Post by Khalid ibn Walid on Feb 9, 2007 21:31:22 GMT -5
Byzantine-Arab War Feeling secure in his pact with Charlemagne, Emperor Nicephoros I decides to repudiate Irene's truce and launch a war on the Abbasid Caliphate. He dispatches a very insulting letter to the Calip Harun al-Rashid. Harun responds by invading Anatolia. Nicephoros sues for peace, but soon after breaks the terms and war is resumed. For the next few years, the war will proceed in fits and starts like that, with truces being made every time the Arabs overrun Anatolia and approach Constantinople, and broken once they retire.
805 - Frankish Venice - The new pro-Frankish Patriarch Fortunatus of Venice is forced out of office by the factional feuding and makes his way to the Frankish court in Aachen. With his mediation, Doge Obelerio of Venice places the Venetian confederation under Frankish suzerainity, taking it out of Byzantium's hands, to the great dismay of many Venetians - and Byzantine Emperor.
805 Truce of Sicily. Byzantine Patrician Constantine of Sicily and Emir Ibrahim I ibn-Aghlab of Ifriqiya negotiate a ten-year truce.
806 Death of Grimoald III of Benevento. He is succeeded by his treasurer, who ascends as Prince Grimoald IV of Benevento.
February, 806 - Partition of Diedonhofen - At an assembly at Diedenhofen (Thionville), Charlemagne suddenly announced his intentions for the inheritance of his empire. Contrary to Frankish custom, the Frankish tribes are not to be divided but go as a whole to Charles the Younger. But provision is made for the younger sons by allocating them kingships over subject tribes. In detail, Charles the Younger receives not only the Franks but also Alemanni, Thuringians, Saxons, Frisians, half of the Burgundians, the Bretons and the northern tributary Slavs (Wilitzes, Sorbs, Bohemians, etc.). The second son Pepin (ex-Carloman) is to receive the Lombards, Bavarians and the Balkan tributaries (Carantanians, Croats, Avars). The third son Louis the Pious is to receive the Aquitainians, Gascons, the Goths of Spain, and the southern half of Burgundy. Their treacherous half-brother, Pepin the Hunchback, is completely disinherited.
Frankish-Byzantine War - In the lull of the Abbasid war, pressed by the overoptimistic generals, Nicephoros initiates an active war against the 'usurper' Charlemagne to reverse his gains in the Balkans and Venice. It is a disaster. The Franks immediately swoop down and capture Dalmatian coast, while their Bulgar allies under Khan Krum launch an invasion of Thrace.
Emperor Nicephoros I negotiates yet another humiliating truce with the Abbasid Caliphate. The frontier is restored to the old Taurus line and much tribute paid to Baghdad. But the death of Harun al-Rashid that year and the subsequent fight for succession will keep the Abbasids distracted. This truce will be renewed into a final peace.
The Arab frontier stabilized, Emperor Nicephoros dispatches the Constantinople fleet to recover Venice. When negotiations fail, the admiral attacks a fledgling Frankish fleet nearby at the naval Battle of Commacchio, but is thoroughly defeated. But continued factional strife and a hellenophile popular rising prompt the francophile Doge Obeleiro and his assistant brothers to invoke the Frankish alliance of 805 and invite Pepin of Lombardia to occupy Venice.
Krum's Bulgars advance into Thrace and capture Sardica (Sofia).
- Khan Krum gathers his Bulgars
After several years of on-and-off war in Spain, the first truce signed between Charlemagne and Umayyad Emir of Cordoba. By this time, the Franks have seized control of the Basque citadel of Pamplona and transformed the western Pyrenees into the March of Gascony (future Navarre).
810 - Siege of Venice. As Pepin's Frankish armies approach Venice, the people of Venice throw off the authority of the treacherous Doge Obeleiro and his two brothers and co-doges, Beato and Valentino, and prepare the defense of the city. Rialtine nobleman Agnello Participazio leads the defense, removing the buoys marking the secret navigable channels in the lagoon, and placing a blockade of projecting stakes across the waters. The Franks capture Chioggia and Pellestrina islands, but are unable to pass beyond the stakes to the Lido, where they are continuously harried by missile fire from the Venetian fleet. Going around the other side of the lagoon, Franks capture Grado, Jesolo and what remains of the ruins of Heraclea, but they face the same problem getting to Malamocco. They settle down to a siege. After six months of futility, plagued by malarial fever, hearing rumors of an approaching Byzantine relief fleet, Pepin negotiates the lifting of the siege and withdraws. Franks remain in control of the shores of the lagoon and the Venetians commit themselves to a tribute.
July, 810 Death of Pepin, King of Lombardy, probably from malaria contracted during the Venetian campaign. He leave his domains (Lombardy, Bavaria and Carinthia) to his thirteen-year-old son, who ascends as King Bernard of the Lombards, albeit under an imperial regency. However, Pepin's brother Conrad the Younger disputes the succession.
810 - The Rialto - The three francophile Antenori doges are deposed and exiled and the hero of the siege is elevated as Doge Agnello Participazio. He moves the capital of the Venetian confederation to his home island of the Rialto, smack in the middle of the Venetian lagoon and heretofore a relatively empty and "neutral" place during the factional strife between republican Malamocco and hellenophile Heraclea. Being centrally located in the Venetian lagoon, Rialto is safer from attack than either. Venice secedes from Frankish Lombardia and places itself under the suzerainity of Byzantium. Agnello Participazio
- Rialto island, new capital of the Venetian Republic
Under Doge Angello Participazio, the Venetians initiate a frenzy of construction, not only building up Rialto, but also strengthening and fortifying the lido sand banks of the lagoon.
Needing desperately to reverse the Bulgar advance, Nicephoros sues for peace with the Franks. Charlemagne agrees and the Pax Nicephori is restored. But the ratification of the final treaty will have to wait until 814.
July, 811 The Frankish front peaceful, Nicephoros goes on the offensive in Thrace, but the Bulgars defeat the Byzantines at the Battle of Pliska and kill Emperor Nicephoros I.
- Battle of Pliska (Stylitze chron.)
Nicephoros's wounded son is acclaimed as Emperor Stauracius, but he is deposed a month later by his brother-in-law, who ascends as Byzantine Emperor Michael I ("Rangabe"). He immediately opens up peace negotiations with the Franks and Bulgars.
- Byzantine Emperor Michael I
Sense his end approaching, Charlemagne pledges to leave two-thirds of his personal treasure to be distributed among the twenty-one metropolises of the empire.
Salzburg-Aquileia Partition By Charlemagne's arbitration, Bishop Arno of Salzburg and Patriarch Ursus I of Aquileia partition their jurisdictions on the Drava river -- all to the north (Austria, Hungary) to Salzburg, all to the south (Slovenia, Croatia) to Aquileia.
