Duchy of Merania

The Duchy of Merania (German: Herzogtum Meranien, Slovene: Vojvodina Meranija) was a fiefdom of the Holy Roman Empire from 1152 until 1248. The dukes of Merania were recognised as princes of the Empire enjoying imperial immediacy at a time when these concepts were just coming into use to distinguish the highest ranks of imperial nobility.[1]

The name "Merania" ("sea-land") probably comes from the Slavic word for sea, morje (cognate with German Meer, Latin mare), and refers to its location on the Adriatic.[2]

Andechsove
The family of Duke Berthold, from the Hedwig Codex.

Territory

The exact territorial extent of Merania is unknown. It probably included coast of the Kvarner Gulf, either on the Istrian peninsula or across from it, and probably included the town of Fiume (Rijeka).[3][4][5] The author of the Historia de Expeditione Friderici Imperatoris, an account of Barbarossa's crusade of 1190, writing around 1200, refers to "the Duke of Dalmatia, also called Croatia or Merania", specifying (imprecisely) that the duchy neighboured Zahumlje and Raška. The actual duchy contained at most only a small part of the region of Dalmatia, which had historically belonged to Croatia. By the twelfth century, Croatia was in a personal union with Hungary.[6]

This territory came under imperial control during the reign of Henry IV. According to the fourteenth-century Chronicon pictum Vindobonense (Viennese Illustrated Chronicle), the "march of Dalmatia" (marchia Dalmacie) was occupied by the Carinthians between 1064 and 1068 during the reign of Dmitar Zvonimir, who in fact was not king of Croatia until 1075. Despite this inconsistency in the chronicle, several modern historians, led by Ljudmil Hauptmann, have connected this Dalmatian borderland with the later duchy of Merania.[7][8] According to the historians Miho Barada and Lujo Margetić, it was the accession of the young King Stephen II of Hungary in 1116 that provided an opportunity for the Emperor Henry V to annex the entire eastern coast of Istria and the coast opposite as far as the river Rječina, including the city of Fiume. This territory, conquered for the emperor by the lords of Duino (Devin), became known as Merania.[9] It is not clear to what extent the Meranian dukes of the Dachau or Andechs lines ever managed to exert their control over the region.[8]

There are other theories proposing a different etymology of "Merania". Erwin Herrmann argues that the name cannot have actually been in use as the name of a region, since it is unknown save as the name of the duchy that existed between 1152 and 1248. He argues that it is probably formed from the name of the seat of the lordship, which he identifies with the town of Marano Lagunare. The region he identifies as that between the rivers Tagliamento and Corno.[10]

In older literature, Merania is sometimes mistakenly identified with Meran, a town in the Tyrol, because the Andechser dukes held land in the Tyrol.[11] August Dimitz, while correcting the Tyrolean error, equates Merania with the march of Istria.[12]

House of Dachau (1152–1180)

The duchy of Merania was created for the Wittelsbach Count Conrad II of Dachau by the Emperor Frederick Barbarossa during an Imperial Diet at Regensburg in June 1152 by separating some lordships from the marches of Carniola and Istria, which were under the jurisdiction of the Duchy of Bavaria. Merania thus bordered the Kingdom of Croatia, which belonged to Hungary. This was done despite the fact that the Diet had refused to approve Frederick's proposed invasion of Hungary. Rather than an attempt to circumvent the diet in his designs on Hungary, it can be seen as part of a more general policy, pre-dating Frederick's reign, of elevating noblemen of the rank of count to that of duke as a counterweight to the powerful hereditary dukes of the so-called stem duchies (like Bavaria). It was also part of a reorganisation of the southeastern frontier that included the creation of the Duchy of Austria in 1156.[2][13]

