Lorraine

Lorraine (French pronunciation: ​[lɔʁɛn]; Lorrain: Louréne; Lorraine Franconian: Lottringe; German: Lothringen ; Luxembourgish: Loutrengen) is a cultural and historical region in north-eastern France, now located in the administrative region of Grand Est. Lorraine's name stems from the medieval kingdom of Lotharingia, which in turn was named for either Emperor Lothair I or King Lothair II. It later was ruled as the Duchy of Lorraine before the Kingdom of France annexed it in 1766.

From 1982 until January 2016, Lorraine was an administrative region of France. In 2016, under a reorganization, it became part of the new region Grand Est.[1] As a region in modern France, Lorraine consisted of the four departments Meurthe-et-Moselle, Meuse, Moselle and Vosges (of an historical point of view the Haute-Marne departement is located in the region), containing 2,337 communes. Metz is the regional prefecture. The largest metropolitan area of Lorraine is Nancy, which had developed for centuries as the seat of the duchy.

Lorraine borders Germany, Belgium, and Luxembourg. Its inhabitants are called "Lorrains" in French and number about 2,356,000.

Lorraine
Flag of Lorraine

Flag
Coat of arms of Lorraine

Coat of arms
Location of Lorraine
CountryFrance
Administrative regionGrand Est
PrefectureMetz
Departments
Area
 • Total23,547 km2 (9,092 sq mi)
Population
 (2012-01-01)
 • Total2,349,816
Demonym(s)Lorrainer
ISO 3166 codeFR-M
NUTS RegionFR4

History

Cathedrale metz 2003
Saint-Etienne cathedral in Metz, capital of Lorraine

Lorraine's borders have changed often in its long history. The location of Lorraine led to it being a paramount strategic asset as the crossroads of four nations. This, along with its political alliances, marriage alliances, and the ability of rulers over the centuries to choose sides between East and West, gave it a tremendously powerful and important role in transforming all of European history. Its rulers intermarried with royal families over all of Europe, played kingmaker, and seated rulers on the thrones of the Holy Roman Empire and Austro-Hungarian Empire Austria-Hungary, and others.

In 840, Charlemagne's son Louis the Pious died. The Carolingian Empire was divided among Louis' three sons by the Treaty of Verdun of 843. The middle realm, known as Middle Francia, went to Lothair I, reaching from Frisia in Northern Germany through the Low Countries, Eastern France, Burgundy, Provence, Northern Italy, and down to Rome. On the death of Lothair I, Middle Francia was divided in three by the Treaty of Prüm in 855, with the northern third called Lotharingia and going to Lothair II. Due to Lotharingia being sandwiched between East and West Francia, the rulers identified as a duchy from 870 onward, enabling the duchy to ally and align itself nominally with either eastern or western Carolingian kingdoms in order to survive and maintain its independence. Thus it was a duchy in name but operated as an independent kingdom.

In 870, Lorraine allied with East Francia while remaining an autonomous duchy. In 962, when Otto I, Holy Roman Emperor, restored the Empire (restauratio imperii), Lorraine was designated as the autonomous Duchy of Lorraine within the Holy Roman Empire. It maintained this status until 1766, after which it was annexed under succession law by the Kingdom of France, via derivative aristocratic house alliances.

The succession within these houses, in tandem with other historical events, would have later restored Lorraine's status as its own duchy, but a vacuum in leadership occurred. Its duke Francois Stephen de Lorraine (Francis I, Holy Roman Emperor) took the throne of the Holy Roman Empire, and his brother Prince Charles Alexander of Lorraine became governor of the Austrian Netherlands. For political reasons, he decided to hide those heirs who were not born by his first wife, Archduchess Maria Anna of Austria, who was deceased when he took office.

The vacuum in leadership, the French Revolution, and the political results and changes issuing from the many nationalistic wars that followed in the next 130 years, ultimately resulted in Lorraine becoming a permanent part of the modern Republic of France. Because of wars, it came under control of Germany several times as the border between the nations shifted. While Lorrainian separatists do exist in the 21st century, their political power and influence is negligible. Lorraine separatism today consists more of preserving its cultural identity rather than seeking genuine political independence.

With enlightened leadership and at a crossroads between French and German cultures, Lotharingia experienced tremendous economic, artistic, and cultural prosperity during the 12th and 13th centuries under the Hohenstaufen emperors. Along with the rest of Europe, this prosperity was terminated in Lorraine in the 14th century by a series of harsh winters, bad harvests, and the Black Death. During the Renaissance, a flourishing prosperity returned to Lotharingia until the Thirty Years' War.

