Origin of the Franks


Written 2010 by Will Johnson
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Henry of Huntingdon, AD 1128 : "Henry, the wise king, spent the whole of the next year in Normandy, and made a hostile incursion into France, because the French king supported his nephew and enemy. He encamped eight days at Epernon as securely as if he had been in his own dominions, and compelled King Lewis to withdraw his succour from the Earl of Flanders. While King Henry abode there he made inquiries concerning the origin and progress of the reign of the Franks; upon which some one present who was not ill-informed, thus replied: "Dread king, the Franks, like most European nations, sprung from the Trojans. For Antenor and his followers, becoming fugitives after the fall of Troy, founded a city on the borders of Pannonia, called Sicambria. After the death of Antenor, these people set up two of their chiefs as governors, whose names were Turgot and Franction, from whom the Franks derived their name. After their deaths, Marcomirus was elected; he was the father of Pharamond, the first king of the Franks. King Pharamond was the father of Clovis the Long-haired, from whence the Frank kings were called 'long-haired.' On the death of Clovis he was succeeded by Merove, from whom the Frank kings were called Merovingians. Merove begat Childeric; Childeric, Clovis, who was baptized by St Remi; Clovis, Clothaire; Clothaire, Chilperic; Chilperic, Clothaire II; Clothaire II begat Dagobert, a king of great renown and much beloved; Dagobert begat Clovis [II]; Clovis had three sons by his pious queen Bathilde, viz. Clothaire, Childeric, and Theodoric; King Theodoric begat Childebert; Childebert, Dagobert [II ?]; Dagobert, Theodoric [II ?]; Theodoric, Clothaire [III ?], the last king of this line. Hilderic, the next king, received the tonsure, and was shut up in a monastery. In another line, Osbert was the father of Arnold, by a daughter of King Clothaire; Arnold begat St. Arnulf; who was afterwards bishop of Metz; St Arnulf, Anchises; Anchises, Pepin, the mayor of the palace; Pepin, Charles Martel; Charles, King Pepin; King Pepin, Charles the Great, the emperor, a bright star, which eclipsed the lustre of all his predecessors and all his posterity; Charles begat Lewis the emperor; Lewis the emperor, Charles the Bald; Charles, King Lewis, father of Charles the Simple; Charles the Simple, Lewis [II]; Lewis, Lothaire; Lothaire, Lewis, the last king of this line. On the death of Lewis, the Frank nobles chose for their king Hugh, who was son of Hugh the Great. Hugh begat the pious King Robert. Robert had three sons, Hugh, the beloved duke; Henry, a most clement king; and Robert, duke of Burgundy. Henry begat King Philip, who ultimately became a monk, and Hugh the Great, who in the holy wars joined the other princes of Europe, and rescued Jerusalem from the Infidels, in the year of our Lord 1095. Philip was the father of Lewis, the king at present reigning."

Note that Roger of Hoveden, who writes his Chronicle up until 1201, repeats the above from Henry of Huntingdon, he is not an independent source for this.

As we can see above, the line as explicitly given is not chronologically possible.  Antenor lived several hundred years before Homer, most historians believe the Trojan War occurred in the 12th or 11th century B.C. (cf: "Trojan War", Wikipedia)  We know the history of the Franks beginning from Childeric as we are given those details by Gregory of Tours, who connects the kings or rulers of the Franks, together from that point forward, but not backward.

In "Bloodline of the Holy Grail", by Laurence Gardner, Barnes and Noble (1997), in Appendix V "Sicambrian Descent", Laurence states the detailed connecting links.  Starting from Laurence's statement that Antenor was not the Trojan elder, but a descendant, I will outline what Garner gives.  Each person in this list is the father of the one who follows.  So this is what Gardner gives as the male-line : "Antenor d 443 BC, Marcomer d 412 BC, Antenor d 385 BC, Priamus d 358 BC, Helenus d 339 BC, Diocles d 300 BC, Bassanus Magnus d 250 BC, Clodomir d 232 BC, Nicanor d 198 BC, Marcomer d 170 BC, Clodius d 159 BC, Antenor d 143 BC, Clodomir d 123 BC, Merovachus d 95 BC, Cassander d 74 BC, Antharius d 39 BC, Francus d 11 BC, Clodius d 20, Marcomer d 50, Clodomir d 63, Antenor d 69, Ratherius d 90, Richemer d 114, Odomar d 128, Marcomer d 169, Clodomir d 180, Farabert d 186, Sunno d 213, Hilderic d 253, Bartherus d 272, Clodius d 298, Walter d 306, Dagobert d 317"

We than have to refer to page 165 of Gardner's book for the remaining links as follows : "Dabogert d 317, Clodomir d 337, Richemir d 350, Theodomir d 360, Clodius d 378, Dagobert d 389, Genobaud d 419"  This last Genobaud is made the father of "Princess Argotta (Sicambrian heiress)" who is made to marry "Faramund, Lord of the West Franks 419-430."  They are then called the parents of "Clodion of Tournai (Clodius Crintus), Salian Chief & Neptunis d'Arcadie, Lord of the West Franks 430-446".  Clodion is then made to marry "Queen Basina I, widow of King Weldephus of Thuringia" and they are made the parents of "Meroveus, King of the Franks, d 456".  Meroveus is then stated to have had a wife "Merira" and they are stated to be the parents of "King Childeric of Franks d 481" who is made to marry "Basina II, ex-wife of King Basin of Thuringia" and they are then stated to be the parents of King Clovis of Franks who died 511.

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