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    Kingdom of Naples and the Holy Roman Empire

    I've been wondering about this for quite some time. But why was southern italy never apart of the HRE? Did the HRE ever have any claim on southern italy? I understand that the kingdom was a normandy state and relations with the HRE and papacy were bad between the kingdom, but was there ever any time when the HRE sought to incorporate the southern lands into the "empire"?
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    To summarize heavily, one reason among others was that there was considerable opposition from the Papacy considering that this would result in the surrounding of the Patrimony of Saint Peter.

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    There was an attempt made to incorporate Sicily into HRE, but as BaronNoir said it really made the pope sligthly nervous. In addition the popes saw Sicily as a part of the papal fief. Henry VI Hohenstaufen inerited it through his wife in 1194.His son Frederick II managed to get excommunicated twice (I think). The last one was a little embaressing as he managed to negotiate the return of Jerusalem in a state of excommunication, forcing the pope to put the holy city under excommunication for a while. In 1245 Innocent IV deposed Frederick II and called a crusade against him and the Hohenstaufen family.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Umega View Post
    I've been wondering about this for quite some time. But why was southern italy never apart of the HRE? Did the HRE ever have any claim on southern italy? I understand that the kingdom was a normandy state and relations with the HRE and papacy were bad between the kingdom, but was there ever any time when the HRE sought to incorporate the southern lands into the "empire"?
    1. The Pope was busier and closer and thus his meddling did more damage than the Emperor's word might carry over the Alps.

    2. Speaking of which, there was quite a bit of difficulty keeping the northern Italians under suzerainty, much more difficult to keep the southern ones so as well.

    3. The Kingdom of Sicily might have turned into something nice and interesting for the first time since the Romans ruined it. But the Pope didn't like Orthodox, Muslim, or Jewish folks. So were lost silk-making, scholars, and efficient farmers. Replaced by dimwit mafia parasite lordlings, always willing to sell Sicily out to the lowest bidder.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Umega View Post
    I've been wondering about this for quite some time. But why was southern italy never apart of the HRE? Did the HRE ever have any claim on southern italy? I understand that the kingdom was a normandy state and relations with the HRE and papacy were bad between the kingdom, but was there ever any time when the HRE sought to incorporate the southern lands into the "empire"?
    The Lombard Duchy of Benevento (proto-Naples) was never conquered by the Franks, and was never integrated as part of the Frankish Kingdom of Italy (ex-Kingdom of the Lombards). It was an independent principality already from the 770s. And the rest of it (Apulia, Calabria, Sicily and the city-state of Naples) was formally part of the Byzantine empire. So, constitutionally, it was "outside" of Italy when the HRE was first constituted as three kingdoms (Germany, Burgundy, Italy) in the 1100s. Not that it mattered, since by that time it (Lombard duchy + Byzantine zones) had been taken by the Normans, and the Normans were explicitly recognized by the pope as separate sovereigns.

    It only really became an issue when the Norman line died out and the Hohenstaufens inherited the kingdom from the Normans. And the Hohenstaufens were also HRE. So there was temporarily a personal union between the Kingdom of Naples and the HRE, but they were still formally distinct entities (much like Hungary remained outside of HRE despite being Hapsburg crown lands)

    This personal union became a massive problem which led to the Ghibelline-Guelf conflict, as the Pope could not tolerate the prospect of the same power to the north and south of him. He had initially accepted the Hohenstaufen inheritance of the Norman Kingdom of Sicily, on the condition that the Germans promised that no Hohenstaufen from Sicily would ever become HRE. This failed almost instantly: Frederick II Stupor Mundi of Sicily was elected and decided to accept election as emperor. From then, papal policy was always and relentlessly about driving the Hohenstaufens out and ensuring that nobody could claim both thrones. The invitation of the Angevins was precisely to kill off any prospect of this ever happening.
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    I know English history, and how Henry III's attempt to secure the Kingdom of Sicily was a complete fiasco that got him overthrown temporarily. Did the Pope turn to another Angevin after that? Why?
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    Very interesting to read from others. Sometimes reading up on wikipedia articles doesn't get you the full facts.
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    Premature anti-fascist Abdul Goatherd's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eusebio View Post
    I know English history, and how Henry III's attempt to secure the Kingdom of Sicily was a complete fiasco that got him overthrown temporarily. Did the Pope turn to another Angevin after that? Why?
    The pope was prepared to turn to anyone that was willing to commit arms to drive the Hohenstaufen out of Sicily. But nobody really wanted to get bogged down in that mess.

