Bibliographic data

Winter, Hans: Mittelalter und Neue Zeit bis zum Westfälischen Frieden. Lehrbuch der Deutschen und Bayerischen Geschichte mit Einschluss der wichtigsten Tatsachen der außerdeutschen Geschichte und der Kulturgeschichte für Höhere Lehranstalten, Vol. 1. Munich: Oldenbourg Verlag, 8. Aufl., 1913, 30–31.

"The Germanic Empires following the Age of Migration"

[Between p. 30/31]

Map II.

The German Empires following the Age of Migration from 500 CE onwards.

[p. 31]

5. The Franks. One can distinguish between two lines of Frankish stock, the Salian or Sea Franks who lived in the Lower Rhine area, and the Ripuarian or Riverine Franks, who lived in the Central Rhine area and upstream as far as the mainland. Slowly, and following careful planning, both groups advanced as far as the borderlands of northern Gaul and took possession of this region at the time of the age of migration. They appear to have still recognised Roman supremacy, and were welcome in the eyes of the Romans as ‘allies’ skilled in making war. They had made an honourable contribution towards the major victory of Châlons (451) under the leadership of the eagles of Aёtius. Since the end of the Roman Empire (476), they formed several independent subempires under the leadership of their own kings. These and other neighbouring areas were united under central Frankish rule by the Salian Clovis (from the Merovingian lineage), who had been the King of Tournai (Doornik) since 481, and who gained these territories both by means of war and other acts of violence. Over time, all of the Germanic peoples living on the right bank of the Rhine had to pledge obedience to the Frankish Empire.

This is how the Franks emerged as the supreme victors out of the turmoil of the age of migration. For a period of no less than four centuries, the history of Europe was primarily a history of the Franks.

Recommended citation: