The March of Styria derived its name from the original seat of its ruling Otakar dynasty: Steyr, in today's Upper Austria. In German, the area is still called "Steiermark" while in English the Latin name "Styria" is used. The ancient link between Steyr and Styria is also apparent in their nearly identical coats of arms, a white Panther on a green background.
The term "Upper Styria" (German: Obersteiermark) used by an Austrian refers to the northern and northwestern parts of the federal-state (districts Liezen, Murau, Judenburg, Knittelfeld, Leoben, Bruck an der Mur, and Mürzzuschlag). The term "West Styria" (Weststeiermark) is used for the districts to the west of Graz (Voitsberg, Deutschlandsberg, western part of the district Leibnitz); the districts east of Graz (Weiz, Hartberg, Feldbach, Fürstenfeld, and Radkersburg) are referred to as "East Styria" (Oststeiermark). The western and eastern parts of the district Graz-Umgebung may or may not be considered parts of West and East Styria, respectively. The southern parts of the Duchy of Styria, which have formed part of Yugoslavia and later Slovenia since 1918 (with the exception of World War II), were (and sometimes colloquially still are) referred to as "Lower Styria" (Untersteiermark; Slovene: Štajerska).
During early Roman times, Styria was inhabited by Celtic tribes. After its conquest by the Romans, the eastern part of what is now Styria was part of Pannonia, while the western one was included in Noricum. During the Barbarian invasions, it was conquered or crossed by the Visigoths, the Huns, the Ostrogoths, the Rugii, and the Lombards. Slavs, who first were under the domination of the Avars, settled in the valleys of this country (around 600 and onwards). At the same time Bavarian people (under Frankish domination) began to expand their area to the south and east and absorbed the Slavic population.
In 1180 Styria separated from the Duchy of Carinthia and became a Duchy of its own; in 1192 the Austrian Duke Leopold V. became also Duke of Styria. Later Styria formed the central part of Inner Austria.
Styria developed culturally and economically under Archduke John of Austria between 1809 and 1859.
In 1918, after World War I, it was divided into a northern section (forming what is the current Austrian state), and a southern one, called Lower Styria, inhabited mostly by ethnic Slovenians, and which was annexed to Yugoslavia, and later in Slovenia.
As elsewhere in the developed world, there has been a shift away from the manufacturing sector towards the service sector in Styria. This has had negative consequences for the industrial regions of upper Styria which have suffered a steady decline in population in recent years.
In 2004 Styria had the strongest economic growth rate in Austria at 3.8%—mainly due to the Graz area which saw strong economic growth that year and has continued to grow in economic and population terms since then.
Styria is home to more than 150 clean technology companies, of which one dozen are world technology leaders in their field. The revenue of Styrian cleantech companies totals €2.7 billion. This equals to 8 percent of the Gross Regional Product (GRP), and is one of the highest concentrations of leading clean technology companies in Europe. The companies have an average (real) growth rate of 22 percent per year—well above the worldwide cleantech market growth of 18 percent per year. The region created roughly 2,000 additional green jobs in 2008 alone.
The state is divided into 13 districts (Bezirke), one of them a statutory city.Graz
Liezen (with the subdistrict Gröbming)
The state had been a stronghold of the Austrian People's Party (ÖVP) since 1945. Graz however is a stronghold of the far left Communist Party (KPÖ). The governor (Austrian political term: Landeshauptmann) has usually been an ÖVP member.
In the 2005 elections for state parliament the Social Democrats (SPÖ) under their regional chairman Franz Voves won the majority after the ÖVP had damaged its credibility through scandals and the secession of a high-ranking party member who took part in the 2005 elections after setting up his own party. In these elections, the KPÖ also received many votes after it had gained much popularity through its role in local politics in Graz during the preceding few years. The two right-wing populist parties, the Freedom Party of Austria (FPÖ) and the Alliance for the Future of Austria (BZÖ), failed to win seats.Palman (fl. 1310–1363), knight and mercenary commander of the Serbian Empire
Johann Joseph Fux (1660–1741), composer and music theorist, wrote Gradus ad Parnassum – a composition manual used by Beethoven and Mozart
Archduke John of Austria (1782–1859)
Johann Puch (1862–1914), founded Johann Puch Erste Steiermärkische Fahrrad-Fabriks-Aktiengesellschaft at Graz in 1899.
Peter Rosegger (1843–1918), honoured poet
Jochen Rindt (1942–1970), Formula 1 World Champion
Bert Isatitsch (1911–1994), first president of the International Luge Federation
Frank Stronach (b. 1932), founder of Magna International, billionaire
Dr. Helmut Marko (b. 1943), former racing driver
Klaus Maria Brandauer (b. 1944), actor and director
Dietrich Mateschitz (b. 1944), founder and CEO of Red Bull, billionaire
Elfriede Jelinek (b. 1946), Nobel Prize in Literature winner
Arnold Schwarzenegger (b. 1947), bodybuilder, film actor and former Governor of California
Wolfgang Muthspiel (b. 1965), jazz composer and guitarist
Thomas Muster (b. 1967), former World No. 1 tennis player
Ulla Weigerstorfer (b. 1967), Miss Austria 1987 and Miss World 1987
Renate Götschl (b. 1975), alpine skiing World Champion
Elisabeth Görgl (b. 1981), professional alpine skier
Eva Rueber-Staier (b. 1951), Miss Austria 1969, Miss World 1969
Josef Allerberger (1924–2010), World War II sniper credited with 257 confirmed kills
Robert Stolz (b. 1880), composer born in Graz
Getty Kaspers (b. 1948), lead vocals of Dutch band Teach-In, who won the 1975 Eurovision Song Contest.
Conchita Wurst (b. 1988), winner Eurovision Song Contest 2014, European superstar