The Holy Roman Empire

Ref: C2341088

The course will look at the emergence of the Medieval Empire, the controversies between Pope and Emperor, the arguments between the Emperor and the Princes within the Empire, the religious clash between the Emperor and the Renegade Monk, and the eventual decline of the Empire. Themes to be discussed:- The Origins of the Empire and the reasons for arguments between Pope and Emperor; The structure of the Empire as between Princely and Imperial Power; The significance of Wars of Religion; The eventual decline of the Empire.

Course aim

To explore a thousand years of the history and politics of Central Europe as defined by and through the emergence, development, and decline of the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Describe the centrality of Emperor and Pope inside Germany;
  • Discuss the extent to which the Empire had an influence on wider political developments across Europe;
  • Put into context the rise of various new States within Germany;
  • Explain how the emergence of the concept of Germanism was delayed by the continuance of the Empire.

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will have opportunities to discuss your progress with your tutor

What else do I need to know?

  • All materials will be provided
  • A notebook and pen might be advantageous.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Progress to a course with another provider

Download full course information sheet

The Holy Roman Empire


As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you book. Please could we ask that you check the list below to ensure you meet our basic criteria:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2018
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

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