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Encyclopedia > Principality

A principality is a monarchical feudatory or sovereign state, ruled or reigned over by a Monarch with the title of prince or princess (a synonym is princedom) or (in the widest sense) a Monarch with another title within the generic use of the term prince. Places where monarchies maintain rule appear in blue. ... This article discusses states as sovereign political entities. ... The term prince (the female form is princess), from the Latin root princeps, when used for a member of the highest aristocracy, has several fundamentally different meanings - one generic, and several types of titles. ...

His Serene Highness Albert II, Prince of Monaco (on the left) represents a principality where he wields administrative power. His Royal Highness The Prince Charles, Prince of Wales represents a titular principality with no administrative power.
His Serene Highness Albert II, Prince of Monaco (on the left) represents a principality where he wields administrative power. His Royal Highness The Prince Charles, Prince of Wales represents a titular principality with no administrative power.


This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... Serene Highness (acronym HSH) – His Serene Highness or Her Serene Highness. ... Albert II, Sovereign Prince of Monaco (Albert Alexandre Louis Pierre Grimaldi; born March 14, 1958), styled His Serene Highness The Sovereign Prince of Monaco, is the head of the House of Grimaldi and the current ruler of the Principality of Monaco. ... Royal Highness (abbreviation HRH) is a style His Royal Highness or Her Royal Highness. ... The Prince Charles, Prince of Wales (Charles Philip Arthur George Mountbatten-Windsor; born Windsor, 14 November 1948), is the eldest son of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. ...


Some have never been an actual polity, but simply a territorial denomination in chief of which a princely style is held, with or even without an often more modest estate and/or income, both of which may even be (at least partially) outside the geographical confines of the principality. Polity is a general term that refers to political organization of a group. ...

Surviving sovereign principalities are Liechtenstein, Monaco, and the co-principality of Andorra. Extant royal primogenitures styled principality include Asturias (Spain), and Wales (UK). Anthem: Asturias, patria querida Capital Oviedo Official language(s) Spanish; Asturian have special status Area  â€“ Total  â€“ % of Spain Ranked 10th  10,604 km²  2. ... Motto: (Welsh for Wales forever) Anthem: Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau Capital Cardiff Largest city Cardiff Official language(s) English, Welsh Government Constitutional monarchy  - Queen Queen Elizabeth II  - Prime Minister Tony Blair MP  - First Minister Rhodri Morgan AM Unification    - by Gruffudd ap Llywelyn 1056  Area    - Total 20,779 km² (3rd in...

The term is also sometimes used as a generic term for any monarchy, especially for other small sovereign states ruled by a Monarch of a lesser rank (compare F├╝rst) than King, for instance grand duchies, whose monarch is a Grand Duke or Duchess. No sovereign duchy currently exists, but Luxembourg is a surviving example of a sovereign grand duchy. Historically there have been sovereign principalities of many ruler styles, such as countships, margraviates and even Lordships. Fürst (plural Fürsten) is a German title of nobility, usually translated into English as Prince; however this translation can be misleading, since a Fürst usually ranks below a Duke. ... A grand duchy is a territory whose head of state is a Grand Duke or Grand Duchess. ... The title of Grand Duke (Latin, Magnus Dux; German, Großherzog, Russian, Великий князь) used in Slavic, Baltic, and Germanic countries, is ranked in honour below King but higher than a sovereign Duke (Herzog) or Prince (Fürst). ... A Grand Duchess is the wife of a Grand Duke or a woman who rules a Grand Duchy in her own right. ... A duchy is a territory, fief, or domain ruled by a duke or duchess. ...

Notable principalities existed until the early 20th century in various regions of France, Germany and Italy. (19th century - 20th century - 21st century - more centuries) Decades: 1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s As a means of recording the passage of time, the 20th century was that century which lasted from 1901–2000 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar (1900–1999...

While the definition would fit a princely state perfectly, the historical tradition is to reserve that word for native monarchies in colonial countries, principality for the Western monarchies, which this page is therefore devoted to. A princely state is any state under the reign of a prince and is thus a principality taken in the broad sense. ...