France annexed Lorraine by force in 1766, and it retains control in the early 21st century. Due to the region's location, the population has been mixed. The north is largely Germanic, speaking Lorraine Franconian and other Germanic dialects. Strong centralized nationalism had only begun to replace the feudalist system which had formed the multilingual borders, and insurrection against the French occupation influenced much of the area's early identity. In 1871, the German Empire regained a part of Lorraine Bezirk Lothringen, corresponding to the current department of Moselle). The department formed part of the new Imperial German State of Alsace-Lorraine. In France, the revanchist movement developed to recover this territory.

The Imperial German administration strongly discouraged the French language and culture in favor of High German, which became the administrative language (Geschäftssprache.[2]) It required the use of German in schools in areas which it considered or designated as German-speaking, an often arbitrary categorisation. French was allowed to remain in use only in primary and secondary schools in municipalities definitely considered Francophone, such as Château-Salins and the surrounding arrondissement,[3] as well and in their local administration.[4]

But after 1877, higher education, including state-run colleges, universities and teacher seminaries, was conducted exclusively in German.[5] The predominance of German and the partial usage of French, though restricted, were both guaranteed by the 1911 constitution of Alsace-Lorraine.[6] While many toponyms of Germanic etymology in Lorraine were adapted to the High German standard (i.e. Germanised[7]) a number of genuine Francophone toponyms remained untouched. During the Nazi occupation between 1940 and 1944, however, its government imposed arbitrary German translations to replace all French names. For instance, Château-Salins was called Salzburg in Lothringen.

In the 1919 Treaty of Versailles, the former German Empire suffered severe territorial losses, including the portion of Lorraine territory that had been part of its state of Alsace-Lorraine. With the exception of its de facto annexation by Nazi Germany during World War II, that area has since remained a part of France. During that war, the cross of Lorraine was a symbol of Free France.

Lorraine et anciennes provinces

Development of the borders in modern history

Lorraine1870
Lorraine in 1870: Colors show the original departments' territories

The administrative region of Lorraine is larger than the 18th century duchy of Lorraine, which gradually came under French sovereignty between 1737 and 1766. The modern region includes provinces and areas that were historically separate from the duchy of Lorraine proper. These are:

Some historians consider the traditional province of Lorraine as limited to the duchy of Lorraine proper, while others consider that it includes Barrois and the Three Bishoprics. The duchy of Lorraine was originally the duchy of upper Lorraine, and did not include the entire area since called Lorraine.

The case of Barrois is the most complicated: the western part of Barrois (west of the Meuse), known as Barrois mouvant, was detached from the rest of Barrois in the early 14th century and taken over by French sovereignty. The largest part of Barrois (east of the Meuse River) was the Duchy of Bar, part of the Holy Roman Empire. In the 15th century, it was united with the Duchy of Lorraine by the marriage of the Duke of Bar, René of Anjou, with Isabella, daughter of the Duke of Lorraine. Thus the duchies of Bar and Lorraine were united in personal union under the same duke, although formally they were officially separate until being annexed and incorporated into the Kingdom of France in 1766.

During the French Revolution, four departments were created from the main parts of the territories of Barrois, Three Bishoprics and the Duchy of Lorraine:

After 1870 some parts of Moselle and Meurthe became German. Of the remaining parts, France formed the new department named Meurthe-et-Moselle. After 1918 and the Great War, France took over control again of Moselle.

When France created its administrative regions in the middle of the 20th century, it decided to gather Meurthe et Moselle, Meuse, Moselle and Vosges into a single region, known as Lorraine.

Geography

Vallee-chajoux
Chajoux Valley

Lorraine is the only French region to have borders with three other countries: Belgium (Wallonia), Luxembourg, and Germany (Saarland, Rhineland-Palatinate). It also borders the French regions of Franche-Comté, Champagne-Ardenne, which were at times part of historical Lorraine Lotharingia, and Alsace, which, while still part of Lorraine's identity, is now a separate administrative region.

Most of the region forms part of the Paris Basin, with a plateau relief cut by river valleys presenting cuestas in the north-south direction. The eastern part is sharper with the Vosges. Many rivers run through Lorraine, including Moselle, Meurthe, and Meuse. Most of them are on the Rhine drainage basin.

Lorraine has an oceanic climate with continental influences.

Language and culture

Longwy
Fortifications in Longwy, inscribed on the World Heritage list by UNESCO as part of the Fortifications of Vauban

Most of Lorraine has a clear French identity, with the exception of the northeastern part of the region, today known as Moselle, which historically has had an ethnic German, and German-speaking, population.

In 1871, Bismarck annexed about a third of today's Lorraine to the newly formed German Empire following victory in the Franco-Prussian War. This disputed third has a culture not easily classifiable as either French or German, since both Romance and Germanic dialects are spoken here. Like many border regions, Lorraine was a patchwork of ethnicities and dialects not mutually intelligible with either standard French or German (see linguistic boundary of Moselle).

