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Imperial Coronation Oath

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Imperial Coronation Oath

Post by Guest on Sun Sep 04, 2011 11:40 am

One of the surprising things in G7 is the way the Imperial Coronation Oath is interpretted in very different ways. Does anyone have any insight from other LGDR games or general history which could shed light on the correct interpretation and its implications?

The oath appears to be made up of 5 questions:
Question1: Will you hold and guard by all proper means the sacred faith as handed down to Catholic men?
Question2: Will you be the faithful shield and protector of Holy Church and her servants?
Question3: Will you uphold and recover those rights of the realm and possessions of the Empire that have been unlawfully usurped?
Question4: Will you protect the poor, the fatherless, and the widowed?
Question5: Will you pay due submission to the Roman Pontiff and the Holy Roman Church?


Q1 and 4 seem clear.
Does Q2 mean the oath is broken if an Emperor is at war with another Catholic nation or allies with a Protestant or non-Christian nation?
Does Q5 mean that the Pope can overrule the Emperor?

The hardest question is Q3. The question is not simply "Will you uphold and recover those rights of the realm and possessions of the Empire". If it was then clearly if any state breaks away from the Empire, the Emperor should attack it, and you can't give away bits of the Empire. But the defining clause is "that have been unlawfully usurped". The test would appear to be:
1. Have lands been usurped?
2. Was the usurpation lawful?


Usurp means 'to seize and hold the rights of another without legal authority,' so this is down to who has sovereignty. If say Hannover attacked Brunswick then it is clear that Brunswick's lands have been usurped, that the usurpation was unlawful, and so an obligation exists under the Coronation Oath for the Emperor to force Hannover to restore the rights of Brunswick or reach some form of settlement agreeable to both parties.

But the recurring issue in G7 has been with states wanting to leave the Empire. Can the ruler of a state 'usurp' the lands of that state? Can the ruler of a state behave unlawfully within that state?

In the newspapers from G7 (July-September 1702) several states referred to the Treaty of Westphalia and the consensus appears to be that the Treaty of Westphalia established the sovereignty of individual states within the Empire and limited the Emperor's right to directly rule those states. It was designed not only to stop nations attacking each other within the Empire, but also to stop the Emperor attacking those nations.

If sovereignty rests with the rulers of those states, then any nation which wants to break away from the Empire can do so. A sovereign ruler cannot behave unlawfully against his own people. If this interpretation holds then it appears not to be a breech of the Emperor's Coronation Oath to allow states to break away. However, once a state has broken away there doesn't appear to be any restriction on the Emperor attacking them as there is no restriction on any independent country attacking any other independent country.

Can the Emperor direct states to leave the Empire? If sovereignty rests with the individual state, then on the face of it no. Unless by agreement with that state. It would probably be good manners and certainly lead to fewer misinterpretations if states wanting to leave the Empire had some kind of discussion with the Emperor first, but there doesn't appear to be any necessity for this.

The alternative would be that the Emperor has sovereignty over individual states and so can force nations out or keep them in irrespective of their own wishes. This seems to be against the Treaty of Westphalia and Q3 of the Coronation Oath which only applies if there is an unlawful usurpation.

And of course the other obvious question: does breaking the Coronation Oath have a significant impact in the game anyway?

What do other players think?
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Re: Imperial Coronation Oath

Post by Kingmaker on Sun Sep 04, 2011 1:25 pm

Q3 is quite clear to me it means The Holy Lands

Q2 It would mean all Catholic nations. However in Game 3 we are trying to Unite the Orthodox church with the Roman catholic church. Some may not be aware that the Orthodox church is catholic and the Roman is the Romanised version of it, so that Question could be applied to them in the East (Russia etc) as well.

I would suggest reading any of the wikis on LGDR etc as Game 3 covers this ground very much as the Current HRE is a Protestant! Much to the Popes dismay and anger!!!!


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Re: Imperial Coronation Oath

Post by Guest on Sun Sep 04, 2011 1:46 pm

Thanks for the reply.

What are 'The Holy Lands'? My point about Q3 is that it is not so much about which lands, but about what happens to them. The distinction is based on 'unlawful usurpation'.

I'm not in G3 and there are only a few months newspapers to review which don't seem to contain the discussion. I'm amazed the current HRE in G3 is Protestant, don't see how that can work.

