Franko (Worms)

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Franko , also Franco , († September 4, 999 in Rome ) was Bishop of Worms from 998 to 999 .


Franko came from a noble family in Hesse, which is why he is sometimes called Franko von Hessen , and was the older brother of his successor, Bishop Burchard I of Worms . His sister Mechthildis is mentioned in a document in 1016 as the abbess and re-founder of the Worms monastery Maria Münster . According to Wormatia Sacra , they came from the counts of Reichenbach-Ziegenhain .

Like Burchard, he belonged to the imperial court orchestra and became court chaplain with him. He was with Emperor Otto III. friends, was in his special favor and accompanied him on his second train to Italy. After the death of Worms Bishop Hildebold († August 3, 998) he appointed him his successor. Franko then went to Worms at short notice and traveled from there to Italy.

In the vita of Bishop Burchard, written by an unnamed chronicler around 1030, it says about his brother Franko:

After taking over the office of bishop, he stayed in the Worms area for some time. He put ecclesiastical affairs in order and then set off with the emperor on a train to Italy. There he tried for more than a year in the service of the emperor. Very often he was privy to its secret plans. In spite of his youth, when advice was to be given on important matters, Franko enjoyed such trust and respect with the emperor that anything was rarely decided without his advice. He was affable towards everyone, kind towards everyone, and through gifts he earned himself an unusual reputation among everyone. Therefore everyone loved him very much and already suspected a saint in him. That is why the emperor honored him very much and loved him before the others. "

- Vita of Bischofs Burchard , around 1030, in: Wormatia Sacra (commemorative publication on the 900th anniversary of the death of Bishop Burchard), Dompfarrei Worms, 1925, p. 15 and 16

In August 999 he and the Emperor performed ascetic penances together in the monastery of San Benedetto in Subiaco . Soon afterwards he died in Rome and - according to Burchardsvita - was buried there with great honors. He had predicted the day of his death for his imperial friend in Subiaco.

Tradition reports that Franko dying asked the emperor to appoint his brother Burchard as his successor in Worms. The Otto III. Court chaplains, initially designated as successors, Erpo and Razo died in next to no time, after which Burchard succeeded as Bishop of Worms and served as an important shepherd for 25 years.

During Franko's reign the emperor tried unsuccessfully to subordinate the Lorsch monastery to the diocese of Worms . In this context, the ruler appointed him abbot there in early 999 , after he had forced the incumbent Salmann to resign. About Otto III. Franko von Worms was in friendly contact with Pope Silvester II.

When Bishop Franko died, Otto III informed. his grandmother, the canonized Empress Adelheid , through a special courier about the bereavement. She held the cleric in great esteem.


  • Michael de Ferdinandy : The holy emperor. Otto III. and his ancestors. Wunderlich, Tübingen 1969, p. 302 u. 435-437.
  • Hermann Grosch: Burchard I., Bishop of Worms. Frommannsche Buchdruckerei (Hermann Pohle), Jena 1890, pp. 6 , 7 u. 10 , (Leipzig, University, dissertation, 1890).
  • Andreas C. Hofmann, Ioannis Charalambakis, Leila Bargmann (eds.): Sources. A historical scientific basic category (= Aventinus classica. Vol. 1). Diplomica Verlag, Hamburg 2013, ISBN 978-3-8428-9641-3 , p. 82, (Digitalscan) .
  • Friedhelm Jürgensmeier : The diocese of Worms. From Roman times to its dissolution in 1801 (= contributions to the history of the Mainz church. Vol. 5). Echter, Würzburg 1997, ISBN 3-429-01876-5 , p. 24.

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Date according to Jürgensmeier: The Diocese of Worms. 1997, according to other sources already on August 28th.
  2. ^ Margit Rinker-Olbrisch: Data on the history of the city of Worms.
  3. ^ Wormatia Sacra. Contributions to the history of the former diocese of Worms. On the occasion of the celebration of the 900th anniversary of the death of Bishop Burchard. Stenzel, Worms 1925, p. 13.
  4. All-German past. Festgabe for Heinrich Ritter von Srbik on the occasion of his 60th birthday on November 10, 1938. Bruckmann, Munich 1938, p. 29, (detail scan) .
  5. ^ Ekkehard Eickhoff : Emperor Otto III. The first millennium and the development of Europe. Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 1999, p. 254 and 255, ISBN 3-608-94188-6 (digital scan) .
  6. ^ Heinrich Boos : History of the Rhenish urban culture from the beginning to the present with special consideration of the city of Worms. Part 1. Stargardt, Berlin 1897, p. 239 .
  7. ^ Kassius Hallinger: New research on Willigis von Mainz (975-1011). In: Studies and communications on the history of the Benedictine order and its branches. Vol. 84, 1973, ISSN  0303-4224 , pp. 7-51, here p. 19, (detail scan ) .
  8. Michael de Ferdinandy: The holy emperor. 1969, p. 302.
predecessor Office successor
Hildebold Bishop of Worms