Nowadays, royal residences are often seen by the general public as the peculiar homes of royal families, who lived isolated from society. However, these places belonged to larger networks of buildings and estates which, especially from the Middle Ages onwards, played an important role in the government of the monarch. In order to improve control over their buildings and ensure their maintenance, the monarchs set up administrative bodies that managed their buildings on their behalf.
The symposium 'Building the Presence of the Prince' brings together scientists from different disciplines as a first attempt to compare these institutions on a pan-European scale, from the late Middle Ages to the end of the 17th century. The aim is to investigate the relationships between the local characteristics of these organisations and their common European characteristics. It addresses from a multidisciplinary perspective questions about the nature of such administrations, their purpose, their organisational structure and legal status, as well as their role in state building.
The symposium takes place in English.