    In fact, the English originally refused. The offer was first made in 1252, to Richard of Cornwall (Henry III's brother), but he refused. Then it was offered to Charles of Anjou (Louis IX's brother) but he refused. Then to Edward Longshanks (Henry III's son) but he refused. Only in 1255 did Edmund Crouchback (Henry III's other son) finally accept. But there was the question of funds. So to sweeten the deal and induce them to come, the pope offered Germany to Richard of Cornwall in 1256, and finally Henry III was convinced it might be worth it. It was originally thought they could use German money to fund the Sicilian expedition, but the Hohenstaufen-allied party in Germany raised hell and made it clear they were going to fight Richard. So it had to be English money. Unfortunately, the 1258 parliament disagreed, thought it was a waste of money and men, and forced Edmund to resign the position.

    So the English prospect dead, pope turned back to France, and offered the kingship again to Charles of Anjou (Louis IX's brother), who had made a name for himself as a successful military adventurer, and was getting rather restless again. Charles was eager, so Louis IX assented. The terms were set out in a treaty in 1262, finalized in 1263, affirming (without ambiguity) that no Angevin or any descendant would be a candidate for emperor or accept any HRE office. Charles only got around to actually seizing Sicily in 1266.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eusebio View Post
    I know English history, and how Henry III's attempt to secure the Kingdom of Sicily was a complete fiasco that got him overthrown temporarily. Did the Pope turn to another Angevin after that? Why?
    The kingdom of Sicily was split. The mainland, which were called the Kingdom of Sicily (moderns call it the Kingdom of Naples), continued under Angevin rule, while Sicily itself (called Kingdom of Trinacria) came under the House of Aragon. Peter III of Aragon could trace his line back to Mafalda, a daughter of Robert Guiscard, and therefore had a claim on the throne.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jorsalfar View Post
    The kingdom of Sicily was split. The mainland, which were called the Kingdom of Sicily (moderns call it the Kingdom of Naples), continued under Angevin rule, while Sicily itself (called Kingdom of Trinacria) came under the House of Aragon. Peter III of Aragon could trace his line back to Mafalda, a daughter of Robert Guiscard, and therefore had a claim on the throne.
    It also helped that Peter married Constance of Sicily, the last remaining Hohenstaufen.

    Yeah, the conflict did not end there. The Aragonese just replaced the Hohenstauens, and became the new champions of the Ghibellines. The Angevins got rolled and the Aragonese would have recovered all of it, if not for the continuous and relentless interference of the popes. Aragonese got the better of it, defeated the Angevins over and over again, and several times the Angevin candidates wanted to call it quits, but the popes wouldn't hear of it - papal officials just took over and administered Naples and launched a crusade against Aragon. After some twenty years of conflict, the Aragonese ended up having to agree to a partition.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jorsalfar View Post
    The kingdom of Sicily was split. The mainland, which were called the Kingdom of Sicily (moderns call it the Kingdom of Naples), continued under Angevin rule, while Sicily itself (called Kingdom of Trinacria) came under the House of Aragon. Peter III of Aragon could trace his line back to Mafalda, a daughter of Robert Guiscard, and therefore had a claim on the throne.
    How did that work constitutionally? It seems quite a novel innovation to just split a kingdom in half because there are two claimants. Not very medieval.
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    I must admit that I don't know the details of the peace of Caltabellotta, but I would guess that the pope created a new kingdom. It was after all his fief, so it would be in his power to do so.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jorsalfar View Post
    I must admit that I don't know the details of the peace of Caltabellotta, but I would guess that the pope created a new kingdom. It was after all his fief, so it would be in his power to do so.
    I don't think the pope agreed. He certainly opposed its negotiations. And it wasn't meant to be the final solution.

    Charles II of Naples had actually already "sold" Sicily (Trinacria) to Aragon back in 1287, in return for his release from captivity. The 1302 Caltabellotta treaty just really ratified things on the ground temporarily - Frederick of Aragon gets to hold Sicily (Trinacria) as an independent king for his lifetime, and agrees to marry the Angevin princess Eleanor, daughter of Charles II of Naples. Any children they have can inherit Sicily, but Charles II (or his descendants) have first purchase dibs, that is, the right to exercise their claim on Sicily in exchange for a good chunk of cash.

