. Styria was originally settled by Celts and later was part of Roman Noricum and Pannonia. It was made a duchy in 1180 and in 1192 passed to the Austrian house of Babenberg. Ottocar II of Bohemia successfully contested it with Bela IV of Hungary, but in 1278, at the battle of Marchfeld, Ottocar was defeated and killed by the forces of Rudolf I of Hapsburg. Rudolf declared (1282) Styria, Austria, and Carniola hereditary Hapsburg possessions. By the Treaty of Saint-Germain (1919) Styria's southern portion was ceded to Yugoslavia and is now part of Slovenia.
Styria (Steiermark) is a state or Bundesland, located in the southeast of Austria. In area, it is the second largest of the nine Austrian states, covering 16,388 km². It borders Slovenia as well as the other Austrian states of Upper Austria, Lower Austria, Salzburg, Burgenland, and Carinthia. The population (as of 2006) was 1,203,986. The capital city is Graz.


The term "Upper Styria" (Obersteiermark) used by an Austrian refers to the northern and northwestern parts of the federal state (districts Liezen, Murau, Judenburg, Knittelfeld, Leoben, Bruck an der Mur and Mürzzuschlag). The term "West Styria" (Weststeiermark) is used for the districts to the west of Graz (Voitsberg, Deutschlandsberg, western part of the district Leibnitz), the districts east of Graz (Weiz, Hartberg, Feldbach, Fürstenfeld and Radkersburg) are referred to as "East Styria" (Oststeiermark). The western and eastern parts of the district Graz-Umgebung may or may not be considered parts of West and East Styria, respectively. The southern parts of the Duchy of Styria, which have formed part of Slovenia since 1918, were (and sometimes colloquially still are) referred to as "Lower Styria" (Untersteiermark; Spodnja Štajerska).



Like everywhere in the developed world there has been a shift away from the manufacturing sector towards the service sector in Styria. This has had negative consequences for the industrial regions of upper Styria which have suffered a steady decline in population in recent years. In 2004 Styria had the strongest economic growth rate in Austria at 3.8% - mainly due to the Graz area which saw strong economic growth that year and has continued to grow in economic and population terms since then.

Administrative divisions

The state is divided into 16 districts (Bezirke), and a statutory city.

Statutory City

  1. Graz


  1. Bruck an der Mur
  2. Deutschlandsberg
  3. Feldbach
  4. Fürstenfeld
  5. Graz-Umgebung
  6. Hartberg
  7. Judenburg
  8. Knittelfeld
  9. Leibnitz
  10. Leoben
  11. Liezen with the subdistricts
    Gröbming and Bad Aussee
  12. Mürzzuschlag
  13. Murau
  14. Radkersburg
  15. Voitsberg
  16. Weiz


The state had been a stronghold of the Austrian People's Party (ÖVP) since 1945. The governor (Austrian political term: Landeshauptmann) was usually a member of this party.

2005 Elections

In the latest elections for state parliament the Social Democrats (SPÖ) under their regional chairman Franz Voves won the majority after the ÖVP had damaged its credibility through scandals and the secession of a high-ranking party member who took part in the 2005 election after setting up his own party. In this election, the Communist Party (KPÖ) also received many votes after it had gained much popularity through its role in local politics in Graz during the preceding few years. The two right wing populist parties, the FPÖ and the BZÖ both failed to win seats.

Notable persons

See also

External links

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