*Privilegium maius*, dated 1156, forgery from 1358/59

Building the Power Base


During the course of the fourteenth century the Habsburgs slowly establish their power base. Having inherited the Duchy of Carinthia in 1335, they assume dominion over Tyrol in 1363. Using the notorious forged document known as the Privilegium maius Duke Rudolf IV elevates Austria to the status of archduchy. The Habsburg rise to power is jeopardized by the division of territories and by conflict between the various branches of the dynasty in the late fourteenth and fifteenth century.