The Vatican is an independent nation under the protection of Naples. It is a successor state to the Papal States, which were first founded in 752, and for a long period of time were an independent theocracy. However, in 1640, Pope Altair I reformed them into the "Holy Roman Republic", and invaded Venice immediately. However, the occupation of Venice was short, and the nation of Venice quickly broke away again. The Holy Roman Republic had several failed attempts to make colonies across the globe. In 1670 they reverted to the Papal States again following the death of Pope Altair II. Naples quickly turned the weak Papal States into a vassal to protect them. However, in 1746 the Pope, Leo XIII, a puppet of Neapolitan king Carlo VIII surrendered all authority to the Neapolitan government, reducing Papal Control strictly to the Vatican itself.