Traditionally, two languages are native to Lorraine. The first is Lorrain, which is a moribund minority Romance language that is spoken in southeastern Lorraine. The second is the Germanic Lorraine Franconian, a group of three Franconian dialects independently surviving in northern and western Lorraine. They are referred to collectively as Plàtt in Franconian or francique or platt (lorrain) in French (not to be confused with Lorrain, the Romance language). Now mainly rural and isolated, these dialects gradually differ in the region, though they are mutually intelligible. Lorraine Franconian is distinct from neighbouring Alsatian, to the south, although the two are often confused. Neither of them has official status where they are spoken, but Alsatian is far more widely used.

Technically, Lorraine Franconian is a catch-all term for what were historically three dialects: Luxemburgish, Mosel Franconian, and Rhine Franconian. Each is identical to the same dialects spoken in the neighboring Rhineland of Germany.

Like most of France's regional languages (e.g. Breton, West Flemish, Catalan, Provençal, and Alsatian), Lorrain and Lorraine Franconian have largely been replaced in use by French. For more than a century, nationalistic policies of the central government required public schooling to be conducted only in French. Now, however, there are efforts being made to revive Lorraine Franconian, whose linguistic vitality is still relatively high. Recent efforts include the use of bilingual signs in Franconian areas, and Franconian-language classes for young children whose parents can no longer speak their ancestral language.

Cross of Lorraine

During World War II, the cross was adopted as the official symbol of the Free French Forces (French: Forces Françaises Libres, or FFL) under Charles de Gaulle. The capitaine de corvette Georges Thierry d'Argenlieu suggested the adoption of the Cross of Lorraine as the symbol of the Free French.

In his General Order n° 2 of 3 July 1940, vice-admiral Émile Muselier, chief of the naval and air forces of the Free French for two days, created the bow flag displaying the French colours with a red Cross of Lorraine, and a cockade also featuring the Cross of Lorraine.

De Gaulle is memorialised at his home village of Colombey-les-Deux-Églises by a gigantic 44.3-meter (145 feet) high cross of Lorraine.

Cuisine

The use of the potato in Lorraine can be traced back to 1665. It was imported to Europe from South America. It is used in what developed as various traditional dishes of the region, such as the potée lorraine. The Breux potato, which takes its name from the village of Breux in the north of the Meuse, is considered to be excellent due to the perfect conditions of the area for its cultivation.

Smoked bacon is also a traditional ingredient of the cuisine of Lorraine. It is used in various traditional dishes of the region, including the famous quiche lorraine. The mirabelle plum of Lorraine is the emblematic fruit of Lorraine. It is used in pies and other desserts, as well as in alcoholic beverages.

Traditional dishes in the region include:

  • Quiche Lorraine
  • Pâté lorrain (chopped pork and veal flavoured with white wine and baked in puff pastry)
  • Potée lorraine (a stew of smoked meats and sausages, with cabbage, potatoes and other root vegetables)
  • Andouille (tripe sausage)

Traditional cheeses of Lorraine include the following: Carré de l'Est, Brouère, Munster-géromé, Tourrée de l'Aubier.

Desserts include: Madeleine, Macaron, Rum baba, Plombières ice-cream, various pie recipes (brimbelles bilberry, mirabelle plum, rhubarb, quark...)

Tea and carrots are a still consumed together in Lorraine. The origin of the tradition dates to medieval times. Knights errant would enjoy black tea and the local porous carrots (nicknamed Karotewasser in Germany); they would dunk the carrots into the liquid to soak up the tea. Medically, people now understand that there are health benefits from consuming the antioxidants of tea and the beta carotene of the carrots.

Beverages

  • Wine: The most well-known wine of the region is the Côtes de Toul. There are vineyards in the valley of the Moselle, the valley of Seille, the valley of Metz, and the valley of Sierck.
  • Beer: Historically, Lorraine was the location of many breweries, including the Champigneulles founded on June 20, 1897.

Traditions

Lorraine has a Roman Catholic heritage. Almost every village has a church, often centuries old, although many do not have a dedicated priest anymore. Church bells are traditionally rung to announce Angelus time (and often toll the hours). By tradition, they do not toll during Holy Week preceding Easter. Instead, the children of the villages play ratchets and announce, C'est l'Angélus! (It's the Angelus). After Easter, the children go from house to house and receive small presents for their service.

Sinterklaas is celebrated in Lorraine, where he is called "Saint Nicolas". Each year, more than 150,000 people gather in the streets of Nancy to celebrate Sinterklaas. A total of that number gather in other areas across the region.[8]

Housing

Except for dispersed settlement in the Vosges mountains, traditional farms display linked houses, forming linear villages. They are built quite far from the road. The area between the house and the road is called l'usoir. Until the 1970s, the usoir was used to store farming tools, firewood, or manure. Today this area is generally used as a garden or for car parking.

Furniture developed a specific identity after the Thirty Years' War: the "Lorrain style".

Economy

At 44 billion euros (in 2000), Lorraine generates 3.4% of France's GDP. Despite ranking 11th in population, it ranks 8th in GDP out of the 22 regions of France, making it per capita among the top economic producing regions in the country, along with Alsace and Île-de-France (Paris). The logistics and service sectors have experienced the strongest growth in recent years. The traditional industries (textiles, mining, metallurgy) have undergone a decline due to restructuring and the move of some jobs offshore. Consequently, the region has struggled with rising unemployment, although its rate is still below the national average. In 1997 the last iron ore mine in Lorraine was closed; it had once produced more than 50 million tonnes of iron.[9]

Lorraine France
GDP in 2000 44.3 billion Euros 1.816 trillion Euros
Agriculture 2.5% 2.8%
Industry 30.7% 25.6%
Service 66.8% 71.6%
Unemployment in June 2002 8.4% 9%

Major communities

Fauna and flora

Fauna

Flora

Notable Lorrainers

Art and literature

Economy and industry

Military

Musicians and actors

Politicians

Religion

Sciences

Sport

Miscellaneous

See also

References

  1. ^ Loi n° 2015-29 du 16 janvier 2015 relative à la délimitation des régions, aux élections régionales et départementales et modifiant le calendrier électoral (in French)
  2. ^ cf. "Gesetz, betreffend die amtliche Geschäftssprache" (Law concerning the official transaction language) of 31 March 1872, Gesetzblatt für Elsaß-Lothringen (Legal gazette for Alsace-Lorraine), p. 159.
  3. ^ The imperial Statthalter was entitled to allow French as language of instruction in elementary and secondary schools in areas that were predominately Francophone, cf. §4 of the "Gesetz, betreffend das Unterrichtswesen" (Law concerning the educational system) of 12 February 1873, Gesetzblatt für Elsaß-Lothringen, p. 37.
  4. ^ The 'Law concerning the official transaction language' provided for exceptions from the German language in areas with Francophone majorities.
  5. ^ Otto Pflanze, Bismarck: Der Reichskanzler [Bismarck and the development of Germany), Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1990; German], Munich: Beck, 2008, p. 484. ISBN 978 3 406 54823 9.
  6. ^ Cf. § 26 of the "Gesetz über die Verfassung Elsaß-Lothringens" (Law on the Constitution of Alsace-Lorraine), retrieved on 24 April 2013.
  7. ^ Such as replacing French pronunciation spellings of the local dialects to standard High German orthography, e.g. …bourg to …burg, …house to …hausen, …troff to …dorf, …ange to …ingen etc.
  8. ^ "Marche de Noel Fêtes: Saint Nicolas"
  9. ^ Iron Ore in 1997, Minerals, United States Geological Survey, Dept. of Interior]

Further reading

  • Putnam, Ruth. Alsace and Lorraine: From Cæsar to Kaiser, 58 B.C.-1871 A.D. New York: 1915.
  • Bontemps, Daniel and Martine Bontemps-Litique, with Nelly Benoit, Virginie Legrand and Jean-Pierre Thiollet, Les noms de famille en Lorraine, Archives et Culture, Paris,1999[1]

External links

Coordinates: 49°00′N 6°00′E / 49.000°N 6.000°E

  1. ^ http://catalogue.bnf.fr/servlet/biblio?idNoeud=1&ID=37096524&SN1=0&SN2=0&host=catalogue
AS Nancy

Association Sportive Nancy-Lorraine (French pronunciation: ​[asɔsjasjɔ̃ spɔʁtiv nɑ̃si lɔʁɛn], commonly known as AS Nancy-Lorraine, ASNL, or simply Nancy) is a French association football club based in Nancy, Lorraine. The club was founded in 1967 and currently plays in Ligue 2.

Nancy was founded as the successor to FC Nancy, which collapsed in 1965. The club has spent its entire life playing in either Ligue 1 or Ligue 2. Nancy has never won the first division, but has won the second division on five occasions. Nancy's biggest achievement came in 1978 when the club won the Coupe de France defeating Nice in the final. The club has also won the Coupe de la Ligue in 2006. Nancy is presided over by Jacques Rousselot. Rousselot serves as a vice-president of the French Football Federation (FFF) and is also a member of the federation's Federal Council.One of the club's most notable players is Michel Platini, the former president of UEFA. Platini began his career at the club in 1972, playing eight seasons with Nancy. He scored the only goal in the aforementioned Coupe de France final and won two French Player of the Year awards whilst playing with the club. Platini also established himself as a French international while at the club and went on to achieve numerous team and individual accolades after his departure from Nancy. He is considered to be, arguably, the club's greatest player ever and, upon entering the section of the club's official website showing Nancy's greats, a picture of a young Platini is displayed.

