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9

It didn't - Germany was united several times even prior to the unification of France, Spain or England under strong central governments. Otto I and Frederick I (Barbarossa) being two examples of Emperors who united Germany long before Spain united under the Catholic Monarchs Ferdinand and Isabella in 1469; Louis XIV captivated his nobles and courtiers at ...


9

The three ecclesiastic electorates; Trier, Cologne, and Mainz have well documented lists of the Archbishop-Electors who served and at what times. The majority of them in the latter period of the Holy Roman Empire are indeed of noble descent. However, John I of Trier is presumably to have been of commoner descent, as stated in this 1881 publication by ...


8

As a bride, Marie Antoniette might have been disliked by some due to the longstanding conflict between the two dynasties. But in terms of legitimacy, I'm not sure what could be illegitimate about being an Archduchess of Austria. Indeed, I'm not sure how one could ask for a more legitimate bride than a princess of Europe's most prestigious royal house. In ...


8

Imagine the USA electoral process: you don't technically elect the president, you elect someone into the electoral college of your state who elects for the president every 4 years, and you elect some members of congress and the senate every 2. Now imagine that congress doesn't exist, every state gets 1 appointed senator, and you, the filthy lowborn ...


7

- How were the borders of small European principalities maintained or secured? They weren't, really. Even accurate maps didn't exist until sometime in the late 18th century when the Longitude Problem was solved. However, as all of these little sovereignties were the personal possession of their sovereign, this did not affect the common people in their ...


5

The striking thing was that France and Austria had been political rivals going back to the time of Francis I (France) and Charles V (Austria). Until the mid 18th century. After winning the 100 Years' War, France became the strongest power in western Europe. Spain and Austria (counting the Holy Roman Empire) were two and three, and when Princess Juana of ...


5

After some reading up I have the beginnings of an answer here, I think. The partition of the Habsburg lands actually took place in 1521 (The pact of Worms) and 1522 (The pact of Brussels), way before Philip II was even born. By the Worms and Brussels agreements, which were actually family documents and not diplomatic instruments, Charles's brother ...


4

The nearest modern equivalent to what the Holy Roman Empire was is a federation. It consisted of a large set (up to 1.800) semi-independent areas. When elected, the Holy Roman Empire would not gain complete control over these areas, instead these areas all had their own rule or administration which was generally inherited.


1

In 1485 the House of Wettin split into the Ernestine and Albertine branches, splitting Saxony between them. During the Schmalkaldic War the two branches were headed by John Frederick I and Maurice, respectively Elector of Saxony (Ernestine) and Duke of Saxony (Albertine). The normal distinction between the two sovereignties was made through distinguishing ...


1

Other nations were formed as a result of major wars, some would say civil wars. Arguably the first nation-state was that of France, after the end of the Hundred Years' War in 1453. If you've been at war for over 100 years, it really defines your loyalties. Spain was defined by the war that united Andulusia with Castile, ending in 1492, then an 1640 war ...



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