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Here, gathered in our beloved South Dakota, are a few members of our Williamson / Mattson Clan. Charles and Luella are to be blamed (be kind, they didn't know what they were doing). We're generally a happy bunch and somewhat intelligent (notwithstanding our tenous grasp on reality). I'm also proud to say that most of us still have our teeth.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

The Williamson Line. Charlemagne - Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire. A Great Grandfather.

From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

Hello Williamsons,
Well, today's four hours of research proved interesting. Today I'm please to present our 31st Great Grandfather, Charlemagne, Holy Roman Emperor. We find him also on the Mattson line meaning we are related through both parents.
Here he is, perhaps one of our greatest ancestors. The relation comes through the Williamson line to Margaret Ann Willis and then to the Brintons. The full line is presented below:

Relationship Chart

Charlemagne, Holy Roman Emperor. Married Hildegard
to
Adelheid, Princess of the Holy Roman Empire married Robert the Strong Duke of France

to
Richende Blois married Count of Chartres and Bourges Thibaut De Troyes
to
Gerlette De Blois married Rollo Thurston Rollosson

to
Toussaint De Bertrand married Juliane De Murdac
to
Thurston Haldub married Emma
to
Viscount Eudo de Capello married Muriel Conteville
to
Muriel Chappell married Roger de Busli

to
William de Busli married Hawise de Espec

to
Roger De Busli married ?
to
Robert “de Busli” Gresbroke married Miss Paynell

to
Bartholomew De Gresbroc married Edith De Grendon
to
Robert de Gresebroke married ?
to
Robert de Gresebrooke married ?
to
William de Gresbrooke married ?

to
John de Gresbroke Married?

to

John de Gresebroke married ?
to
John Gresbrooke married Isabel
to
John Gresbrooke married Elizabeth Rugeley

to
Alverey Greysbrooke married Margaret Keene
to
Elizabeth Glazebrook married Thomas Mason
to
Elin Mason married Thomas Brinton

to
Thomas Brinton married Anne Biddle
to
William Brinton married Ann Bagley
to
Ester Brinton married John Willis
to
Henry Willis married Mary Rachel Underwood
to
John Willis married Phebe Bennett
to
Bennett Willis married Katherine Nosseman
to
Jonathan Willis married Anabelle Phlegar
to
Margaret Ann Willis married George Matthew Williamson

to

William J. Williamson married Effie Helen Victor

to
Vennie, Ima Della, Inez, Lillie Ethel, Josie, Emmett, Walt, Charles, Maurice.
to
My Dad Charles married Luella
to

Us


Of course everyone that studies history knows Charlemagne, but just in case your history is a bit rough, here are the basics on our most famous of Grandfathers.

Here is a written description of Charlemagne from one of his associates.
He was heavily built, sturdy, and of considerable stature, although not exceptionally so, since his height was seven times the length of his own foot. He had a round head, large and lively eyes, a slightly larger nose than usual, white but still attractive hair, a bright and cheerful expression, a short and fat neck, and a slightly protruding stomach. His voice was clear, but a little higher than one would have expected for a man of his build. He enjoyed good health, except for the fevers that affected him in the last few years of his life. Toward the end he dragged one leg. Even then, he stubbornly did what he wanted and refused to listen to doctors, indeed he detested them, because they wanted to persuade him to stop eating roast meat, as was his wont, and to be content with boiled meat.
Einhard provides us with a close-up of Charlemagne.
He was large and strong, and of lofty stature, though not disproportionately tall (seven-feet tall). His head was round and well-formed, his eyes very large and vivacious, his nose a little long, his hair white, and his face jovial. His appearance was always stately and very dignified, whether he was standing or sitting. His gait was firm, his whole carriage manly, and his voice clear.
This heroic figure was possessed of a joyful spirit. The Monk of St. Gall recounts that whoever came before Charlemagne sad and disturbed would leave him serene, just by the effect of his presence and some few words. The freshness and honesty of his nature strengthened all those who were associated with him. His majesty did not have a rigid arrogance, nor a suspicious reserve; rather the tranquil grandeur of his personality dominated everything around him, and, notwithstanding, was unpretentious and self-contained.