December, 811Death of Charles the Younger, eldest son and successor of Charlemagne. Another son, Pepin the Hunchback (invalid traitor) dies that same year. Only one legitimate son remains -- Louis the Pious, sub-king of Aquitaine.
Post by Khalid ibn Walid on Feb 9, 2007 21:40:12 GMT -5
Pax Nicephori (Version II) Agreement achieved between Charlemagne of the Franks and Emperor Michael I of Byzantium signed at Aachen, putting an end to the Byzantine-Frankish conflict. Charlemagne gets to keep his imperial title and suzerainity over Istria and the heavily-Slavic Dalmatian interior in return for surrendering his claims on Venice and the scattering of Romano-Illyrian towns on Dalmatia. While apparently not much is gained by the Byzantines, they succeed in depriving the Franks of acquiring sea-borne power that they might have otherwise used to threaten Constantinople itself. The shores of the Venetian lagoon are to be restored to Venice but the tribute promised to Pepin will continue to be paid. The Byzantine Emperor promises to respect the lagoon-republic's autonomy, thereby marking the true official beginning of Venetian independence.
But Michael I rejects the peace terms of Khan Krum of the Bulgars. Hostilities between Byzantines and Bulgars restarts.
Spring, 812 Diet of Aachen. Charlemagne has his grandson (son of Pepin) confirmed as King Bernard of the Lombards. It is around this time that Grimoald IV of Benevento makes peace and recognizes nominal Frankish overlordship. Charlemagne appoints the Frankish-Bavarian lord Boniface as Count Boniface I of Lucca, granting him a large territory (including Pisa, Pistoia, Volterra, and Luni) and assigning him governor (dux) in Italy on Bernard's behalf. Boniface is the stem of the future Bonifaci marquises of Tuscany.
Basque Uprising begins in Pamplona against the Frankish overlordship.
Spanish Peace - Realizing he needs time to secure his gains, Charlemagne negotiates a second truce with the Umayyad Emirate of Cordoba. Gerona & Barcelona are absorbed as the Spanish March into the Carolingian empire, while the Emirate of Cordoba will hold on to the plains of the Ebro (Tudela, Huesca, Lleida & Tortosa). The Spanish border will remain unchanged for the next 300 years.
The Arabian Sea Like the Carthagians and Vandals before them, the Ifriqiyans take to the sea. With the construction of the naval arsenal of Tunis, the Aghlabid Emir Abdallah I of Ifriqiyah begins outfitting a formidable fleet preparing for a more aggressive seizure of the western Mediterranean, including Sicily. Emperor Michael I gets wind of the plans and dispatches a new Patrician Gregory to Sicily with reinforcements. Requests for naval support are given the cold shoulder by Duke Antimo of Naples.
- Bab el-Bahr, the 'gate to the sea', in modern Tunis. - Arsenal of Tunis in lower center.
June, 813 - Ifriqiyan expedition to Sicily sets out, but the fleet is caught up in bad weather in the Sardinian sea and much of it destroyed. Nonetheless, an expedition lands on the Lampedusa islands (south of Sicily, near Malta), which are thoroughly plundered. An advance Byzantine naval force is destroyed, but the Ifriqiya expedition itself is defeated upon the arrival of the bulk of the Byzantine navy.
Also, this expedition produced the first definite Arab raid on the Italian mainland - the sack of Civitavecchia (north of Rome).
July, 813 Bulgars defeat the Byzantines at the Battle of Versinikia. The humilitiaed Michael I abdicates the throne in favor of the captain of the Armenian guard, who ascends as Byzantine Emperor Leo V ('the Armenian'). Khan Krum presses forward and sets up the blockade of Constantinople.
- Byzantine Emperor Leo V ('the Armenian')
August, 813 Notwithstanding the losses in June, Ifriqiyans sends a smaller fleet to Sicily. They get near the Campania coast, but they achieve little beyond the sacking of the islands of Ponza and Ischia, in the Gulf of Gaeta, right before Naples
September, 813 Diet of Aachen Charlemagne crowns his son Louis the Pious as "co-emperor" and sole successor and has Bernard acclaimed as King of the Lombards.
813 - Muslim freebooters from Spain raid Provence, Corsica & the Papal port of Civitavecchia (north of Rome). But the Frankish Count Ermenguer of Ampurias defeats an Andalusian flotilla and brings the Balearic islands (formerly Byzantine) under Frankish suzerainity.
813 Synod of Mainz formally institutes four-day Christmas celebrations.
813 - Homiliarium - Preaching sermons and homilies to the common folk had become increasingly rare. In principle, sermons were the responsibility of the bishops. But bishops were now predominantly drawn from the lay nobility and thus usually ill-trained in scripture. They were more interested in the lifestyle an episcopal benefice could afford than in ministering to their flocks. Infuriated at the neglect of their spiritual duties, Charlemagne set about restoring ecclesiastical discipline. In a series of Councils in 813 (Arles, Tours, Mainz), all bishops were required to preach regularly. They were also exhorted to transmit their homilies in a language that could be understood by the laity - rustic roman or german dialects, rather than high latin. At the king's orders, the Lombard monk Paul the Deacon (i.e. Paul Wanifred) composed an extensive 'Homiliarium' (collection of pre-prepared homilies) that clerics could draw upon.
Post by Khalid ibn Walid on Feb 9, 2007 22:26:01 GMT -5
January, 814 Death of Charlemagne, King of the Franks, Lombards and Emperor of the West.
July, 814 Diet of Praderborn Charlemagne's son ascends as King Louis I ("the Pious") of the Franks. With Charlemagne's "strong hand" gone, a series of insurrections and invasions will mark the new Emperor's reign: the Lombards, Bretons and Basques will make their bids for independence; the Slavs will cross the Elbe into Saxony, and the Saracens will launch assaults on the southern coasts while the Vikings ravage the north and west.
- Louis I 'the Pious', King of the Franks, Emperor (large version)
814 - Having got off by the nick of it, Byzantine Patrician Gregory of Sicily negotiates yet another ten-year truce with Abdallah I of Ifriqiyah.
Death of Khan Krum. His son ascends as Khan Omurtag of the Bulgars. Upon ascension, he launches a new invasion of Byzantium, but it fails to land a death-blow.
Second Iconoclastic Period - Associating the iconophile policy with the defeats at the hands of the Arabs and Bulgars, Emperor Leo V the Armenian deposes the iconophilic Patriarch Nicephoros of Constantinople and installs the iconoclastic Patriarch Theodotus. A new Synod of Constantinople assembled by Theodotus erases the iconophile Second Council of Nicaea (787) and restores iconoclasm in the Byzantine Empire. This second period of iconoclasm will last until 843.
