Archdiocese of Cologne, Germany

[Archdiocese of Cologne, Germany]Also known as

  • Archdiocese of Köln
  • Archidioecesis Coleniensis
  • Colonia Agrippina (Latin = colony of Agrippa)





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    Based in the city and former principality in Rhineland, Germany. It was the seat of the Ubii in the first century BC, and a Roman colony in 51 AD. The ecclesiastics of the diocese had temporal jurisdiction over a considerable territory extending along the left bank of the Rhine, including the Duchy of Westphalia, acquired in 1180. In the 11th century the archbishop was appointed Arch-chancellor of Italy, in the Holy Roman Empire. Dissensions with the towns people forced Engelbert II to move his residence to Bonn, Germany in 1273. The Golden Bull of 1356 made the archbishop one of the seven electoral princes. A university was founded in Cologne in 1388, and the city gradually developed into a free imperial city. Secularization occurred in 1801, the principality being divided among France, Hesse-Darmstadt, and Prussia. Its cathedral, the greatest Gothic monument in Germany, begun in 1248 and finally completed in 1880, is reputed to contain the relics of the Magi and the tombs of Albertus Magnus and Duns Scotus. In the church of Saint Ursula are preserved relics of Saint Ursula and the 11,000 virgins martyred with her.