The New Student's Reference Work/Swabia
Swabia (swā′bĭ-ȧ), a southwestern German duchy, stretching from Franconia to Helvetia and from Burgundy and Lorraine to Bavaria. It was so named from the Germanic Suevi, who drove out the Celts of this region in the 1st century B. C. The Alemanni became a part of the Suevic nation in the 5th century, and from this time there were dukes of Swabia. Under the Hohenstaufen emperors, who were Swabians, this duchy became the richest, most powerful and most civilized country in Germany. But when the Swabian line died, Swabia became the scene of feudal wars, and this unhappy state of affairs lasted for centuries. Swabia suffered terribly in the Peasants' War of 1525, in the Thirty Years' War (1618-48) and in the wars of the French Revolution. From the time of the Reformation the rulers of Württemberg (q. v.) struggled with the Holy Roman emperors for the control of Swabia. This struggle ended in the founding, in 1806, of the kingdom of Württemberg, which includes most of the old duchy. The name now denotes the south-central part of Württemberg, the adjoining part of Baden and the southwestern part of Bavaria.