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[[File:Carolingian Empire map 1895.jpg|thumb|360px|Carolingian Empire with the southeastern March of Friuli after the 843 [[Treaty of Verdun]]]]
The '''March of Friuli''' was a [[Carolingian]] [[Marches|frontier march]] against the [[Slavic peoples|Slavs]] and [[caucasian Avars|Avars]] in the ninth and tenth centuries. It was a successor to the [[Lombards|Lombard]] [[Duchy of Friuli]].
After [[Charlemagne]] had conquered the Italian [[Kingdom of the Lombards]] under King [[Desiderius]] at the [[Siege of Pavia]] in 774, he at first allowed the Lombard duke [[Hrodgaud of Friuli|Hrodgaud]] to continue ruling in Friuli. According to the [[Royal Frankish Annals]], Hrodgaud two years later revolted declaring himself a King of the Lombards, whereafter Charlemagne came rushing into Italy where he routed the duke's forces and had him deposed and killed. The autonomous Lombard duchy was dissolved and incorporated into [[Francia]], though Hrodgaud's successors appointed by Charlemagne continued to bear the title of a ''dux Foroiuliensis''. To the former Lombard duchy he added [[Pannonia]] as an integral part of his [[Carolingian Empire]] and a bulwark against the encroachments of the [[caucasian Avars|Avars]] and the [[Croats]].
In 828 the last Friulian duke, [[Baldric of Friuli|Baldric]], was removed from office by Emperor [[Louis the Pious]] at the Imperial diet of [[Aachen]], as he had not been able to defend the Pannonian frontier against the troops of Khan [[Omurtag of Bulgaria]]. The duchy was divided into four counties, which in 846 were gathered together again as part of the [[Middle Francia|Middle Frankish]] realm ruled by Louis' eldest son Emperor [[Lothair I]]. He bestowed Friuli on his brother-in-law [[Eberhard of Friuli|Eberhard]], of the Frankish [[Unruochings]], with the title of ''dux'', though his successors were called ''marchio'': "margrave."
Eberhard's son [[Berengar I of Italy|Berengar]], Friulian margrave since 874, was elected King of Italy after the deposition of [[Charles the Fat]] in 887. His election precipitated decades of contests for the throne between rival claimants. Berengar paid homage to the [[East Francia|East Frankish]] king [[Arnulf of Carinthia]], he nevertheless lost the crown to Duke [[Guy III of Spoleto]] in 889 and did not succeed in recapturing it until 905. Meanwhile, represented by his counsellor [[Walfred of Friuli|Walfred]] at the city of [[Verona]], he remained master in Friuli, which was always the base of his support. After Berengar's death in 924, his partisans elected [[Hugh of Italy|Hugh of Arles]] king.
King Hugh did not appoint a new margrave and the march lay vacant. It remained a political division of the Frankish [[Kingdom of Italy (medieval)|Kingdom of Italy]] until the usurpation of the throne by [[Berengar II of Italy|Berengar II]] upon the death of Hugh's son King [[Lothair II of Italy|Lothair II]] in 950. Summoned by Lothair's widow [[Adelaide of Italy|Adelaide of Burgundy]], the [[Kingdom of Germany|German]] king [[Otto I, Holy Roman Emperor|Otto I]] took the chance to conquer Italy, depose Berengar II and to marry Adelaide. The conflict was settled at the 952 diet of [[Augsburg]], where Berengar II was allowed to retain the royal title as a German vassal, but had to cede Friuli as the [[March of Verona]] to Duke [[Henry I, Duke of Bavaria|Henry I of Bavaria]], brother of King Otto I. On February 2, 962 Otto was crowned [[Holy Roman Emperor]] at [[Rome]], deposed King Berengar II and had him arrested and exiled one year later. His remaining Italian kingdom became a constituent part of the [[Holy Roman Empire]].
The Veronese march was held by the [[Duchy of Carinthia|Carinthian dukes]] from 976 well into the [[High Middle Ages]]. In 1077 King [[Henry IV, Holy Roman Emperor|Henry IV of Germany]] vested the [[Patrie dal Friûl|Patriarchate of Aquileia]] with the Friulian territory east of the [[Tagliamento]] river.
*[[Thomas Hodgkin (historian)|Hodgkin, Thomas]]. ''Italy and her Invaders''. Clarendon Press: 1895.