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The Electorate of
Mainz Mainz (; ) is the capital and largest city of Rhineland-Palatinate Rhineland-Palatinate (german: Rheinland-Pfalz, ) is a western state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine ...

Mainz
(german: Kurfürstentum Mainz or ', la, Electoratus Moguntinus), previously known in English as Mentz and by its French name Mayence, was one of the most prestigious and influential states of the
Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire ( la, Sacrum Romanum Imperium; german: Heiliges Römisches Reich) was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in Western Western may refer to: Places *Western, Nebraska, a village in the US *Western, New York, a town i ...
. In the
Roman Catholic Roman or Romans most often refers to: *Rome , established_title = Founded , established_date = 753 BC , founder = King Romulus , image_map = Map of comune of Rome (metropolitan city of Capital Rome, region Laz ...

Roman Catholic
hierarchy, the Archbishop-Elector of Mainz was also the Primate of Germany ('), a purely honorary dignity that was unsuccessfully claimed from time to time by other archbishops. There were only two other ecclesiastical
Prince-elector The prince-electors (german: Kurfürst pl. , cz, Kurfiřt, la, Princeps Elector), or electors for short, were the members of the that elected the of the . From the 13th century onwards, the prince-electors had the privilege of who would ...
s in the Empire: the
Electorate of Cologne The Electorate of Cologne (german: Kurfürstentum Köln), sometimes referred to as Electoral Cologne (german: Kurköln, links=no), was an ecclesiastical principality A principality (or sometimes princedom) can either be a monarchical ...
and the
Electorate of Trier The Electorate of Trier (german: Kurfürstentum Trier or '), traditionally known in English by its French name of Trèves, was an ecclesiastical principality A principality (or sometimes princedom) can either be a monarchical ...
. The Archbishop-Elector of Mainz was also
archchancellor An archchancellor ( la, archicancellarius, german: Erzkanzler) or chief chancellor was a title given to the highest dignitary of the Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire ( la, Sacrum Romanum Imperium; german: Heiliges Römisches Reich) w ...
of
Germany ) , image_map = , map_caption = , map_width = 250px , capital = Berlin Berlin (; ) is the Capital city, capital and List of cities in Germany by population, largest city of Germany by both area and population. Its 3,769,495 inh ...
(one of the three component titular kingdoms of the Holy Roman Empire, the other two being
Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of a peninsula delimited by the Alps The Alps ; german: Alpen ; it, Alpi ; rm, Alps; sl, Alpe ) are the highest ...
and
Burgundy Burgundy (; french: link=no, Bourgogne ) is a historical territory and a former administrative region Administration may refer to: Management of organizations * Management Management (or managing) is the administration of an organizati ...

Burgundy
) and, as such, ranked first among all ecclesiastical and secular princes of the Empire, and was second only to the
Emperor An emperor (from la, imperator The Latin word "imperator" derives from the stem of the verb la, imperare, label=none, meaning 'to order, to command'. It was originally employed as a title roughly equivalent to ''commander'' under the Roma ...
. His political role, particularly as an intermediary between the Estates of the Empire and the Emperor, was considerable.


History

The episcopal see was established in
ancient Roman times
ancient Roman times
in the city of Mainz, which had been a Roman provincial capital, Moguntiacum. The first bishops before the 4th century have legendary names, beginning with
Crescens Crescens was an individual who appears in the New Testament The New Testament grc, Ἡ Καινὴ Διαθήκη, Transliteration, transl. ; la, Novum Testamentum. (NT) is the second division of the Biblical canon#Christian canons, Chr ...
. The first verifiable Bishop of Mainz was Martinus in 343. The ecclesiastical and secular importance of Mainz dates from the accession of St.
Boniface Boniface ( la, Bonifatius; 675 – 5 June 754), born in the Crediton Crediton is a town and civil parish In England, a civil parish is a type of administrative parish used for local government Local government is a generic ter ...

