Regesta of Albert I 1298-1308


Dr. Paul Herold


Institut für Österreichische Geschichtsforschung

Universitätsring 1

A-1010 Wien

The first fascicle, which will include the regesta of the years 1298-1302, is currently in process.

Regesta of Henry VII 1308-1313


Prof. Dr. Michel Margue

  • Dr. Christina Abel
  • Dr. Miriam Weiss
  • Linda Hammann (Stipendiatin)

Regesta Imperii Heinrich VII.
Historisches Institut Mittelalter
Universität des Saarlandes

Campus B3.1, Räume 2.11, 2.15 und 2.16

D-66123 Saarbrücken


work +49(0)681-302-3304


fax +49(0)681-302-4234

Henry VII 1308-1313

The Luxembourgish count, Roman king and later emperor Henry VII is counted among the most significant rulers of the Middle Ages.

Already during his time as a count he had proven himself as an innovative and vigorous sovereign. His younger brother Balduin († 1354), which rose up to the archbishop of Trier in 1307/1308, was a successful politician, too, who skillfully supported his brother and even after his early death not only directed his archdiocese with a firm hand for almost half a century, but also sustainably shaped the imperial politics. After having been elected as Roman-German emperor in November 1308 after a more than six month preparation, Henry VII was the founder of a ruler dynasty of pan-European importance. He already laid the foundation stone for this in his first year in power by ruling positively on Bohemian requests in a venturesome way, enfeoffed son John – who later received the epithet “the Blind”– in the following year with the Bohemian crown and immediately married him off to the last unwedded Přemyslidian princess Elisabeth so that the Bohemian Kingdom came into the possession of his family. At the start of the 14th century their realm in “composed statehood” comprised a territory three times the size of the present-day Grand Duchy between the modern states Germany, Belgium and France, but was still unable to measure up to the mightier ones amongst the German Prince Regnants. By integrating Bohemia in his realm, Henry VII did not only gain an electorship for the house of Luxembourg but also due to her rich silver mines of the biggest and economically strongest imperial territories. Simultaneously the marriage between Henry VII’s son and the Přemyslidian princess reinforced the tendency strengthening of political and cultural emphases in the Roman-German Empire in the East, too, with Prague emerging as a quasi-capital, which was then followed by Vienna.

From the start Henry VII purposefully pursued his plans of gaining the western imperial crown. Already in the autumn of 1310 he had crossed the alps accompanied by a respectable army, he was however welcomed by the Italian population with a mixture of enthusiasm and fear, rejection actually. This was caused by the fact that Henry VII aspired for the first time in more than half a century to exercise imperial rights in Northern Italy, exercise real power and claim the taxes and duties which the monarchical central power was entitled to.

After one and a half years he was able to prevail despite persisting resistance, partly due to the aid of military violence: On June 26, 1312 Henry VII was declared emperor in Rome. Further plans, in a politically and militarily effective pincer movement, that is to say in an alliance with the Sicilian king, possibly to win Southern Italy back, were not realized due to his prematurely death on August 24, 1313.

Henry VII in the research

Despite his significance for the German and European history Henry did so far not attract the interest he deserves. Prejudices and misjudgments dating back to the 19th and 20th century are still predominant in research, which do not do justice to his personality, his politics and his vision. Friedrich Schneider for instance transports with his up today not yet redeemed biography in a nearly panegyric way the image of the “representative of higher manhood”, in whom “in noble purity” the emperor idea was reawaken; later authors like William M. Bowsky and Francesco Cognasso present the Luxembourgian rather as a naïve enthusiast, who in the end had to fail due to the Italian realities. A well-balanced appreciation of Henry VII’s personality is still pending not at least because until now the relevant archive material had only been developed insufficiently. Such an appreciation has been prepared by works out of the employee group of the Regesta Imperii (like Maria Elisabeth Franke) and has recently been outlined by Peter Thorau in the biographic-political baselines.

