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During the Early Modern period
Early Modern period
the Holy Roman Empire
Holy Roman Empire
was divided into Imperial Circles (Latin: Circuli imperii, German: Reichskreise; singular Circulus imperii, Reichskreis), administrative groupings whose primary purposes were the organization of common defensive structure and the collection of imperial taxes. They were also used as a means of organization within the Imperial Diet and the Imperial Chamber Court. Each circle had a Circle Diet, although not every member of the Circle Diet would hold membership of the Imperial Diet as well. Six Imperial Circles were introduced at the Diet of Augsburg
Diet of Augsburg
in 1500. In 1512, three more circles were added, and the large Saxon Circle
Saxon Circle
was split into two, so that from 1512 until the collapse of the Holy Roman Empire in the Napoleonic era, there were ten Imperial Circles. The Crown of Bohemia, the Swiss Confederacy and Italy remained unencircled, as did various minor territories which held imperial immediacy.

Contents

1 Formation 2 Unencircled territories 3 References 4 Literature 5 External links

Formation[edit] Initially the 1500 Diet of Augsburg
Diet of Augsburg
set up six Imperial Circles as part of the Imperial Reform:

the Bavarian Circle the Franconian Circle the Saxon Circle the Swabian Circle the Upper Rhenish Circle the (Lower Rhenish-)Westphalian Circle

Originally, the territories held by the Habsburg dynasty and the Electors remained unencircled. In 1512 the Diet at Trier
Trier
and Cologne organized these lands into three more circles:

the Austrian Circle, including the Habsburg territories inherited by Maximilian I the Burgundian Circle, including the patrimony of Maximilian's late wife, Mary of Burgundy the Electoral Rhenish Circle, including the ecclesiastical Electorates of Mainz, Cologne
Cologne
and Trier, and the secular Electorate of the Palatinate.

Also, the Saxon circle got divided into:

the Lower Saxon Circle the Upper Saxon Circle, including the Electorates of Saxony and Brandenburg

In view of French claims raised to Maximilian's Burgundian heritage, the 1512 Diet initiated the official use of the name Holy Roman Empire of (the) German Nation (Latin: Sacrum Imperium Romanum Nationis Germanicæ) in its Final Act.[1][2] Though the Empire lost several western territories after the secession of the Seven United Netherlands in 1581 and during the French annexations of the 1679 Peace of Nijmegen, the ten circles remained largely unchanged until the early 1790s, when the French Revolutionary Wars brought about significant changes to the political map of Europe. Unencircled territories[edit] Main article: Territories of the Holy Roman Empire
Holy Roman Empire
outside the Imperial Circles A number of imperial territories remained unencircled, notably the lands of the Bohemian crown, the Old Swiss Confederacy
Old Swiss Confederacy
and the Italian territories. Besides these, there were also a considerable number of minor territories which retained imperial immediacy, such as individual Imperial Villages, and the lands held by individual Imperial Knights. References[edit]

^ Wilson, Peter Hamish (1999), The Holy Roman Empire, 1495–1806, London: MacMillan Press, p. 2 . ^ "The Holy Roman Empire
Holy Roman Empire
of the German Nation", German History, The Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany in London .

Winfried Dotzauer: Die deutschen Reichskreise in der Verfassung des alten Reiches und ihr Eigenleben. 1500–1806. Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft, Darmstadt 1989, ISBN 3-534-04139-9 [1] Peter Claus Hartmann (ed.): Regionen in der frühen Neuzeit. Reichskreise im deutschen Raum, Provinzen in Frankreich, Regionen unter polnischer Oberhoheit. Ein Vergleich ihrer Strukturen, Funktionen und ihrer Bedeutung. (= Zeitschrift für historische Forschung; Beiheft 17). Duncker und Humblot, Berlin 1994, ISBN 3-428-08078-5.