Your interpretation of Q2 is interesting - you suggest it is a breech of the Coronation Oath if the emperor attacks another Catholic or Orthodox nation?
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Re: Imperial Coronation Oath

Post by Kingmaker on Sun Sep 04, 2011 4:08 pm

The Holy lands are Antioch ,Jerusalem etc. All owned by the Muslims unlawful meaning they were took by force by Saladin?

Yes G3 HRE has caused a lot of problems not sure how they will work with him.

Also in game 3 some time ago Prussia tried to usurp the HRE but with the help of the Duke of wurrternburg and Saxony they forced him to back down.

Not sure about Q2 attacking but it may be frowned upon by the Pope after all catholics Roman ones that is are supposed to be on the same side.

Q5 quite simply means although he is the HRE the Pope has the ultimate say so but how that works in practise is to be seen.

Just out of interest in Game 3 as the Tsar I have recovered nearly all of the former Eastern Empire and I am now titled The Emperor of the Romans so we have 2!!!Although the present Pope seems to not recognise the title, but the easIf any one is playing th game tern Patriarchs do. I would also hazard also that the Pope would not be too fussed if the current HRE attacked Imperial Russia...

Also if any one is playing game3 by email they could send you some back dated newspaers with the al the coronation stuff in it as he was crowned not too far back


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Re: Imperial Coronation Oath

Post by Guest on Sun Sep 04, 2011 5:29 pm

So the 'Holy Lands' commitment refers back to Medieval times and doesn't relate to the current borders of the Empire?! That explains a lot.

In G7 France and England are at war. Austria had a peace treaty with France, but broke it and is now at war with France. It sounds from your reply like you think this would not endear the Emperor to the Pope.

G3 sounds very confusing: 2 Emperors?! Still, you've obviously done very well to recover lost lands and unite such a large area.

I would be interested in receiving relevant newspapers or other comments/views. I think the issue in G7 is conflicting interpretations of the Treaty of Westphalia and the Coronation Oath. Between them they seem to determine the extent of the powers of the Emperor and individual states within the Empire. But everyone seems to have different interpretations.

Any other views?


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Re: Imperial Coronation Oath

Post by Kingmaker on Sun Sep 04, 2011 7:41 pm

As I say My Emperor, The Tsar (Which is a Russian corruption of Ceaser) is really recognised by the council of Patriarchs church wise, The Pope does not.


The Oath and the coronation plus the selection are very confusing in every game noy just yours.....


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Re: Imperial Coronation Oath

Post by Basileus on Mon Sep 05, 2011 9:56 am

I presumed that question 3 actually referred to Holy Roman Empire lands. I would have thought that the recovery of the Holy Lands would only apply if there was some sort of crusader oath involved inthe coronation oath. This was sometimes the case in western European coronation oaths in the Middle Ages but certainly by the fourteenth/fifteenth century there was no interest in this anymore. Therefore I would presume that this applied to Empire lands.
The difficulty with this is that the borders changed over time. Generally with a reduction of the loss of lands, northern Italy, the Dutch provinces, the Swiss Cantons (not to mention Franche-Comte Sad ) But the knowledge that lands had been lost and no more should be lost would make that part of the oath meaningful. I do not think that the recovery of the Holy Lands would have been even of interest in the eighteenth century to the HRE.
The interesting element is Kingmakers perspective in that from a Russian position there does appear to be an element in Russian self image in eighteenth and nineteenth century about the recovery of Jerusalem. But I suspect that was in part about dividing up and grabbing parts of the declining Ottoman Empire. The Tsar did take a role as protectors of the Orthodox communities in the Ottoman Empire with a keen interest in Jerusalem. In probability this could have been more counter productive for Orthodox communities rather than helpful. Reference - the treatment of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire in the twentieth century.
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Re: Imperial Coronation Oath

Post by Kingmaker on Mon Sep 05, 2011 10:32 am

Yes true, there was also a speech by a Monk saying that Moscow was the third Rome and that the Tsar was the new Ceaser...

