The County of Werdenfels, Werdenfels, is a small constitutional monarchy in Central Europe. It a member state of the Holy Roman Empire. It is bordered by Füssen to the west, Bavaria to the north, Austria-Bohemia to the south-east and a small exclave of Freising to the south-west. The capital is Garmisch and the population around 34,000.
The Head of State is Count Otto X.
The official language is German.
The currency is the Bavarian Taler (BVT).
Well positioned, it controlled the northern approaches to the Brenner Pass. Under local law goods coming northward were obliged to be deposited (for a fee) at Mittenwald and goods southward bound were deposited (again or a fee) at Partenkirchen. Only Werdenfelsers had the right to move goods between the two towns. Added to that monolopy there were silver deposits in the area. This conspired to make the area considerably wealthy and gave it the epitet 'Little Golden Land'.
Count Perchthold of Eschenlohe sold his land to Biship Emicho of Freising in 1294 but much of the territory was sold on, on Emperor Olaf's insistence, to one of his trusted advisors, Karl Klauer von und zu Wohra, in 1371. Apart from periods of military occupation the land has remained in the Klauer von und zu Wohra family since then and they used the county's wealth to control several Imperial monastic states for centuries. The growth in transatlantic shipping slowly lessened the county's economic clout but it still held vital importance as a military road between Germany and Venice.
Great pains were taken to keep the passes in Catholic hands during the Fifty Years War and the brief period of mediasation following the war allowed it to absorb the lands of the independent Ettal Abbey (which was in Klauer von zu Wohra hands anyway), but the war effectively ruined the transcontinental trade and the county slipped into economic inconsequence, that is until the recent opening of a trans-Alpine railway.
During the Austrian Civil War (1717-1735) it was occupied off and on by Bavaria, using it to help hold onto the Tyrol region. Its small militia campaigned with Bavaria during the Six Years War (1783-1789), the Palatinate during Eleanor's War (1802-1805) and was occupied by Bavaria once more during the crisis years of the Hispanic Revolution.
In the past year it has joined the discussions to create an economic union in Swabia.
Werdenfels is governed by a single-chambered Landtag with elections every three years. The Count, currently Otto X, still retains a high degree of direct executive power but the comital family usually resides in Vienna, allowing the small country to generally run its own affairs.