The Balkan powder keg was the name given to the Balkan region because of the secure and safe state it had before a minor issue led to World War I. The assassination of Franz Ferdinand, the heir to Austria-Hungary empire, and his wife, Sophie, ended the peaceful state of Europe.
After the Roman Empire, Europe had many smaller cultures and several empires. Italy and Germany became unified nations and joined Russia, France, Austria-Hungary and Great Britain as world powers. These nations had great national pride, peace and nationalism. Due to the peace and harmony in the region, people referred to it as Balkan Power Keg, or Power Keg of Europe.