from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- adj. the territory formerly subject to the Pope of Rome as its temporal ruler; -- called also States of the Church.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
By the partition compacts with Prussia and Bavaria in 1802 and by the Imperial Delegates Enactment of 1803, he secularized such ecclesiastical states as still existed, and in 1805-06 he abolished the rest of the decadent petty principalities in the south, including the domains of the free knights of the empire and of the free cities.