The historian Wilhelm Wegener has proposed that Merania was created out of lands claimed by Conrad through his mother, Willibirg, daughter of Udalschalk, count of Lurngau, and Adelaide, daughter of Margrave Ulrich I of Carniola. He proposed that Willibirg was heir to Adelaide, who was heir to her brother Ulrich II (died 1112). Thus, the creation of Conrad's duchies was a partial vindication of his claims on Carniola and had a hereditary basis. This theory had not found wide acceptance, since several duchies were created in Germany in the twelfth century with no cleary hereditary basis.[14][15]

These new ducal titles created in the twelfth century were often based on insignificant or diminished territories. Merania was small, with little in the way of rights or income for its holder.[16] The ducal title that technically pertained only to the newly acquired territory was thus also often used in conjunction with the dynastic seat, and Conrad was thus sometimes known as the Duke of Dachau.[17] Bishop Otto I of Freising, in his history of Barbarossa's reign, calls Conrad the Duke of Croatia and Dalmatia, an impressive if imprecise title that alluded to the origin of the lands in question as part of Croatia.[18]

It has been argued that since neither Duke Conrad I nor his son, Conrad II, is ever recorded as having visited the region around the Istrian peninsula or the Kvarner Gulf, it is more likely that their title referred to unspecified lands around the southeastern frontier but not actually under imperial control. On this theory, Merania was at first a purely titular dignity for the Dachauers that only became a territorial reality under the Andechsers, who created it out of lands they held in the far southeast.[19]

House of Andechs (1180–1248)

In 1180, Frederick Barbarossa transferred Merania to Berthold, the son of the count of Andechs. This was probably done in order to maintain a balance of power and rank between the House of Andechs and the House of Wittelsbach, which had received the Duchy of Bavaria earlier that year.[20] Although some sources ascribe the transfer of Merania to Conrad's death and propose that Berthold was his heir through his mother, in fact Conrad II did not die until 1182. The transfer of 1180 was part of a reorganization of the southeastern frontier by the emperor.[15]

Berthold inherited the marches of Istria and Carniola from his father in 1188. Although the Andechsers' primary lands lay elsewhere in the Empire, their southeastern connection involved them in its foreign affairs. When Barbarossa passed through the Balkans on his crusade in 1189, he negotiated the marriage of one of Berthold's daughters to Toljen, the eldest son of Prince Miroslav of Zahumlje, a younger brother of Grand Prince Stefan Nemanja of Serbia. Although Berthold consented, the marriage probably never took place. In any case, the Duke of Merania was considered a near neighbour of the Serb princes.[6][21] The Andechsers pushed the empire's southeastern frontier further south, acquiring Gottschee, Črnomelj and Metlika for Merania–Carniola at the expense of Croatia.[22]

On Berthold's death in 1204 Merania went to his eldest son, Otto I, and Istria to a younger son, Henry.[16] In the 1240s, the duke of Mernia, Otto II, who had numerous possessions throughout southern Germany, was involved in a dispute with the duke of Bavaria that turned into open warfare.[23] In 1248, the duchy fell vacant with the extinction of the Andechs-Meranier and was broken up, mostly going to Istria.[1][23]

List of dukes

  • Conrad I (1152–1159), also count of Dachau (as Conrad II)
  • Conrad II (1159–1180), also count of Dachau (as Conrad III)
  • Berthold (1180–1204), also count of Andechs (as Berthold IV) and margrave of Istria and Carniola (as Berthold II)
  • Otto I (1204–1234), also count of Andechs (as Otto VII), margrave of Istria and Carniola (as Otto I) and count of Burgundy (as Otto II)
  • Otto II (1234–1248), also count of Andechs (as Otto VIII), margrave of Istria and Carniola (as Otto II) and count of Burgundy (as Otto III)

