Being a description of those lands called "Frisia", and of the noble families living there. Written by magister Henricus Wangenius as part of his "Treatise on the Northwestern Provinces".
We turn now to the grafschaft of Frisia, or Friesland, which at this time is ruled by the just and pious graf Ekbert. It is made up of two ancient provinces, the western of which is called Frisia and the eastern of which is called Ostrofrisia. The latter is often known as Ostfriesland in the vernacular tongue.
These lands lie on the shores of the German Sea, which the Frisians also call the North Sea by virtue of being to the north of their native lands. These same Frisians live on small islands which stretch from Frisia in the southwest to the Danish province of Schleswig in the northeast, and which are often exposed to storms and floods. Both Frisia and Ostrofrisia are rather flat landscapes, which is marginally well suited for agriculture. Fishing is also widespread here. There is very little forest, and the country is also quite devoid of anything resembling mountains.
Its people, which are predominantly Frisians in the west and Saxons in the east, are for the most part hospitable, loyal and hardworking. The exception are those Frisians living in the marshes and islands of Ostrofrisia, which are well known to be a rebellious and recalcitrant lot. It was said that even Emperor Charlemagne himself had great difficulty in bending them to his will, and to this day, it is only with the greatest exertion of force that one can compel them to do anything against their own desires.
This recalcitrance extends even so far to the manner of their language, which is very peculiar and completely unlike any other language in the known world. Certainly, this must be so that it is even more difficult for outsiders to rule over them, when even their very language is incomprehensible, just as ours seems to be to them.
In the light of all these obstacles, one can only consider how fortunate it is that these people have so little of any worth or importance, so that the loss is not very great.
Christianity is now well established among the people of these provinces, but this was not always so. Indeed, for many years the people living in these parts were strongly pagan, and it was only through the works and eventual martyrdom of the Holy Bonifacius that the Frisians were at last converted to Our Lord.
Neighbouring these two provinces are several other demesnes, primary among them the two bishoprics of Osnabrück and Münster to the East. To the south, one finds the county of Gelre, and to the north is Oldenburg, whose counts are well known to have had rather poor relations with their neighbours in Frisia, for reasons which not even men of very advanced age indeed can recall. Further to the south and west are the bishopric called Sticht and the rich holdings of the counts of Holland.
As previously mentioned, the provinces of Frisia are ruled in the name of the Emperor by graf Ekbert van Braunschweig, who is also a vassal of the magnificent Gotfried, duke of the Lower Lorraine. From ancient times, the Braunschweig family grows from noble roots, namely those of the legendary Billungs, whose ancestors now also hold the lands of Niedersachsen as dukes.
For many generations, the Braunschweigs have been blessed with strong, able and God-fearing counts, who in the past have been known for both loyalty and great feats of arms, and no one who is of sane mind can deny that they will continue this in the future.
Having thus treated extensively with Frisia, we shall turn our attention to the Archdiocese of Bremen, further to the north…