A conspiracy is hatched by the old Roman noble families against Pope Leo III. The conspiracy is discovered and the conspirators punished. But this alarms Emperor Louis the Pious, who believes that it is the prerogative of the Frankish king -- as Emperor and Patrician of Rome -- and not the Pope to dispense justice. But the Pope successfully defends his actions.
815 - 20-Year Peace signed between Byzantine Emperor Leo V and Khan Omertug of the Bulgars, with the terms rather favorable to the Bulgars.
Spring, 816 Uprisings in the Roman countryside by lords angered by Pope Leo III's inquest into the conspiracy and seizure of lands. But Duke Winiges of Spoleto crushes the rebellion on the Pope's behalf.
Council of Aachen. Louis I the Pious decrees the uniform application of the Benedictine rule in monasteries throughout the Frankish Empire (to the protests of Columban monks, e.g. Bobbio). Benedict of Aniane, abbot of the royal monastery in Aachen, presided over a special assembly to set out detailed instructions about how to interpret and apply them. Hereby all monks must live in community, eat & sleep in common, some may have private quarters, but only within the cloister. They are all obliged to work seven hours a day and live within the abbey, but they can dress in linen, eat meat and have their own private possessions.
- St. Benedict delivering his rules.
- Benedictine scriptorium
Saracen freebooters (probably from Spain) capture Corsica (or at least a good chunk of it). Corsican emissaries proceed to Louis' court to beg for intervention.
June, 816 Death of Pope Leo III. Election of Pope Stephen IV. Risking trouble, the new Pope is consecrated before the arrival of imperial confirmation. To make up for it, the Pope obtains an oath of loyalty from the Roman population.
- Pope Stephen IV
August, 816 Pope Stephen IV rushes to Francia to explain his unorthodox ascension to Emperor Louis. He is well-received at Rheims and Louis confirms the ordination. The whole matter goes over without a ripple. Pope Stephen V crowns again Emperor Louis ("the Pious") at the Cathedral of Rheims.
Fall, 816 Stephen IV returns to Rome, accompanied by the Italian King Bernard.
January, 817 Death of Pope Stephen IV. Ascension of a non-noble as Pope Paschal I. Like his predecessor, the ordination comes without first obtaining imperial confirmation.
- Pope Paschal I
817 Donation of Louis - Papal ambassadors are dispatched to Louis to explain the election of Paschal I. It is at this time that Louis supposedly issues the Pactum cum Paschali pontefice/ Pactum Ludovicianum[/i] , confirming the privilege of St. Peter's and abandoning the right of imperial pre-sanction of papal elections (which might be a fabrication). Furthremore, Louis confirms the temporal rights of the Holy See over Italian possessions - including the Duchy of Rome and Umbrian corridor (curiously, first time those two territories are explicitly mentioned in a donation document) plus a confirmation of the southern Tuscany, Sabina, Romagna and Pentapoli holdings. Louis also assigns to the Pope all the royal rents of Tuscany and Spoleto that would have otherwise gone to Pavia.
July, 817 Partition of Aachen At the diet of Aachen, breaking with tradition, Frankish Emperor Louis I ("the Pious") declares that he will not divide the Frankish lands equally among his sons but, to preserve unity, will pass the lion's share to his eldest son, Lothair. Lothair is simultaneously acclaimed as co-King Lothair of the Franks (and co-Emperor). Provisions are made for his younger brothers, who are invested as King Pepin I of Aquitaine (which includes Gascony, the Spanish march and part of Septimania and three Burgundian counties -- Autun, Avallon and Nevers) while his youngest will become King Louis ("the German") of Bavaria (which includes Carinthia and the eastern marches), although suzerain to the elder brother.
The constitution of the new kingdom is laid out in Ordinatio imperio regulating the relations between Emperor and Kings, which all Frankish lords must swear to uphold. In the document, it is established that: - (1) the younger brothers (Pepin of Aquitaine & Louis the German) must meet with elder brother Lothair at least once a year (and on any matter of importance), - (2) the younger brothers are not allowed to make war or peace without Lothair's permission, - (3) Lothair retains the right to intervene in their internal affairs but, simultaneously, is obliged to defend them against foreign aggression, - (4) should either younger brother die without issue, the lands returned to Lothair; - (5) should Lothair die without issue, the imperial dignity and domains shall pass to one of the younger brothers upon the approval of his subjects.
Peculiarly, no mention is made of King Bernard of Lombardia, who had his title granted by Charlemagne directly. Instead, all that is mentioned is that Italy is part of the imperial (i.e. Lothair's) domains.
Fall, 817 Bernard's Revolt. Prodded on by the Archbishop Anselm of Milan (who fears the dilution of his power as Lombard metropolitan) and the Bishop Woldold of Cremona, King Bernard of the Lombards, goes half-heartedly into revolt against his uncle, Louis I the Pious for omitting him at the partition of Aachen. Receiving exaggerated reports of Bernard's preparations from the rival Bishop Ratold of Verona and the Count of Brescia, Emperor Louis I the Pious assembles a great army at Chalon-sur-Sâone to subdue his errant nephew. Rethinking his revolt and having received guarantees from Empress Ermengarda, Bernard of the Lombards makes his way to Châlons and renounces his rebellion and offers his penitence to Louis. He is arrested and dispatched under arms to Aachen.
817 Benevento Coup Lombard lord Siconulf (or Sicone) of Aurenza deposes Grimoald IV of Benevento and ascends as Prince Siconulf I ("Aurenza') of Benevento. Hoping to make Benevento into a naval state, Siconulf immediately restarts the war against the Duchy of Naples
Post by Khalid ibn Walid on Feb 9, 2007 23:29:31 GMT -5
Croatian Revolt In response to accusations in the Frankish court, Emperor Louis orders the vassal duke Ljudevit ("Posavski") of the Pannonian Croats to answer the charges. But Ljudevit refuses to appear goes into revolt instead. Marquis Cadalaus of Friuli is sent after him.
April, 818 Trial of Bernard. Louis I the Pious shows no mercy on his nephew. Bernard and his laical confederates are condemned to death, while the fate of the bishops of Milan and Cremona are to be decided by an ecclesiastical court. After merciful pleas from his wife, Louis spares Bernard's life, but has his eyes poked out and banished from the empire. But the blinding is botched and Bernard dies three days later from the wounds.