Revision of the regesta of Henry VII and their academic importance

The aim of the revision of the regesta of Henry VII is to create a reliable and broadest possible basis for the future engagement with the ruler and his time. First preliminary works trace back to Vincenz Samanek, who in the course of many years of work on the regesta of Adolf, King of Germany (which was published posthumously in 1948) additionally collected materials concerning the Luxembourgian. The project has been systematically tackled since 1979 by Kurt-Ulrich Jäschke; it is located as a workplace at the History Department of the Saarland University. Peter Thorau has been a staff member of the project since 1993.The first fascicle of the Regesta Imperii Henry VII has been published in May 2006. It contains 42 regesta in total, mainly from Henry’s time as a Luxembourgian count and the environment of the king election of November 27, 1308 as well as 277 numbers from Henry VII’s first action as a king until the end of the his first voyage through his realm at the court meeting in Speyer in August 1309. Apart from deeds and other written documents from Henry’s chancery historiographic messages as well as letters addressed to the king were recorded. More than a third of those pieces have not been printed until then– a whole range has only been acquired in various archives by the workplace in Saarbrücken– or are only available as fairly old prints from before 1800. There are newer prints for more than a hundred deeds (ca. two fifths), however those are usually scattered in regional record books or other publications; besides those prints are not always reliable.Thus the especially detailed design of the new regesta is explained, which without doubt often have to serve as a substitute for a proper edition. Apart from a list of the tradition in archives (as complete as possible), all available prints and  so far present regesta, they offer a reproduction of content which sticks very close to the text including extensive quotes from the sources and thorough comments on the individual pieces. The detailed additional information shall not only be a reliable and broad working basis for academic researchers but also facilitate the access to the matter for interested laymen: Everything possible that is originally in Medieval Latin, Middle French or Middle High German will be expressed in modern academic language. At least three additional fascicles are planned, which will on the one hand cover the time until the crossing of the Alps in the late autumn of 1310, on the other hand the years in Italy.


VI. Rudolf I of Germany - Henry VII, Holy Roman Emperor 1273-1313

  1. Böhmer, J. F., Regesta Imperii VI. Die Regesten des Kaiserreichs unter Rudolf, Adolf, Albrecht, Heinrich VII. 1272-1313. Unit. 1 (Rudolf), edited by Redlich, Oswald. Reprint of the edition Innsbruck (1898) - Hildesheim (1969).*Printed version as PDF documentReviews of this volume
  2. Böhmer, J. F., Regesta Imperii VI. Die Regesten des Kaiserreichs unter Rudolf, Adolf, Albrecht, Heinrich VII. 1272-1313. Unit. 2. Die Regesten des Kaiserreiches unter Adolf von Nassau: 1291-1298, edited by Samanek, Vincenz - Innsbruck (1948).Printed version as PDF documentReviews of this volume
  3. Böhmer, J. F., Regesta Imperii VI. Die Regesten des Kaiserreichs unter Rudolf, Adolf, Albrecht, Heinrich VII. 1272-1313. Unit. 4. Heinrich VII. 1288/1308-1313. 1. fasc.: 1288/1308 - August 1309, edited by Jäschke, Kurt-Ulrich and Thorau, Peter - Innsbruck (2006).Printed version as PDF documentReviews of this volume
  4. Böhmer, J. F., Regesta Imperii VI. Die Regesten des Kaiserreichs unter Rudolf, Adolf, Albrecht, Heinrich VII. 1273-1313. Unit 4. Heinrich VII. 1288/1308-1313. 2. fasc.: 1. September 1309 – 23. Oktober 1310, edited by Jäschke, Kurt-Ulrich and Thorau, Peter - Wien (et al.) (2014).Printed version as PDF documentReviews of this volume

All printed publications were published by the two Böhlau publishing houses in Cologne-Weimar-Vienna and respectively Vienna-Weimar-Cologne. Volumes marked by a * were published as reprints by the publishing house Olms, Hildesheim.