The Holy Roman Empire (800-1806) was a collection of highly autonomous political entities, including duchies, principalities, archbishoprics, bishoprics, landgraviates, margraviates, imperial free cities, imperial abbeys, imperial knights and imperial villages. At its height, the Empire included literally hundreds of these different political entities, earning the Empire the nickname of ‘Flickenteppich’ (German for ‘patchwork carpet’). By the eve of