Fulk (archbishop of Reims)

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Fulk the Venerable (died June 17, 900) was the Archbishop of Reims from 883 until his death. He was the chief opponent of the non-Carolingian king of France, Odo, in the last quarter of the 9th century. He was the brother of Anscar I, Margrave of Ivrea

Fulk was born of a noble family, became a palace cleric of Charles the Bald, and by 877 had been made Abbot of the Abbey of Saint Bertin near Saint-Omer, France. He was consecrated Archbishop of Reims in March 883.[1] As bishop, he corresponded with Alfred the Great regarding the needs of the English Church, and rebuked Queen Richilde for what he considered irregular behavior.[2]

Upon the deposition of Emperor Charles the Fat in 887, He tried to install his kinsman Guy II, Duke of Spoleto, on the throne and even crowned him at Langres (888), but to no avail: Odo was crowned at Paris. He then turned to the Emperor Arnulf, but also to no avail, Arnulf being preoccupied with other things and wishing to maintain peace with the French kingdom.

According to historian Georges Goyau, Fulk served as the chancellor of Charles the Simple, and maintained the rights of the Carlovingians against Odo, Count of Paris, ancestor of the House of Capet.[3] Fulk finally crowned Louis the Stammerer's youngest son, Charles the Simple, in 893 while Odo was still king. This ploy was also unsuccessful, but when Odo died in 898, Charles succeeded him and restored the Carolingian dynasty in France, though it would be involved in numerous rivalrous wars with the relatives of Odo in the 10th century. Charles made him chancellor for the first two years of his reign.

According to Flodoard, the king granted Fulk the Abbey of St Vaast, which was held by Baldwin of Flanders, whom the king suspected of disloyalty. In 900, while traveling with a small escort to meet with Charles, Fulk was killed by men in the service of Baldwin.[4] Pope Benedict IV would later excommunicate Baldwin for the murder.[5]


  1. ^ Nelson, Janet L., "Fulk's Letter to Alfred Revisited", Alfred the Wise, (Jane Roberts and Janet L. Nelson, eds.) D.S. Brewer
  2. ^ The Cambridge Medieval History, Volume 3, (Henry Melvill Gwatkin et al eds.) Macmillan, 1922, p. 72
  3. ^ Goyau, Georges. "Reims." The Catholic Encyclopedia Vol. 12. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1911. 16 December 2018
  4. ^ Duckett, Eleanor Shipley. Death and Life in the Tenth Century, University of Michigan Press, 1967, p. 155 ISBN 9780472061723
  5. ^ Frodoard, Hist. Remensis, IV, 10
Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Archbishop of Reims
Succeeded by