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1185 THE AGE OF CHARLEMAGNE-SUCCESSORS OF CHARLEMAGNE. 1185-

by his brothers Lothaire and Louis, and

his kingdom given to Charles the Bald.

It was now the father's turn to try the issue

of battle with his own offspring. The two

armies met at a place called the Field of

Red, situated between Colmar and Bale.

But when the battle was about to begin

a large part of King Louis's forces abandoned

him and went over to Lothaire. The monarch was thus left naked to the mercy of

his sons. The name of the Field of Red

was changed to the Field of Falsehood.

The victorious princes, however, received

their father with the consideration due

to his rank, but their filial respect did not

extend to his restoration to power. On

the contrary, Lothaire convened a national

assembly and had himself proclaimed Emperor. In a short time another convention of grandees and bishops was held at

Compiegne, and Louis the Debonair was

again formally deposed. He was obliged

to hear the decree of his own dethronement,

in which the charges of incapacity and weakness were openly set forth, read aloud to

the multitude. He meekly accepted the

situation which had been imposed by his

subjects, and retired to the convent of

Rheims.

It now appeared that the affairs of the

Empire were permanently settled; but though

the Emperor Louis was dethroned the party

of his supporters was by no means annihilated. In a short time rebellions in his

favor occurred in various parts of his kingdom, and the usurping sons found it difficult

to retain the power which they had seized

by force. The beautiful and ambitious

Judith was still at liberty, and her intrigues

prevailed to win over many friends to the

cause of her dishonored husband. Not a few

of the clergy rallied to his support. In the

year 834 two national assemblies were held,

and the acts of the convention of Compiegne were formally revoked. The Imperial

dignity was again conferred on Louis, and the

kingdom continued in a ferment of revolt as

before.

Four years after this second restoration of

the Emperor to power Pepin of Aquitaine

died. The problem of the Empire was thus

somewhat simplified. In 839 an assembly was

called at Worms. The general condition of

the dynasty and the distribution of political power again came up for discussion. It was

resolved to make a new territorial division of

the kingdom. Bavaria and the surrounding regions were left as before to Prince Louis,

henceforth known as Louis the German. The

western portion of the Empire was divided

into two parts by the Rhone and the Mouse,

the eastern division falling by his own choice

to Lothaire. The. western part was assigned

to Charles the Bald. The German, however,

was by no means satisfied with the distribution. He took up arms to undo the settlement, and his imbecile father in his old age

was obliged once more to attempt the maintenance of peace by war. At the head of his

army he set out towards the Rhenish frontier;

but on arriving near the city of Mayence he

fell sick of a fever and died at the castle of

Ingelheim. Thus in the summer of 840

the question of the settlement of the kingdom was still further simplified by the course

of nature.

In his last hours the expiring monarch

transmitted the Imperial crown and sword

to his son Lothaire. To Louis of Bavaria

he sent the assurance of pardon, and to

both princes the earnest admonition that the

rights of the Queen Judith and the young

King Charles the Bald should be faithfully

observed.

Of little avail, however, were these charitable injunctions of the dying Emperor.

For in the mean time the prince Pepin II,

son of the deceased Pepin of Aquitaine,

had usurped the government of his father's

province. With him Lothaire now entered

into a conspiracy for despoiling Charles the

Bald of his inheritance. The latter took

the alarm, and made an alliance with Louis

the German, who, like himself, was fearful of the ambition of Lothaire. The

Empress Judith went on a mission to the

Bavarian prince, and the latter, as soon as

practicable, sent an army to the aid of Charles.

In the next summer after the death of the

Debonair the forces of the rival brothers,

Charles and Louis on one side, and Lothaire

and his nephew Pepin II on the other, met

near the village of Fontenailles, where the

destinies of the Carlovingian empire were again

to be decided. The two armies are said

to have numbered three hundred thousand

men. For four days the antagonists maneuvered, dreading to come to battle. In the