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The Sisgau was a landgraviate in what is now northwestern Switzerland , which was probably established in Carolingian times and played a decisive role in the territorial control of the northern Jura valleys near Basel until 1585.

The Sisgau appears in a document dated to the year 835 as pagus sisigaugensis . His name is probably related to the village of Sissach .

Like the Frickgau and the Buchsgau, the Sisgau was probably part of the Augstgau . It was bounded in the north by the Rhine , in the east by the Möhlinbach and Ergolz , in the south by the Jura heights and the Lützel and in the west by the Birs . This original expansion underwent a change, especially in the east, when the border from Möhlinbach to Violenbach was moved, which was connected with the expansion of the Habsburg rule Rheinfelden (which had emerged from the Frickgau).

In 1041 the Duchy of Basel received the Sisgau from the Roman-German King Heinrich III. own. The Landgraviate then passed as an episcopal fief by inheritance and marriage through the hands of the important regional noble houses, in 1048 Rudolf von Rheinfelden was Count in Sisgau, followed by those of Homberg , Habsburg , Frohburg , Thierstein and Falkenstein . There were numerous large and small lordships below the high judicial level of the Landgraviate. In 1461 the city of Basel acquired the Landgraviate from the Barons von Falkenstein, which they had inherited from the Thiersteiners in 1418. However, the Thierstein-Pfeffingen branch made its own claims until 1510.

Over the rights associated with the Landgraviate, there was almost a military confrontation between Solothurn and Basel in 1531 , which the High Court claimed over the Solothurn communities in Sisgau. A federal arbitration tribunal decided the bloodless " gallows war " . The border of the Landgraviate was moved to a line that still separates the cantons of Solothurn and Baselland .

The Landgraviate played a last important role during the Counter Reformation , when Prince-Bishop Jakob Christoph Blarer von Wartensee demanded the redemption of the fiefdom and old manorial leases of Basel in the 1580s. Basel ran the risk of falling under the sovereignty of the prince-bishopric, of losing its independence and of being re-Catholicized. Due to its Lutheran orientation, it could not hope for the help of the Reformed cantons and consented to another federal arbitration award. This “Baden Treaty” of 1585 stipulated that, with a payment of 200,000 guilders , Basel came into the final possession of all leases and the Landgraviate. To make up for the cost of this high payment, the wine change in the countryside was increased. The displeasure about this led to the bloodless black war from 1591 to 1594.