Statue of Charlemagne at Norte Dame Cathedral in Paris

The terrifying impression he caused in the hearts of his enemies as a warrior leading his army is described by the Monk of St. Gall:
Then, one could see the Charlemagne of iron, with his head covered by a iron helmet, his arms bearing iron protectors; in his left hand he carried an iron lance, and in the right his always victorious steel sword. His muscles were covered with iron plates, and his shield made of pure iron. "When he appeared, the inhabitants of Pavia cried out with fear: O, the Iron Man! O, the Iron Man!
This Iron Man had a profoundly sensitive heart. Charlemagne wept like a boy at the death of a friend. The victor of 100 battles showed a paternal care for the poor. The man whose steps caused all of Europe to tremble and by whose grand campaigns a million men were conquered was the most tender of fathers, who never could dine without the presence of one of his children.

It was his Religion that gave the noblest impulse to his strong and fecund spirit and that conferred glory to his power. And under its protection he placed the peoples that his sword had conquered.

Charlemagne was also called Charles I, Charles the Great (in French, Charlemagne; in German, Karl der Grosse; in Latin, Carolus Magnus) was King of the Franks, King of the Lombards, and is generally considered the first Holy Roman Emperor. Charlemagne consolidated a large portion of Europe under his rule, promoted learning, and instituted innovative administrative concepts.



Charlemagne was the son of Pippin III (the Short), who officially put an end to the Merovingian line of kings when he negotiated with the pope to be crowned King of the Franks. When Pippin died, the kingdom of Francia was divided between Charlemagne and his brother Carloman. Charles proved himself a capable leader from early on, but his brother was less so, and their relationship was tense until Carloman's death in 771.

Once Charlemagne had sole rule of the government of Francia, he expanded his territory through conquest. He conquered the Lombards in northern Italy, acquired Bavaria, and campaigned in Spain and Hungary. Charles used harsh measures in subduing the Saxons and virtually exterminating the Avars of presnt-day Austria and Hungary. Though he had essentially amassed an empire, Charlemagne did not style himself "emperor," but called himself the King of the Franks and Lombards.


Charles was an able administrator who delegated authority over his conquered provinces to Frankish nobles. At the same time, he recognized the diverse ethnic groups he'd brought together, and allowed each to retain its own local laws. To ensure justice, Charlemagne had these laws set down in writing and strictly enforced. He issued capitularies that applied to all citizens, and kept an eye on events in his empire through the use of missi dominici, representatives who acted with his authority.

Though never able to master writing himself, Charlemagne was an enthusiastic patron of learning. He attracted noted scholars to his court, including Alcuin, who became his private tutor, and Einhard, who was his biographer. Charles was responsible for reforming the palace school and setting up monastic schools throughout the empire. The monasteries he sponsored preserved and copied ancient books. The flowering of learning under his patronage has come to be known as the "Carolingian Renaissance."

Charlemagne took his role as a Christian seriously, and in 800, he came to the aid of Pope Leo III, who had been attacked in the streets of Rome. Charlemagne went to Rome to restore order and, after Leo purged himself of the charges against him, the pope unexpectedly crowned him emperor.

According to his biographer Einhard, Charlemagne wasn't pleased with this development, because it established the precedent of papal ascendancy over secular leadership; but though he still often referred to himself as a king he now also styled himself "Emperor," as well.
Charlemagne died in January, 814. His achievements stand among the most significant of the early Middle Ages, and although the empire he built (called "the Carolingian Empire" after him) would not long outlast his son Louis, his consolidation of lands marked a watershed in the development of Europe.

1 comment:

  1. Very interesting!! I'm doing a project on Charlemagne, and this helped a lot! Thank you :) I'll be sure to credit you for it!

    ReplyDelete