- Mutilation of Bernard of Lombardia
The combination of Louis's lack of mercy for his own kin and the application of this "barbaric" punishment shocks everybody. (physical mutilation is common among Byzantines, but unheard of among Franks). Empress Ermengarda, who had vouschafed Bernard's safety, will die two months later, possibly suicide from guilt.
In Bernard's place, Louis's son and co-emperor Lothair is appointed King of the Lombards, and assigned the government of Italy. But he will not depart for years, leaving Lombardia in administrative chaos.
The Supponids of Brescia It is around this time that the Frankish Count Suppo of Brescia, who had been instrumental in putting down Bernard's revolt, is given the newly-vacant countships of Parma, Piacenza, Modena, and Bergamo and appointed missi dominici in Italy on Lothair's behalf. Beginning of the 'Supponid' dynasty's ascendancy.
818 Andalusians capture the Balearic islands of Izira and Majorca, then proceed out and invade Sardinia. These are followed by a huge wave of Muslim colonists, many of them deported from Spain after a failed Cordoba uprising against the Umayyad Emir that same year. Cordoban exiles also set up colonies in Fez (Morocco) and the Nile Delta (Egypt).
818 Basque revolt spreads to Gascony. Emperor Louis reorganizes the southwestern border provinces to try to contain it. Berengar of Toulouse, a son of Hunroch of Friuli, is put in charge.
February, 819 Emperor Louis I marries Judith of Bavaria, daughter of Count Guelph of Bavaria.
Spring, 819 Death of Cadalus of Friuli, soon after returning from ravaging Croatian Pannonia. Ascension of Marquis Balderic of Friuli, who immediately begins organizing a new expedition against Ljudevit. Balderic enlists the support of Borna of the Dalmatian Croats, while Ljudevit recruits the support of Carantanian and Carniola Slavs in the Frankish borderlands.
Muhammad Ibn-Abdallah, cousin of Tunisian emir Ziyadat-Allah, raids Sicily, sacking several towns and taking much booty. This isolated raid is not followed up.
To the delight of the Archbishop of Ravenna, Pope Paschal I issues the great papal privilege for Ravenna, affirming several of the ancient powers and privileges of that see
Fall, 819 Croatian Campaign Balderic of Friuli clashes with Ljudevit's Pannonian Croats on the Varna river and pushes him away from the Carantanian border inland, right on the path of Borna's Dalmatian Croats coming up from the southwest. But at the Battle of Kupa, Ljudevit's Pannonian Croats crush Borna's Dalmatian Croats. With their army routed and Balderic busy with Carantianian revolters, Ljudevit goes on an offensive deep into Dalmatia, heading towards the Adriatic coast. But the Dalmatian Croats go into guerilla mode, and as winter approaches, Ljudevit's army suffers great losses and withdraws back up to Pannonia.
820 Venetian Zecca With a charter from Louis the Pious, the Venetian 'zecca' (mint) is set up and begins minting Carolingian-style "denaro" (silver penny) with the names of the Holy Roman Emperors.
- early Venetian denaro with the name "Ludovicas" (HRE Louis) on one seide and "Venecias" on the other (the very first coins actually had "Rivoalto" (Rialto) instead).
Balderic's of Friuli and his Dalmatian Croat allies go on another massive offensive against Ljudevit of the Pannonian Croats. After futilely attempting to stop up the Alpine passes, Ljudevit falls back into the interior entrenches himself in Sisak for a siege. But the Frankish army, struck by malarial outbreak from the Carantanian marshes, decides to call the invasion off and retires to Friuli - taking care to secure the submission of the Carantanian chieftans on the way.
December, 820 Assassination of Emperor Leo V ("the Armenian") as he attends Christmas mass. His murderer. Michael the Amorian, a disgruntled general and Leo V's former brother-in-law, is acclaimed as Michael II ("the Amorian") of Byzantium. To secure the claim to the throne, Michael II will eventually marry Europhosyne (daughter of Constantine VI, the last Isaurian emperor, and former nun). Beginning of the Amorian or Phrygian dynasty of Byzantine emperors.
- Byzantine Emperor Michael II ('the Amorian')
Penitence at Attigny - Feeling guilty of his cruel treatment of Bernard, Emperor Louis penitently releases the Archbishop Anselm of Milan and other of Bernard's confederates. He makes public penitence before an assembly at Attigny, at which Pope Paschal I is present. Louis withdraws to a mendicant retreat for a while.
Sicilian Mutiny. Sicilian military officers, most of them mercenary, revolt against their Byzantine Greek commanders.
First Siege of Naples Lombard troops led by the Duke Siconulf of Benevento lay the first siege to Naples. The death of Siconulf puts an end to the siege. He is succeeded by his son, who ascends as Lombard Prince Sicardo of Benevento -- who is even crueler than his father and intent on subjecting the Byzantine Duchy of Naples to Lombard rule..
- Sicardo, Prince of Benevento
Death of Borna of the Dalmatian Croats. He is succeeded by his nephew, who ascends as Duke Vladislav of the Dalmatian Croats.
Subjugation of Pannonian Croats In a final campaign, Balderic of Friuli and Vladislav of the Dalmatian Croats go on a massive offensive against Ljudevit Posavski of the Pannonian Croats. The Pannonian Croats are crushed, Ljudevit Posavski takes refuge in Serbia (where he will, by some accounts, attempt a coup to become prince there, only to be exiled and killed the next year). By Frankish pressure, Patriarch Fortunatus of Grado, who had logistically supported Ljudevit's revolt, is sent into exile.
822 Supponid Spoleto Under Lothair's pressure duke Winiges of Spoleto abdicates and retires to a monastery (dies soon after). The Frankish mega-count Suppo of Brescia, etc. - ascends as Duke Suppo I ("Brescia") of Spoleto. Taking office in the south, he leaves the north in his sons' hands, investing his eldest son as Count Mauring of Brescia and his younger son as Count Adelchis of Parma. They share/partition their domination of Piacenza, Modena and Bergamo.
April, 823 Co-King Lothair of the Franks visits Italy and is crowned as co-Emperor Lothair at Rome by Pope Paschal I. He returns to Francia soon after.
Summer-Fall, 823 Roman nobles revolt against their ecclesiastical rulers. In the subsequent repression, two leaders of the revolt -- the primicerius Theodore and the nomenclature Leo -- are arrested, tried for lese majeste and decapitated by clerical authorities, yet again a violation of imperial authority. Pope Paschal I immediately dispatches an embassy to Louis, attesting his innocence in this matter -- and, at any rate, assuring him the sentences were just
Omurtag of the Bulgars helps new Byzantine Emperor Michael II fend off a challenge from his rival general, Thomas the Slav.
Emperor Louis I fathers a new child from his second marriage to Judith of Bavaria, who will later become known as Charles ("the Bald").
