The Kingdom of Württemberg, Württemberg, is a medium sized constitutional monarchy in central Europe. It is an integral part of the Holy Roman Empire; indeed it is an Electorate, and is bordered by numerous Imperial states including Luxembourg, Eßlingen, Palatinate, Hohenlohe, Baden, Swiss Confederation, Austria-Bohemia, Hohenzollern, Rottweil, Hohenburg and Scheer. The capital is Stuttgart and the population around 1.7 million.
The current Head of State is King Karl II Alexander.
The official language is German.
The currency is the Württemberg Gulden (WRG) which is also used by several neighbouring states.
The smallest of the Empire's kingdoms, Württemberg developed out of the Duchy of Swabia which fell apart in the 1260s. Frederick III effectively divided up his considerable territories between his children in 1263. While western Swabia would become the core of Burgundy the eastern areas fell under the authority of the counts of Wurttemberg however in practice this meant it splintered into various independent entities.
Württemberg remained the largest of these new states however, and its counts slowly expanded its territory with marriage, purchase and war. In 1373 Emperor Olaf granted it a electorate (transferred from Brandenburg after John I of Luxembourg bought it from Otto II of Bavaria) and elevated it to a dukedom in its own right, cementing its position. Duke Ulrich V would bring it to its height during the middle of the 15th century as he built a 'Swabian League' to defend Swabian lords against the dangerous ideas coming out of the Swiss states whilst also attempting to control events in civil war stricken Bavaria. Eventually trying to juggle the Zurich War against the Swiss Confederation, Bavarian affairs and opposition to Emperor Frederick III proved too much and Ulrich V would be forced into a climb-down. Württemberg would be briefly divided in two between his two sons.
The Decapole War (1483-1492) against Swiss Confederation, Burgundy and the Decapole cities was a humiliating defeat and led Duke Eberhard VI to fall out with his Swabian League allies. In an attempting to restore prestige to Württemberg the Duke overtaxed the state. This drove the peasantry into a revolt against the economic reforms of his reign. Eberhard conceded to some of the demands and established the Estates to however the main peasant force was still suppressed by force. The peasants would rise once more as part of the much wider Great Peasants' War.
Thanks to Duke Friedrich I's connections to Auvergne and Hesse he embraced Lutheranism with vigour during the Reformation further dividing him from the ultra-Catholic Swabian League. Like Luxembourg the duchy stayed out of the Schmalkaldic Wars but unwisely intervened on the Protestant side during the Fifty Years War. It took several years of diplomacy from Hesse-Darmstadt but eventually in 1633 Duke Eberhard VII agreed to take up arms. Despite initial success the Duke and his army was crushed at Strassburg in 1636 and he would remain Luxembourg's prisoner for the next few years. Most of the major battles of 1635-1638 would be fought on Württemberg's soil causing untold misery to the peasantry. Signing the Peace of Heilbronn, Eberhard VII would be released and he and his successors would campaign on the Imperial side, but the devastation and disease already inflicted on the state (with the population dropping by almost 60%) constrained its activities. The death-rate was so drastic that Eberhard VIII was, in typical Württemberger gallows humour, said to be on first-name terms with the entire population.
During the 18th century the fortunes of the state were slowly rebuilt, though the frequent flare ups between Luxembourg and France threatened its position as Luxembourg swallowed up the states on its western flank. A plot to unseat the still staunchly Lutheran ducal family came to nothing, and protestants from France were welcomed with open arms reinforcing the state's religious leaning. They, and settlers moving from the overcrowded and disease-ridden Dutch cities, helped the population, and economy, to recover.
During the War of Bavarian Succession, or Eleanor's War (1802-1805) Württemberg campaigned on behalf of Luxembourg, securing guarantees on its territory in the process. Its small army conducted itself well but was ultimately outclassed by the larger armies wielded by France and Bavaria. As part of the diplomatic process to calm the adversaries following France's victory Württemberg was raised to a Kingdom. Soon after, attempts to reconstruct the state as an absolutist monarchy failed in the face of hostility from the Estates and increasingly liberal advisers.
Its army would be involved in the Iberian Revolutionary Wars against del Olmo but dropped out of the coalitions after the Battle of Nancy in 1829. What was left of the kings' power was legislated away during the 19th century. The kingdom has had trouble with Syndicalist revolutionaries but is generally characterised as a liberal bastion.
Chiefly agricultural, Württemberg is a noted red wine producer though cereal crops are overall more valuable to the economy. Salt and iron mining are important too though a lack of coal reserves has hampered its industrial development.
Wurttemberg has a long history of parliamentary government with its bicameral Estates having been formed in the late 15th century and sitting almost unbroken since. There is no fixed election schedule, the coalitions forming its government tend to only last a year or two before new elections are required.
The Head of State is King Karl II Alexander and his Chancellor is Ernst Buß.