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The chamber property (also Kameralgut or Tafelgut ) is an outdated legal term that described the property of kings , emperors or princes .


The Kammergut (or Domanium , Domanial ) was the property of the ruling families , both in terms of its historical origin and according to the legal principles recognized during the time of the Reich . Chamber goods could therefore not be called “state property” in the sense usually associated with it. The chamber property was tied to the government function of the ruling sovereigns , so that it was passed on to the government successor by way of state succession.

History of origin

In ancient Egypt , according to Diodorus , the land belonged equally to the king , the priesthood, and the warrior caste . These sovereigns thus had the greatest material wealth in the state.

Even in the Franconian Empire , chamber goods ( Latin terrae dominicae ) were used to maintain the royal court and to cover state expenses . Even the Salians usurped the chamber property of the resident princes. The chamber ( treasury ) already referred to the private domain of the king or prince in Frankish times, for example belonging to the chamber of King Dagobert I , the royal chamber of Charlemagne or the chamber of Archbishop Anno II of Cologne. The administration of the chamber property was entrusted to chamberlains ( Latin: camerarius ) who headed a rent or court chamber . The more powerless the emperor was, the more sovereigns acquired parts of the imperial property through purchase , exchange or pledging . Charlemagne increased his chamber property by confiscating property in conquered provinces.

As early as 1265, some Austrian properties in Öblarn were designated as ducal chamber property. The ties between the Salzkammergut and the ruling family dated back to 1311 at the latest, when Elisabeth von Görz und Tirol , the widow of Albrecht I , formally renewed the legal basis for salt mining in her Kammergut. The name of this Austrian cultural area goes back to the salt mining belonging to the sovereign in the Kammergut. The County of Hardegg did not remain a chamber property for long, because the later Emperor Maximilian I sold it in 1494 to Heinrich Prueschenk , who was also awarded the Machland in October 1495 . In France , Philip VI expanded . after 1329 his chamber property ( French terre domaniale ) by confiscating the counties of Champagne , Brie , Valois , Anjou , Maine and Chartres .

Already the Cologne imperial goodbye of August 1512 used the expression chamber property for the prince estates: “After electors, princes, spiritual and secular, ... and all sorts of expenses from their chamber property are to apply to it and not hit the subjects, they should, however, contribute to their person these burdens and investments remain unencumbered ”. It was about the fact that the sovereigns partly passed their expenses on to the population within the framework of their sub-collection right, which allowed them to raise imperial taxes.

Following the French model, in Germany from 1713 the chamber property was regarded as inalienable ( Latin res extra commercium ), which in fact made it state property. Friedrich Wilhelm I declared by the edict of August 13, 1713 the "difference between Schatoul- ( casket , d. Author.) And ordinary Cammer goods in total for abolished", when the domain income made up about half of the state income. Kammergut was therefore not (no longer) part of the private property of the sovereigns. The General Prussian Land Law (APL) of June 1794 assigned ownership of domains to the state, but their use to the head of state (II 14, § 11 APL); Domains and chamber goods were considered synonyms, but only in this law.

In Austria, a distinction was made between the private and family goods of the House of Habsburg: state, camera and fiscal goods, a large part of which were sold between 1818 and 1848 to repay national debts . Since March 1849 these crown estates belonged to the imperial domains. While in Prussia , Bavaria , Württemberg and Saxony the chamber property had been recognized as a state property since the 18th century and the sovereigns were entitled to a civil list , in Baden , for example, it was still considered a chamber property of the ruling families.