Western principalities


Though principalities existed in Antiquity, before the height of the Roman Empire, the modern principality as it is known today evolved into being in the Middle Ages between 350 and 1450 when feudalism was the primary economic system employed by Eurasian societies. Feudalism increased the power of local princes to govern the king's lands. As princes continued to gain more power over time, the authority of the king was diminished in many places. This led to political fragmentation and the king's lands were broken into mini-states led by princes and dukes who wielded absolute power over their small territories. This was especially prevalent in Europe, and particularly with the Princes of the Holy Roman Empire. The Roman Empire was a phase of the ancient Roman civilization characterized by an autocratic form of government. ... The Middle Ages formed the middle period in a traditional schematic division of European history into three ages: the classical civilization of Antiquity, the Middle Ages, and modern times, beginning with the Renaissance. ... Events January 18 - Magnentius proclaimed Emperor by the army in Autun. ... Events March - French troops under Guy de Richemont besiege the English commander in France, Edmund Beaufort, Duke of Somerset, in Caen April 15 - Battle of Formigny. ... Roland pledges his fealty to Charlemagne; from a manuscript of a chanson de geste. ... Economics (deriving from the Greek words οίκω [okos], house, and νέμω [nemo], rules hence household management) is the social science that studies the allocation of scarce resources to satisfy unlimited wants. ... World map showing Europe Political map (neighbouring countries in Asia and Africa also shown) Europe is one of the seven traditional continents of the Earth. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ...

During the period known as the Renaissance from 1200 to 1500, principalities were engaged in constant warfare with each other as royal houses asserted sovereignty over smaller principalities. These wars caused a great deal of instability and economies were destroyed. To add insult to injury, the bubonic plague reduced the power of principalities to survive independently. But eventually, agricultural successes, development of new goods and services to trade and patronization by the Roman Catholic Church boosted commerce between principalities. These states became wealthy and expanded their territories and improved the services provided to their citizens. Princes and dukes developed their lands, established new ports and chartered large thriving cities. Some took their new found wealth and built the first palaces and elaborate government offices people now associate with principalities. Raphael was famous for depicting illustrious figures of the Classical past with the features of his Renaissance contemporaries. ... Events University of Paris receives charter from Philip II of France The Kanem-Bornu Empire was established in northern Africa around the year 1200 Mongol victory over Northern China — 30,000,000 killed Births Al-Abhari, Persian philosopher and mathematician (died 1265) Ulrich von Liechtenstein, German nobleman and poet (died... 1500 was a common year starting on Monday (see link for calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Bubonic plague is the best-known variant of the deadly infectious disease plague, which is caused by the enterobacteria Yersinia pestis. ...


While some principalities prospered in their independence, less successful states were swallowed by stronger royal houses. Europe saw consolidation of small principalities into larger kingdoms and empires. This trend directly led to the creation of such states as Great Britain, France, Portugal, and Spain. Another form of consolidation was orchestrated in Italy during the Renaissance by the Medici family. A banking family from Florence, the Medici took control of governments in various Italian regions and even assumed the papacy. They then appointed family members to become princes and assured their protection by the Medici-controlled Vatican. Places where monarchies maintain rule appear in blue. ... What exactly constitutes an Empire (from the Latin imperium, denoting military command within the ancient Roman government) is a topic of intense debate within the scholarly community. ... The Medici coat of arms The Medici family was a powerful and influential Florentine family from the 13th to 17th century. ... Country Italy Region Tuscany Province Florence (FI) Mayor Leonardo Domenici Elevation 50 m Area 102 km² Population  - Total (as of 2006-06-02) 366,488  - Density 3,593/km² Time zone CET, UTC+1 Coordinates Gentilic Fiorentini Dialing code 055 Postal code 50100 Frazioni Galluzzo, Settignano Patron St. ... The Pope is the Catholic Bishop and patriarch of Rome, and head of the Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Catholic Churches. ...


Nationalism, the belief that the nation-state is the best vehicle to realize the aspirations of a people became popular in the late 19th century. Characteristic of nationalism is the preference for loyalty to the people instead of loyalty to monarchs. With this development, principalities fell out of favor. As a compromise, many principalities united with neighboring regions and adopted constitutional forms of government with the monarch as a mere figurehead while administration was left at the hands of elected parliaments. The trend after World War II was the abolition of various forms of monarchy like principalities and the creation of republican governments led by popularly elected presidents. Liberty Leading the People by Eugène Delacroix Nationalism is an ideology [1] that holds that a nation is the fundamental unit for human social life, and takes precedence over any other social and political principles. ... Alternative meaning: Nineteenth Century (periodical) (18th century — 19th century — 20th century — more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 19th century was that century which lasted from 1801-1900 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar. ... Combatants Major Allied powers: United Kingdom Soviet Union United States Republic of China and others Major Axis powers: Nazi Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Harry Truman Chiang Kai-Shek Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tojo Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead...