The story of "Third Rome" ("the second Constantinople") started in Tver, during the reign of Boris of Tver, when the monk Foma (Thomas) of Tver had written The Eulogy of the Pious Grand Prince Boris Alexandrovich in 1453.[3][4] The idea crystallized with a panegyric letter composed by the Russian monk Philoteus (Filofey) of Pskov in 1510 to their son Grand Duke Vasili III, which proclaimed, "Two Romes have fallen. The third stands. And there will be no fourth. No one shall replace your Christian Tsardom!". Contrary to the common misconception, Filofey explicitly identifies Third Rome with Muscovy (the country) rather than with Moscow (the city). In addition, Moscow is placed on seven hills, as is Rome.


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Re: Imperial Coronation Oath

Post by Deacon on Wed Sep 07, 2011 7:49 am

Kingmaker wrote:Q3 is quite clear to me it means The Holy Lands

Q2 It would mean all Catholic nations. However in Game 3 we are trying to Unite the Orthodox church with the Roman catholic church. Some may not be aware that the Orthodox church is catholic and the Roman is the Romanised version of it, so that Question could be applied to them in the East (Russia etc) as well.

I would suggest reading any of the wikis on LGDR etc as Game 3 covers this ground very much as the Current HRE is a Protestant! Much to the Popes dismay and anger!!!!

I disagree about q3. Charlemagne was consecrated in 800, well before any crusades were called, so I wouldn't presume this is a call for the holy lands, but the lands held by the emperor, and european centric

And as the pope in game 3, I'd appreciate you not putting words in my mouth. I have an opinion on the protestant HRE which I've expressed publicly repeatedly in the paper, and it is neither dismay nor anger. It is that the title is intrinsically catholic, being created by us, and that if the electors want to name a protestant to lead them that is their right, but they may call him something else. They may not usurp a Catholic title.

I won't comment on the rest since, I think it crosses the line about what may be said on the boards.

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Re: Imperial Coronation Oath

Post by Guest on Wed Sep 07, 2011 10:02 am

Deacon/Kingmaker/Basileus - thank you for your comments.

The point of the topic was not to incite a replay of whatever is going on in Game 3, but to hope that other players would share their own findings from all other games. I don't see how a general discussion crosses any line and I'm sure all players will contribute in the spirit of the original posting. Clearly in ignorance I did not anticipate how hot an issue this was in Game 3.

I would very much like to read the comments from newspapers where this has been discussed, but I'm not in game 3 and don't have access to the papers. Those on the Wiki do not include personal statements/articles submitted by players and so the relevant statements/arguments are missing. Perhaps, as Kingmaker suggests, someone could send the relevant extracts?

There are many players on this forum of much greater game experience than I have and it should be possible between us to reach a consensus view on:

1. What the Coronation Oath means
2. Which lands Q3 refers to
3. How it relates to the Treaty of Westphalia
4. How the Oath and the Treaty of Westphalia together permit or restrict the actions of the Emperor.
5. How nations can leave the Holy Roman Empire without causing the Emperor to break his Coronation Oath or exceed his powers.
6. Can nations join the Holy Roman Empire, and if so do these form part of Imperial Lands binding the Emperor to act?

Clearly nations can and have left the Empire in different games, just as nations have merged together, peacefully and quite possibly with the Emperor's blessing. I don't know of any nations joining the Empire, but it seems reasonable to suppose they can.

Any more constructive views?

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Re: Imperial Coronation Oath

Post by Basileus on Wed Sep 07, 2011 10:24 am

I dont know if this helps, but during the 30 Years War which was primarily in Germany and goes to the core of some of the issues discussed. The position of the United Dutch Republic was clearly one where it had previously achieved independence from the Spanish Hapsburgs in the previous century. But from the perspective of the Imperial constitution it was still considered as part of the Empire. The Imperial authorities however had the sense at that time not to try to impose something that they never had the power or ability to undertake and whilst the UDP in their theory was still part of the Empire it had left, as I presume had been the case of the Swiss cantons earlier. So in part it seems that there was an element of "real politik" taking place with the constitution. Cessation was possible and attempted succesfully and unsuccessfully. So the Swiss and Dutch had been successful but the Czechs were unsuccessful with the Defrenistration (is that how you spell it Smile ) of Prague. There must have been peaceful occasions when this had happened such as Milan leaving the Empire and becomming a Spanish Hapsburg province.
So it strikes me that legality follows success in this and in other aspects of life.
Which doesnt help my game position so perhaps I should have kept quite Laughing

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