    It didn't last anyway. In 1309, the German king Henry VII Luxembourg entered Italy, ostensibly to "pacify" Guelf and Ghibelline conflict, and ended up provoking an even bigger war against the Angevin king Robert of Naples. The Aragonese king Frederick of Sicily got suckered into participating on the German side. So Caltabellotta was de facto canceled, and the pope endorsed Robert of Naples mission to invade and recover Sicily. Of course, he had his hands busy elsewhere so not much came of it. If it wasn't certain yet, the treaty was confirmed to be deader than a doornail in 1321, when the Sicilian estates approved Frederick of Sicily's request to associate his eldest son Peter of Sicily as king of Sicily, without consulting or giving the Angevins their "first dibs".

    A final partition solution would have to wait until the Treaty of Avignon in 1372, between Joan of Naples and Fred IV of Sicily, which was this time ratified by the pope. However, I still don't think it was formally separate, that the King of Sicily was technically still a vassal of the King of Naples, and owed tribute.
    Last edited by Abdul Goatherd; 06-09-2013 at 22:38.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Abdul Goatherd View Post
    The Lombard Duchy of Benevento (proto-Naples) was never conquered by the Franks, and was never integrated as part of the Frankish Kingdom of Italy (ex-Kingdom of the Lombards). It was an independent principality already from the 770s. And the rest of it (Apulia, Calabria, Sicily and the city-state of Naples) was formally part of the Byzantine empire. So, constitutionally, it was "outside" of Italy when the HRE was first constituted as three kingdoms (Germany, Burgundy, Italy) in the 1100s
    I'm not sure how relevant the legalities were. Whether or not Otto I claimed rights over all of Italy, he certainly acted as if he did: bestowing Benevento on Pandulf Ironhead as an imperial vassal and sending armies deep into Byzantine territory (investing Bari in 968). I'm not aware of later emperors renouncing those claims

    The real issue was more likely the simple reality that southern Italy was at the limit of the Empire's reach. The Ottonians could come down south as often as they liked but they couldn't make their authority stick south of Rome (and even that was tenuous). Particularly not the with Byzantines acting as an efficient counterweight
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    Premature anti-fascist Abdul Goatherd's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by ComradeOm View Post
    I'm not sure how relevant the legalities were. Whether or not Otto I claimed rights over all of Italy, he certainly acted as if he did: bestowing Benevento on Pandulf Ironhead as an imperial vassal and sending armies deep into Byzantine territory (investing Bari in 968). I'm not aware of later emperors renouncing those claims

    The real issue was more likely the simple reality that southern Italy was at the limit of the Empire's reach. The Ottonians could come down south as often as they liked but they couldn't make their authority stick south of Rome (and even that was tenuous). Particularly not the with Byzantines acting as an efficient counterweight
    Not quite. Otto I didn't invest Benevento on Pandulf Ironhead. He invested Spoleto, a Frankish duchy, on Pandulf. Pandulf had been Prince of Benevento for a couple of decades already, invested by his own father, Landulf Antipater.

    Pandulf did swear allegiance and become closely allied to Otto - but only because Otto was helping him expand his dominions at Byzantine expense (much like Louis II had helped against the Emirate of Bari a century earlier). But upon Pandulf's death, it was all over. Otto II was run out of there.

    Benevento was occupied and swore allegiance to the Byzantines just as frequently. Indeed, Benevento was the capital of the Byzantine Theme of Longobardia for a while, which is the closest they came to being under outside control before the Normans.

