See also

Pepin (c. 635-714)

1. Pepin II, Duke of Austrasie (also known as Pepin II de Heristal, Pippin the MIDDLE), son of Ansegis(el) (c. 602-bef679) and Abbess Begga of Andenne ( - ), was born circa 0635. He died on 16 December 0714. He married Alpaide de Austasia.


Pepin (also Pippin, Pipin, or Peppin ) of Herstal (c. 635 – 16 December 714), also called the Middle, the Fat, or the Younger,[1] was the Mayor of the Palace of Austrasia from 680 to his death and of Neustria and Burgundy from 687 to 695. He was also the first mayor of the palace to "reign" as Duke and Prince of the Franks and he by far overshadowed the Merovingian rois fainéants.

Pepin, sometimes called Pepin II, was the grandson and namesake of Pepin I the Elder by the marriage of Pepin I's daughter Begga and Ansegisel, son of Arnulf of Metz. That marriage united the two houses of the Pippinids and the Arnulfings which created what would be called the Carolingian dynasty. Pepin II was probably born in Herstal (Héristal), modern Belgium (where his centre of power lay), whence his byname (sometimes "of Heristal").

As mayor of Austrasia, Pepin and Martin, the duke of Laon, fought the Neustrian mayor Ebroin, who had designs on all Frankland. Ebroin defeated the Austrasians at Lucofao (Bois-du-Fay, near Laon) and came close to uniting all the Franks under his rule; however, he was assassinated in 681, the victim of a combined attack by his numerous enemies. Pepin immediately made peace with his successor, Waratton.

However, Waratton's successor, Berthar, and the Neustrian king Theuderic III, who, since 679, was nominal king of all the Franks, made war on Austrasia. The king and his mayor were decisively defeated at the Battle of Tertry (Textrice) in the Vermandois in 687. Berthar and Theuderic withdrew themselves to Paris, where Pepin followed and eventually forced on them a peace treaty with the condition that Berthar leave his office. Pepin was created mayor in all three Frankish kingdoms (Austrasia, Neustria, and Burgundy) and began calling himself Duke and Prince of the Franks (dux et princeps Francorum). In the ensuing quarrels, Berthar killed his mother-in-law Ansfled and fled. His wife Anstrude married Pepin's eldest son Drogo, Duke of Champagne, and Pepin's place in Neustria was secured.

Over the next several years, Pepin subdued the Alemanni, Frisians, and Franconians, bringing them within the Frankish sphere of influence. He also began the evangelisation of Germany. In 695, he placed Drogo in the Burgundian mayorship and his other son, Grimoald, in the Neustrian one.

Around 670, Pepin had married Plectrude, who had inherited substantial estates in the Moselle region. She was the mother of Drogo of Champagne and Grimoald, both of whom died before their father. However, Pepin also had a mistress named Alpaida (or Chalpaida) who bore him two more sons: Charles and Childebrand. Just before Pepin's death, Plectrude convinced him to disinherit his bastards in favour of his grandson, Theudoald, the son of Grimoald, who was still young (and amenable to Plectrude's control). Pepin died suddenly at an old age on 16 December 714, at Jupille (in modern Belgium). His legitimate grandchildren claimed themselves to be Pepin's true successors and, with the help of Plectrude, tried to maintain the position of mayor of the palace after Pepin's death. However, Charles had gained favor among the Austrasians, primarily for his military prowess and ability to keep them well supplied with booty from his conquests. Despite the efforts of Plectrude to silence her rival's child by imprisoning him, he became the sole mayor of the palace and de facto ruler of Francia after a civil war which lasted for more than three years after Pepin's death.


Pepin II, Duke of Austrasie had the following children:


Charles Martel (The Hammer) King of the Franks (672-741). Charles was born in 0672. He was born in 0676. He died in 0741.

Second Generation

2. Ansegis(el), son of St. Arnulf, Bishop of METZ and Doda, was born circa 0602. He died before 0679. He married Abbess Begga of Andenne.


