Chilperic I - King of Soissons(561-584)

Chilperic I - King of Soissons(561-584)

(b. c. 539--d. September or October 584, Chelles, France), Merovingian king of Soissons whom Gregory of Tours, a contemporary, called the Nero and the Herod of his age.

Son of Chlotar I by Aregund, Chilperic shared with his three half brothers (sons of Ingund, Aregund"s sister) in the partition that followed their father"s death in 561, receiving the poorest region, the kingdom of Soissons. To this was added, however, the best part of Charibert"s lands on the latter"s death in 567 or 568, so that Chilperic"s kingdom corresponded in large part to that later known as Neustria. In 568 he repudiated his wives in order to marry Galswintha, sister of the Visigothic princess, Brunhild, who had herself recently married his half brother, Sigebert I; but he soon had Galswintha murdered and immediately married Fredegund, an earlier mistress. The consequences of this crime constitute virtually the only clearly discernible thread in the tangled skein of Frankish history over the next four decades, as first Sigebert, whose relations with Chilperic had in fact been bad from the start, and then his descendants, incited by Brunhild, sought revenge for Galswintha"s murder upon the persons of Chilperic, Fredegund, and their family.

Saved from apparent disaster by the assassination of Sigebert I in 575, Chilperic was prevented from seizing the lands of the dead king"s young heir, Childebert II, by the action of Guntram, his third half brother and the king of Burgundy. Although Chilperic succeeded in forming an alliance with Childebert against Guntram by recognizing the young king as his heir (581), this was short-lived; in 583 Childebert and Guntram again came to terms. A year later Chilperic fell victim to an unknown assassin, leaving a four-month-old son, Chlotar II.

Ambitious, brutal, and debauched, Chilperic nevertheless had pretensions to being a man of learning; he wrote poor poetry, became involved in theological matters, and ordered four letters to be added to the alphabet. Regarding the church as a major rival to his wealth, he treated the bishops with hostility and contempt; at the same time, he had a reputation for injustice toward his subjects at large and imposed heavy taxes.

King Chilperic had several wives including Galswinth (the sister of Brunhild) and the elevated slave-girl Fredegund. Galswinth was dissatified with her position within the royal household and threatened to return to her father King Athanagild of Spain. Soon after, she was found dead in her bed. Many contemporaries including Brunhild assumed that she had been murdered by Chilperic and Fredegund, but Gregory of Tours makes no such claim despite the fact that he despises Chilperic. This event touched off the bloody feud between Brunhild and Fredegund that dominates Merovingian history.

Gregory devotes two of the ten books in his *History of the Franks* to the deeds and mis-deeds of Chilperic I. He begins the paragraph in which he describes Chilperic"s death at the hands of an anonymous assasin by calling Chilperic "the Nero and Herod of our time". In an earlier passage, Gregory takes another swipe at Chilperic. Gregory says that the poetry written by Chilperic "observed none of the accepted rules of prosody". One of Chilperic"s poems, a hymn of St.Medard, survives.

Fils naturel Chilperic I roi de Neustrie (ou de Soissons) 561-584, roi de Paris 568-584
epouse: Audovere. morte en 580
epouse: Galswinthe fille d"Athanagilde roi des Wisigoths. morte en 568
epouse: Fredegonde fille de Brunulphe I comte d"Ardennes. mort en 597
8 enfants:
- Theodebert. mort en 575
- Merovee. mort en 577
- Clovis. mort en 580
- Clodebert. mort en 580
- Samson. mort en 577
- Dagobert. mort en 580
- Thierry. mort en 584
- Clotaire II Le Jeune roi des Francs. cf: dessous

Chilperic Ier DE NEUSTRIE

(Chilperic DE NEUSTRIE)
Born in 536.
Died in September 584.


Clotaire Ier le Vieux DE SOISSONS ca 497-561
Haregonde DE THURINGE *ca 510

Marriages and children

Allied to Audovère N... ca 530-580, with
Merovee ca 550-577
Richilde *ca 560
Allied in 567 to Galswinthe N... ca 532-568
Allied in 568 to Fredegonde DE CAMBRAI ca 545-597, with
Clotaire II 584-629


Naissance : ou 523 (?)
Profession : Roi de Neustrie de 561 à 584 et de Paris de 568 à 584

<I001851> Chilperic I, King of NEUSTRIA
BIRTH: 539
DEATH: 584, Chelles [stabbed]
BURIAL: Saint-Germain-des-Pres


<B020772> Chilperic I MEROVING (King)
<B020764> Father: Clotaire (The_Old) I MEROVING (King)
<B020765> Mother: Radegonde Aregonde de THURINGE
BIRTH: 539, ,Neustria,France
DEATH: SEP 584, ,,France
Family 1:
<B024827> Audovere MEROVING?
<B024830> 1. Merovius II MEROVING
<B024828> 2. Clovis MEROVING
<B024829> 3. Thibert MEROVING
Family 2:
<B024825> Galswintha VISIGOTH
<B020775> 1. Clotaire (Le_Grand) II MEROVING (King of Franks)

Accension to the thrown in 561. Shared the thrown with his half-brother Charibert. King of Neustrie (562-584); King of Paris (568-584) King of Sossions. He may have been born in 523 or 526. Killed in 584 by Fredegunda, his wife.
Source: Genealogy of the Kings of France; Kings, Rulers and Statesmen, p 118
Charlemagne"s 40 Generation Ahnentafel Chart by Tom Peterson, 24 Oct 1992;
Ahnentafel of Edward III, King of England

Chilperic Ier
King of Soissons 561-584; m. Fredegonde.