References

Notes
  1. ^ a b Wilson 2016, pp. 360–61.
  2. ^ a b Reindel 1981, pp. 340–41 and n. 118.
  3. ^ Štular 2009, p. 23.
  4. ^ Arnold 1991, p. 98.
  5. ^ Lyon 2013, p. xv, has a map showing its probable location.
  6. ^ a b Loud 2010, p. 62.
  7. ^ Klaić 1965, pp. 272–74.
  8. ^ a b Köbler 2007, p. 425.
  9. ^ Kraljic 1989, p. 160.
  10. ^ Herrmann 1975, p. 10–14.
  11. ^ Baillie-Grohman 1907, p. 73.
  12. ^ Dimitz 2013, p. 109 n. 4.
  13. ^ Wilson 2016, p. 358.
  14. ^ Cawley 2015, ch. 3, C. Grafen von Dachau.
  15. ^ a b Komac 2003, p. 286.
  16. ^ a b Lyon 2013, p. 161.
  17. ^ Arnold 1991, p. 99.
  18. ^ Otto & Rahewin 1966, I.xxvi (p. 60) and IV.xvii (p. 252).
  19. ^ Spindler & Kraus 1988, pp. 14–15 and n. 9.
  20. ^ Lyon 2013, p. 115.
  21. ^ Lyon 2013, p. 154.
  22. ^ Dimitz 2013, p. 109.
  23. ^ a b Arnold 1991, p. 109.
Bibliography
  • Aigner, Toni (2001). "Das Herzogtum Meranien: Geschichte, Bedeutung, Lokalisierung". In Andreja Eržen; Toni Aigner (eds.). Die Andechs-Meranier: Beiträge zur Geschichte Europas im Hochmittelalter. Kamnik: Kulturverein Kamnik. pp. 39–54.
  • Arnold, Benjamin (1991). Princes and Territories in Medieval Germany. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  • Baillie-Grohman, William A. (1907). The Land in the Mountains, being an Account of the Past and Present of Tyrol, its People and its Castles. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott.
  • Cawley, Charles (2015). "Nobility of Bavaria". Medieval Lands Project, 3rd ed. Foundation for Medieval Genealogy. Retrieved 1 October 2016.
  • Dimitz, August (2013) [1874]. History of Carniola from Ancient Times to the Year 1813 with Special Consideration of Cultural Development, Volume I: From Primeval Times to the Death of Emperor Frederick III (1493). Slovenian Genealogy Society International.
  • Herrmann, Erwin (1975). "Die Grafen von Andechs und der Ducatus Meraniae". Archiv für die Geschichte von Oberfranken. 55: 1–35.
  • Klaić, Nada (1965). "Historijska podloga hrvatskoga glagoljaštva u X i XI stoljeću". Slovo. 15–16: 225–80.
  • Köbler, Gerhard (2007). Historisches Lexikon der Deutschen Länder: die deutschen Territorien vom Mittelalter bis zur Gegenwart (7th rev. ed.). Munich: C. H. Beck.
  • Komac, Andrej (2003). "Utrditev grofov Andeških na jugovzhodu cesarstva v 12. stoletju: Cesar Friderik Barbarossa, velika shizma (1161–1177) in pridobitev naslovov mejnih grofov Istre in vojvod Meranije s strani Andeških". Annales: Series historia et sociologia. 13 (2): 283–94.
  • Kraljic, John (1989). "The Early History of Vinodol and the Lords of Krk: Recent Works of Nada Klaić and Lujo Margetić". Journal of Croatian Studies. 30: 153–65.
  • Loud, G. A., ed. (2010). The Crusade of Frederick Barbarossa: The History of the Expedition of the Emperor Frederick and Related Texts. Ashgate.
  • Lyon, Jonathan (2004). Cooperation, Compromise and Conflict Avoidance: Family Relationships in the House of Andechs, ca. 1100–1204 (PhD diss.). University of Notre Dame.
  • Lyon, Jonathan (2013). Princely Brothers and Sisters: The Sibling Bond in German Politics, 1100–1250. Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press.
  • Otto of Freising; Rahewin (1966). Charles Christopher Mierow (ed.). The Deeds of Frederick Barbarossa. New York: W. W. Norton.
  • Reindel, Kurt (1981). "Bayern vom Zeitalter der Karolinger bis zum Ende der Welfenherrschaft (788–1180): Die politische Entwicklung". In Max Spindler (ed.). Handbuch der bayerischen Geschichte I: Das Alte Bayern—Das Stammesherzogtum bis zum Ausgang des 12. Jahrhunderts. Munich: C. H. Beck. pp. 249–351.
  • Spindler, Max; Kraus, Andreas (1988). "Die Auseinandersetzungen mit Landesadel, Episkopat und Königtum unter den drei ersten wittelsbachischen Herzögen (1180–1253)". In Andreas Kraus (ed.). Handbuch der bayerischen Geschichte II: Das Alte Bayern—Der Territorialstaat vom Ausgang des 12. Jahrhunderts bis zum Ausgang des 18. Jahrhunderts. Munich: C. H. Beck.
  • Štular, Benjamin (2009). Mali Grad: High Medieval Castle in Kamnik. Ljubljana: Inštitut za arheologijo.
  • Wilson, Peter (2016). Heart of Europe: A History of the Holy Roman Empire. Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press.
Further reading
External links
Agugliastra

