Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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The meaning of the term consul underwent several shifts of meaning after Antiquity. For over a thousand years until 542 CE, the consul was the highest office of the Roman cursus honorum (political career), but from the Middle Ages it denoted five different functions: (1) in towns of the north-western Mediterranean, the senior urban administrative officials; (2) the “merchant consul” (French consul des marchands) operating in the same region, whose remit was to defend the interests of merchants and to arbitrate on their disputes (from the 16th century,…

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Ulbert, Jörg, “Consul”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 01 December 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_022551>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20170206

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