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another great council at Clermont, in Auvergne, and there the first formal step was

taken for the rescue of the Holy Land from

the Turks. Here, then, we pause in the feudal history of France to sketch the course

of events in the surrounding states before entering upon the history of that tumultuous

movement called the Crusades.


The course of German history has already been

traced from the division

of the Carlovingian empire to the death of Otho

the Great, in the year

973. That distinguished sovereign was succeeded on the throne by

his son Otho II, surnamed the Red. The

prince who thus came into the kingly and

Imperial dignity was at the time of his accession but seventeen years of age. It was

the first fate of his reign to fall under the

regency of his mother, Adelheid, who exhibited great abilities during the minority

of her son. But Theophania, the wife of Otho,

became inflamed with jealousy on account

of the ascendancy of her mother-in-law,

and the latter was presently obliged to

descend from her preeminence and retire into


In the first years of the reign of Otho the

Emperor's cousin, Henry of Bavaria, headed

a revolutionary movement against the crown,

with a view of securing the independence

of his own state. The revolt made considerable progress, and Henry was crowned

at Ratisbon; but the tide presently turned

against him, and in 976 he was overthrown

in battle. The ambitious purpose of the

barbarians was brought to naught, and

they had the chagrin to see their country

united with the province of Suabia. By this union of the two German states, effected

in the last quarter of the tenth century,

were laid the foundations of the modern

kingdom and empire of Austria.

The next complication demanding the attention of Otho arose on the frontier of Bohemia and Denmark. With both of these

states he went to war and was so successful as

to maintain the boundaries established by his

father. But while the Emperor's energies were thus absorbed in the Northeast, Lothaire, king of France, seized the favoring

opportunity to possess himself of the lower

province of Lorraine. In the summer of

978, he succeeded in capturing Aix la Chapelle

and thus established himself in the ancient

capital of Charlemagne. Great was the wrath

which these events excited throughout Germany. An army of sixty thousand men

was raised; and Otho, turning upon the

Franks, drove them back more rapidly

than they had come. The Emperor pursued

the retreating Lothaire to Paris and besieged

him in his own capital. Then it was that

the German army, encamped on Montmartre,

performed an exquisite piece of bravado

by bellowing the Latin litany in the ears of

the Parisians' After a war of two years, a personal interview was had

between Otho and Lothaire, and their difficulties were settled by the restoration of

Lorraine to Germany.

The next trouble in which the Empire was

involved was on the side of Italy. The Eternal City had for some time been the scene of

turmoil and confusion. In the year 891 Otho

found it necessary to go to Rome in order to

quiet the disturbances in the government.

While engaged in this duty he had personal

interviews with Conrad, duke of Burgundy,

and the great count, Hugh Capet of France.

His mother, the ex-empress Adelheid, also

met him at Pavia, and the two were reconciled. At this time the coasts of Italy were

assailed by both the Greeks and the Saracens.

It was necessary for Otho, in virtue of his Imperial title, to defend the South against the

ravages of its enemies. Notwithstanding the

fierce animosities existing between the Greeks

and the Saracens, an alliance was made between them for the purpose of resisting the