One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1The parliament of the Austrian Empire or (1867–1919) of the Austrian part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.
2The second chamber of the German parliament during the Weimar Republic, composed of representatives of the various federated states, and having the power of veto over legislation passed in the Reichstag.
Mid 19th century; earliest use found in The Times. From German Reichsrat, † Reichsrath the parliament of the Austrian Empire and its successors up to the end of the First World War, the second chamber of the German Parliament during the Weimar Republic from Reichs-, combining form of Reich kingdom, empire + Rat council.
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