Salian Franks

The Salian Franks (also Salic Franks, Salian Franks or West ) are known since the 4th century as an autonomous part of the Franks. They settled originally from the Lower Rhine to the Salland at the Overijssel, then settled in Toxandria and later in space Tournai (Hainaut). In the 5th and 6th centuries they conquered under the royal family of the Merovingian Frankish all other tribes and other adjacent areas and so founded the Frankish Empire. In the ancient sources and therefore sometimes also in the research literature, the Salian Franks as " Salian " ( Salii ) are referred to. However, they are not to be confused with the ruling dynasty of the Salian Franks from the High Middle Ages.

Settlement in Toxandria

The Salian were one of the sub-tribes of the Franks. They are first attested in the year 357 and may have been native to the Salland named after them in the Dutch province of Overijssel. In 358 they crossed the Rhine to the southwest, and fell on the Betuwe in the Roman Empire a.

The Romans were able to successfully defend against the Frankish incursions to fight back. Instead of selling had penetrated to the West Franks, they were allowed by the later Emperor Julian in 358 ( at that time still Caesar, ie, under the Emperor, under Constantius II ), to settle in Toxandria, one at this time thinly populated region within the Roman province Belgica II in return, the Frankish warriors were standing there in the military service of the Romans. This part of the Franks, since referred to as the Salian Franks or Salfranken was now physically separated from the east settled on the right bank side Frankish tribes for a long time. The distinction made by the Romans integration of the Salian Franks within the Roman Empire was successful to the extent as it remained quiet for almost a hundred years in this field. In contrast, there were repeated clashes of the Romans to the Rhine francs.

In Toxandria the Salian Franks remained until the beginning of the 5th century. Whether they were involved in the military operations of the remaining francs, is unclear. As a leader in the early 5th century, a king Faramund is mentioned in later sources, but is considered to be a legendary figure and is not historically secured.

Settlement to Cambrai and Tournai

From 440 the Salian Franks invaded under their king Chlodio ago about the carbon forest to the west towards Arras and Cambrai. Aetius they could defeat 448, but he allowed them as federates in the new settlement areas to stay in the area between the Somme and Scheldt. There were several salfränkische small kingdoms. One was at Tournai, another to Cambrai and at least one other was an unknown center today. The Salian Franks were fighting on the Catalaunian fields on the side of the Romans. The contracts with Aetius had until his death in 454 or until the death of the Emperor Valentinian in 455 valid. Then Chlodio front of Cambrai, the areas to the Somme. Contrast Merowech founded the branch of Tournai ..

Rise to Great Power

The salfränkische petty king Childeric I. became the influential rank of standing in Roman service Föderatenbefehlshabers with responsibility for a military diocese within the province of Belgica II he fought apparently on the part of the Roman commander Aegidius against the Visigoths and against Saxons, on the Loire estuary had settled. However, the sparse source location is not an accurate assessment of Childeric's relationship with Aegidius, the 462/63 rose against the Western Roman government; it is quite possible that both were also rivals. By the rank of a Roman commander Childeric likely to be outgrown already have the other salfränkischen kings. His son Clovis inherited this position in the year 481 or 482, and was also compared with the other salfränkischen petty kings, as Ragnachar Chara and Rich, enforce final, so that he became the sole king of the Salian Franks. He then began to expand his sphere of influence to the southwest by 486/87 the Roman ruler Syagrius attacked and defeated. Later succeeded Clovis also stand up to the Rhine-Frankish petty kings and bring the until then independent Francia Rhinensis under his rule. The Rhine Franks Clovis made ​​by insurrection now their king, so that thus the whole of the Frankish tribes were united into one kingdom for the first time. As early as the middle of the 5th century, the name of the Salian Franks from the sources vanishes.

The Salic Law, that of Clovis for the united Frankish kingdom commissioned Code bears, representing the name of the Salian Franks in the title. The in some areas derived Lex Ripuaria appeared in the time of King Dagobert I Austrasia and was in the settlement area of ​​the Rhine francs.

Salfränkische ruler

  • Chlodio second quarter of the 5th century
  • Merowech to 455 or 460
  • Childeric I. 457/63-482
  • Ragnachar end of the 5th century
  • Chara Rich end of the 5th century

See also: List of Frankish rulers