Holy Roman Empire  

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This page Holy Roman Empire is part of the Roman Empire series.  Illustration: Antichita Romanae (1748) by Piranesi
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This page Holy Roman Empire is part of the Roman Empire series.
Illustration: Antichita Romanae (1748) by Piranesi

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The Birth of Venus (detail), a 1486 painting by Sandro Botticelli
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The Birth of Venus (detail), a 1486 painting by Sandro Botticelli
Ancient Rome, Roman Empire

The Holy Roman Empire was a union of territories in Central Europe during the Middle Ages and the Early Modern period under a Holy Roman Emperor. The first emperor of the Holy Roman Empire was Otto I, crowned in 962. The last was Francis II, who abdicated and dissolved the Empire in 1806 during the Napoleonic Wars.

The Empire's territorial extent varied over its history, but at its peak it encompassed the Kingdom of Germany, the Kingdom of Italy and the Kingdom of Burgundy; for much of its history the Empire consisted of hundreds of smaller sub-units, principalities, duchies, counties, Free Imperial Cities, as well as other domains. Despite its name, for most of its history the Empire did not include Rome within its borders.

The territories of the Holy Roman Empire in terms of present-day states comprised Germany (except Southern Schleswig), Austria (except Burgenland), the Czech Republic, Switzerland and Liechtenstein, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Slovenia (except Prekmurje), besides significant parts of eastern France (mainly Artois, Alsace, Franche-Comté, Savoie and Lorraine), northern Italy (mainly Lombardy, Piedmont, Emilia-Romagna, Tuscany, and South Tyrol), and western Poland (mainly Silesia, Pomerania, and Neumark).

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Holy Roman Empire" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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