Happy Swiss Christmas everyone

December 22, 2014, 1 Comment

Christmas 2014

Leukerbad in the snow looking towards the Matterhorn. A perfectly Swiss picture of mine to wish you a merry Swiss Christmas from me!

2014 was the year that Switzerland took a step into the unknown, with a Yes vote on immigration quotas from Europe. Ten months after the narrow victory, there’s still no sign of how the decision will be put into practice. Just as well the Swiss government has another two years to negotiate with the EU.

What of next year? The general election in Switzerland might produce a few surprises but mostly 2015 is a year of anniversaries. It’s 700 years since the Swiss defeated the Austrians at the Battle of Morgarten and 500 years since they were beaten by the French at Marignano. The first secured independence for the new confederation, the second set it on the road to permanent neutrality.

It will be 200 years since the Congress of Vienna, which not only ended the Napoleonic Wars but also guaranteed Switzerland’s neutrality and international borders; they have remained unchanged ever since. And on 14 July it is the 150th anniversary of the first ascent of the Matterhorn, a Swiss-British triumph that ended in tragedy when four died on the return journey.

2015 will also see the publication of my next book, something completely different from the others: a book of maps showing Switzerland across the centuries and from many different angles. From the oldest map of Switzerland and the newest tunnel under the Alps to the city that was never built and the regions that were lost forever. It’s a unique beautiful book that will be published in September.

Happy New Year!


One Comment on "Happy Swiss Christmas everyone"

  1. Stella Thursday January 1st, 2015 at 05:39 AM · Reply

    And it’s the first year of the dismissing of the commander of the Swiss Guard, with a possibility of discarding the whole Swiss Guard.

    Best wishes for 2015 to all of you.

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