waldeck pyrmont prince inhabitants
WALDECK-PYJ1MONT, a small principality in the north-west of Germany, is the eighteenth factor of the German empire in point of area, and the twenty-fourth in point of population. It consists of two separate portions lying about 30 miles apart, viz., the county (grafschaft) of Waldeck, embedded in Prussian territory between the provinces of Westphalia and Hesse-Nassau, and the principality (ffirstenthum) of Pyrmont, farther to the north, between Lippe, Brunswick, and Hanover. Waldeck, with 48,580 inhabitants, comprises an area of 407 square miles, covered for the most part with hills, which culminate in the Hegekopf (2807 feet). The centre is occupied by the plateau of Corbach. The chief rivers are the Eder and Diemel, both of which eventually find their way into the Weser. Pyrmont, only 26 square miles in extent, with 8123 inhabitants, is also mountainous. The Emmer, also belonging to the Weser system, is its chief stream. The united area is thus 433 square miles, or about half the size of Cambridgeshire in England, and the united population in 1885 was 56,703. Agriculture and cattle-rearing are the main resources of the inhabitants in both parts of the principality, but the soil is nowhere very fertile. Only 55i per cent. of the area is occupied by arable land and pasture; forests, one-tenth of which are coniferous, occupy 36 per cent. Rye is the principal crop; but oats, potatoes, and flax are also grown in considerable quantities. In 1883 the principality contained 5956 horses, 20,249 cattle, 66,704 sheep, 17,735 pigs, and 7332 goats. Iron, slate, and building-stone are worked at various points, and, along with horses, cattle, sheep, pigs, wool, and timber, form the chief exports. A few insignificant manufactures (cigars, liqueurs, earthenware, linen, knitted stockings) are carried on in some of the little towns, but both trade and manufactures are much retarded by the almost complete isolation of the country from railways. Wildungen in the extreme south of Waldeck is the terminus of a. branch line, and a narrow part of Pyrmont is intersected by an unimportant line.
The capital and the residence of the prince is Arolsen (2442 inhabitants) in Waldeck ; twelve smaller " towns " and about one hundred villages are also situated in the county. The only town in Pyrmont is Bad Pyrmont, with about 1500 inhabitants, at one time a highly fashionable watering-place on account of its chalybeate and saline springs. The annual number of visitors is still estimated at 13,000. Wildungen is also a spa of some repute. The inhabitants to the north of the Eder are of Saxon stock, to the south of Franconian, - a difference which is distinctly marked in dialect, costumes, and manners. Nearly all are Protestants. In 1880, when the population was 56,522, there were 53,995 Protestants, 1576 Roman Catholics, 854 Jews, and 97 others.
Waldeck-Pyrmont has one vote in the federal council and one in the imperial diet. The constitution, dating from 1852, is a reactionary modification of one carried in 1849, which in its turn had been a considerable advance upon one granted in 1816. The single chamber consists of fifteen members (three of whom represent Pyrmont), elected indirectly for three years. In the event of the male line of the present ruling family becoming extinct the female line succeeds in Waldeck, but Pyrmont falls to Prussia. In terms of a treaty concluded in 1868 for ten years and renewed in 1878 for a similar period, the finances and entire government of Waldeck-Pyrmont are managed by Prussia, the little country having found itself unable to support unassisted the military and other burdens involved by its share in the North-German Confederation. The government is conducted in the name of the prince by a Prussian " landes-director," while the state-officials are "Prussian subjects," and take the oath of allegiance to the king of Prussia. The prince of Waldeck reserves his whole rights as head of the church, and also the right of granting pardons, and in certain circumstances may exercise a veto on proposals to alter or enact laws. Education, the administration of justice, and similar matters are thus all conducted on the Prussian model; a previous convention had already handed over military affairs to Prussia. The budget for 1886 showed a revenue of £52,530 and an expenditure of £48,680. The public debt was £117,550, paying interest at 4 per cent. The prince is supported by the income derived from crown-lands.
The princes of Waldeck-Pyrmont arc descendants of the counts of Schwalenberg, the earliest of whom known to history was Wittekind, who died in 1137. His grandson seems to have been the first count of Waldeck. For many centuries the original possessions of the Schwalenbergs were divided among several collateral lines of counts (Waldeck, Landau, Wildungen, Eisenberg); and about 1428 Hesse obtained a right of superiority over Waldeck, in return for its protection during those troublous times. This right gave rise to important claims on the part of Hesse, which were not finally set aside until 1847, when the German diet decided that the right had come to an end with the extinction of the empire. In 1685 a paction primogeniturx was made between the two surviving lines, which took effect in 1692, when the Eisenberg branch became extinct with the death of George Frederick, who had served with distinction as an imperial field-marshal, and had received the title of prince. Pyrmont had also originally belonged to a branch of the Schwalenberg family ; but it had successively been held by the counts of Lippe (from 1557) and Gleichen (from 1584), before it finally fell back to Waldeck in 1625. From 1692 the lands have remained undivided under the Wildungen line, with the exception of a brief period (1805-1812) when Waldeck and Pyrmont were held by two brothers. Frederick Anthony Ulrich, who succeeded in 1706, was made prince by the emperor Charles VI. In 1807 Waldeck was a member of the Confederation of the Rhine ; and in 1814 it entered the German Confederation. Its first constitution was granted in 1816 by Prince George 'Henry (1813-1845). George Victor, the present prince (1888), succeeded in 1845 at the age of 14, and assumed the government in 1852. The most important incident in the recent history of the principality is the conclusion of the above-mentioned treaty with Prussia, with whom it sided in the war against Austria.