Class Year


Document Type

Student Research Paper

Date of Creation

Fall 2014

Department 1



The Holy Roman Empire had an electoral process for choosing the Holy Roman Emperor. The heritage of this unique medieval institution can be traced through from Charlemagne empire to the Ottonians. The Empire of Charlemagne had several serious problems that led to its collapse. In the wake of this collapse, the lords of Germany asserted their power and chose leaders for themselves. Between the fall of the Carolingians and the rise of the Ottonians, Germany moved toward an elected kingship with a ducal power base. Only when Otto I became emperor was there a marriage between the German electoral system and the title of Holy Roman Emperor, resulting in the Holy Roman Empire of the late medieval period.


This paper was written for HIST 311: Medieval Europe, Fall 2014.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 License.