Glarus (canton)

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Glarus is a canton in east Switzerland. The capital is Glarus. There are 25 municipalities in the canton (July 2006). The population is German speaking and either Protestant or Catholic.

Geography[change | edit source]

The canton of Glarus is dominated by the deep valley of the Linth River. Most of the area is mountainous. The total area of the canton of Glarus is 685 km².

History[change | edit source]

Church of Glarus by Ferdinand Stadler

The history of this canton is dominated by religion. The inhabitants of the Linth Valley were converted to Christianity in the 6th century by the Irish monk Saint Fridolin, who still features in the coat of arms of the canton today. He founded Säckingen Abbey near Basel. From the 9th century, the area around Glarus was owned by the abbey. By 1288, the Habsburgs, bit by bit, claimed all the abbey's rights. This resulted in the people of Glarus joining the Swiss Confederation in 1352.

Between 1506 and 1516, the reformer Huldrych Zwingli was priest in Glarus, but by 1564, all of Zwingli's followers were eliminated. This, however, did not end the struggles between the Protestants and the Catholics in the area. To secure peace it was decided that each party should have its own assembly (Landsgemeinde) in 1623, and at a later stage in 1683, each side was granted the right to have its own tribunals.

Between 1798 and 1803, Glarus was part of the Canton of Linth as established by Napoleon. In 1836 the constitution was adapted to unite the assemblies and establish only one Landsgemeinde.

About two thirds of Glarus (593 buildings) were destroyed after a big fire in 1861. After this incident, Glarus was rebuilt in block fashion according to construction plans by Bernhard Simon and Johann Caspar Wolff.

On May 6, 2007 Glarus became the first Swiss canton to lower the voting age to 16.[1]

Industry[change | edit source]

The land of the canton helped to make slate works in the 1600s.

Municipalities[change | edit source]

The 25 municipalities (gemeinden) are:

References[change | edit source]

  1. SwissInfo, retrieved on May 7 2007

Other websites[change | edit source]