Alsace-Lorraine

The Imperial Territory of Alsace-Lorraine (German: Reichsland Elsaß-Lothringen or Elsass-Lothringen) was a territory created by the German Empire in 1871, after it annexed most of Alsace and the Moselle department of Lorraine following its victory in the Franco-Prussian War. The Alsatian part lay in the Rhine Valley on the west bank of the Rhine River and east of the Vosges Mountains. The Lorraine section was in the upper Moselle valley to the north of the Vosges.

The territory encompassed 93% of Alsace and 26% of Lorraine, while the rest of these regions remained part of France. For historical reasons, specific legal dispositions are still applied in the territory in the form of a "local law". In relation to its special legal status, since its reversion to France following World War I, the territory has been referred to administratively as Alsace-Moselle.Since 2016, the historical territory is now part of the French administrative region of Grand Est.

Bisten-en-Lorraine

Bisten-en-Lorraine (German: Bisten im Loch) is a commune in the Moselle department in Grand Est in northeastern France.

Cross of Lorraine

The Cross of Lorraine (French: Croix de Lorraine), known as Cross of Anjou in the 16th century, is a heraldic two-barred cross, consisting of a vertical line crossed by two shorter horizontal bars. In most renditions, the horizontal bars are "graded" with the upper bar being the shorter, though variations with the bars of equal length are also seen. The Lorraine name has come to signify several cross variations, including the patriarchal cross with its bars near the top.

Duchy of Lorraine

The Duchy of Lorraine (French: Lorraine [lɔʁɛn]; German: Lothringen), originally Upper Lorraine, was a duchy now included in the larger present-day region of Lorraine in northeastern France. Its capital was Nancy.

It was founded in 959 following the division of Lotharingia into two separate duchies: Upper and Lower Lorraine, the westernmost parts of the Holy Roman Empire. The Lower duchy was quickly dismantled, while Upper Lorraine came to be known as simply the Duchy of Lorraine. The Duchy of Lorraine was coveted and briefly occupied by the Dukes of Burgundy and the Kings of France.

In 1737, the Duchy was given to Stanisław Leszczyński, the former king of Poland, who had lost his throne as a result of the War of the Polish Succession, with the understanding that it would fall to the French crown on his death. When Stanisław died on 23 February 1766, Lorraine was annexed by France and reorganized as a province.

Ed and Lorraine Warren

Edward Warren Miney (September 7, 1926 – August 23, 2006) and Lorraine Rita Warren (née Moran; January 31, 1927 – April 18, 2019) were American paranormal investigators and authors associated with prominent cases of hauntings. Edward was a World War II United States Navy veteran and former police officer who became a self-taught and self-professed demonologist, author, and lecturer. Lorraine professed to be clairvoyant and a light trance medium who worked closely with her husband.

In 1952, the Warrens founded the New England Society for Psychic Research, the oldest ghost hunting group in New England. They authored numerous books about the paranormal and about their private investigations into various reports of paranormal activity. They claimed to have investigated over 10,000 cases during their career. The Warrens were among the very first investigators in the controversial Amityville haunting. According to the Warrens, the N.E.S.P.R. uses a variety of individuals, including medical doctors, researchers, police officers, nurses, college students, and members of the clergy in its investigations.Stories of ghost hauntings popularized by the Warrens have been adapted as or have indirectly inspired dozens of films, television series and documentaries, including 17 films in the Amityville Horror series and five films in The Conjuring Universe with two more yet to be released.

Skeptics Perry DeAngelis and Steven Novella have investigated the Warrens' evidence and described it as "blarney". Skeptical investigators Joe Nickell and Ben Radford concluded that the more famous hauntings, Amityville and the Snedeker family haunting, did not happen and had been invented.

Francis I, Holy Roman Emperor

Francis I (German: Franz Stefan, French: François Étienne; 8 December 1708 – 18 August 1765) was Holy Roman Emperor and Grand Duke of Tuscany, though his wife Maria Theresa effectively executed the real powers of those positions. They were the founders of the Habsburg-Lorraine dynasty. From 1728 until 1737 he was Duke of Lorraine. Francis traded the duchy to the ex-Polish king Stanisław Leszczyński in exchange for the Grand Duchy of Tuscany as one of the terms ending the War of the Polish Succession in November 1738. The duchy and the ducal title to Lorraine and Bar passed to King Louis XV of France upon Leszczynski's death in 1766, though Francis and his successors retained the right to style themselves as dukes of Lorraine and Bar.