Ansegisel (also Ansgise) (c.602-before 679) was the son of Saint Arnulf, bishop of Metz and his wife Doda. He served King Sigbert III of Austrasia (634-656) as a duke (Latin dux, a military leader) and domesticus. He was killed sometime before 679, slain in a feud by his enemy Gundewin.


3. Abbess Begga of Andenne was the daughter of Pepin I of Landen The Elder and Saint Itta, Abbess of Nivelles (Brabant). She and Ansegis(el) had the following children:



Pepin II, Duke of Austrasie (c. 635-714)

Third Generation

4. St. Arnulf, Bishop of METZ was born on 13 August 0582. He died on 16 August 0640. He married Doda.


St. Arnulf was the great-great-great-grandson of Clovis, Merovingian King of the Franks, whose grandfather was himself Merovee. His descendents can thus claim to be of Merovingian descent.


Arnulf of Metz (August 13, 582 – August 16, 640) was a Frankish noble who had great influence in the Merovingian kingdoms as a bishop and was later canonized as a saint. He is also known by his anglicized name, Arnold. Arnulf of Metz is one of several saints who may be known as Saint Arnold[1].

He was born near Nancy. Arnulf gave distinguished service at the Austrasian court under Theudebert II (595-612). At the age of thirty he wanted to retire from public life. Instead, in 614, he was made bishop of Metz, even though he was still a layman at the time. In 613, Arnulf and Pippin of Landen, led the opposition of Frankish nobles to Queen Brunhilda of Austrasia. The revolt led to her overthrow, torture, and eventual execution, and the subsequent reunification of Frankish lands under Clotaire II, the dowager queen's nephew.

From 623 (with Pippin of Landen, then the Mayor of the Palace), Arnulf was an adviser to Dagobert I. He retired in 627 to a mountain site in the Vosges, to implement his lifelong resolution to become a hermit. His friend Romaric had preceded him to the mountains and had already established the monastery of Remiremont there. Arnulf settled there, and remained there until his death twelve years later.

Arnulf was canonized as a saint by the Roman Catholic Church and is known as a patron saint of brewing. His feast day is either July 18 or August 16. In iconography, he is portrayed with a rake in his hand and is often confused in legend with Arnold of Soissons, who is another patron saint of brewing. Saint Arnold Brewing Company, Houston, Texas, named after the saint, lists itself as the state's oldest microbrewery.


While Arnulf is recognised as one of the earliest documented ancestors of Charlemagne, to which the Carolingians themselves traced their ancestry,[1] and thereby of most modern European royal families, Arnulf's own parentage is both uncertain and undocumented. Some have claimed that Arnulf's father was Arnoldus (c.535–600), and that his mother was Ada of Swabia. This Arnoldus is sometimes said to be the son of Ausbert, the Senator of Moselle and Bertha of Kent, daughter of Charibert, King of Paris. Others, professing to quote Frankish legends, make Arnulf the son of Bodegisel. Still others have claimed that Arnulf's mother was Bertha, Princess of Paris (539–640).

Arnulf's more distant descent from a 4th-century "Mellobaude" may be a genealogical fantasy to flatter the Carolingians. Gothic names may be recognized in the following list, none of whom are attested in a near-contemporary source:

* Mellobaude (320-376)
* Richemir of the Sicambrian Franks (350-384) married Ascyla (d.352)
* Theodemir of Toxandria,[2] in the genealogies "Theodimir Magnus", (370-414) married Valentina Justina (d.414)
* Clovis the Ripuarian[3] (398-448) married Ildegonde de Cologne (399-450)
* Childebert of Cologne (430-483) married Amalaberge (435-478)
* Siegbert the Lame (murdered 509)
* Cloderic of Cologne (477-509) also known as Cloderic "the Parricide"
* Munderic (500-532) married Arthenia (500)
* Bodegisel I married Palatina
* Bodegisel II (d.588) married Oda of Suevia
* Arnulf (582-641) married Dode (586-612)

For a fuller discussion of this "Arnulfing Ancestry" see the New England Historical and Genealogical Register. Boston, MA. Kelly, David H. Genealogical Research in England vol. 101 [April 1947]:109-113; ibid, Chart:113.


