Charles Martel

Charles Martel

      Sex: M

Individual Information
          Birth: Cir 688 1
          Death: October 22, 741 Quierzy-Sur-Oise, France 1
 Cause of Death: 
          AFN #: 

         Father: Pepin , II, King of the Franks
         Mother: Aupais

Spouses and Children
1. *Swanhilde
                1. Grifo

2. Rotrou
                1. Pepin III
                2. Carloman
                3. Bernard

"Mayor of the palace of Austrasia (the eastern part of the Frankish kingdom)
from 715-741, who reunited and ruled the entire Frankish realm and stemmed the
Saracen invasion at Poitiers in 732. His byname, Martel, means "the hammer".
A man of valiant determination, ambition, and ability he strove incessantly to
consolidate his power.
"After the death of Dagobert I in 639, there had been no king of any worth
in the Frankish kingdom. All of them were of the Merovingian line-idle,
slothful, and bent on ease and luxury. The burden of rule lay upon the mayors
of the palace, who in reality governed Austrasia, the eastern part of the
Frankish kingdom, and Neustria, its western portion. These mayors controlled
not only routine in the royal palace but also political, social, and
commercial life of the Franks, Neustria bitterly resented its conquest and
annexation in 687 by Pepin of Herstal, mayor of Austrasia and father of
Charles Martel, at the Battle of Tertry (Testry), near Peronne.
"When in 714 Pepin of Herstal died, he left as heirs three grandsons, his
legitimate children all being dead. Until his grandchildren came of age,
Plectrude, Pepin's widow, was to hold power. As an illegitimate son, Charles
Martel was entirely neglected in the will. But he was young, strong, and
determined, and a struggle for control at once began between him and
"Both Charles and Plectrude faced rebellion throughout the Frankish kingdom
when Pepin's will was made known. The king, Chilperic II, was in the power of
Ragenfrid, mayor of the palace of Neustria, who joined forces with an enemy of
the Franks, Radbod, king of the Frisians in Holland, in order to eliminate
Charles. Plectrude managed to imprison Charles, but he escaped, gathered an
army, defeated king Chilperic and mayor Ragenfrid, and conquered the hostile
Neustrians. He made the resistance by Plectrude and the Austrasians useless;
realizing the spirit and power of young Charles they submitted and by 719
Charles alone governed the Franks as mayor. Peace and order reigned in
Austrasia and Neustria, so that by 724 Charles was free to deal with hostile
elements elsewhere. This involved expeditions against the Saxons and the
peoples of the lands near the Rhine and the Danube."

Encyclopedia Britannica


1 Encyclopedia Britannica, 15th Edition, Encyclopedia Britannica, 15th Edition.

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