Four Forest Cantons, the

Four Forest Cantons, the,

Ger. Die Vier Waldstätten, in central Switzerland, the cantons of UnterwaldenUnterwalden
, canton, central Switzerland, one of the Four Forest Cantons. A mountainous, forested, and chiefly pastoral region, Unterwalden is divided into the half cantons of Obwalden (1993 pop.
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, SchwyzSchwyz
, canton (1993 pop. 116,100), 351 sq mi (909 sq km), central Switzerland, one of the Four Forest Cantons. Bordering on the Lake of Zürich in the north and the Lake of Lucerne in the southwest, Schwyz is a mountainous and forested region, with meadows supporting
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, UriUri
, canton (1993 pop. 35,500), 415 sq mi (1,075 sq km), central Switzerland, one of the Four Forest Cantons. Altdorf is the capital. The most sparsely populated of the Swiss cantons, Uri is an Alpine region of glaciers and pastures, with forests and meadows in the Reuss River
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, and LucerneLucerne
, Ger. Luzern , canton (1993 pop. 331,800), 576 sq mi (1,492 sq km), central Switzerland. Drained by the Reuss and Kleine Emme rivers, Lucerne is mainly an agricultural and pastoral region, with orchards and large forested areas.
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, the first Swiss communities to win their freedom against the Hapsburgs. In 1291 the three mountain forest cantons (Unterwalden, Schwyz, and Uri) formed the League of Forest Cantons as the nucleus of an independent Switzerland. They were joined by Lucerne in 1332. The Lake of the Four Forest Cantons (Vierwaldstättersee) is called in English the Lake of Lucerne.
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