Grand Est

Grand Est (French pronunciation: [ɡʁɑ̃t‿ɛst] (listen);

English: "Great East"; German: Großer Osten—both in the Alsatian and the Lorraine Franconian dialect), previously Alsace-Champagne-Ardenne-Lorraine (ACAL or less commonly, ALCA), is an administrative region in eastern France. It superseded three former administrative regions—Alsace, Champagne-Ardenne, and Lorraine—on 1 January 2016, as a result of territorial reform which was passed by the French legislature in 2014. Alsace-Champagne-Ardenne-Lorraine was a provisional name, created by hyphenating the merged regions in alphabetical order; its regional council had to approve a new name for the region by 1 July 2016. France's Conseil d'État approved Grand Est as the new name of the region on 28 September 2016, effective 30 September 2016. The administrative capital and largest city is Strasbourg.

Holy Roman Emperor

The Holy Roman Emperor (also "German-Roman Emperor", German: Römisch-deutscher Kaiser "Roman-German emperor"; historically Imperator Romanorum, "Emperor of the Romans") was the ruler of the Holy Roman Empire (considered by itself to be the successor of the Roman Empire) during the Middle Ages and the early modern period. The title was, almost without interruption, held in conjunction with title of King of Germany (rex teutonicorum) throughout the 12th to 18th centuries.From an autocracy in Carolingian times (AD 800–924) the title by the 13th century evolved into an elected monarchy chosen by the prince-electors.

Various royal houses of Europe, at different times, became de facto hereditary holders of the title, notably the Ottonians (962–1024) and the Salians (1027–1125). Following the late medieval crisis of government, the Habsburgs kept possession of the title without interruption from 1440–1740. The final emperors were from the House of Lorraine (Habsburg-Lorraine), from 1765–1806. The Holy Roman Empire was dissolved by Emperor Francis II, after a devastating defeat to Napoleon at the Battle of Austerlitz.

The Holy Roman Emperor was widely perceived to rule by divine right, though he often contradicted or rivaled the Pope, most notably during the Investiture controversy.

In theory, the Holy Roman Emperor was primus inter pares (first among equals) among other Catholic monarchs. In practice, a Holy Roman Emperor was only as strong as his army and alliances, including marriage alliances, made him. There was never a Holy Roman Empress regnant, though women such as Theophanu and Maria Theresa of Austria served as de facto Empresses regnant.

Throughout its history, the position was viewed as a defender of the Roman Catholic faith. Until the Reformation, the Emperor elect (imperator electus) was required to be crowned by the Pope before assuming the imperial title. Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor was the last to be crowned by the Pope in 1530. Even after the Reformation, the elected Emperor always was a Roman Catholic. There were short periods in history when the electoral college was dominated by Protestants, and the electors usually voted in their own political interest.

House of Habsburg

The House of Habsburg (; German: [ˈhaːpsbʊɐ̯k]; also spelled Hapsburg in English) and alternatively called the House of Austria (Haus Österreich in German, Casa de Austria in Spanish), was one of the most influential and distinguished royal houses of Europe. The throne of the Holy Roman Empire was continuously occupied by the Habsburgs from 1438 until their extinction in the male line in 1740. The house also produced emperors and kings of Bohemia, Hungary, Croatia, Galicia, Portugal and Spain with their respective colonies, as well as rulers of several principalities in the Netherlands and Italy. From the 16th century, following the reign of Charles V, the dynasty was split between its Austrian and Spanish branches. Although they ruled distinct territories, they nevertheless maintained close relations and frequently intermarried.

The House takes its name from Habsburg Castle, a fortress built in the 1020s in present-day Switzerland, in the canton of Aargau, by Count Radbot of Klettgau, who named his fortress Habsburg. His grandson Otto II was the first to take the fortress name as his own, adding "Count of Habsburg" to his title. The House of Habsburg gathered dynastic momentum through the 11th, 12th, and 13th centuries. In 1273, Count Radbot's seventh generation descendant Rudolph of Habsburg became Roman-German King. He moved the family's power base to the Duchy of Austria, which the Habsburgs ruled until 1918.

A series of dynastic marriages enabled the family to vastly expand its domains to include Burgundy, Spain and its colonial empire, Bohemia, Hungary, and other territories. In the 16th century, the family separated into the senior Spanish and the junior Austrian branches, who settled their mutual claims in the Oñate treaty.