Literature[edit] Contemporary (1500–1806) literature and source material:

Wolfgang Wüst (ed.): Die "gute" Policey im Reichskreis. Zur frühmodernen Normensetzung in den Kernregionen des Alten Reiches, edition of primary sources in four volumes, vol. 1: Der Schwäbische Reichskreis, unter besonderer Berücksichtigung Bayerisch-Schwabens, Berlin 2001; vol. 2: Der Fränkische Reichskreis, Berlin 2003; vol. 3: Der Bayerische Reichskreis und die Oberpfalz, Berlin 2004; vol.: Die lokale Policey: Normensetzung und Ordnungspolitik auf dem Lande. Ein Quellenwerk, Berlin 2008. Hernach volgend die Zehen Krayß, 1532. Johannes Alhusius: Politica methodice digesta. 3.Aufl., Herborn 1614. Martin Zeiller: Von den zehn Kreisen. 1660, 1694. Johann Samuel Tromsdorff: Accurate neue und alte Geographie von ganz Teutschland. Frankfurt 1711 (pp. 128ff). "Creiß" in: Zedler, Grosses vollständiges Universallexikon aller Wissenschaften und Künste, vol. 6 (Ci – Cz), 1733.

External links[edit]

"Imperial Circles in the 16th Century", Historical Maps of Germany, Webs, archived from the original on 2012-01-27 .

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Circles of the Holy Roman Empire
Holy Roman Empire
after the Imperial Reform

Created in 1500

Bavarian Franconian Westphalian (Lower Rhenish-Westphalian) Lower Saxon Swabian Upper Rhenish

Created in 1512

Austrian Burgundian Electoral Rhenish Upper Saxon

and

Territories of the Holy Roman Empire
Holy Roman Empire
outside the Imperial Circles

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Designations for types of administrative territorial entities

English terms

Common English terms1

Area

Insular area Local government area Protected area Special
Special
area Statistical area

Combined statistical area Metropolitan statistical area Micropolitan statistical area

Urban area

Canton

Half-canton

Borough

County
County
borough Metropolitan borough

Capital

Federal capital Imperial capital

City

City
City
state Autonomous city Charter city Independent city Incorporated city Imperial city Free imperial city Royal free city

Community

Autonomous community Residential community

County

Administrative county Autonomous county Consolidated city-county Metropolitan county

Non-metropolitan

Viscountcy

Country

Overseas country

Department

Overseas department

District

Capital district City
City
district Congressional district Electoral district Federal district Indian government district Land district Metropolitan district

Non-metropolitan district

Military district Municipal district Police district Regional district Rural district Sanitary district Subdistrict Urban district Special
Special
district

Division

Census division Police division Subdivision

Municipality

City
City
municipality County
County
municipality

Norway Nova Scotia Regional county municipality

Direct-controlled municipality District
District
municipality Mountain resort municipality Neutral municipality Regional municipality Resort municipality Rural municipality Specialized municipality

Prefecture

Autonomous prefecture Subprefecture Super-prefecture Praetorian prefecture

Province

Autonomous province Overseas province Roman province

Region

Administrative region Autonomous region Capital region Development region Economic region Mesoregion Microregion Overseas region Planning region Special
Special
administrative region Statistical region Subregion

Reserve

Biosphere reserve Ecological reserve Game reserve Indian reserve Nature reserve

State

Federal state Free state Sovereign state

Territory

Capital territory

Federal capital territory

Dependent territory Federal territory Military territory Organized incorporated territory Overseas territory Union territory Unorganized territory

Town

Census town Market town

Township

Charter township Civil township Paper township Survey township Urban township

Unit

Autonomous territorial unit Local administrative unit Municipal unit Regional unit

Zone

Economic zone

Exclusive economic zone Free economic zone Special
Special
economic zone

Free-trade zone Neutral zone Self-administered zone

Other English terms

Current

Alpine resort Bailiwick Banner

Autonomous

Block Cadastre Circle Circuit Colony Commune Condominium Constituency Duchy Eldership Emirate Federal dependency Governorate Hamlet Ilkhanate Indian reservation Manor

Royal

Muftiate Neighbourhood Parish Periphery Precinct Principality Protectorate Quarter Regency Autonomous republic Riding Sector

Autonomous

Shire Sultanate Suzerainty Townland Village

Administrative Summer

Ward

Historical

Agency Barony Burgh Exarchate Hide Hundred Imperial Circle March Monthon Presidency Residency Roman diocese Seat Tenth Tithing

