Two of the major governmental powers in the High Middle Ages were the national monarchies of the Western Europe countries and the Holy Roman Empire in the middle European state, especially Germany. Understand the differences and similarities of these two methods of government helps to gain more information and a better idea about modern governmental bodies and society. One of the main similarities is the control of the entire State or territory by a single ruling body. This was apparent in both governmental bodies as well as the way in which the people were made dependent on the government to Survive. This is the concept or area which should be discussed in more detail and brought together with the influence of those societies on today’s modern world.
National monarchies and feudalism are related through the princes to consolidate their economic and military surplus and was used to mediate between the aristocracy and the bourgeoisie landowners. Another aspect was to centralize and regulate commerce coming into the country. In essence the High Middle Ages national monarchy was technically the overseer to all national regulations to safeguard the people and commerce (Dumolyn, 110). The Holy Roman Empire’s centralized jurisdictional body was created to find solutions to land issues, peasants, aristocracy, and much more. It was very similar to the feudal national monarch except it was run by judges and not a single person or monarch (Thronhill, 113). It was the first step to a checks and balances system which many democratic societies have today.
Watching the history unfold, Western European countries still have monarchies in place. Some are for show, while others still technically rule the country. Germany however is a democratic state which uses a checks and balance system that works for the people of the nation and not for the aristocracy. This difference shows in modern society the difference of the evolution of government. Those who had and have monarchies are slow to open their society to the people and bring about democracy. Not that this is a bad thing, but it is different from the nation-states of the Holy roman Empire who seem to truly strive for a type of equality in citizenship and an effort to keep the authority out of the control of a single person. This is the government of the modern and future societies of our world.
Dumolyn, Jan. “The Political and Symbolic Economy of State Feudalism: The Case of Late-Medieval Flanders.” Historical Materialism 15.2 (June 2007): 105-131. Academic Search Premier. EBSCO. [Library name], [City], [State abbreviation]. 12 Dec. 2008 <http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=aph&AN=25638187&site=ehost-live>.
Thornhill, Chris. “The Holy Roman Empire and the Law.” German History 24.1 (Feb. 2006): 111-117. Academic Search Premier. EBSCO. Apollo Library. 12 Dec. 2008 <http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=aph&AN=19417372&site=ehost-live>.