Agugliastra or Ogliastra was an administrative subdivision of Pisan and Aragonese Sardinia..

Berthold, Duke of Merania

Berthold IV (c. 1159 – 12 August 1204), a member of the House of Andechs, was Margrave of Istria and Carniola (as Berthold II). By about 1180/82 he already bore the title of Duke of Merania, that is, the Adriatic seacoast of Dalmatia and Istria.

Duchy of Genoa

The Duchy of Genoa was the name taken by the territories of the former Republic of Genoa when they were given to the Kingdom of Sardinia by the Congress of Vienna in 1815.

Ligurian people, with their independentistic and republican traditions, never liked their new political status, and riots sometimes exploded in Genoa.

The Duchy of Genoa was finally disbanded after the perfect fusion of 1848, and it was divided between the departments (later called provinces) of Genoa and Nice.

Duchy of Guastalla

The Duchy of Guastalla was an Italian state which existed between 1621 and 1748. It was bordered by the Duchy of Modena and Reggio and the Po River to the north, on the opposite bank of the Duchy of Mantua.

Duchy of Reggio

The Duchy of Reggio was one of the states that belonged to the Duchy of Modena and Reggio, ruled by the House of Este, in the north of Italy, in a territory now belonging to the Province of Reggio Emilia. The capital was Reggio.

The perimeter of the duchy was from the Apennines to the river Po. The ancient borders were with the County of Novellara and Bagnolo (ruled by a branch of the House of Gonzaga), and the County of Guastalla, the Principality of Correggio, the Duchy of Modena and Garfagnana, all ruled by the dukes of Este. Other neighbour states were those of Lucca, Tuscany, the Duchy of Parma and the Marquisate of Mantua.

Duchy of Sorrento

The Duchy of Sorrento was a small peninsular principality of the Early Middle Ages centred on the Italian city of Sorrento.

Originally, Sorrento was part of the Byzantine Duchy of Naples in the Dark Ages, but in the ninth century, along with Amalfi and Gaeta, it broke away from the Neapolitans to found its own ducatus (or republic). However, it mostly remained under Amalfi and only one independent duke is known from this period, a Sergius in the late ninth century.

In 1035, it was conquered by the Lombards under Guaimar IV of Salerno and bestowed on his younger brother Guy, who ruled it until the 1070s. Not long after that, it was annexed by the Normans.

In 1119, a certain Sergius undersigned a diploma of William II, Duke of Apulia, as "Prince of Sorrento."

Henry II von Sonneberg

Henry II of Sonneberg (before 1249 – 1288) was the descendant of the von Sonneberg family and the founder of the Sonnefeld Monastery.