Republic of Gaeta. Gaeta, a dependency of the Byzantine duchy of Naples, breaks off as an independent commune under its own magistrates.
Death of Boniface I of Lucca, governor of Italy. His son ascends as Count Boniface II of Lucca.
February, Death of the unpopular Pope Paschal I. Rome is ripped apart by two parties in Rome, one backing the Carolingians, the other demanding autonomy.
May, The Frankish party candidate wins and is elected as Pope Eugenius II. The election, engineered by the Frankish monk Wala (Lothair's tutor) goes smoothly. Naturally, imperial pre-confirmation was unnecessary.
- Pope Eugenius II
August, To prevent any tumults that might arise from opposition to Eugenius II's election, Emperor Louis dispatches Lothair to Rome with an army, just in case.
Fall, Lothair arrives in Rome, at the head of an imperial army, to much pomp. He immediately begins a series of inquests into the papacies of Leo III and Paschal I, to popular applause. Numerous Romans are released and their property restored, while other cases are referred back to Francia..
November, At St. Peter's, Lothair unveils the Constitutio Romana (or Constitutio Lotharia) by which he stresses the Emperor's authority over the Pope and promulgates the rights of Roman citizens. There are nine articles: the inviolability of persons under the protection of the emperor or the pope, prohibition of depradations of the Roman countryside and Church properties, research into past damages, proclaiming two months to lodge them, one month for the Pope, another for the Emperor, the referral of the administration of justice, etc. Most importantly, Lothair re-affirms the right of imperial control over papal election and restores the involvement of the Roman laity (which had been excluded in 769). However, he stops short of requiring imperial sanction before consecration.
In the meantime, in the Pyrennees mountains, Basque lord Inigo Iniguez Arista carves out the western half of the Frankish March of Spain into the independent Kingdom of Navarre, the first break-away state from Carolingian Empire.
824 Death of Suppo of Brescia-Spoleto. Spoleto is briefly passed to a certain Adelard of Spoleto, but he is soon replaced by Suppo's eldest son, Mauring of Brescia. But Mauring himself dies a few days later. His younger brother Adelchis of Parma inherits everything and ascends as Duke Adelchis ('Parma') of Spoleto.
Februrary, At an assembly in Marengo, Lothair issues the Capitula de expeditione corsicana for the defense of Corsica against Saracen freebooters.
July, Capitularies of Cortoleona Assembly of Lombard nobles presided over by Lothair. Through a series of capitularies, Lothair institutes some reforms of Church discipline. He orders the setting up of schools for juridical instruction in eight Italian cities -- Pavia, Turin, Cremona, Verona, Vicenza, Florence, Fermo Cividale and Ivrea -- for the training of teachers, to be placed under the responsibility of the relevant bishops. He also presses for the enforcement of canonical lifestyle. All this is to be confirmed at a Papal council in Rome the next year. His task done, Lothair returns to Francia.
Synod of Paris presided over by Pope Eugenius II to condemn iconoclasm as heresy. But he is faced with unexpected opposition, the iconoclastic party being larger than the supporters of image-worship. He nonetheless manages to get the Bishop Claudio of Turin, a noted iconoclast (particularly opposed to the worship of relics) condemned as a heretic.
Post by Khalid ibn Walid on Feb 9, 2007 23:32:14 GMT -5
Emirate of Crete. Cordoban refugees-turned-freebooters are kicked out of their colony in the Nile Delta by Abassid authorities. Under the leadership of Abu Qa'ab, proceed to conquer Byzantine Crete (Abu Qa'ab burns the boats upon arrival). They establish an establish an independent Emirate there, with capital on the eastern end at Candax (their fortress would be corrupted to give the popular name of the island, 'Candia')
Sicilian Rebellion. Byzantine Sicilian commander Euphemius (Euthymius) elopes with a local nun. Hoping to dispose of the malcontent Sicilian military men who had just mutinied recently, Byzantine Patrician Fotino of Sicily induces the nun's brothers to appeal to Emperor Michael II, who gives orders for the arrest & mutilation of Euphemius. Getting wind of this, Euphemius (then on a raid in Africa) returns quickly and seizes Syracuse, sending the Patrician Fotino into hiding in Catania.
Euphemius is supported by several other military leaders, fearful that they too will soon be on the receiving end of Fotino's "inquisitorial" tactics. They hunt the patrician down and execute him. Euphemius proclaims himself independent (anti-)Emperor by the islanders, who have grown tired of the rapacious rule of the Byzantine bureaucrats and seek to profit from Michael II's distractions in the east.
But the rebellion begins to fall apart, as everyone knows it is merely a matter of time before the bulk of the Byzantine forces bear down on them. As his supporters gradually begin to distance themselves, Euphemius flees to Ifriqiya. There, he invites the Aghlabid Emir Ziyadat-Allah I to help him secure Sicily, promising to govern in his name and grant him an annual tribute. Before acceding to the request, the Aghlabids dispatch emissaries to the island to ascertain the mood and the prospects of success and lay the ground for the invasion plan.
King Harold Flak of the Danes converts to Christianity in the German imperial court at Ingelheim.
Worried about the loss of the Navarre, Emperor Louis places the entire southern borderlands under the command of the ambitious Marquis Bernard of Septimania. An anti-Frankish rebellion rips through Catalonia, joined by the Umayyad armies. A long siege of Barcelona follows.
Unable to maintain Frankish rule on Celtic Brittany, Emperor Louis decides to appoint a Breton lord to rule in his name, Marquis Nomenoe of Brittany.
827 After repeated entreaties to Louis I to bring order to his wild Slavic borderlands, Khan Omertug of the Bulgars decides to take matters into his own hands. The Bulgars invade Pannonia, and bring the Pannonian Croats under their rule. They set up a vassal duke Ratimir in the more westerly parts. Alarmed at the Bulgarian incursion, Duke Vladislav of the Dalmatian Croats places himself more firmly under the sovereignty of the Franks.
June, AGHLABID INVASION OF SICILY Ifriqiyan Emir Ziyadat-Allah I dispatches an Aghlabid expeditionary force composed of Arab jund militias and Berbers, under the command the septagarian Asad ibn al-Forat (a Maliki qadi of Qairouan) accompanied by the Sicilian pretender Euphemius. The expedition lands in Mazara del Vallo, in the western tip of the island, where they are joined by contingents of Euphemius's partisans. But Asad keeps them apart.
- Arabs vs. Byzantines in Sicily (Skylitzes chron.)
July, In their first encounter, Aghabid forces defeat the imperial commander of Palata in a bloody battle near Mazara. The Aghlabids then move along the coast and lay siege to Syracuse, while the Ifriqiyan navy goes around to blockade it.
