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The Edition of Emperor Friedrich II's Charters


The Complete Text of the Charter and the Internal Features

(Explicated by the Solemn Privilege)

Protocol (Introduction)


In nomine sancte et individue trinitatis.

In the name of the holy and inseparable trinity.

Verbal Invocation (lat. invocare, invoke; here: „trinitarian“ invocatio). Invocation of God. It is assumed, that the invokation can be traced to a Pauline epistle stating that every activity should be commenced in the name of God. Virtually unchangeable part of the document.


Fridericus secundus divina favente clementia Romanorum imperator semper augustus, Ierusalem et Sicilie rex.

Frederick II, by divine disposed leniency Roman Emperor, “eternally noble”, King of Jerusalem and Sicily.

Superscription or entitling, including a formula of devotion or legitimization: Monarch’s name and ordinal number / formula of devotion or legitimization indicating the origin of the monarch’s authority (virtually unchangeable part of the document) / listing of all imperial titles.



Si divine maiestatis intuitu, per quam feliciter imperamus, ecclesiarum saluti et commodo pia provisione consulimus, celsitudinis nostre titulos ampliamus et celestium beneficiorum memores, quibus affluimus, de premio retributionis eterne firmam spem et fiduciam optinemus.

When we piously care for the salvation and the well-being of the churches, mindful of the divine majesty allowing us to rule joyfully, we expand the glory of our (own) sovereignty and steadfastly hope and trust – mindful of the heavenly benefactions abundantly bestowed upon us – in the eternal reward.

Arenga: the monarch’s motivation, formulated in a general manner, for issuing the charter (reward in heaven, the monarch’s obligation towards his subjects, transience of all things mortal, etc.). Older research regarded this part of the document as less productive for charter research, since it is not relevant for the proper legal content, which is true. But today the importance of this part in the charter is recognised with regard to the history of mentality and ideas of a respective period of time, realising its benefit with regard to the institution of chancellery and notaries respectively.


Eapropter universis imperii nostri fidelibus tam presentibus quam futuris volumus esse notum, quod …

This is why we want all the faithful in our empire, the ones of today and the ones of the future, should know that …

Publicatio oder promulgatio (lat. publicare, publish or promulgare, make known): The “publication formula“ may vary but almost always directly addresses the „fideles“ (abiders) who “ought to be informed”, who “are supposed to know” etc.


… Eberhardus venerabilis Salzburgensis archiepiscopus, dilectus princeps noster, coram eminentie nostre presentia constitutus exposuit, quod, cum advocatia possessionum capituli sui in Halle, Pettingen, Saldorf, Kunkev et Svndergvt cum suis pertinentiis vacare ceperit, ne per advocatorum maliciam ecclesie sue capitulum sicut hactenus bonorum suorum dispendium aut iacturam incurreret, iure infeudandi, quod ad eum spectabat, renunciavit, ut eandem advocatiam ipse ac successores sui semper in manibus suis retineant nec ad manum transferant alienam et super eo confici fecit publicum instrumentum. Propter quod nostre celsitudini suplicavit, ut instrumentum donationis huiusmodi capitulo suo indultum et ea, que continentur in ipso, confirmare de nostra gratia dignaremur.

… the adorable Archbishop of Salzburg Eberhard, our beloved prince, in the presence of our sovereign explained, that he, because the bailiwick of his chapter’s properties in (Reichen-)Hall, Petting, Saaldorf, Chiemgau and Sondergut together with their properties began to become available, that not by the bailiff’s malice, his churches chapter will not suffer harm or disadvantage in its commodities as happened before, with the right to grant fiefdoms he is entitled to, revoke this bailiwick so that he and his successors would hold this bailiwick in their own hands and would not want to give them into a stranger’s hand and that in context with this matter he would create a public (notary’s) instrument. For this reason, he has asked our highness to consider it worthy in our grace to grant him the instrument of this deed and what is included to this chapter.

Narratio (lat.: narrare, narrate): The narrative „tells us“ about the circumstances under which the respective privileged treatment  came about or what history had preceded this act of law. This part is formulated individually since the circumstances for privileges to be granted are always different.


Nos igitur attendentes ipsius archiepiscopi gratam et laudabilem fidem et sinceram obsequiorum suorum instantiam, quibus excellentie nostre assidue placere curavit, considerantes etiam ex hoc ecclesie sue utilitates multiplices et profectus, quod super hoc ab eodem archiepiscopo provide factum est, sicut in eisdem litteris inde confectis plenius continetur, de speciali munificentie nostre gratia perpetuo confirmamus.

