Rivalry and competition were among the main principles of princely existence. A key factor of utmost importance, if not for the development and formation, but for the consolidation of this competitive thinking, was the occurrence of the Imperial Diet. The resulting competition for self-representation, distinction and supremacy between different ruling princes and their courts yielded to versatile consequences. As an indirect consequence of this versatility, the upcoming and continually growing differentiation of courtly life must be mentioned. Furthermore, this process brought great changes to life at court, considering architectural, cultural, dimensional and organisational aspects. The princes residing at the royal court or participating at the Imperial Diet gathered their experiences in dealing with competitiveness and brought it home to their domestic court. From now on, they started to rule in adaptive imitation and steady altercation. In this article, Duke Bogislaw X of Pomerania (*1454; †1523) and Duke Henry V of Mecklenburg (*1479; †1552) serve as illustrative examples of adaptive imitation. Their personal stays at the royal court were certainly not without consequences for their domestic courts in the North. That can precisely be seen in numismatic and heraldic examples in the former case and by means of an energetically practised policy of remembrance for Duke Henry V.
Imitation und Mimesis sind epochenübergreifende Kulturphänomene. Doch wie erkennt, analysiert oder bewertet man das Imitieren im Mittelalter? Der Band präsentiert unterschiedliche fachdisziplinäre Methoden und Ansätze und erläutert diese an einschlägigen Beispielen. Imitieren kann für das Mittelalter als bislang unterschätzte, höchst komplexe Kulturtechnik angesehen werden, deren Potential nicht nur darin lag, Traditionen zu konservieren, sondern durchaus Innovationen hervorzubringen.