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Henry II

German king and Holy Roman Emperor. Duke of Bavaria and direct descendant of Otto I, Henry was elected king in 1002 and crowned emperor in 1014. He stressed the consolidation of his position in Germany and paid minimal attention to Italy, but did regain some territory lost to the Slavs. He depended heavily on the church, and appointed churchmen to most important administrative positions. Henry made large endowments of crown lands to churches and monasteries, and founded the see of Bamberg in 1007. He put churchmen in charge of vacant counties while freeing other clerics from noble control. By zealously encouraging ecclesiastical reform, he unwittingly paved the way for the destruction of the empire, because a reformed church would not be able to reconcile its spiritual ideals with the political duties imposed on it. Canonized in 1146, many legends have grown up around Henry as the model Christian ruler. His pious wife, Kunigunde, was canonized in 1200.