Under the Lombards the civil government was in the hands of a gastaldo, under the Carolingians of a count, whose authority, by slow degrees and a course of events similar to what took place in other Italian communes, gave way to that of the bishop, whose power in turn gradually diminished and was superseded by that of the consuls and the commonwealth.
As the Salians, however, were the victorious race, the law acquired an authority in excess of the other barbarian laws, and in the additions made to the Ripuarian, Lombard, and other allied laws, the Carolingians endeavoured to bring these laws into harmony with the Salic Law.
The Carolingians evidently regarded such "conjurations" as "conspirations" dangerous to the state.
Making their way up from a position among the nobility to be the rulers of the land, and finally to supplant the kings, the Carolingians had especial need of resources from which to purchase and reward faithful support.
Louis, who was the last of the German Carolingians, died in August or September 911 and was buried at Regensburg.
In 774 the Carolingians conquered the Langobardi or Lombards, and in 788 the Baiouarii.
The failure of legitimate male issue of the later Carolingians gave Arnulf a more important position than otherwise he would have occupied; but he did homage to the emperor Charles the Fat in 882, and spent the next few years in constant warfare with the Sla y s and the Northmen.
Under the Carolingians the functions of the dukes remained substantially the same; but with the decay of the royal power in the 10th century, both dukes and counts gained in local authority; the number of dukes became for the time fixed, and finally title and office were made hereditary, the relation to the crown being reduced to that of more or less shadowy vassalage.
CAROLINGIANS, the name of a family (so called from Charlemagne, its most illustrious member) which gained the throne of France A.D.
In Germany descendants of Pippin reigned till the death of Louis the Child in 911; in Italy the Carolingians maintained their position until the deposition of Charles the Fat in 887.
Charles, duke of Lower Lorraine, who was thrown into prison by Hugh Capet in 991, left two sons, the last male descendants of the Carolingians, Otto, who was also duke of Lower Lorraine and died without issue, and Louis, who after the year loon vanishes from history.
Duren derives its name, not, as was at one time believed, from the Marcodurum of the Ubii, mentioned in Tacitus, but from the Dura or Duria, assemblies held by the Carolingians in the 8th century.
Evidently the impulse towards unity had to come from without; it began with the alliance between the Carolingians and the Papacy, and was accentuated by the recognition of the liber canonum.
In process of time the title abbot was improperly transferred to clerics who had no connexion with the monastic system, as to the principal of a body of parochial clergy; and under the Carolingians to the chief chaplain of the king, Abbas Curiae, or military chaplain of the emperor, Abbas Castrensis.
The political results of this custom of coronation were allimportant for the Carolingians, and later for the first of the Capets.
He gave up his personal right of distributing the fiefs and honors which were the price of adherence, and thus lost for the Carolingians the free disposal of the immense territories they had gradually usurped; they retained the over-lordship, it is true, but this over-lordship, without usufruct and without choice of tenant, was but a barren possession.
Like their territories public authority little by little slipped from the grasp of the Carolingians, largely because of their Decay of abuse of their too great power.
The degeneration of the monarchy was clearly apparent on the death of Charles the Bald, when his son, Louis the Stammerer, was only assured of the throne, which had passed by Louis the right of birth under the Merovingians and been Stan,hereditary under the earlier Carolingians, through his election by nobles and bishops under the direction (877-879).
The death-struggle of the Carolingians lasted for a century of uncertainty and anarchy, during which time the bishops, counts and lords might well have suppressed the Deathmonarchy had they been hostile to it.
Upon his death the nobles assembled to elect a king; and Hugh the Great, Rudolphs brother-in-law, moved by irresolution as much as by prudence, instead of taking the crown, preferred to restore the Carolingians once more in the person of Charles the Simples son, Louis dOutremer, himself claiming numerous privileges and enjoying the exercise of power unenculnbered by a title which carried with it the jealousy of the nobles.
The Carolingians had as it were a fresh access of energy, and the Louis IV.
The Both sides employed similar methods: one was sup- Foreigner ported by Normandy, the other by Germany; the (936-954.) archbishop of Reims was for the Carolingians, the Robertinians had to be content with the less influential bishop of Sens.
Hugh set him free, insisting, as payment for his aid, on the cession of Laon, the capital of the kingdom and the last fortified town remaining to the Carolingians (946).
For nine years (956965) Bruno, archbishop of Cologne, was regent of France, and thanks to him there was a kind of entente cordiale between the Carolingians and the Robertinians and Otto.
They decided to set the Robertinians against the Carolingians, and on their advice Hugh Capet dispersed the assembly of Compigne which Lothair had commissioned to cx- Louis V.
Thus the triple alliance of Adalberos bold and adroit imperialism with the cautious and vacillating ambition of the duke of the Franks, and the impolitic hostility towards Germany of the ruined Carolingians, resulted in the unhooked-for advent of the new Capetian dynasty.
Thenceforth all was over for the Carolingians, who were left with no heritage save their great name.
In this section, after sketching the history of France under the Carolingians and early Capets, Orderic takes up the events of his own times, starting from about 1082.