We therefore have in the grace of our special welfare for all times granted, and aware of the laudable loyalty of the Archbishop and the sincere zeal of his obedience by which he relentlessly tried to please our Sovereignty as well as taking into consideration the manifold benefits and advantages involved for his church, what was done in this matter by this Archbishop as a precaution, in such way as it is fully included in the very charter created for this.

Dispositio: the proper documentation of the legal act or deed. With regard to content and law this is the most essential part of the document, since in this section the actual legislative act takes place. In accordance with the individual subject, this part is often individually formulated.


Statuimus igitur et imperiali sanccimus edicto, quatenus amodo nulla persona sit alta vel humilis, ecclesiastica seu mundana, que contra presentem confirmationem nostram ullo unquam tempore venire presumat. Quod qui presumpserit, preter indignationem nostram centum libras auri conponat, medietatem camere nostre, reliquam passis iniuriam soluturus.

Further we determine and order by Imperial decree that from now on there should be no other person, may they be prominent or humble, spiritual or secular, who dares to proceed against the confirmation present before us at any point in time. But should anyone dare to, he will pay one hundred pounds of gold, half to our chamber and half to the one suffering the injustice.

Sanctio: In most cases, this part of the chapter is strictly formulated and first of all commands everybody not to disobey the imperial decree. Offenders are threatened with a fine (usually a financial penalty, whereby one half is to be paid to the tax authorities, the other to the injured party).


Ad huius itaque nostre confirmationis memoriam et ut hec omnia rata semper et illibata permaneant, presens inde privilegium fieri fecimus et sigillo nostro iussimus communiri.

To commemorate our very endowment and that it may remain valid and unbroken for all times, we caused to create this privilege and ordered to confirm it with our seal.

Corroboratio (lat. robur, power): a very strictly formulated part of the charter, stipulating the means of authenticating the document’s or decree’s legal validity (in this case the announcement of the writing order and the sealing, the most important authentication of charters throughout the Middle Ages). 

Witness List

Testes sunt huius rei: Sifridus Ratisponensis episcopus, Karolus Secowensis episcopus, Liupoldus dux Austrie et Stirie, Bernhardus Carinthie, Otto Meranie duces, Rapoto comes palatinus Bauuarie, Heinricus frater eius comes de Ortenburc, Chuno de Weruen, Gerhohus de Salzburc, Ulricus et alii quamplures.

Witnesses of this act are: Siegfried Bishop of Regensburg, Karl Bishop of Seckau, Leopold Duke of Austria and Steier, Dukes Bernhard of Carinthia and Otto of Meranien, Rapoto Palatine of Bavaria, his brother Heinrich Earl of Ortenburg, Kuno of Werfen, Gerhoh of Salzburg, Ulrich and many more.

Witness list: In hierarchical order (first spiritual, followed by secular witnesses) everybody is listed who has witnessed the legislative act or its writing. This part is of great importance for the research of persons with regard to who was, and at what time in the personal vicinity of the Emperor.


Signum line

Signum domini Friderici secundi dei gratia Romanorum (M.) imperatoris semper augusti, Iherusalem et Sicilie regis.

Sign of the monarch Frederick II, Roman Emperor by the grace of God, “eternally noble”, King of Jerusalem and Sicily.

Signum line (lat. signum, sign): earlier (not anymore in the 13th century) the monarch himself drew a small final line in his imperial monogram himself (the so called executive stroke), as a sign of his personal involvement and approval of the legal act. 


Acta sunt hec apud Sanctum Germanum, anno domini M°CC°XXX°, mense augusti, indictione IIIa, imperante domino nostro Friderico dei gratia invictissimo Romanorum imperatore semper augusto, Ierusalem et Sicilie rege, imperii eius anno X°, regni Ierusalem V° et Sicilie anno XXX°III°;

It was done near San Germano, in the year of the Lord 1230, in the month of August, in the third indiction, during the imperial reign of our ruler, the most invincible Roman Emperor, “eternally noble”, King of Jerusalem and Sicily, in the tenth year of his imperial reign, the fifth year of his Kingship of Jerusalem and his 33rd year of his Kingship of Sicily.

Datatio: here it is indicated, when and where the legal act was executed or written down. In a privilege the following facts are usually indicated: year of incarnation (contemporary yearly count), month, evtl. day of the month, indiction (ancient 15 year cycle) years of reign as Emperor or King.


feliciter amen.

„joyfully“ amen.

Apprecatio: blessing