III. The Postclassical Period, 500–1500 > F. Europe, 461–1500 > 1. Western Europe in the Early Middle Ages, 461–1000 > i. Germany under the Carolingian and Saxon Emperors
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  The Encyclopedia of World History.  2001.
 
 
i. Germany under the Carolingian and Saxon Emperors
 
CAROLINGIAN DYNASTY
THE SAXON AND SALIAN EMPERORS (919-1125)
 
843–76
 
Louis the German. Increasing Slavic and Norse pressure (general Norse attack on Carolingian lands, 845). Louis had three sons: Carloman (d. 880), Louis (d. 882), and Charles the Fat. Carloman was assigned Bavaria and the East Mark; Louis, Saxony and Franconia; Charles, Alamannia. Contest with Charles the Bald for Lorraine. By the Treaty of Mersen (870) Louis added a strip of land west of the Rhine.  1
 
876–87
 
Charles the Fat. He blocked Charles the Bald's advance toward the Rhine. Emergence of the kingdom of Cisjuran Burgundy (i.e., Dauphiné, Provence, part of Languedoc) under Boso (879). Expedition to Italy and coronation by John VIII (881). Negotiations (882) with the Northmen, now permanently established in Flanders. While Charles was in Italy settling a papal election, a great Norse invasion burst on France. Deposition of Charles by the Franconian, Saxon, Bavarian, Thuringian, and Swabian magnates at Tribur (887).  2
 
887–99
 
Arnulf (illegitimate son of Carloman, grandson of Louis the German). A certain supremacy was conceded to Arnulf by the various rulers of Germany and Italy who rendered homage to him. Victory over the Norse on the Dyle (Löwen, 891); resistance to the Slavic (Moravian) advance (893), with Magyar aid. Magyar raids after 900. Arnulf went to Italy (894), was crowned king (896), and received homage from most of the magnates. On appeal from Formosus (895), he took Rome and was crowned emperor (896).  3
 
899–911
 
Louis the Child (born 893), last of the Carolingians, elected king by the magnates at Forchheim (900). Increasing Norse, Slavic, and Magyar pressure and devastation.  4
The weakening of the royal power as the East Frankish kingdom of the Carolingians declined, and the survival of tribal consciousness left the way open for the emergence of the stem (Ger., Stamm, tribe) duchies. These duchies preserved the traditions of ancient tribal culture, and their independent development under semiroyal dukes (beginning in the 9th century) contributed to the disruption of German unity. These stem duchies were: Franconia (the Conradiners ultimately drove the Babenbergers into the East Mark, later Austria); Lorraine (not strictly a stem duchy but with a tradition of unity); Swabia (the early ducal history is obscure); Bavaria (under the Arnulfings; repulse of the Magyars, acquisition of the mark of Carinthia); Saxony (under the Liudolfingers; repulse of the Danes and Wends, addition of Thuringia); Frisia (no tribal duke appeared).  5
 
911
 
End of the East Frankish line of the Carolingians with the death of Louis the Child (911); the German magnates, to avoid accepting a ruler of the West Frankish (French) line, elected Conrad, duke of Franconia.  6
 
911–18
 
Conrad I. Magyar raids and ducal rebellions in Saxony, Bavaria, and Swabia met vigorous but futule resistance from Conrad. Lorraine passed (911) temporarily under the suzerainty of the West Frankish ruler, Charles the Simple. Conrad nominated his strongest foe, Henry, duke of Saxony, as his successor, and he was elected.  7
 
919–1024
 
The Saxon (or Ottonian) House.  8
 
919–36
 
King Henry I (called the Fowler, supposedly because the messengers announcing his election found him hawking). Tolerant of the dukes, he forced recognition of his authority; cool to the Church, he avoided ecclesiastical coronation.  9
 
920–21
 
Reduction of the duke of Bavaria; alliance with Charles the Simple.  10
 
923–25
 
Lorraine restored to the German Kingdom and unified into the duchy of Lorraine, a center of spiritual and intellectual ferment. Henry's daughter married the duke of Lorraine (928).  11
 
924–33
 
Truce (and tribute) with the Magyars; fortification of the Elbe and Weser Valleys (Saxony and Thuringia); palisading of towns, villas, monasteries; establishment of garrisons (which later often became towns like Naumburg, Quedlinburg).  12
 
 
 
The Encyclopedia of World History, Sixth edition. Peter N. Stearns, general editor. Copyright © 2001 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Maps by Mary Reilly, copyright 2001 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

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