    Simply put, Benevento (and its Capua and Salerno fragments) was never under anyone's control but its own. It survived by playing Frank and Byzantine against each other. It switched allegiances every once in a while, but retained their autonomy throughout. Save for a couple of occasions, outsiders didn't get to depose or impose rulers there like they did in all other duchies. Ottonians couldn't come south "when they liked". They could only come south at the invitation of the locals. And never got a chance to stay.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Abdul Goatherd View Post
    But upon Pandulf's death, it was all over. Otto II was run out of there...
    After his army had been smashed at Stilo. Otto II wasn't there at the suffrage of the Lombards, quite the opposite. He came south after Pandulf Ironhead's death and the appearance of an Imperial army was enough to cow the Lombards and force their (temporary) recognition of his authority as Emperor. It was only after defeat in pitched battle that everything fell apart for him. Which wasn't an atypical example of German expeditions south of Rome

    Now I'd fully agree that "Benevento (and its Capua and Salerno fragments) was never under anyone's control but its own" but that wasn't for lack of trying on the part of the HRE. My point is that the German Emperors, the Ottonians at least, did consider themselves to be the rulers of all Italy and repeatedly attempted to assert their persumed rights in southern Italy. That they failed in this (brief periods aside) had nothing to do with constitutional niceties and everything to do with distance, competing powers, etc
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    Premature anti-fascist Abdul Goatherd's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by ComradeOm View Post
    After his army had been smashed at Stilo. Otto II wasn't there at the suffrage of the Lombards, quite the opposite. He came south after Pandulf Ironhead's death and the appearance of an Imperial army was enough to cow the Lombards and force their (temporary) recognition of his authority as Emperor. It was only after defeat in pitched battle that everything fell apart for him. Which wasn't an atypical example of German expeditions south of Rome
    Nope. This was before Stilo.

    Otto II had come down precisely with the purpose of joining up with Pandulf Ironhead and conquering Byzantine Apulia. But Pandulf died in March 981, when Otto was still in Rome. While this ought to have put an end to the Ottonian plan, Otto II decided to insist, recognized Pandulf's two sons - Landulf IV and Pandulf II - as his heirs and proceeded on his campaign invade Byzanine Apulia in September. But the Lombards didn't agree. Still in that same month, Manso of Amalfi invaded Salerno and Pandulf of Sant'Agata captured Benevento, and drove out the Ottonian-backed princes. Otto II, who received the news while marching in Lucera, had to call off his invasion and return to try to take them back. He failed. His mighty army laid siege to Salerno in October, to no avail. By January, 982, Otto II capitulated - he was forced to give up the sieges and accept Manso's hold on Salerno and Panulf of Sant'Agata's on Benevento.

    This was six months before Stilo (July 982).

    So, Otto II, at the height of his strength and power, with all the king's horses and all the king's men at his disposal right there (arguably the largest German army ever seen in Italy) couldn't bring the plucky Lombard principalities to heel, i.e. Otto II was effectively defeated. After Stilo, of course, forget about it. He couldn't even flee through their territory. He had to go by ship around, to Capua.

    Now I'd fully agree that "Benevento (and its Capua and Salerno fragments) was never under anyone's control but its own" but that wasn't for lack of trying on the part of the HRE. My point is that the German Emperors, the Ottonians at least, did consider themselves to be the rulers of all Italy and repeatedly attempted to assert their persumed rights in southern Italy. That they failed in this (brief periods aside) had nothing to do with constitutional niceties and everything to do with distance, competing powers, etc
    Well, the Ottonians did not think too much about the legal t's and i's. They were usurpers, remember? They commanded very little loyalty and recognition among the traditional nobility. Heck, the Ottonians were hardly recognized in Germany itself. They were not Carolingians, they were not Franks from the Frankish heartland. Otto I didn't even bother with the formality of being crowned King of Lombards in Pavia (as all other kings were). The great Lombard-Frankish nobility, up and down Italy, rejected them. In their eyes, there were native dynasties which had greater claims as the rightful Kings of Italy.

    Otto had next to no interest in Italy. But he had a lot of interest in the pope. Because the true power base, the muscle, of the Ottonians was the church - bishops in particular - and he needed the pope to ratify his appointments and deployments and erect bishoprics to dominate the eastern German borderlands against the Slavs.

    Ottonians knew they were illegitimate usurpers, so there was no point playing nice. Ottonian policy was not to impress the traditional nobility, but to destroy it. And the bishops were their chosen battering rams. They tore down all the great nobles, broke up all the great duchies and marches, and wrote gigantic grants of property over to the bishops, and even (an Ottoninan innovation) wrote over the judicial and military duties of counts over to the bishops. This was also true in Germany, but it was particularly true in Italy where the Ottonians had no legitimate claims and near-zero local support.