Non-English or loanwords

Current

Amt Bakhsh Barangay Bezirk Regierungsbezirk Comune Frazione Fu Gemeinde Județ Kunta / kommun

Finland Sweden

Län Località Megye Muban Oblast

Autonomous

Okrug Ostān Poblacion Purok Shahrestān Sum Sýsla Tehsil Vingtaine

Historical

Commote Gau Heerlijkheid Köping Maalaiskunta Nome

Egypt Greece

Pagus Pargana Plasă Satrapy Socken Subah Syssel Zhou

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Arabic
Arabic
terms for country subdivisions

First-level

Muhafazah (محافظة governorate) Wilayah (ولاية province) Mintaqah (منطقة region) Mudiriyah (مديرية directorate) Imarah (إمارة emirate) Baladiyah (بلدية municipality) Shabiyah (شعبية "popularate")

Second / third-level

Mintaqah (منطقة region) Qadaa (قضاء district) Nahiyah (ناحية subdistrict) Markaz (مركز district) Mutamadiyah (معتمدية "delegation") Daerah/Daïra (دائرة circle) Liwa (لواء banner / sanjak)

City / township-level

Amanah (أمانة municipality) Baladiyah (بلدية municipality) Ḥai (حي neighborhood / quarter) Mahallah (محلة) Qarya (قرية) Sheyakhah (شياخة "neighborhood subdivision")

English translations given are those most commonly used.

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French terms for country subdivisions

arrondissement département préfecture subprefectures

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Greek terms for country subdivisions

Modern

apokentromenes dioikiseis / geniki dioikisis§ / diamerisma§ / periphereia nomos§ / periphereiaki enotita demos / eparchia§ / koinotita§

Historical

archontia/archontaton bandon demos despotaton dioikesis doukaton droungos eparchia exarchaton katepanikion kephalatikion kleisoura meris naukrareia satrapeia strategis thema toparchia tourma

§ signifies a defunct institution

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Portuguese terms for country subdivisions

Regional subdivisions

Estado Distrito federal Província Região Distrito Comarca Capitania

Local subdivisions

Município Concelho Freguesia Comuna Circunscrição

Settlements

Cidade Vila Aldeia Bairro Lugar

Historical subdivisions in italics.

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Slavic terms for country subdivisions

Current

dzielnica gmina krai kraj krajina / pokrajina městys obec oblast / oblast' / oblasti / oblys / obwód / voblast' okręg okres okrug opština / općina / občina / obshtina osiedle powiat / povit raion selsoviet / silrada sołectwo voivodeship / vojvodina županija

Historical

darugha gromada guberniya / gubernia jurydyka khutor obshchina okolia opole pogost prowincja sorok srez starostwo / starostva uyezd volost ziemia župa

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Spanish terms for country subdivisions

National, Federal

Comunidad autónoma Departamento Distrito federal Estado Provincia Región

Regional, Metropolitan

Cantón Comarca Comuna Corregimiento Delegación Distrito Mancomunidad Merindad Municipalidad Municipio Parroquia

Ecuador Spain

Urban, Rural

Aldea Alquería Anteiglesia Asentamiento

Asentamiento informal Pueblos jóvenes

Barrio Campamento Caserío Ciudad

Ciudad autónoma

Colonia Lugar Masía Pedanía Población Ranchería Sitio Vereda Villa Village
Village
(Pueblito/Pueblo)

Historical subdivisions in italics.

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Turkish terms for country subdivisions

Modern

il (province) ilçe (district) şehir (city) kasaba (town) belediye (municipality) belde (community) köy (village) mahalle (neighbourhood/quarter)

Historical

ağalık (feudal district) bucak (subdistrict) beylerbeylik (province) kadılık (subprovince) kaza (sub-province) hidivlik (viceroyalty) mutasarrıflık (subprovince) nahiye (nahiyah) paşalık (province) reya (Romanian principalities) sancak (prefecture) vilayet (province) voyvodalık (Romanian provinces)

1 Used by ten or more countries or having derived terms. Historical derivations in italics. See also: Census division, Electoral district, Political division, and List of administrative di

.