Childebert III.

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Childebert III.

Childebert III. (* Around 678 / 679 , † 711 before March 2) was king of the Franks from 694 to 711 from the family of the Merovingian . He was the son of Theuderich III. and the Chrodechild .

In 694 he followed his brother Clovis III. on the throne. Like his predecessors, however, he was presumably only de iure King of the Franconian Empire ; in fact, the mighty Hausmeier and princeps francorum Pippin the middle ruled . In contrast to his predecessors and successors, Childebert was buried in Choisy-au-Bac near Compiègne and not in the Merovingian burial place, the Basilica of Saint-Denis .

Shortly before his 16th birthday, he was married to “a woman of Franconian origin, cast out by Duke Adalrich ( Eticho ?) Because of her excessive unchastity”. Nothing more is known about this woman, the mother of his children (see also: False Merovingians ). His children are Dagobert III. and (presumably) Chlothar IV.

Nothing concrete is known about any of Childebert's political activities either. However, the Liber Historiae Francorum (" Franconian Chronicle ") of 727 calls him a vir inclytus ("famous man") and bonae memoriae gloriosus dom (i) nus Childebertus rex iustus ("the glorious lord of good memory Childebert, the just king"). How this unusual judgment came about - the other late Merovingians are never described in a comparable way by the Liber Historiae Francorum - has so far been completely unclear. The same applies to the question of why the king was denied burial in the Merovingian family grave. According to some scholars, Childebert protested against the caretaker in 698 on the occasion of the celebrations after Pippin's victory over the Frisian Ratbod . This attempt at emancipation apparently failed, and Childebert was then, it is said, interned until his death in an aristocratic court near Compiègne, which would explain the choice of the place of his burial.

In 1825, Auguste Trognon translated old manuscripts written in Latin from the Abbey of Saint-Julien in Brioude into French. One of them deals with the entire life of Childebert III.

Individual evidence

  1. Manuscrits de l'ancienne Abbaye de Saint-Julien à Brioude, Seconde Partie: le livre des gestes du Roi Childebert III, p. 242.
  2. Monumenta Germaniae Historica , Scriptores rerum Merovingicarum, Vol. II, pp. 323-324.


predecessor Office successor
Clovis III King of the Franks and Burgundians
Dagobert III.