The House of Habsburg became extinct in the male line in the 18th century. The senior Spanish branch ended upon the death of Charles II of Spain in 1700 and was replaced by the House of Bourbon. The remaining Austrian branch became extinct in the male line in 1740 with the death of Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI. It was succeeded by the descendants of his eldest daughter Maria Theresa's marriage to Francis III, Duke of Lorraine. The successor house styled itself formally as the House of Habsburg-Lorraine (German: Habsburg-Lothringen); because it was often still referred to as the House of Habsburg, historians use the appellation of the Habsburg Monarchy for the countries and provinces that were ruled by the family until 1918. The House of Habsburg-Lorraine continues to exist to this day and its members use the Habsburg name, for example Otto von Habsburg.

The Habsburg Empire had the advantage of size, but multiple disadvantages. There were rivals on four sides, its finances were unstable, the population was fragmented into multiple ethnicities, and its industrial base was thin. Its naval resources were so minimal that it did not attempt to build an overseas empire. It did have the advantage of good diplomats, typified by Prince Metternich; they had a grand strategy for survival that kept the empire going despite wars with the Ottomans, Frederick the Great, Napoleon and Bismarck, until the final disaster of the First World War. Along with the Capetian dynasty, it was one of the two most powerful continental European royal families, dominating European politics for nearly five centuries.

House of Lorraine

The House of Lorraine (German: Haus Lothringen) originated as a cadet branch of the House of Metz. It inherited the Duchy of Lorraine in 1473 after the death of duke Nicholas I without a male heir. By the marriage of Francis of Lorraine to Maria Theresa in 1736, and with the success in the ensuing War of the Austrian Succession, the House of Lorraine was joined to the House of Habsburg, and was now known as Habsburg-Lorraine (German: Habsburg-Lothringen). Francis, his sons Joseph II and Leopold II, and grandson Francis II were the last four Holy Roman Emperors from 1745 to the dissolution of the empire in 1806. Habsburg-Lorraine inherited the Habsburg Empire, ruling the Austrian Empire and Austria-Hungary until the dissolution of the monarchy in 1918.

Although its senior agnates are the Dukes of Hohenberg, the house is currently headed by Karl Habsburg-Lothringen (born 1961), oldest grandson of the last emperor Charles I.

Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor

Leopold II (Peter Leopold Joseph Anton Joachim Pius Gotthard; 5 May 1747 – 1 March 1792) was Holy Roman Emperor, King of Hungary, and Bohemia from 1790 to 1792, and Archduke of Austria and Grand Duke of Tuscany from 1765 to 1790. He was the earliest opponent of capital punishment in modern history. He was a son of Emperor Francis I and his wife, Empress Maria Theresa, and the brother of Marie Antoinette, Queen of France, Maria Carolina of Austria and Joseph II, Holy Roman Emperor. Leopold was a moderate proponent of enlightened absolutism. He granted the Academy of Georgofili his protection.

Lorraine Bracco

Lorraine Bracco (Italian: [ˈbrakko]; born October 2, 1954) is an American actress. She is best known for her performances as Dr. Jennifer Melfi on the HBO series The Sopranos, and as Karen Friedman Hill in the 1990 Martin Scorsese film Goodfellas, for which she was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.

Lorraine Hansberry

Lorraine Vivian Hansberry (May 19, 1930 – January 12, 1965) was an African-American playwright and writer.Hansberry was the first black female author to have a play performed on Broadway. Her best known work, the play A Raisin in the Sun, highlights the lives of Black Americans living under racial segregation in Chicago. Hansberry's family had struggled against segregation, challenging a restrictive covenant and eventually provoking the Supreme Court case Hansberry v. Lee. The title of the play was taken from the poem "Harlem" by Langston Hughes: "What happens to a dream deferred? Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun?"

At the young age of 29, she won the New York Drama Critics' Circle Award — making her the first African American dramatist, the fifth woman, and the youngest playwright to do so.After, she moved to New York City, Hansberry worked at the Pan-Africanist newspaper Freedom, where she dealt with intellectuals such as Paul Robeson and W. E. B. Du Bois. Much of her work during this time concerned the African struggle for liberation and their impact on the world. She died of cancer at the age of 34. Hansberry inspired Nina Simone's song "To Be Young, Gifted and Black".

Lorraine Kelly

Lorraine Kelly, (born 30 November 1959) is a Scottish presenter and journalist. She has presented on TV-am, GMTV, ITV Breakfast, Daybreak and on her eponymous Lorraine.

Between 2012 and 2014, Kelly was a main female presenter of ITV's Daybreak, which she co-hosted from Monday to Thursdays with Aled Jones.Since 2011, Kelly has hosted the annual STV Children's Appeal. She hosts the telethon and sister series such as STV Appeal Stories and Lorraine & Friends.

