MORAVIA, province of the former republic of Czecho slovakia, since 1939 under a German protectorate, is an area of 8,616 sq.m. It is a large basin, drained by the Morava and its tributaries and by the upper Oder. North and west of a line from Znojmo through Brno to the source of the Oder it is part of the plateau which slopes south from the Vrchovina Ceskomorayska, and beyond the Olomouc bay of the Morava, of the Jesenik heights (Praded, 4,887 ft.). Both these plateaux consist of old crystalline rocks and pre-Permian, notably Devonian limestones and Car boniferous strata. South and east of the line mentioned above Tertiary and Recent deposits, e.g., loess, form a fertile, undulating territory with isolated hills, rising beyond the Morava to the outer ranges of the Bile Karpaty and the West Beskids. The most important ranges of this downland run parallel to the Car pathians and include the Chfiby (1,915 ft.) west of the Morava and its continuations the Hory Vizovske and spurs of the West Beskids, east of the river. The bay of Olomouc projects a tongue of Recent deposits and their typical human responses into the eruptive zone, where small outcrops of Cretaceous strata repro duce conditions found in the neighbouring basin of the Elbe.
The accidented relief of Moravia gives rise to great varieties of climate which in association with the different geological formations diversify its agriculture. Thus on the high western plateau the cultivated crops grade from hardy cereals, flax and potatoes through wheat and rye to maize, sugar-beet and vine in the lower sheltered valleys where conditions resemble those of the Bohemian plain. Beyond the Morava the passage is from the last-named group through cereals to fodder crops and pasture on the pervious flysch and limestones of the Carpathian flanks.
The province contains some 16% of the acreage under wheat in Czechoslovakia, and 3o% of that devoted to sugar-beet. Other crops of importance are hops (Truce), hemp in the warm low lands, vegetables (Znojmo and Olomouc), chicory, fruit and tobacco. Forestry is well-developed and the raising of stock in cludes an esteemed breed of horses from the plain of the Hana, excellent sheep in the Carpathians and fine cattle along the north eastern border. The mineral wealth, consisting chiefly of coal and iron, is considerable. The former is mined principally in the
district of Morayska Ostrava, part of the Silesian field, but smaller quantities are obtained from the Rosice-Oslavany region, west of Brno ; lignite is mined at Hodonin. Iron-ores are extracted in the Moravian-Silesian borderlands, Blansko and Rosice. Other mineral products of lesser importance are graphite (Mohelnice and Stare Mesto), clay and slates.
Industrially Moravia is advanced. It shares the important iron and steel working of Silesia, possessing foundries at Vitkovice and has smaller works at Rosice. Machinery is manufactured at Brno and Blansk6; much of this is for domestic use in agricul ture, agricultural industries and textile manufacture. The hops and barley of Olomouc supply large breweries with a flourish ing export trade, while other distributed and thriving industries arising from local agriculture are distilling and sugar-refining, and along the mountain borderland of the west starch and glucose are prepared. The cloth industry dates from the 14th century and has its powerful centre at Brno, silks are manufactured in northern Moravia, hats at Prostejov and Novy Ji6in and leather goods at Brno, Prostejov and Jihlava. Other activities include saw-milling, the manufacture of furniture (Brno and Tfebie') and clay products (Znojmo).
The population of Moravia (193o) was 2,825,137 ; in 1921, 78.2% were Czechoslovaks, 21% Germans and o.6% Jews. The German element is strongest at the northern and southern ends, for Moravia has always been a great thoroughfare for movements between Vienna and south-eastern Germany, and in several of the larger towns the proportion of Germans is fairly high. By religion its people are 91% Roman Catholic, 3.2% Protestant, 2.3% Czechoslovak church and 1.8% without any confession. Educa tionally the standard is high and reflects both the prosperity of the province and the cultural influence of its German contacts during a long association with Austria. For administrative pur poses the province is included with Silesia and the two are divided into six electoral areas for representation in the Chamber of Deputies and three for the Senate. A large measure of provincial autonomy is granted, the provincial capital being Brno.