Chilperic I,King of Neustria(537-584)

Charibert"s death in 567 and the division of his estate occasioned quarrels between Chilperic and Sigebert, already at odds on account of their wives. Unlike his brothers, who had been satisfied to marry serving-women, Sigebert had won the hand of the beautiful Brunehilde, daughter of Athanagild, King of the Visigoths. Chilperic had followed Sigebert"s example by marrying Galeswintha, Brunehilde"s sister, but at the instigation of his mistress, Fredegonda, he soon had Galeswintha assassinated and placed Fredegonda upon the throne. Brunehilde"s determination to avenge the death of her sister involved in bitter strife not only the two women but their husbands. In 575 Sigebert, who was repeatedly provoked by Chilperic, took the field, resolved to bring the quarrel to a conclusion. Chilperic, already banished from his kingdom, had taken refuge behind the walls of Tournai, whence he had no hope of escape, when, just as Sigebert"s soldiers were about to raise him to the throne, he was felled by assassins sent by Fredegonda. Immediately the aspect of affairs changed: Brunehilde, humiliated and taken prisoner, escaped only with the greatest difficulty and after the most thrilling adventures, while Fredegonda and Chilperic exulted in their triumph. The rivalry between the two kingdoms, henceforth known respectively as Austrasia (Kingdom of the East) and Neustria (Kingdom of the West), only grew fiercer. Gontran"s kingdom continued to be called Burgundy. First the nobles of Austrasia and then Brunehilde who had become regent, led the campaign against Chilperic, who perished in 584 at the hand of an assassin. The murderer could not be ascertained.

Chilperic I of the Franks King Of Soissons
(Chilperic King Of Soissons)
Born about 519
Died in 584
Chlothar I the Old of the Franks King Of Franks 497-561
Ingonde (Radegond) Von Thuringia *
Marriages and children
Married to Fredegund (Of Soisson) +597, with
Chlothar II of the Franks King Of Franks 584-629
Married to Galeswinthe Of The Visigoths

Chilperic I X
(Chilperic X)

Born in 528
Died in 584


Charlbert I, King_Of Paris 520-
Ingoberge, Queen Of Paris ca 520-589

Marriages and children

Married to Fredegonde ?

Chilperic I
d.Sep 584, Chelles

m.548 Audovere(533-580, Le Mans)

m.Mar 567 Soissons, Galswinthe(540, Toledo-568, Soissons), sister of Brunehaut, wife of his brother Sigebert I

m.568 Fredegonde(543, Montdidier-8.12.597, Paris), dau.of Brunulphe, Cte d"Ardennes
12.Clotaire II

Chilperic Lotharson
1.Lothar Ii Chilpericson

Soissons, Chilperich I de Roi
d.AFT OCT 584
Father: de_la_Francs, Chlothar I Soissons Roi
Mother: Areburge

m.AFT 550

b.BEF 535


Austrasie, Theudebert d" Generaux
b.AFT 550
Soissons, Merovech de
b.AFT 550
Soissons, Chlodovech de
b.AFT 550

m.ABT 567

b.BEF 552
Father: Toledo, Athanagild the Visigoth King
Mother: Goswinda

m.AFT 568

b.BEF 541


Soissons, Solomon de
b.AFT 565
d.ABT 577
Soissons, Chlodebert de
b.AFT 568
Soissons, Theuderich de
b.AFT 569
Soissons, Dagobert de
b.AFT 570
de_la_Francs, Chlothar II le_Grand Roi
Soissons, Rigunthis de Princess
b.AFT 560

VI. Chilperic Ier (° v. 523-assassine, 27.09./9.10.584), roi de Soissons (561-584), de Paris (568-584), s"empare du Poitou, du Limousin et de la Touraine en 576 ep. 1°. v. 549, Audovere (+ 580, assassinee), repudiee; 2°. 567, Galsonte (+ 568), s.p.; 3°. Fredegonde (° Montdidier, 546-Paris, 597). Dont :

- Du premier lit :

1. Theodebert (+ 575).
2. Merove (+ 577, etrangle) ep. 576, Brunehaut (° v. 543-Reneve, 613), fille puinee d"Athanagilde, roi des Wisigoths d"Espagne, s.p.
3. Clovis (° v. 555-580- + assassine).
4. Basine, religieuse a l"abbaye Sainte-Croix de Poitiers.
5. Childesinte.

- Du troisieme lit :

6. Clodebert (° v. 565-580).
7. Samson (° 575-577).
8. Dagobert (° & + 580).
9. Thierry (° 582-584).
10. Clotaire, roi de Paris et de Metz, qui suit.
11. Rigonte.

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