5. Doda was born in 0586. She died in 0612. She and St. Arnulf, Bishop of METZ had the following children:



Ansegis(el) (c. 602-bef679)


6. Pepin I of Landen The Elder, son of Carloman, was born circa 0580. He died on 27 February 0640. He married Itta, Abbess of Nivelles (Brabant).


Pepin (also Peppin, Pipin, or Pippin) of Landen (c. 580 – 27 February 640), also called the Elder or the Old, was the Mayor of the Palace of Austrasia under the Merovingian king Dagobert I from 623 to 629. He was also the mayor for Sigebert III from 639 until his own death.

Pepin's father is named Carloman by the Chronicle of Fredegar, the chief source for his life. His byname comes from his probable birthplace: Landen, modern Belgium. He is sometimes called Pepin I and his other nicknames (Elder and Old) come from his position at the head of the family called the Pippinids after him. Through the marriage of his daughter Begga to Ansegisel, a son of Arnulf of Metz, the clans of the Pippinids and the Arnulfings were united, giving rise to a family which would eventually rule the Franks as the Carolingians.

In 613, several leading magnates of Austrasia and Burgundy abandoned Brunhilda, the great-grandmother and regent of their king, Sigebert II, and turned to Chlothar II of Neustria for support, promising not to rise in defence of the queen-regent and recognising Chlothar as rightful regent and guardian of the young king. Chief among these leading men were Warnachar II, Rado, Arnulf, and Pepin. The latter two were described by Fredegar as the "two most powerful barons of Austrasia" and they made some agreement with Chlothar at Andernach. However, while Rado was confirmed as mayor in Austrasia and Warnachar in Burgundy, Pepin did not receive his reward until 623, when he was appointed mayor in Austrasia after Chlothar made his young son Dagobert king there. Arnulf, his lifelong friend, was appointed adviser to the new king alonside him.

Pepin was praised by his contemporaries for his good government and wise counsel. Though some enemies tried to turn the king against him, their plots were foiled and Pepin remained on good terms with the king until 629, when, for reasons unknown, he retired (or was retired) to his estates, where he remained for the next decade, until Dagobert's death.

On his death, Pepin came out of retirement to take on the mayoralty in Austrasia for the heir Sigebert III and to oversee the distribution of the treasury between Sigebert and his brother, Clovis II, and his step-mother Nanthild, who was ruling on Clovis' behalf in Neustria and Burgundy. Sigebert's share of the inheritance was amicably surrendered, parly because of the friendship between Pepin and the Burgundian mayor of the palace, Aega. Pepin and Arnulf's successor as chief counsellor to the king, Cunibert, Bishop of Cologne, received the treasure at Compiègne and brought it back to Metz. Not long after, both Pepin and Aega died. He was so popular in Austrasia that, though he was never canonised, he was listed as a saint in some martyrologies. His feast day was 21 February.


7. Saint Itta, Abbess of Nivelles (Brabant) has few details recorded about her.


Saint Itta (also Ida, Itte, or Idulberga) (died May 8, 652) was the wife of Pepin of Landen, mayor of the palace of Austrasia.

On the advice of the missionary bishop Saint Amand, bishop of Maastricht, after Pepin's death, she founded the Benedictine nunnery at Nivelles, with a monastery under the abbess. She herself entered it and installed as abbess her daughter Gertrude, perhaps after resigning the post herself.

She had by Pepin another daughter, Abbess Begga of Andenne. By Begga, she is the grandmother of Pepin of Heristal and one of the matriarchs of the great Carolingian family. Her only son was Grimoald, later mayor of the palace, and father of King Childebert the Adopted.

Both her daughters were later canonised, as was she. Her feast day is May 8.


Pepin I of Landen and Itta, Abbess of Nivelles (Brabant) had the following children:



Abbess Begga of Andenne ( - )