August, 827 Death of Pope Eugenius II. Election of Pope Valentine. After a forty-day rule, he is succeeded by a Roman noble, who ascends Pope Gregory IV.
- Pope Gregory IV.
Synod of Mantua Patriarch Manentius of Aquileia presses for the restoration of Aquileia's authority over Grado. Representatives of the Pope and Emperor agree, but it is bitterly disputed by the Patriarch Venerio of Grado and the fledgling Venetian Republic.
827-8 The small Aghlabid expeditionary force is insufficient to take Syracuse and as time goes by, supplies run out. The navy is sent back to Tunisia to pick up reinforcements. The respite by the lifting of the Tunisian naval blockade of Syracuse give the Byzantines time to react. At their request, the Venetian Doge Guistiniano Partizipazio assembles afleet and speeds towards Sicily, while the remaining loyal forces are assembled in Palermo, all geared to re-supplying Syracuse's defenses.
Republic of St. Mark Two Venetian merchants -- Tribun and Rustic -- in Alexandria steal the corpse of the evangelist St. Mark from its tomb, elude Egyptian authorities by hiding it in a shipload of pork, and make their way back to Venice. The remains will be placed in the specially-built Basilica of St. Mark, the chapel of the Doge's palace in the Rialto, and St. Mark elevated to patron saint of the Venetian republic.
This supposedly fulfills the old legend that an angel had prophesized to St. Mark, when traveling in the lagoon, that he would be buried there. The opening line of the angel's message -- Pax tibi, Marce evangelista meus. Hic requiescet corpus tuum ("Peace be upon you, Mark, my evangelist. Here shall your body rest") -- will become the motto of Venice, engraved on the open book of the winged lion of St. Mark on the Venetian banner. The theft of St. Mark help the Venetians press for the continued independence of the Patriarch of Grado from Aquileia.
828 - Byzantine defenders of Syracuse rally but are defeated by the Aghlabid besiegers in a bloody encounter. Syracuse is on the verge of falling, when a providential pestilence seizes the area, killing the old Aghlabid commander Asad ibn-Forat. Command of the Aghlabid expeditionary force passes to Muhammad ibn al-Jawari. With the hinterlands in revolt, Syracuse still holding out, and no relief from Tunisia, Ibn al-Jawari decides to abandon the enterprise and return home. But the Aghlabida ships are intercepted by the Byzantine-Venetian fleet at the mouth of the port of Syracuse and defeated. With no way out, the Arabs lift the siege and proceed to Mineo, their new base of operations..
Reorganizing themselves, the Sicilian expeditionary force takes Agrigento on the southern coast, before turning inwards and laying siege to Enna (Catrogiovanni). The pretender Euphemius is killed by treachery at the siege. The siege is fruitless, although the Arabs achieve a victory over the troops of the Patrician Theodotus. Aghlabid commander Ibn al-Jawari is killed in the process, and leadership of the Aghlabid expedition is taken up by Zuhayr ibn al-Ghawth.
But the Aghlabid force is defeated by Byzantines under Theodotus and forced to take refuge in Mineo again. The Enna siege is lifted and Agriganto retaken by the Byzantines, forcing the Aghlabid garrison back to Mazara. Byzantines lay siege to Mineo.
828 Partition of Friuli For his failure to confront Slavic raids and Bulgar advances into Pannonia, Lothair deposes Marquis Balderic of Friuli and partitions the hitherto massive March of Friuli into four separate marches -- the March of Friuli, the March of Istria, the March of Carniola and the March of Pannonia. A son of the old Count Hunroch I ("Ternois") of Friuli is appointed as Marquis Hunroch II of Friuli.
Tuscan Corsica Lothair grants Boniface II of Lucca the governorship ('prefectus et tutela') of Corsica.
Summer, 828, Raid on Tunis Boniface II of Lucca outfits a small Italian fleet to hunt down Saracen pirates on the coasts of Corsica. Finding none there or in Sardinia, Boniface heads all the way across the Mediterranean to raid Ifriqiya, assulting the north African coasts around Tunis, boldly sailing into the 'mouth of the beast' itself. This represents the first of very few naval counter-raids by a Christian power on Saracen home coasts. The Tuscan raid forces Emir Ziyadit-Allah to hold back much-needed reinforcements intended for the siege of Syracuse in Sicily.
To control future landings, Boniface II of Lucca proceeds to build the castle of Bonifacio, on the southern tip of Corsica (the oldest town on the island).
Lothair and Pepin of Aquitaine assemble an army to relieve Barcelona, where the Frankish marquis Bernard of Septimania is beseiged by Catalan rebels and their Muslim allies. But the relief effort fails and the Franks sue for peace. Although they get to retain Barcelona, the Franks lose the lands below and behind it.
Louis the Pious recalls Bernard of Septimania to his court in Aachen, where he is made grand chamberlain (i.e. prime minister). Bernard immediately enters into intrigues with Judith of Bavaria, who is attempting to get inheritance provisions made for her young son, Charles the Bald.
Post by Khalid ibn Walid on Feb 9, 2007 23:32:48 GMT -5
Saracen Civitavecchia An Ifriqiyan force lands north of Rome and captures the all-important port of Civitavecchia (Centumcellae). Well-shielded by marshes and hills and a splendid harbor and fortress, Civitavecchia will become first Saracen enclave on the Italian mainland, and the advanced base for raids future landings and raids.
- fortress of Civitavecchia (16th C.)
August, 829 Partition of Worms. Having dispatched Lothair again to Italy, Louis the Pious assembles his lords at Worms and revises his will, carving out a small fief in Alemannia (Swabians) (plus Alsace, Rhaetia and a bit of Transjurane Burgundy) for his new son, Charles the Bald, from the domains originally assigned to Louis the German. The Frankish barons, led by Louis the German (the main loser), protest vigorously. Rumors fly about Bernard of Septimania's relationship with Judith of Bavaria, and wicked tongues suggest that Charles the Bald may not be Louis's son at all.
October, 829 Death of Michael II. His son ascends as Byzantine Emperor Theophilus I, an avid iconoclast.
c.830 Caliph al-Ma'mun founds the 'House of Wisdom' in Baghdad to collect and translate the ancient Greek texts.
Discovery of the tomb of St. James (the Apostle) in Compostela (Galicia). Will become a major Christian pilgrimage site and rejuvenate the fortunes of the Asturian kingdom.
March - Pepin of Aquitaine joins his brother Louis the German in the movement against his father's new partition plan to accomodate the new child Charles the Bald. Co-Emperor Lothair and much of the Frankish nobility join them.
