Concordat of Worms  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

The Concordat of Worms, sometimes called the Pactum Calixtinum by papal historians, was an agreement between Pope Calixtus II and Holy Roman Emperor Henry V on September 23, 1122 near the city of Worms. It brought to an end the first phase of the power struggle between the Papacy and the Holy Roman Emperors and has been interpreted as containing within itself the germ of nation-based sovereignty that would one day be confirmed in the Treaty of Westphalia (1648); in part this was an unforeseen result of strategic maneuvering between the Church and the European sovereigns over political control within their domains. The King was recognized as having the right to invest bishops with secular authority ("by the lance") in the territories they governed, but not with sacred authority ("by ring and staff"); the result was that bishops owed allegiance in worldly matters both to the pope and to the king, for they were obligated to affirm the right of the sovereign to call upon them for military support, under his oath of fealty. Previous Holy Roman Emperors had thought it their right, granted by God, to name the pope, as well as other Church officials, such as bishops. One long-delayed result was an end to the belief in the divine right of kings. A more immediate result of the Investiture struggle identified a proprietary right that adhered to sovereign territory, recognizing the right of kings to income from the territory of a vacant diocese and a basis for justifiable taxation. These rights lay outside feudalism, which defined authority in a hierarchy of personal relations, with only a loose relation to territory.


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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Concordat of Worms" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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