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Theodelinda (c. 570–628), the daughter of Garibald I, fresco by Zavattari

The Agilolfings were a noble family that ruled the Duchy of Bavaria on behalf of their Merovingian suzerains from about 550 until 788. A cadet branch of the Agilolfings also ruled the Kingdom of the Lombards intermittently from 616 to 712. They are mentioned as the leading dynasty in the Lex Baiuvariorum (c. 743). Their Bavarian residence was at Regensburg.

The dynasty's eponymous ancestor is Agilulf, a semi-legendary prince of the Suebi and descendant of Hermeric, the 5th-century Suevic king of Galicia, possibly identical with one Agilulf, a steward of the Visigothic king Theoderic II, who was executed in 457.[1]

The first duke identified with the Agilolfing line in German historiography is Garibald I (Gariwald). However, doubt has been cast on Garibald's membership in the Agilolfing family in modern scholarship,[2] which makes Tassilo I (r. 591–610) the first ascertained member of the dynasty.

The Agilolfings had close ties to the Merovingians. Garibald I himself married Waldrada, the widow of Merovingian king Theudebald, in 555, after her marriage to Chlothar I was annulled on grounds of consanguinity. As they had their fate intertwined with the Merovingian dynasty, they opposed the rise of the Carolingian mayors of the palace, who finally deprived the Agilolfings of their power.

Rulers of Bavaria[edit]

Rulers of Italy[edit]

At the Austrasian court[edit]


  1. ^ Jörg Jarnut: Agilolfingerstudien. Untersuchungen zur Geschichte einer adligen Familie im 6. und 7. Jahrhundert. Stuttgart 1986. Diese Ansicht wird weitgehend geteilt in: Wilhelm Störmer: Die Baiuwaren. Von der Völkerwanderung bis Tassilo III. München 2007.
  2. ^ Carl I. Hammer: From Ducatus to Regnum. Ruling Bavaria under the Merovingians and early Carolingians. 2007; Britta Kägler: „Sage mir, wie du heißt …“. Spätantik-frühmittelalterliche Eliten in den Schriftquellen. Das Beispiel der frühen Agilolfinger. In: Hubert Fehr, Irmtraut Heitmeier (eds.): Von Raetien und Noricum zur frühmittelalterlichen Baiovaria. EOS, St. Ottilien 2012, S. 183–196.

Further reading[edit]

  • Oman, Charles (1914). The Dark Ages, 476–918. London: Rivingtons. ASIN B008WI02H8.
  • Pearson, Kathy Lynne Roper (1999). Conflicting Loyalties in Early Medieval Bavaria. Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing. ISBN 978-0754600114.

External links[edit]