Ambitionen: Business-Roman (German Edition)

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The Hanseatic League was a commercial and defensive alliance of the merchant guilds of towns and cities in northern and central Europe that dominated marine trade in the Baltic Sea , the North Sea and along the connected navigable rivers during the Late Middle Ages 12th to 15th centuries. Each of the affiliated cities retained the legal system of its sovereign and, with the exception of the Free imperial cities , had only a limited degree of political autonomy.


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Important centers of commerce within the empire, such as Cologne on the Rhine river and Bremen on the North Sea joined the union, which resulted in greater diplomatic esteem. By the late 14th century the powerful league enforced its interests with military means, if necessary. This culminated in a war with the sovereign Kingdom of Denmark from to The league declined after due to a number of factors, such as the 15th-century crisis , the territorial lords' shifting policies towards greater commercial control, the silver crisis and marginalization in the wider Eurasian trade network, among others.

The Ostsiedlung lit. Eastern settlement is the term for a process of largely uncoordinated immigration and chartering of settlement structures by ethnic Germans into territories, already inhabited by Slavs and Balts east of the Saale and Elbe rivers, such as modern Poland and Silesia and to the south into Bohemia , modern Hungary and Romania during the High Middle Ages from the 11th to the 14th century.

Conquered territories were mostly lost after the troops had retreated, but eventually were incorporated into the empire as marches , fortified borderlands with garrisoned troops in strongholds and castles, who were to ensure military control and enforce the exaction of tributes. Contemporary sources do not support the idea of policies or plans for the organized settlement of civilians.

Emperor Lothair II re-established feudal sovereignty over Poland, Denmark and Bohemia since and appointed margraves to turn the borderlands into hereditary fiefs and install a civilian administration. There is no discernible chronology of the immigration process as it took place in many individual efforts and stages, often even encouraged by the Slavic regional lords. However, the new communities were subjected to German law and customs.

Total numbers of settlers were generally rather low and, depending on who held a numerical majority, populations usually assimilated into each other. In many regions only enclaves would persist, like Hermannstadt , founded by the Transylvanian Saxons in modern Romania.

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The campaign, that was supported by the forces of Polish duke Konrad I of Masovia , initially intended to Christianize the Baltic Prussian tribes , succeeded primarily in the conquest of large territories. The order, emboldened by imperial approval , quickly resolved to establish an independent state , without the consent of duke Konrad. Recognizing only papal authority and based on a solid economy, the order steadily expanded the Teutonic state during the following years, engaging in several land disputes with its neighbors.

Permanent conflicts with the Kingdom of Poland , the Grand Duchy of Lithuania , and the Novgorod Republic , eventually lead to military defeat and containment by the midth century. The last Grand Master Albert of Brandenburg converted to Lutheranism in and turned the remaining lands of the order into the secular Duchy of Prussia. Adalbert began to assert the powers of the Church against secular authorities, that is, the Emperor.

This precipitated the "Crisis of " as yet another chapter of the long-term Investiture Controversy. Conrad tried to divest his rival Henry the Proud of his two duchies — Bavaria and Saxony — that lead to war in southern Germany as the empire was divided into two powerful factions. During this early period, the Welfs generally maintained ecclesiastical independence under the papacy and political particularism the focus on ducal interests against the central imperial authority.

The Waiblings, on the other hand, championed strict control of the church and a strong central imperial government. During the reign of the Hohenstaufen emperor Frederick I Barbarossa , an accommodation was reached in between the two factions. However, the Margraviate of Austria was separated from Bavaria and turned into the independent Duchy of Austria by virtue of the Privilegium Minus in Having become wealthy through trade, the confident cities of Northern Italy, supported by the Pope, increasingly opposed Barbarossa's claim of feudal rule Honor Imperii over Italy.

The cities united in the Lombard League and finally defeated Barbarossa in the Battle of Legnano in In , Henry the Lion was outlawed, Saxony was divided, and Bavaria was given to Otto of Wittelsbach , who founded the Wittelsbach dynasty , which was to rule Bavaria until From to , the empire under Frederick I Barbarossa reached its cultural peak with the Reichsfest imperial celebrations held at Mainz and the marriage of his son Henry in Milan to the Norman princess Constance of Sicily. Chivalry and the court life flowered, as expressed in the scholastic philosophy of Albertus Magnus and the literature of Wolfram von Eschenbach.

Between and , Frederick II established a modern, professionally administered state from his base in Sicily.

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He resumed the conquest of Italy, leading to further conflict with the Papacy. In the Empire, extensive sovereign powers were granted to ecclesiastical and secular princes, leading to the rise of independent territorial states. The struggle with the Pope sapped the Empire's strength, as Frederick II was excommunicated three times. After his death, the Hohenstaufen dynasty fell, followed by an interregnum during which there was no Emperor.

The failure of negotiations between Emperor Louis IV and the papacy led to the Declaration at Rhense by six princes of the Imperial Estate to the effect that election by all or the majority of the electors automatically conferred the royal title and rule over the empire, without papal confirmation. As result, the monarch was no longer subject to papal approbation and became increasingly dependent on the favour of the electors.

The decree of the Golden Bull stipulated that all future emperors were to be chosen by a college of only seven - four secular and three clerical - electors. Between and Germany and almost the entire European continent were consumed by the most severe outbreak of the Black Death pandemic.

