The Salva Guardia (from Italian salvaguardia for protection, preservation and guardia for guards, guards) was a letter of protection and safe conduct that was originally awarded by the German emperor.
The simplest forms of the Salva Guardia were a letter of safe conduct , which was supposed to enable merchants and ambassadors to safely cross border or front lines, and a letter of protection that forbade attacks on buildings and settlements. Failure to do so was subject to penalty and imperial disgrace. From the Thirty Years' War to the beginning of the 20th century, permits approved by a commander and deployed guards were referred to as Salvaguardia or French Sauvegarde .
With the Schwarzer Adler-Privilegium or Salva Guardia-Privilegium , individuals, families and corporations were placed under the protection of the emperor and the empire in a hereditary or permanent way . The term Schwarzer Adler-Privilegium describes figuratively the right to post the imperial eagle or a corresponding coat of arms on one's own land and property in order to indicate to the outside world the protection and privileges. These consisted of freedom of billeting , protection from incarceration and special rights with regard to customs duties, taxes and jurisdiction.
In addition to the Salva Guardia, other similar privileges were awarded in the case of nobility :
- Protection and shield
- Freedom from foreign courts
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