The death of Duke Otto II of Merania on 19 June 1248 at Niesten Castle brought the end to the Imperial Duchy of Merania, in whose service the Herren (Lords) von Sonneberg had managed properties in the areas of Coburg and Sonneberg. Because of his service, Henry II was given the Herrschaft (territorial dominion) of Sonneberg and the authority to govern it. In 1252 and around 1260 he acquired from the Benedictine Abbey of Saalfeld the extensive possessions in the surrounding areas of Sonneberg and Coburg.

In 1260, Henry II, with his wife Kunigunde, founded the Sonnefeld Monastery and furnished it with the properties from their own possessions. In 1279, with other associates of the Sonnefeld Monastery, he was found among the witnesses of the foundation charter of the Himmelkron Monastery, where the first nuns were assumed to have come from Sonnefeld.

Lega dei popoli

In ancient Italy, the Etruscan "Lega dei popoli" (English: League of the peoples) was a league comprising several towns — usually, but not necessarily, twelve — located in the areas that today are known as Tuscany, western Umbria and northern Lazio.

Lichtenfels (district)

Lichtenfels is a Landkreis (district) in Bavaria, Germany. It is bounded by (from the north and clockwise) the districts of Coburg, Kronach, Kulmbach, Bayreuth and Bamberg.

March of Istria

The March of Istria (or Margraviate of Istria ) was originally a Carolingian frontier march covering the Istrian peninsula and surrounding territory conquered by Charlemagne's son Pepin of Italy in 789. After 1364, it was the name of the Istrian province of the Habsburg Monarchy, the Austrian Empire and Austria-Hungary.

March of Ivrea

The March of Ivrea was a large frontier county in the northwest of the medieval Italian kingdom from the late 9th to the early 11th century. Its capital was Ivrea in present-day Piedmont, and it was held by a Burgundian family of margraves called the Anscarids. The march was the primary frontier between Italy and France and served as a defense against any interference from that state.

Margravate of Mantua

The Margravate of Mantua was a Margravate in Lombardy, Northern Italy, subject to the Holy Roman Empire.

Marquisate of Ceva

The Marquisate of Ceva was a small independent state in north-western Italy, situated at the foot of the Apennines, with its seat at Ceva, in what is now a part of Piedmont.

Marquisate of Oristano

The Marquisate of Oristano was a marquisate of Sardinia that lasted from 1410 until 1478

Principality of Piombino

The Lordship of Piombino (Signoria di Piombino), and after 1594 the Principality of Piombino (Principato di Piombino), was a small state on the Italian peninsula centred on the city of Piombino and including part of the island of Elba. It existed from 1399 to 1805, when it was merged into the Principality of Lucca and Piombino. In 1815 it was absorbed into the Grand Duchy of Tuscany.

Republic of Noli

The Republic of Noli was an Italian Maritime republic centered on the city of Noli that existed from 1192 to 1797. Present-day Noli is in Liguria, in the Province of Savona.

Sophia of Hungary

Sophia of Hungary (c. 1050 – 18 June 1095), a member of the royal Árpád dynasty, was a Margravine of Istria and Carniola from about 1062 until 1070, by her first marriage with Margrave Ulric I, as well as Duchess of Saxony from 1072 until her death, by her second marriage with Duke Magnus Billung.

Terra Sancti Benedicti

The Terra Sancti Benedicti ("Land of Saint Benedict") was the secular territory, or seignory, of the powerful Abbey of Montecassino, the chief monastery of the Mezzogiorno and one of the first Western monasteries: founded by Benedict of Nursia himself, hence the name of its possessions.

The secular holdings had their origin in the donation of Gisulf II of Benevento in 744. The Terra was not large, it formed a basically contiguous zone around the hill of Montecassino, but it was valuable land and the site of many battles in many wars. It was immediately subject to the Holy See and constituted its own state. In 1057, Pope Victor II declared that the abbot of Montecassino had preeminence over and above all other abbots.

Wattendorf

Wattendorf is the smallest community in the Upper Franconian district of Bamberg and a member of the administrative community (Verwaltungsgemeinschaft) of Steinfeld.

Languages

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.