Die goldene Bulle

Bayerisches Hauptstaatsarchiv


The Golden Bull, the constitution of the “Heilige Römische Reich” (Holy Roman Empire), had been decreed by Emperor Charles IV in 1356 and would influence the constitutional structure up to the end of the empire in 1806. It regulated in particular the election of the German kings by the electors, whose number and constitutional position were settled in detail. The electors, whose territories were declared indivisible, gained special legal privileges. The alternating execution of the electoral dignity as fixed in the Treaty of Pavia (1329) between the Palatinate and Bavaria is not considered. The Bavarian Wittelsbach line, therefore, remained excluded from the royal election for centuries. The term “Goldene Bulle” originated from the seal with a golden bulla and is attested as the name for this particular deed since the fifteenth century. Seven originals are preserved in total. Here the version made for the counts Palatine of the Rhine, kept by the Bayerische Hauptstaatsarchiv (Bavarian Main State Archive) is presented.

Rights Statement Description