Golden Bull

Golden Bull
Imperial chrysobull of Alexios III of Trebizond, 1374
The Golden Bull of 1356 issued by Holy Roman Emperor Charles IV
The Golden Bull of 1242 of Béla IV to inhabitants of Zagreb in Croatia.

A Golden Bull or chrysobull was a golden ornament representing a seal (a bulla aurea or "golden seal" in Latin), attached to a decree issued by Byzantine Emperors and later by monarchs in Europe during the Middle Ages and Renaissance. The term was originally coined for the golden seal itself but came to be applied to the entire decree. Such decrees were known as golden bulls in western Europe and chrysobullos logos, or chrysobulls, in the Byzantine Empire (χρυσός, chrysos, being Greek for gold).

For nearly eight hundred years, they were issued unilaterally, without obligations on the part of the other party or parties. However, this eventually proved disadvantageous as the Byzantines sought to restrain the efforts of foreign powers to undermine the empire. During the 12th century, the Byzantines began to insert into golden bulls sworn statements of the obligations of their negotiating partners.[citation needed]

Other European monarchs adopted golden bulls in imitation of the Byzantines, but used them much more sparingly. The exceptional nature of non-Byzantine golden bulls gave them a much higher profile than either the Byzantine originals or ordinary proclamations[citation needed]. Notable golden bulls included:

  • The Golden Bull of Berne, supposedly also issued by Frederick II in 1218, but now considered a forgery.

See also


External links

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Golden bull — Golden Gold en (g[=o]ld n), a. [OE. golden; cf. OE. gulden, AS. gylden, from gold. See {Gold}, and cf. {Guilder}.] [1913 Webster] 1. Made of gold; consisting of gold. [1913 Webster] 2. Having the color of gold; as, the golden grain. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Golden Bull — • A fundamental law of the Holy Roman Empire; probably the best known of all the many ordinances of the imperial diet Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006 …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Golden Bull — an edict of Charles IV, emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, issued in 1356 and in force until the extinction of the empire in 1806, in which the selection of the emperor was entrusted to seven Electors. * * * golden bull noun (L bulla aurea) an… …   Useful english dictionary

  • Golden Bull — an edict of Charles IV, emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, issued in 1356 and in force until the extinction of the empire in 1806, in which the selection of the emperor was entrusted to seven Electors. * * * …   Universalium

  • GOLDEN BULL —    an Imperial edict, issued by the Emperor Charles IV., which determined the law in the matter of the Imperial elections, and that only one member of each electoral house should have a vote; so called from the gold case enclosing the Imperial… …   The Nuttall Encyclopaedia

  • Golden Bull of 1356 — The Golden Bull of 1356 was a decree issued by a Reichstag in Nuremberg headed by Emperor Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor (see Diet of Nuremberg) that fixed, for a period of more than four hundred years, important aspects of the constitutional… …   Wikipedia

  • Golden Bull of Rimini — The Golden Bull of Rimini was a Golden Bull issued by Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor, at Rimini in March 1226, to confirm the Teutonic Knights possessions in Prussia. It was the first of three similar documents, followed by the Treaty of… …   Wikipedia

  • Golden Bull of 1222 — The Golden Bull of 1222 was a golden bull, or edict, issued by King Andrew II of Hungary. The law established the rights of Hungary s noblemen, including the right to disobey the King when he acted contrary to law ( jus resistendi ). The nobles… …   Wikipedia

  • Golden Bull of 1222 — ▪ Hungarian history       charter granted by King Andrew II of Hungary, which stated the basic rights and privileges of the Hungarian nobility and clergymen and the limits of the monarch s powers. The Hungarian nobles, aroused by Andrew s… …   Universalium

  • Golden Bull of Emperor Charles IV — ▪ Holy Roman Empire [1356]       constitution for the Holy Roman Empire promulgated in 1356 by the emperor Charles IV. It was intended to eliminate papal (pope) interference in German political affairs and to recognize the importance of the… …   Universalium

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