The canton of Lucerne (German: Kanton Luzern; French: canton de Lucerne) is a canton of Switzerland. It is located in the centre of Switzerland. The cantonal capital is Lucerne.
The canton of Lucerne comprises territories acquired by its capital Lucerne, either by treaty, armed occupation or purchase. The first town acquired was Weggis (in 1380), Rothenburg, Kriens, Horw, Sempach and Hochdorf (all in 1394), Wolhusen and Entlebuch (1405), the so-called "Habsburger region" to the north-east of the town of Lucerne (1406), Willisau (1407), Sursee and Beromünster (1415), Malters (1477) and Littau (1481), while in 1803, in exchange for Hitzkirch, Merenschwand (held since 1397) was given up.
The first signs of a municipal constitution appear in 1252. With the growing power of the Habsburgs in the area the ties that bound Lucerne to Murbach weakened. In 1291 the Habsburgs finally purchased Lucerne from Murbach. The purchase of Lucerne by the Habsburgs drove the three forest cantons (Uri, Schwyz and Unterwalden) to form an Eternal Alliance, an act that is considered to be the foundation of Switzerland. In 1332 Lucerne became the fourth member of the Eidgenossen or Swiss Confederation, and the first town to join the rural forest cantons.
The canton issued its own coinage until the formation of the modern federal state of Switzerland in 1848 which imposed a single currency in 1850, replacing all former cantonal currencies.