Minority groups, and Jews in particular were blamed, singled out and attacked. As a consequence, many Jews fled and resettled in Eastern Europe. The early-modern European society gradually developed after the disasters of the 14th century as religious obedience and political loyalties declined in the wake of the Great Plague , the schism of the Church and prolonged dynastic wars.

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The rise of the cities and the emergence of the new burgher class eroded the societal, legal and economic order of feudalism. As financiers to both the leading ecclesiastical and secular rulers, the Fuggers fundamentally influenced the political affairs in the empire during the 15th and 16th century. The knightly classes had traditionally established their monopoly through warfare and military skill.

However, the shift to practical mercenary infantry armies and military-technical advances led to a marginalization of heavy cavalry. From the Habsburg dynasty, who had acquired control in the south-eastern empire over the Duchy of Austria, Bohemia and Hungary after the death of King Louis II in , managed to permanently occupy the position of the Holy Roman Emperor until with the exception of the years between and However, this strict policy of dynastic rule over a vast multi-ethnic territory, prevented the development of concepts of patriotism and unity among the empire's territorial rulers and a national identity as in France and England.

During his reign from to , Maximilian I tried to reform the empire. An Imperial supreme court Reichskammergericht was established, imperial taxes were levied, and the power of the Imperial Diet Reichstag was increased. The reforms, however, were frustrated by the continued territorial fragmentation of the Empire.

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Total population estimates of the German territories range around 5 to 6 million by the end of Henry III's reign in and about 7 to 8 million after Friedrich Barabarossa's rule in The towns were subjected to the municipal legal system. Cities such as Cologne , that had acquired the status of Imperial Free Cities , were no longer answerable to the local landlords or bishops, but immediate subjects of the Emperor and enjoyed greater commercial and legal liberties.

Craftsmen formed guilds , governed by strict rules, which sought to obtain control of the towns; a few were open to women. Society had diversified, but was divided into sharply demarcated classes of the clergy , physicians , merchants , various guilds of artisans, unskilled day labourers and peasants. Full citizenship was not available to paupers. Political tensions arose from issues of taxation, public spending, regulation of business, and market supervision, as well as the limits of corporate autonomy.

Cologne's central location on the Rhine river placed it at the intersection of the major trade routes between east and west and was the basis of Cologne's growth. It was the seat of an archbishop, under whose patronage the vast Cologne Cathedral was built since The cathedral houses sacred Christian relics and since it has become a well known pilgrimage destination. By the city had secured its independence from the archbishop who relocated to Bonn , and was ruled by its burghers.

Munich , Nuremberg Chronicle , Bamberg , Nuremberg Chronicle , From the early medieval period and continuing through to the 18th century, Germanic law assigned women to a subordinate and dependent position relative to men.

Ambitionen: Business-Roman (German Edition)

Salic Frankish law , from which the laws of the German lands would be based, placed women at a disadvantage with regard to property and inheritance rights. Germanic widows required a male guardian to represent them in court. Social status was based on military and biological roles, a reality demonstrated in rituals associated with newborns, when female infants were given a lesser value than male infants. The use of physical force against wives was condoned until the 18th century in Bavarian law.

Some women of means asserted their influence during the Middle Ages, typically in royal court or convent settings. Hildegard of Bingen , Gertrude the Great , Elisabeth of Bavaria — , and Argula von Grumbach are among the women who pursued independent accomplishments in fields as diverse as medicine, music composition, religious writing, and government and military politics. Benedictine abbess Hildegard von Bingen — wrote several influential theological, botanical, and medicinal texts, as well as letters, liturgical songs, poems, and arguably the oldest surviving morality play , while supervising brilliant miniature Illuminations.

About years later, Walther von der Vogelweide c. He was the global inventor of the printing press , thereby starting the Printing Revolution. Cheap printed books and pamphlets played central roles for the spread of the Reformation and the Scientific Revolution. By then, the emperors had lost their influence in Italy and Burgundy. Hildegard von Bingen — , Benedictine abbess, philosopher, author, artist and visionary naturalist. Walther von der Vogelweide c.

Johannes Gutenberg c. Albertus Magnus c. Tilman Riemenschneider c. In order to manage their ever growing expenses, the Renaissance Popes of the 15th and early 16th century promoted the excessive sale of indulgences and offices and titles of the Roman Curia. In , the monk Martin Luther published a pamphlet with 95 Theses that he posted in the town square of Wittenberg and handed copies to feudal lords.

Whether he nailed them to a church door at Wittenberg remains unclear. The list detailed 95 assertions, he argued, represented corrupt practice of the Christian faith and misconduct within the Catholic Church. Although perhaps not Luther's chief concern, he received popular support for his condemnation of the sale of indulgences and clerical offices, the pope's and higher clergy's abuse of power and his doubts of the very idea of the institution of the Church and the papacy.

The Protestant Reformation was the first successful challenge to the Catholic Church and began in as Luther was outlawed at the Diet of Worms after his refusal to repent. The ideas of the reformation spread rapidly, as the new technology of the modern printing press ensured cheap mass copies and distribution of the theses and helped by the Emperor Charles V 's wars with France and the Turks. This is highlighted by the fact that Luther spoke only a local dialect of minor importance during that time.