During the French period in 1802 secularization took place on the left bank of the Rhine in Germany , which brought the sovereigns to an increase in their chamber property through the church property in February 1803 through the Reichsdeputationshauptschluss (RDH) . The RDH made it clear that “ regalia , episcopal domains, domicile possessions and income” are chamber goods of the sovereigns (§ 61 RDH). He thereby implemented the secularization of 1802. Today's state forests emerged from the chamber property of the sovereigns, from the secularization of ecclesiastical and monastic forest ownership, as well as from purchase and exchange agreements, because German sovereigns already had considerable allodial forest ownership when they took over territorial power . From the income of the chamber property ( fiefs , leases , sports ), the sovereigns covered both the costs of their court and the administration of the state. If the income was not sufficient, the sovereign raised taxes ("Beysteuer"). When the German territories were converted into sovereign states after the Congress of Vienna in 1815 , efforts were made to separate the princely court budget from the state budget on the one hand, and to combine the chamber property with the crown on the other. Thereupon Bavaria declared the chamber property to be state property in May 1818, Württemberg followed suit in September 1819 with the exception of the chamber property of the royal family. The grand ducal Hessian constitutional charter of December 17, 1820 assigned only 1/3 of the domain to the state, but 2/3 to the family as chamber property. In other countries ( Thuringian principalities), however, the chamber property was retained by the prince as private property. The dispute over whether the domain was state property or the prince's private property was called the domain question .


The lands ( forest , farmland , buildings ) as well as regalia and monopolies ( coins , salt pans , mines or customs duties ) belonged to the chamber property . The chamber property also included interest income , tithe and other justice . The chamber property was regularly passed on to the legal successor of the sovereign, even if he did not belong to the same dynasty . The sovereign administered the chamber property alone, but the taxes together with the landscape ordinance. The sovereign was allowed to use surplus of the chamber property for private purposes, while state property was only allowed to be used for state purposes.


State domains , chamber property and church property can be clearly distinguished from one another. The property of the state domains was owned by the state . The chamber property, on the other hand, was owned by kings, emperors or princes. If there was chamber property, there was also a state domain next to it. Church property, in turn, still belongs to the church or the institutions associated with it.


See also

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Justus Christoph Leist , Textbook of German Constitutional Law , 1805, p. 92
  2. ^ Heinrich Albert Zachariä , German State and Federal Law , Part II, 1841, p. 415 f.
  3. ^ Heinrich Albert Zachariä, German Constitutional and Federal Law , Part III, 1845, p. 35
  4. Ludwig von Rönne, The Constitution and Administration of the Prussian State , Volume 9, Edition 1, 1854, p. 1, footnote 1
  5. Brockhaus, Politisches Handbuch: Staats-Lexikon für das Deutschen Volk , Volume 2, 1871, p. 76
  6. Ludwig von Rönne , The Constitution and Administration of the Prussian State , Volume 9, Edition 1, 1854, p. 3
  7. ^ Gesta Dagoberti regis, c. 33
  8. Caroli M., capit. II a. 813 c. 19th
  9. ^ Hannonis, Archiepiscopi Colon , dipl. a., 1057
  10. ^ Meyers Konversations-Lexikon, An Encyclopedia of General Knowledge , Volume 5, 1875, pp. 560 f.
  11. Archives for Geography, History, State and War Art, Volume 12, 1821, p. 401
  12. Österreichische National-Ecyclopädie , Volume II, 1835, p. 504
  13. ^ Minutes of the meeting of the Herrenbank at the meeting of estates of the Duchy of Passau in 1819 , 1819, p. 290
  14. ^ Max Endres, Handbuch der Forstpolitik , 1905, p. 475
  15. August Ferdinand Schering (Ed.), General Land Law for the Prussian States , Volume III, 1876, p. 166 ff.
  16. Ludwig von Rönne, The Constitution and Administration of the Prussian State , Volume 9, Edition 1, 1854, p. 20
  17. ^ Robert Achille Friedrich Hermann Hue de Grais, Handbook of the Constitution and Administration in Prussia and the German Empire , 1906, p. 183
  18. ^ Max Endres, Handbuch der Forstpolitik , 1922, p. 410
  19. ^ Critical archive of the latest juridical literature and administration of justice , Volume 2, 1802, p. 690 f.
  20. Hernman Wagener (ed.), State and Society Lexicon , Campagna di Roma bis Denmark, Volume V, 1861, p. 373
  21. Ludwig von Rönne, The Constitution and Administration of the Prussian State , Volume 9, Edition 1, 1854, p. 20
  22. Meyers Konversations-Lexikon, An Encyclopedia of General Knowledge , Volume 5, 1875, p. 561
  23. ^ Max Endres, Handbuch der Forstpolitik , 1922, p. 410