Charles the Younger
b.abt 0773 Neustria, Frankish Kingdoms
d.4 Dec 811
Facts and Events
Charles the Younger (ca. 772 – 4 December 811) was the second son of Charlemagne and the first by his second wife, Hildegard of Swabia. When Charlemagne divided his empire among his sons, his son Charles was designated King of the Franks.
His eldest half brother, Pippin the Hunchback, had been sent to the monastery of Prüm in 792 after having been involved in a rebellion against their father, Charlemagne. Of his younger brothers, Carloman (renamed Pippin) and Louis the Pious, were appointed sub-kings of Italy and Aquitaine.
Charles was mostly preoccupied with the Bretons, whose border he shared and who rebelled on at least two occasions and were easily put down, but he was also sent against the Saxons on multiple occasions. Charles' father outlived him, however, and the entire kingdom thus went to his younger brother Louis the Pious, Pippin also having died.
Around 789 it was suggested by Charlemagne that Charles the Younger should be married to Offa's daughter Ælfflæd. Offa insisted that the marriage could only go ahead if Charlemagne's daughter Bertha was married to Offa's son Ecgfrith. Charlemagne took offence, broke off contact, and closed his ports to English traders. Eventually, normal relations were reestablished and the ports were reopened. Just a few years later, in 796, Charlemagne and Offa concluded the first commercial treaty known in English history.
His father associated Charles in the government of Francia and Saxony in 790, and installed him as ruler of the ducatus Cenomannicus (corresponding to the later Duchy of Maine). Charles was crowned King of the Franks at Rome December 25, 800, the same day his father was crowned Emperor.