Lotharingia

Lotharingia (Latin: Lotharii regnum) (French: Lorraine) was a medieval successor kingdom of the Carolingian Empire, comprising the present-day Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, North Rhine-Westphalia (Germany), Rhineland-Palatinate (Germany), Saarland (Germany), and Lorraine (France). It was named after King Lothair II who received this territory after the kingdom of Middle Francia of his father Lothair I was divided among his sons in 855.Lotharingia was born out of the tripartite division in 855 of the kingdom of Middle Francia, which itself was formed after the threefold division of the Carolingian Empire by the Treaty of Verdun of 843. Conflict between East and West Francia over Lotharingia was based on the fact that these were the old Frankish homelands of Austrasia, so possession of them was of great prestige.

Marie Antoinette

Marie Antoinette (; French: [maʁi ɑ̃twanɛt]; born Maria Antonia Josepha Johanna; 2 November 1755 – 16 October 1793) was the last Queen of France before the French Revolution. She was born an Archduchess of Austria and was the penultimate child and youngest daughter of Empress Maria Theresa and Francis I, Holy Roman Emperor. She became Dauphine of France in May 1770 at age 14 upon her marriage to Louis-Auguste, heir apparent to the French throne. On 10 May 1774, her husband ascended the throne as Louis XVI and she assumed the title Queen of France and Navarre, which she held until September 1791, when she became Queen of the French as the French Revolution proceeded, a title that she held until 21 September 1792.

After eight years of marriage, Marie Antoinette gave birth to Marie Thérèse, the first of her four children. A growing percentage of the population came to dislike her, accusing her of being profligate and promiscuous and of harboring sympathies for France's enemies, particularly her native Austria. The Affair of the Diamond Necklace damaged her reputation further. During the Revolution, she became known as Madame Déficit because the country's financial crisis was blamed on her lavish spending and her opposition to the social and financial reforms of Turgot and Necker.

Several events were linked to Marie Antoinette during the Revolution after the government had placed the royal family under house arrest in the Tuileries Palace in October 1789. The June 1791 attempted flight to Varennes and her role in the War of the First Coalition had disastrous effects on French popular opinion. On 10 August 1792, the attack on the Tuileries forced the royal family to take refuge at the Assembly, and they were imprisoned in the Temple Prison on 13 August. On 21 September 1792, the monarchy was abolished. Her trial began on 14 October 1793, and two days later Marie Antoinette was convicted by the Revolutionary Tribunal of high treason and executed by guillotine on the Place de la Révolution.

Metz

Metz (French pronunciation: [mɛs] (listen), Lorraine Franconian pronunciation: [mɛts]) is a city in northeast France located at the confluence of the Moselle and the Seille rivers. Metz is the prefecture of the Moselle department and the seat of the parliament of the Grand Est region. Located near the tripoint along the junction of France, Germany, and Luxembourg, the city forms a central place of the European Greater Region and the SaarLorLux euroregion.Metz has a rich 3,000-year-history, having variously been a Celtic oppidum, an important Gallo-Roman city, the Merovingian capital of Austrasia, the birthplace of the Carolingian dynasty, a cradle of the Gregorian chant, and one of the oldest republics in Europe. The city has been steeped in Romance culture, but has been strongly influenced by Germanic culture due to its location and history.Because of its historical, cultural, and architectural background, Metz has been submitted on France's UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List. The city features noteworthy buildings such as the Gothic Saint-Stephen Cathedral with its largest expanse of stained-glass windows in the world, the Basilica of Saint-Pierre-aux-Nonnains being the oldest church in France, its Imperial Station Palace displaying the apartment of the German Kaiser, or its Opera House, the oldest one working in France. Metz is home to some world-class venues including the Arsenal Concert Hall and the Centre Pompidou-Metz museum.

A basin of urban ecology, Metz gained its nickname of The Green City (French: La Ville Verte), as it has extensive open grounds and public gardens. The historic city centre is one of the largest commercial pedestrian areas in France.A historic garrison town, Metz is the economic heart of the Lorraine region, specialising in information technology and automotive industries. Metz is home to the University of Lorraine and a centre for applied research and development in the materials sector, notably in metallurgy and metallography, the heritage of the Lorraine region's past in the iron and steel industry.

Nancy, France

Nancy (, also UK: , US: , French: [nɑ̃si]; outdated German: Nanzig) is the capital of the north-eastern French department of Meurthe-et-Moselle, and formerly the capital of the Duchy of Lorraine, and then the French province of the same name. The metropolitan area of Nancy had a population of 434,565 inhabitants at the 2011 census, making it the 20th largest urban area in France. The population of the city of Nancy proper was 104,321 in 2014.The motto of the city is Non inultus premor, Latin for "I'm not touched with impunity"—a reference to the thistle, which is a symbol of Lorraine.

Place Stanislas, a large square built between March 1752 and November 1755 by Stanislaus I of Poland to link the medieval old town of Nancy and the new town built under Charles III in the 17th century, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the first place in France and in the top four in the world.

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