May Assembly at Compiègne At the suggest of the three sons, the Frankish nobles agree to place the old Emperor Louis I and the babe Charles the Bald placed under confinement, Judith of Bavaria is repudiated as queen and sent under arms to retire in a convent in Poitiers. Bernard of Septimania returns to his domains, subject to an inquest into his affairs.
Summer, New Arab expedition lands in Sicily, primarily Aghlabid Africans accompanied by a contingent of Spanish Arabs under the command of Asbagh ibn-Wakkil. The Africans proceed to lay siege to Palermo, while the Spaniards head to the besieged Aghlabid troops at Mineo. Asbagh defeats and kills the Sicilian Patrician Theodotos at the Battle of Mineo. Mineo is razed to the ground and the troops proceed to Ghallulia (Caltaniseta). But plague kills Asbagh and his captains. The remainder of the Andalusian force makes its way to Mazara, looking for a passage back to Spain. The Africans stay on at their siege of Palermo.
Summer - Byzantine-Abbasid War - After nearly twenty years of peace, the Caliph al-Ma'mun restarts hostilities with a 'summer raid' on Byzantine Anatolia. It is more than mere loot. Unable to regain Azerbaijan, where the peculiar Khurramites are firmly entrenched, the Caliph is going after their Byzantine backers. After a small retaliatory raid, the Emperor Theophilus offers peace, but the Caliph refuses and renews the raids
October, 830 Assembly at Nimingen called by Lothair asks for confirmation of the deposition of his father Louis the Pious. But the Frankish nobles -- and Pepin and Louis the German -- decide that is a step too far and restore Louis to the imperial throne.
830 Raid on Rome Saracens descend from their perch in Civitavecchia, ravage the Roman countryside and sack the Basilicas of St. Peter and St. Paul outside the Roman city walls.
Lordship of Palermo After a long siege, Palermo falls to the Ifriqiyans. The Byzantine governor, bishop and other notables escape by sea. The Aghlabids make Palermo the new capital of their Sicilian conquests. Soon after, Sicily is partitioned into three segments: the western ("Val di Mazzara"), ruled by the Arabs from Palermo, the central ("Val di Enna"), dominated by the impregnable Byzantine fortress of Enna (Castrogiovanni) and the eastern ("Val di Noto"), still ruled by the Byzantines from Syracuse. The Aghbabid Emir Ziyadat-Allah I of Ifriqiya invests his cousin, Abu Fihr Muhammad, as Sahib (Lord) of Sicily and dispatches him to Palermo, thus formally beginning the government of the Arab part of the island. The arrival of a ruler from Qairouan upsets the local Muslim commanders.
- Arab map of Sicily (by al-Idrisi)
Renewing his efforts, Sicardo of Benevento lays second siege to Naples.
Partition of Aachen. To re-do the provision for Charles, Louis I the Pious tries again. He offers Pepin of Aquitaine two Burgundian counties (Auxerre and Sens), to add to the three he already has (Autun, Avallon and Nevers) provided he leave the remainder to Charles the Bald. Pepin of Aquitaine revolts again.
September, Louis I defeats his son Pepin of Aquitaine and has him held captive at Trier. Marquis Bernard of Septimania (who had intrigued with Pepin) is deprived of his domains in southern France and Spain.
Post by Khalid ibn Walid on Feb 9, 2007 23:33:25 GMT -5
833 Great Moravian Empire Prince Moimir of the Moravians annexes Mitra (Slovakia) and forges the nucleus of the 'Great Moravian' state that will eventually cover much of the Slavic states of eastern europe.
April, The Sons' Revolt Apparently not learning anything from the first time around, Emperor Louis I decides to assign Aquitaine (Pepin's realm) to Charles the Bald. Pepin escapes from captivity, and with the support of Pope Gregory IV, the three sons (Pepin of Aquitaine, Louis the German and Lothair of Lombardia) rebel again. Accompanied by the Pope, they head towards Louis the Pious's army of Franks and Saxons.
July Champ du Mensonge (Field of Deceit). The four armies meet for battle near Colmar. With Pope Gregory IV's mediation, Emperor Louis I the Pious decides to avoid a patricidial fight and submits to his sons.
August, 833 Death of Caliph al-Ma'mun on campaign in Anatalia. His son ascends as Abbasid Caliph al-Mu'tasim. A peace is negotiated with Byzantine Emperor Theophilus I next year.
October Assembly at Compiègne. Emperor Louis I is forced make a public pronouncement of regret and perform penitence at a monastery in Soissons (earns his 'Pious' appelation here). Queen Judith is exiled to Lombardy and Charles the Bald to Prum. Louis is deposed and Lothair acclaimed as the sole Emperor.
Abbasid Caliph al-Ma'mum institutes the mihna, an inquisition asserting the truth of the rationalist Mu'tazilite theology, the first attempt by a Caliph to assert a theological line with state power. Islamic scholars and jurists rise up in protest.
January, Installed at Aachen, Lothair refuses to grant any greater territory to his brothers, Louis the German and Pepin II of Aquitaine. Wary of their elder brother's imperious designs and aware that public sympathy is returning to their father after his public humiliation, Pepin and Louis the German break the ranks and form an alliance against Lothair. They dispatch their armies against Aachen, while Bernard of Septimania and Guerin V of Macon engineer a rebellion in Burgundy. Lothair, unable to raise in army in hostile Austrasia, heads to the Neustrian capital of Paris, where he drops off his hostage father, and rushes south to still-loyal Vienne assemble his men.
February, Emperor Louis escapes from captivity in Paris and makes his way to Quierzy to rendez-vous with Louis the German, Pepin and their lieutanants. Having deemed their father's penitence sufficient, Pepin of Aquitaine and Louis the German restore Louis to the imperial throne. Louis the Pious orders Lothair to submit, but he refuses.
Spring, Heading up the Rhine, Lothair captures Châlon-sur-Saône. But, by this time, Louis the Pious has assembled a huge army which Lothair cannot hope to defeat. Lothair submits to his father, and is duly banished with his partisans to Lombardia. Bernard of Septimania, having proven is loyalty to the old emperor, is restored with command over the great southwest complex of Septimania-Barcelona-Toulouse.
Guideschi Spoleto Count Lambert of Nantes, Marquis of Brittany, a partisan of Lothair who followed him to Italy, is granted the Duchy of Spoleto, taking it away from the Supponid duke Adelchis of Parma. Ascends as Duke Lambert ('Nantes') of Spoleto, The first of the 'Guideschi' dynasty of Spoleto.
Lothair dismisses Boniface II of Lucca-Corsica, a supporter of Louis, and replaces him with a partisan Count Aganus of Lucca. Boniface II retires to family lands in Septimania.
