East Francia

East Francia

East(ern) Francia ("Regnum Francorum orientalium"), known variously as Francia Orientalis or the Kingdom of the East Franks, was the realm allotted to Louis the German by the 843 Treaty of Verdun. It is the precursor of the Holy Roman Empire.

The Verdun Treaty divided the Carolingian Empire of the Franks into an East, West, and Middle. As this agreement did not abolish the entity of Francia itself, the beginning of the Holy Roman Empire is taken to coincide with the rise of the Ottonian dynasty. Therefore the Kingdom of East Francia lasted from 843 to the coronation of Duke Henry I of Saxony in 919; more commonly, the Holy Roman Empire is thought to begin in 962 with the Coronation of Otto the Great ("translatio imperii").

East Francia was divided into four stem duchies: Swabia (Alamannia), Franconia, Saxony and Bavaria (including Carinthia); to which after the death of Lothair II were added the eastern parts of Lotharingia by the 870 Treaty of Meerssen. The duchies decomposed over the next centuries, recently Swabia after the the end of the Hohenstaufen dynasty in 1268.

From the 10th century, East Francia became also known as "Regnum Teutonicum" ("Teutonic kingdom", "Kingdom of Germany"), a term often used by the Papacy during the Investiture Controversy, perhaps as a polemical tool by Pope Gregory VII against the Emperor Henry IV in the late eleventh century. [Robinson, "Pope Gregory", p. 729.] .

ee also

*List of German monarchs


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