Subcarpathia Carpatho-Ukraine

Subcarpathia Carpatho-Ukraine (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

One of the federal republics in post-Munich Czechoslovakia, 1938-9, and an ephemeral state – for one day in March 1939.   It lay at the eastern end of the Czechoslovakia that had emerged out of the collapse of Austria-Hungary, further east than Slovakia, and was formed out of the lands which had belonged to Hungary south of the Carpathians and which were peopled by those sometimes called Ruthenes and at others Ukrainians.   In Czechoslovakia this autonomous region was called Podkarpatská Rus’ (Subcarpathian Rus’) but generally in English it was called Ruthenia.

After the Munich agreement early in October 1938 Czecho-Slovakia was reshaped into a more federal state.  The new federal state in Ruthenia adopted the name of Carpatho-Ukraine.   It had visions of itself as the Piedmont that might unite all Ukrainians in a separate and independent state, but, a month after Munich, it lost its own southern lands, including the towns of Uzhorod and Mukachevo, to Hungary.

On 14th March 1939, Slovakia proclaimed its independence and the next day Carpatho-Ukraine followed suit, but on the 16th Hungarian troops entered the scarcely born state and its lands were annexed to Hungary.   Germany, which had prevented a Hungarian takeover in the autumn, was no longer interested.   When the war was over, Carpatho-Ukraine did not return to Czechoslovakia but was added to the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic as the Transcarpathian district.

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