New Aghlabid governor of Sicily, Abu Fihr Muhammad, turns his attentions towards central Sicily ("Val di Enna") and defeats a Byzantine force there, forcing them to retreat to the fortress of Enna.
Viking Raids - Vikings from Denmark and Norway who had been harassing the British islands since the 790s, turn towards the continent and launched one or two raids on Flanders in 820s. But now the Danes, unable to break through the Danish march, start to attack more systematically further along the coasts. Viking raids are first directed towards Frisia, notably the port and commercial city of Dorestad, which is sacked four times in the next four years.
Assembly of Thionville The proclamations of 833 are expurgated and Louis I the Pious is re-crowned emperor once again.
Assembly of Metz. Emperor Louis the Pious revises his will to make grander provision for his youngest-born. He assigns Charles the Bald a southern domain (known as "Carolingia") composed of Burgundy, Provence and Septimania.
Sicilian emir Abu Fihr Muhammad defeats the Byzantines again near Castrogiovanni and seizes their observation post, taking the wife of the Byzantine governor prisoner. Intending to lay siege to Castrogiovanni, Abu Fihr dispatches a column to Taormina (eastern coast) to delay any approaching Byzantine army. But as the Summer approaches, Abu Fihr is killed in a mutiny by subalterns, grating under Qairouan's control of their enterprise.
In his own campaign, the new military commander in Sicily, Fadhl ibn Yaqub defeats the Byzantines in a skirmish near Syracuse and then defeats the Byzantines in a bloody Battle of Castrogiovanni, wounding the Byzantine Patrician. But he is soon replaced by a new commander from Qairouan, Abu al-Aghlab Ibrahim, at the head of a new Ifriqiyan fleet.
The unpopular and feckless Doge Giovanni Partizipazio of Venice is forced to abdicate on the street by his own subjects. He is shorn and sent to live out his days in a monastery in Grado. In his place, an architect from Jeselo (related to the Participazio's by marriage), is elevated as Doge Pietro Tradonico of Venice. He immediately begins preparations to deal with the Dalmatian pirates.
- Pietro Tradonico , Doge of Venice.
In Sicily, Aghlabid troops devastate the region around Catania & Mt. Etna. Abu Aghlab, making effective use of his Ifriqiyan fleet, captures outlying Lispari islands and raids the northern and eastern coasts of the island. By the end of the year, most of the Byzantine strong-points in the north, between Palermo and Messina are in Aghlabid hands.
Ifriqiyan-Neapolitan Alliance The beseiged Duke Andrew II of Naples appeals to the Aghlabid lords of Sicily for support against the Lombard Prince Sicardo of Benevento. The Aghlabid fleet from Sicily sails up into Naples harbor and forces Sicardo to raise the siege. In June, the Pactum Sicardo is signed making peace between between Andrew II of Naples and Sicardo of Benevento.
Expiration of the 20-year-peace between the Bulgars and Byzantines. Emperor Theophilus I goes on a quick offensive on the Bulgarian borderlands. Peace is soon restored.
Death of Lambert of Nantes, Marquis of Brittany and Duke of Spoleto from the plague. He is succeeded in Nantes by his son Lambert. Lothair appoints his own son-in-law Berengar (husband of daughter Hilmtrud) as Duke Berengar of Spoleto.
Emperor Louis I repartitions the Empire, making the youngest-born Charles the Bald his principal inheritor of the Frankish Empire (or rather, grants Charles the Bald, reducing his eldest son Lothair merely to Lombardy, Pepin to Aquitaine and Louis the German to Bavaria. At his father's initiative, Charles the Bald is crowned King of the Franks at Quierzy-sur-Oise. Lothair and Louis the German promptly take up arms against the Emperor Louis and their younger brother Charles the Bald.
Byzantines strike back with a naval victory and repel an Aghlabid assault on Enna. Aghlabids settle down to a siege of Cefalu (northern coast) for much of the next year.
In a radical gamble, knowing the Arab are armies are concentrated in an assault on rebellious Azerbaijan, Emperor Theophilus I breaks the peace and goes on an offensive in Syria. He captures Zebetra, the town of al-Mu'tasim's birth, and puts it to the sack and sword.
In violation of the 836 Pactum, Lombard Prince Sicardo of Benevento captures Amalfi, a city under Neapolitan sovereignty and deports much of its population to Salerno.
At Neapolitan suggestion, a small Ifriqiyan expeditionary force from Palermo sails up the Adriatic and captures Brindisi, a port in Apulia. Prince Sicardo of Benevento is forced withdraw from Amalfi, taking his army east to deal with them. According the chroniclers, Sicardo dug a great moat and covered it in dirt and leaves. When the Ifriqiyans sallied out of Brindisi, the Lombards fell on top of them and pushed them back into it, killing great numbers of them. The saracens leave Brindisi, but not before sacking and setting it to flame.
- Saracen horseman (Sicilian fresco)
Spring, 838 In revenge for Syria, Abbasid Caliph al-Mu'tasim assembles the largest-ever Arab army on an offensive on Anatolia The Byzantine army is crushed at Caesarea and, in revenge for Zebetra, Theophilus's hometown of Amorium is razed and put to the sword. They retire at the end of the year. It will be the last great Byzantine-Abbasid confrontation.
- Saracens (modern repr.)
Byzantine relief force arrives in Cefalu (Sicily) and the Aghlabids retire their siege.
Death of Aghlabid Emir Ziyadat-Allah I of Ifriqiyah and sovereign of Sicily. He is succeed by his brother, who ascends as Aghlabid Emir Abu Iqal of Ifriqiya.
First Expedition to Dalmatia Doge Pietro Tradonico leads a Venetian expedition against the coasts of Dalmatia to flush out the Slavic pirates who have been plaguing the Adriatic shipping from their hideouts in the delta of the Narenta and Crentina rivers.
- Venetian campaigns in 9th C.
December, 838 Aquitainean Revolt Death of Pepin of Aquitaine. Emperor Louis I dispossesses Pepin's own sons and assigns the Kingdom of Aquitaine to Charles the Bald. But Aquitanian barons led by Count Ermenon of Poitou, not wishing to see the Kingdom of Aquitaine reduced to a mere Frankish duchy, promptly acclaim Pepin's young son as King Pepin II of Aquitaine and vow to defend the integrity of his domain.
Exploiting the chaos in southern France, Saracen pirates, probably with Andalusian support, launch a naval attack on Marseilles. Marseilles is sacked and they proceed to sail up the estuary of the Rhone. From the north, in a probing raid, the Vikings attack Aquitaine, the first such attack down the French coast since 820.