Ecclesiastical principalities

Principalities where genealogical inheriatnce is replaced by succession in a religious office have existed in significant number in the Roman Catholic Church, in each case consisting of a feudal polity (often a former secular principality lato sensu, such as a lordship, countship...) held ex offico -the closest possible equivalent to hereditary succession- by a Prince of the church, styled more precisely according to his ecclesiastical rank, such as Prince-bishop, Prince-abbot and, especially as a form of crusader state, Grand Master. Catholic Church redirects here. ... The term Prince of the church is nowadays used nearly exclusively for Roman Catholic Cardinals. ... Prince-Bishop was the title given bishops who held secular powers, beside their inherent clerical power. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Grand Master is the typical title of the supreme head of various military orders of knighthood, a type of religious order including the Knights Templar, a class of sectarian order such as the Ancient Order of Hibernians, the Orange Order, but who in the case of a sovereign order such...

Other principalities

Non-western and colonial world

Principalities have existed in ancient and modern civilizations of Africa, Asia, Pre-Columbian America and Oceania. A world map showing the continent of Africa. ... World map showing the location of Asia. ... The term pre-Columbian is used to refer to the cultures of the New World in the era before significant European influence. ... World map exhibiting a common interpretation of Oceania. ...

However in the colonial context, the term princely states is generally preferred, specially for those that came under the sway of a Western colonizing power, e.g. the British Indian and neighbouring or associated (e.g. Arabian) princely states were ruled by Monarchs called Princes by the British, regardless of the native styles, which could be equivalent to royal or even imperial rank in the autochthonous cultures. A princely state or native state was a feudal monarchy in British India ruled by a hereditary ruler, who was nominally sovereign. ... British India (otherwise known as The British Raj) was a historical period during which most of the Indian subcontinent, or present-day India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Myanmar, were under the colonial authority of the British Empire (Undivided India). ...

Micronations claiming to be principalities

Several micronations, which claim sovereignty but are not recognized as states, also claim the status of sovereign principalities, the most notable in Europe being Sealand off the coast of England and Seborga, a small town in Italy; micronational principalities elsewhere include Hutt River Province in Australia, the Principality of Minerva in the South Pacific and The Maya Lenca Principality in eastern El Salvador. This article is about small nations that are not recognized by any world government. ... For other meanings, see Sealand (disambiguation). ... Motto: (French for God and my right) Anthem: Multiple unofficial anthems Capital London Largest city London Official language(s) English (de facto) Government Constitutional monarchy  - Queen Queen Elizabeth II  - Prime Minister Tony Blair MP Unification    - by Athelstan AD 927  Area    - Total 130,395 km² (1st in UK)   50,346 sq... City motto: Sub umbra sedi (Latin: Sit in the Shade) Founded 954 Region Liguria Province Imperia Mayor Franco Fogliarini from 05/31/2001 Nearest Commons Ospedaletti, Perinaldo, Sanremo, Vallebona Area  4 km² Altitude 500 Latitude 43° 50 43 Longitude 7° 42 0 Population  362 Density 85 Habitants Name seborghini... The Hutt River Province Principality is Australias oldest micronation. ... The Republic of Minerva was one of the few modern attempts at creating a sovereign micronation on the reclaimed land of an artificial island. ... The Maya Lenca Principality was a principality formed around 900 BC in a region of what is now El Salvador. ...

Other uses

The Principalities are one of nine orders of angels in medieval angelology, the 7th in the hierarchy. The Annunciation - the Angel Gabriel announces to Mary that she will bear Jesus (El Greco, 1575) An angel is a supernatural being found in many religions. ... For other uses, see Angel (disambiguation). ... According to medieval Christian theologians, the Angels are organized into several orders, or Angelic Choirs. ...

See also

The title Grand Prince (Latin, Magnus Princeps; German, Großfürst, Finnish Suuriruhtinas, Swedish Storfurste, Lithuanian Didysis kunigaikštis, Russian Великий князь Velikii kniaz) ranks in honour below Emperor and Tsar but higher than a sovereign Prince (Fürst) or Royal Prince. ... A victory title is an honorific title adopted by a successful military commander to commemorate his defeat of an enemy nation. ...

Sources and references


  • WorldStatesmen

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