Boniface
to the see in 747. Boniface was previously an archbishop though without an assigned see, but that ecclesiastical status did not immediately devolve upon the see itself until his successor
Lullus Saint Lullus (Lull or Lul) (born about 710 in Wessex Wessex (; ang, Westseaxna rīċe , 'the Kingdom of the West Saxons') was an Anglo-Saxons, Anglo-Saxon Heptarchy, kingdom in the south of Great Britain, from 519 until England was Kingdom ...
; during his reign Mainz became an archdiocese, in 781. Another early bishop of Mainz was
Aureus of Mainz Aureus of Mainz (born at an unknown date in the Rhone-Loire The Loire (, also ; ; oc, Léger, ; la, Liger) is the longest river in France and the 171st longest in the world. With a length of , it drains , more than a fifth of France's land ...
. The territory of the Electorate included several non-contiguous blocks of territory: lands near Mainz on both the left and right banks of the Rhine; territory along the Main River above Frankfurt (including the district of
Aschaffenburg Aschaffenburg () is a town in northwest Bavaria Bavaria (; German language, German and Bavarian language, Bavarian: ''Bayern'' ), officially the Free State of Bavaria (German and Bavarian: ''Freistaat Bayern''; ), is a Landlocked country, la ...
); the
Eichsfeld The Eichsfeld ( or ; English: ''Oak-field'') is a historical region in the southeast of the state of Lower Saxony (which is called "Untereichsfeld" = lower Eichsfeld) and northwest of the state of Thuringia ("Obereichsfeld" = upper Eichsfeld) in th ...

Eichsfeld
region in
Lower Saxony Lower Saxony (german: Niedersachsen ; nds, Neddersassen; stq, Läichsaksen) is a German state The Federal Republic of Germany, as a federal state, consists of sixteen partly sovereign federated states (german: Land (state), plural (st ...
and
Thuringia Thuringia (; german: Thüringen ), officially the Free State of Thuringia ( ), is a states of Germany, state of Germany. Located in central Germany, it covers , being the sixth smallest of the sixteen German States (including City States). It ...
; and the territory around
Erfurt Erfurt ( , ; ) is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or capitals (or more formally ''majuscule'') and smaller ...

Erfurt
in Thuringia. As was generally the case in the Holy Roman Empire, the territory of a prince-bishopric or archbishopric differed from that of the corresponding diocese or archdiocese, which was the purely spiritual jurisdiction of the prince-bishop or archbishop. During the early modern age, the archdiocese of Mainz (see map below) was the largest ecclesiastical province of Germany, covering Mainz and 10 suffragant dioceses.Augsburg, Coire, Constance, Eichstätt, Hildersheim, Paderborn, Speyer, Strasbourg, Worms, Würtzburg; Franck Lafage, ''Les comtes Schönborn, 1642–1756'', L'Harmattan, Paris, 2008, vol 1, p. 69 In 1802, Mainz lost its archiepiscopal character. In the secularizations that accompanied the ' (
German mediatization German mediatisation (; german: deutsche Mediatisierung) was the major territorial restructuring that took place between 1802 and 1814 in Germany and the surrounding region by means of the mass mediatisation and secularisation of a large number ...
) of 1803, the seat of the elector,
Karl Theodor von Dalberg Karl Theodor Anton Maria von Dalberg (8 February 1744 – 10 February 1817) was Prince A prince is a Monarch, male ruler (ranked below a king, grand prince, and grand duke) or a male member of a monarch's or former monarch's family. ''Princ ...
, was moved to
Regensburg Regensburg or is a city in eastern Bavaria, at the confluence of the Danube, Naab and Regen River, Regen rivers. It is capital of the Upper Palatinate subregion of the state in the south of Germany. With more than 150,000 inhabitants, Regens ...
, and the electorate lost its left bank territories to
France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a transcontinental country This is a list of countries located on more than one continent A continent is one of several large landmasses ...
, its right bank areas along the Main below Frankfurt to
Hesse-Darmstadt The Landgraviate of Hesse-Darmstadt (german: Landgrafschaft Hessen-Darmstadt) was a State State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The S ...
and the Nassau princes, and Eichsfeld and Erfurt to the
Kingdom of Prussia The Kingdom of Prussia (german: Königreich Preußen) was a German kingdom Kingdom may refer to: Monarchy * A type of monarchy * A realm ruled by: **A king, during the reign of a male monarch **A queen regnant, during the reign of a female ...
. Dalberg retained the Aschaffenburg area as the
Principality of Aschaffenburg The Principality of Aschaffenburg (german: Fürstentum Aschaffenburg) was a principality of the Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire ( la, Sacrum Imperium Romanum; german: Heiliges Römisches Reich) was a multi-ethnic complex of territories ...
. In 1810 Dalberg merged Aschaffenburg,
Frankfurt Frankfurt, officially Frankfurt am Main (; Hessian dialects, Hessian: , "Franks, Frank ford (crossing), ford on the Main (river), Main"; french: Francfort-sur-le-Main), is the most populous city in the States of Germany, German state of Hess ...
,
Wetzlar Wetzlar () is a city in the state of Hesse, Germany. It is the twelfth largest city in Hesse with currently 55,371 inhabitants at the beginning of 2019 (including second homes). As an important cultural, industrial and commercial center, the un ...
,
Hanau Hanau () is a town in the Main-Kinzig-Kreis, in Hesse, Germany. It is located 25 km east of Frankfurt, Frankfurt am Main and is part of the Frankfurt Rhine-Main, Frankfurt Rhine-Main Metropolitan Region. Its Hanau Hauptbahnhof, station is a ...

