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Germanic Mpire

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GERMANIC MPIRE. The mo dern history of Germany commences in the ninth century, when Louis le De bonnair, the grandson of Charlemagne, became, by the treaty of Verdun, A.D. 843, the first king of the Germans. After A.D. 918, the crown became elective. The emperors of Germany assumed the title of Roman emperors from the time of Otho I., who died A.D. 973: when a suc cessor to the throne was elected during the emperor's lifetime, he was called the king of Rome. On the 6th of August, 1806, when the German States bad most of them fallen under the power of Napo leon, the emperor, Francis II., abdicated the imperial crown of Germany, declared the dissolution of the Germanic empire, and took instead the title of emperor of Austria. The Confederation of the Rhine had been formed by the policy of Napo leon, July 12th, 1806. [CONFEDERATION OF THE RHINE.] Before the first French revolution the states of the Germanic empire consisted of the following members, divided into three colleges, or chambers : L The Electoral College, which con sisted of the Ecclesiastical Electors.

1. The archbishop of Mainz, arch chancellor of the empire for Germany. 2. Archbishop of Treves, arch-chancellor of the empire for Gallia and the kingdom of Arles (a purely titular office). 3. Archbishop of Cologne, arch-chancellor for Italy (also a titular office).

IL The Secular Electors were 4. The king of Bohemia, arch-cup bearer of the empire : he presented the emperor at the coronation banquet with a cup of wine and water. 5. The elector of Bavaria, arch-carver of the empire : he bore at the coronation-procession the golden bull before the emperor, and pre sented to him the dishes at the banquet. 6. The elector of Saxony, arch-marshal of the empire : he bore in the great so lemnities of the empire the sword of state, and at the coronation preceded the em peror on horseback. 7. The elector of Brandenburg, arch-chamberlain of the empire : he bore in the coronation-proces sion the sceptre, and presented to the emperor a basin with water to wash his hands. 8. The elector palatine of the Rhine had the title of the arch-treasurer of the empire : his duties were to scatter at the coronation gold and silver medals, struck for the occasion, amongst the people. This electorate became united with that of Bavaria by the accession of the elector to the throne of the last-named principality in 1777, after the extinction of the reigning house of Bavaria. 9. The elector of Brunswick-Luneburg, or Hanover, created by the Emperor Leopold I. in 1692, received in 1706 the title of arch-treasurer; when the emperor, having put to the ban of the empire the elector of Bavaria, took from him the office of the arch-carver, and bestowed it on the elector palatine of the Rhine, whose office on that occasion was given to Hanover.

The Second College consisted of the princes of the empire, who were in rank next to the electors : they had each a vote in the diet of the empire, and were divided into Spiritual and Temporal princes.

The Spiritual princes of the empire who had a vote in the diet were :—the archbishop of Salzburg, and formerly the archbishop of Besancon ; the grand master of the German orlier ; the bishops of Bamberg, Wilrzburg, Worms, Eich staedt, Speyer, Strassburg, Constanz, Augsburg, Hildesheim, Paderborn, Frey singen, Passau, Ratisbon, Trent, Brixen, Basel, Munster, Osnabruck, Liege, Char, Fulda, Lubeck ; the princely (geftirstete) abbot of Kempten ; the princely preben daries of Berchtolsgaden and Weissen burg ; the princely abbots of Priim, Sur blo, and Cervey.

The Temporal princes were :—the arch duke of Austria ; the dukes of Burgundy, and Magdeburg; the counts palatine of Lantern, Simmern, and Neuburg ; of Denxponts (Zweibriickea), of Veldenz, and Lantereken ; the dukes of Bremen, of Saxen-Weymar, Eisenach-Gotha, Alten burg, Coburg ; the margraves of Branden burg-Culmbach, and of Brandenburg Onolzbach ; the dukes of Brunswick, Zell, Grubenhagen, Calenberg, and Wolf enbiittel ; the prince of Halberstadt; the dukes of Upper and Lower Pomerania ; of Verden, Mecklenburg-Schwerin, Meek burg-Gustrow (afterwards Strelitz); of Wirtemberg ; the landgraves of Hessen Cassel and Hessen-Darmstadt ; the mar graves of Baden-Baden, Baden-Durlach, and Baden-Hochberg; the dukes of Hol stein, Gottorp, of Saxe-Lanenburg ; the prince of Minden ; the landgrave of Leucbtenberg; the prince of Anhalt; the princely count of Henneberg; the princes of Schwerin, Kamin Ratzeburg, and Hers feldt ; the princely count of Montbeliard. The princes enumerated belonged to the old body; the following who were ele vated to their dignities after the time of the Emperor Ferdinand II., were called the new : the duke of Aremberg ; the princes of Hohenzollern, Salm, Lobkowitz, Dietrichstein, Nassan-Hadamar, Nassau-DR lenburg, Auersberg, East Friesland, Scbwarzenberg, Lichtenstein, Thurn Taxis, and Schwarzburg. Many of these principalities were in the possession of one individual, who had consequently several votes, the votes being attached to the states and not to individuals.

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