    (Yes, the Ottonians managed to cultivate a few native loyalists, usually lesser knights of low origin, who made out like bandits in the feudal spoils the Ottonians were handing out like candy (such as the hitherto unknown houses of Canossa, Este, Montferrat). But far and away, the church, the bishops, were the beneficiaries of Ottonian policy. The empowering of bishops with lay jurisdiction was the groundwork of the "communal era" that would follow the Ottonians, the fragmentation of northern Italy into a gazillion little bishop-led urban republics.)

    However, not in southern Italy. He imposed not a person there. Pandulf Ironhead's dominions, great as they were, were unmeddled with. This was partly because he was the only great magnate in Italy who collaborated with Otto, and profited from the Ottonian rampage across Italy (Pandulf's rewards were Spoleto and Camerino). But it was also because it was partly thought as papal land. Indeed, when Otto was still in Pavia, it was the pope, by himself, who tried to opportunistically invade Benevento (Pandulf saw him off).

    Otto was very intent on pleasing the pope. His bishops-and-bishoprics policy depended on the pope's cooperation. And the crown of emperor was what he really wanted to boster his usurpation back in Germany. The 962 Ottonian treaty with the pope confirmed everything the Carolingians had ever even hinted at giving them, and the 967 treaty went even further, giving the papacy the great exarchate of Ravenna (which the Carolingians had taken away).

    Otto wasn't doing this because he thought of himself as a proper "King of Italy". He was doing this as a usurping thief, knowing he was a usurping thief, divvying up spoils to buy loyalty he did not legitimately command or deserve. But he didn't much care to actually rule in Italy. He had no claim there. There were native dynasties. Yes, he was concerned about snuffing out the prospect of German rivals fleeing to Italy, raising power there and coming back to challenge him in Germany. But Otto's interventions in Italy were all at papal request. Popes asked him to come, for reasons to do with toppling one Roman faction or another, or saving the pope from the Dukes of Spoleto, the perennial wolf at the gate. He was doing the pope favors, which the pope gratefully returned with the all-important bishoprics and the crown of emperor he craved. If not for opportunities to exact these papal favors, Otto wouldn't have bothered to cross the Alps.

    To that end, his primary concern for breaking up the north was to clear the path to Rome, so that no magnate could block it. It was Rome he wanted to get to, south of Rome was not so interesting. Leaving the great southern duchies intact was fine - indeed, they were helpful to keep the Byzantines away from Rome.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ComradeOm View Post
    After his army had been smashed at Stilo. Otto II wasn't there at the suffrage of the Lombards, quite the opposite. He came south after Pandulf Ironhead's death and the appearance of an Imperial army was enough to cow the Lombards and force their (temporary) recognition of his authority as Emperor. It was only after defeat in pitched battle that everything fell apart for him. Which wasn't an atypical example of German expeditions south of Rome

    Now I'd fully agree that "Benevento (and its Capua and Salerno fragments) was never under anyone's control but its own" but that wasn't for lack of trying on the part of the HRE. My point is that the German Emperors, the Ottonians at least, did consider themselves to be the rulers of all Italy and repeatedly attempted to assert their persumed rights in southern Italy. That they failed in this (brief periods aside) had nothing to do with constitutional niceties and everything to do with distance, competing powers, etc
    However they were not German Emperors, they were Roman Emperors (for any Byzantophile, they were crowned as such by the Pope (the head of their branch of Christianity)) with a (what we now consider) German ethnicity. It is from their position as (Holy*) Roman Emperors that they derived their sovereignty over those parts.

    (*= never formally part of the title)
    Last edited by Ruwaard; 08-09-2013 at 02:25.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ruwaard View Post
    (Holy*) Roman Emperors

    (*= never formally part of the title)
    Quibble: the title was 'Romanorum imperator augustus', and augustus originally meant something like 'holy' or 'worshipful'. Before the title was claimed by Octavian Caesar, it was an epithet of the Roman gods.

    In other words, 'Romanorum imperator augustus' really does mean 'Holy Roman Emperor', or more accurately 'Holy Emperor of the Romans'. It's just that most people forget what the original meaning of 'augustus' actually was...

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    I'm pretty sure 'augustus' just means 'august'. I didn't know 'august' meant 'holy' though.
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