City in lower Bavaria and former principality of the Holy Roman Empire.
On the site of the Roman colony of Batavis, Saint Boniface created the see of Passau.
Emperor Otto III granted the privileges of taxation and coinage and at the Reichstag of Nuremberg (1217) the bishops were formally recognized as princes of the empire.
They were temporal rulers of a territory diminished in the 15th century and again in the 18th which was then about 350 square miles with a population of 50,000.
The city of Passau was granted a charter in 1299.
The cathedral, begun in 1407, was rebuilt in 1662, in the florid rococo style.
At the secularization of 1803, most of the principality was ceded to Bavaria.
The city is the seat of the diocese of Passau.
New Catholic Dictionary