Hanau
, and
Fulda Fulda () (historically in English called Fuld) is a town in Hesse Hesse (, , ) or Hessia (, ; german: Hessen ), officially the State of Hessen (german: links=no, Land Hessen), is a German states, state in Germany. Its capital city is Wiesbaden ...

Fulda
, to form the new
Grand Duchy of Frankfurt The Grand Duchy of Frankfurt was a German satellite state of Napoleonic creation. It came into existence in 1810 through the combination of the former territories of the Archbishopric of Mainz along with the Free City of Frankfurt itself. Histor ...
in 1810. Dalberg resigned in 1813 and in 1815 the
Congress of Vienna The Congress of Vienna (, ) of 1814–1815 was an international diplomatic conference to reconstitute the European political order after the downfall of the French Emperor Napoleon I Napoléon Bonaparte (15 August 1769 – 5 May 1821) w ...

Congress of Vienna
divided his territories between the
Kingdom of Bavaria The Kingdom of Bavaria (german: Königreich Bayern; ) was a German state that succeeded the former Electorate of Bavaria in 1805 and continued to exist until 1918. With the unification of Germany into the German Empire in 1871, the kingdom becam ...
, the
Electorate of Hesse-Kassel The Electorate of Hesse (german: Kurfürstentum Hessen), also known as Hesse-Kassel or Kurhessen, was a Landgraviate of Hesse-Kassel, landgraviate whose prince was given the right to elect the Emperor by Napoleon.Thus it was both a landgraviate ...

Electorate of Hesse-Kassel
(or Hesse-Cassel), the
Grand Duchy of Hesse The Grand Duchy of Hesse and by Rhine (german: link=no, Großherzogtum Hessen und bei Rhein) was a grand duchy A grand duchy is a country A country is a distinct territorial body or political entity A polity is an identifiable poli ...

Grand Duchy of Hesse
and the
Free City of Frankfurt For almost five centuries, the German city of Frankfurt Frankfurt, officially Frankfurt am Main (; Hessian dialects, Hessian: , "Franks, Frank ford (crossing), ford on the Main (river), Main"; french: Francfort-sur-le-Main), is the most ...
. The modern
Roman Catholic Diocese of Mainz The Diocese of Mainz, historically known in English by its French name of Mayence is a Latin rite of the Catholic church The Catholic Church, often referred to as the Roman Catholic Church, is the List of Christian denominations by number ...
was founded in 1802 when Mainz lost its archdiocese status and its territory west of the Rhine River became a mere diocese within the territory of
France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a transcontinental country This is a list of countries located on more than one continent A continent is one of several large landmasses ...
. In 1814 its jurisdiction was extended over the territory of Hesse-Darmstadt. Since then it has had two cardinals and via various
concordat A concordat is a convention between the Holy See The Holy See ( lat, Sancta Sedes, ; it, Santa Sede ), also called the See of Rome or Apostolic See, is the jurisdiction of the Bishop of Rome A bishop is an ordained, consecrated, or a ...
s was allowed to retain the medieval tradition of the
cathedral chapter According to both canon law (Catholic Church), Catholic and canon law (Anglican Communion), Anglican canon law, a cathedral chapter is a College (canon law), college of clerics (chapter (religion), chapter) formed to advise a bishop and, in the cas ...
electing a successor to the bishop. File:Kurfuerstliches Schloss Mainz Innenhof.jpg,
Electoral Palace, Mainz The Electoral Palace in Mainz Mainz (; ; la, Mogontiacum) is the capital and largest city of Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany. Most of the city is upstream of the Rhine before it flows west. The north of the city faces Wiesbaden, in Hesse, and ...
File:Schloss Johannisburg Aschaffenburg.jpg,
Schloss Johannisburg Schloss Johannisburg is a schloss in the town of Aschaffenburg, in Franconia in the state of Bavaria, Germany. It was erected between 1605 and 1614 by the architect for Johann Schweikhard von Kronberg, Prince Bishop of Mainz. Until German medi ...

Schloss Johannisburg
in Aschaffenburg File:ThüringerStaatskanzlei.jpg, Palace of the Mainz Governors in
Erfurt Erfurt ( , ; ) is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or capitals (or more formally ''majuscule'') and smaller ...

Erfurt
File:Mainzer Dom von Nordosten.jpg,
Mainz Cathedral , native_name_lang = , image = Mainzer Dom nw.jpg , imagesize = , imagelink = , imagealt = , caption = , pushpin map = , pushpin label position = , pushpin map alt = , pushpin mapsize = , relief = , map caption = , iso regi ...
File:Erfurt cathedral and severi church.jpg,
Erfurt Cathedral Erfurt Cathedral (german: Erfurter Dom, link=no, officially ''Hohe Domkirche St. Marien zu Erfurt'', English: Cathedral Church of St Mary at Erfurt), also known as St Mary's Cathedral, is the largest and oldest church building in ...

Erfurt Cathedral
and St. Severus Church in
Erfurt Erfurt ( , ; ) is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or capitals (or more formally ''majuscule'') and smaller ...

Erfurt


See also

*
Elector of Mainz The Elector of Mainz was one of the seven Prince-elector The prince-electors (german: Kurfürst pl. , cz, Kurfiřt, la, Princeps Elector), or electors for short, were the members of the that elected the of the . From the 13th century ...
*
Mainz Cathedral , native_name_lang = , image = Mainzer Dom nw.jpg , imagesize = , imagelink = , imagealt = , caption = , pushpin map = , pushpin label position = , pushpin map alt = , pushpin mapsize = , relief = , map caption = , iso regi ...
*
Primas Germaniae Primas Germaniae is a historical title of honor A title of honor or honorary title is a title bestowed upon individuals or organizations as an award in recognition of their merits. Sometimes the title bears the same or nearly the same name as ...
*
Roman Catholic Diocese of Mainz The Diocese of Mainz, historically known in English by its French name of Mayence is a Latin rite of the Catholic church The Catholic Church, often referred to as the Roman Catholic Church, is the List of Christian denominations by number ...


References


External links

* of the modern Diocese
Map of the Archbishopric of Mainz in 1789
{{DEFAULTSORT:Mainz
Electorate Electorate may refer to: * The people who are eligible to vote in an Election#Electorate, election, especially their number e.g. the term ''size of (the) electorate'' * The dominion of a Prince-elector in the Holy Roman Empire until 1806 * An electo ...
History of Hesse Former states and territories of Rhineland-Palatinate Prince-bishoprics of the Holy Roman Empire in Germany Electorates of the Holy Roman Empire History of Catholicism in Germany Lists of bishops and archbishops in Europe 780 establishments 1803 disestablishments in the Holy Roman Empire Dioceses established in the 8th century Electoral Rhenish Circle Former states and territories of Bavaria
Former states and territories of Hesse * * Hesse Hesse (, , ) or Hessia (, ; german: Hessen ), officially the State of Hessen (german: links=no, Land Hessen), is a state of the Germany, Federal Republic of Germany. Its capital city is Wiesbaden, and the largest urban area is Frankfur ...