- "Frederick the Great" and "Frederick II" redirect here. For a list, see List of people known as "the Great". For other uses, see Frederick II (disambiguation).
Frederick II (German: Friedrich; Italian: Federico) (26 December 1194 – 13 October 1258), also known as Saint Frederick the Great, PS. S. J.,[note 3] was the Emperor of the Romans from 1220 until his death in 1258 following the death of his father Emperor Henry VI in 1197. He become the Duke of Swabia from 1212, the King of Germany, following the dispute with his rival Emperor Otto IV in 1215, and disputed King of Italy in 1212, however an conflict declared of gaining his right to the Italian throne since 1254, which Frederick II's son Rudolf.
The son of Henry VI, Holy Roman Emperor and his wife Constance and he became actively involved by the age of 14 in claim the throne of Holy Roman Empire. Frederick soon involved during the two major crusades, one involved during his reigns as King and Emperor the Fifth and Sixth Crusades respectfully. His political and cultural ambitions were enormous as he ruled a vast area beginning with Sicily and stretching through Italy all the way north to Germany. He become crowned the King of Germany at the St. Martin's Cathedral in Mainz, after his rival, Otto IV deposed in 1215. Viewing himself as a direct successor to the Roman emperors of antiquity, he was the first elected Emperor of the Romans in 1220.
After his accession, he picks the new official capital of Nuremberg rather than Frankfurt after the Imperial Diet of 1220, beginning the rise of the Teutonic Knights including policies in Italy, war with Sultan Al-Kamil during Sixth Crusade, war and disputing against Pope Gregory IX, victories against the Lombard League, as well as helping his friend, King Béla IV against the Golden Horde during the first wave of the Mongols invaded Hungary, conflict with Innocent IV which started the Wars of the Lombardy Crown (1254–1272), which leading his son Rudolf to become King of Italy in 1272, and as well as the war against Denmark (1257–1258) over the control the city of Lübeck, which result in Imperial victory. He was the first king who explicitly outlawed trials by ordeal as they were considered irrational. He had a good relationship with Louis IX of France, making an brotherly relationship. His relationships with Pope, England, the Guelphs and Ghibellines factions, and his native France and relationship with his half-brother Henry III of England.
For his personal holiness, efforts to support the Church and won many accomplishments, Pope Boniface VIII canonized him in 1297, making Frederick III, along with Emperor Henry II the only German monarchs and Frederick, the only German-born German monarch to be a saint during the medieval times. The only completely surviving coin portrait of Frederick II is the seal coin effingy was found in his tomb after years of his death.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Reign as King and Crusade
- 3 Reign as Emperor
- 4 Legacy
- 5 Gallery
- 6 See also
- 7 Evaluation
- 8 Family
- 9 Ancestry
- 10 Notes
- 11 References
- 12 Further reading
- 13 External links
Born in Iesi, near Ancona, Italy, Frederick was the son of the emperor Henry VI. He was known as the puer Apuliae (son of Apulia). Some chronicles say that his mother, the forty-year-old Constance, gave birth to him in a public square in order to forestall any doubt about his origin. Frederick was baptised in Assisi.
At throughout his teenage to early young adult years, Frederick developed effeminacy who wear mostly dress and very tight mail armor as well had feminine walk, which Prince Frederick who was healthy, brave and shy Prince who had a fan of tight Mail armor and Frederick who was inherited the disabilities. Historians said that Frederick was called the Feminine Boy or Girly Prince. He had also have a very-close devoted relationship with Theobald II, Count of Bar, which historians described as Frederick sexually aroused by Theobald, which had time they also had sex. Frederick who was again returned to Luxembourg. Prince Frederick who was described as "handsome Prince who always wearing very tight mail armor." Henry was describe as an "The Emperor was covered with blonde hair, was bald and myopic. On the winter of 1241, Frederick was interesting into military service in the Holy Roman Empire and England, which was accepted by Emperor Frederick II. Frederick also had teachings of politics which he wanted to avoid them.
In 1196 at Frankfurt am Main the infant Frederick was elected King of the Germans. His rights in Germany were disputed by Henry's brother Philip of Swabia and Otto of Brunswick. At the death of his father in 1197, Frederick was in Italy traveling towards Germany when the bad news reached his guardian, Conrad of Spoleto. Frederick was hastily brought back to his mother Constance in Palermo, Sicily, where he was crowned as King on 17 May 1198, now Frederick I of Sicily, at only three years of age.
Constance of Sicily was in her own right queen of Sicily, and she established herself as regent. In Frederick's name she dissolved Sicily's ties to Germany and the Empire that had been created by her marriage, sending home his German counsellors and renouncing his claims to the German throne and empire.
Upon Constance's death in 1198, Pope Innocent III succeeded as Frederick's guardian. Frederick's tutor during this period was Cencio, who would become Pope Honorius III. However, Markward of Annweiler, with the support of Henry's brother, Philip of Swabia, reclaimed the regency for himself and soon after invaded the Kingdom of Sicily. In 1200, with the help of Genoese ships, he landed in Sicily and one year later seized the young Frederick. He thus ruled Sicily until 1202, when he was succeeded by another German captain, William of Capparone, who kept Frederick under his control in the royal palace of Palermo until 1206. Frederick was subsequently under tutor Walter of Palearia, until, in 1208, he was declared of age. His first task was to reassert his power over Sicily and southern Italy, where local barons and adventurers had usurped most of the authority.
Conflict with Otto IV
Otto of Brunswick had been crowned Holy Roman Emperor by Pope Innocent III in 1209. In southern Italy, Otto became the champion of those noblemen and barons who feared Frederick's increasingly strong moves against them, exemplified by the firing of the pro-noble Walter of Palearia. The new emperor invaded Italy, where he reached Calabria without meeting much resistance. In response, Innocent sided against Otto, and in September 1211 at the Diet of Nuremberg Frederick was elected in absentia as German King by a rebellious faction backed by the pope. Innocent also excommunicated Otto, who was forced to return to Germany. Frederick sailed to Gaeta with a small following. He agreed with the pope on a future separation between the Sicilian and Imperial titles, and named his wife Constance as regent. Passing through Lombardy and Engadin, he reached Konstanz in September 1212, preceding Otto by a few hours.
Frederick was crowned as king on 9 December 1212 in Mainz. Frederick's authority in Germany remained tenuous, however, and he was recognized only in southern Germany; in the region of northern Germany, the center of Guelph power, Otto continued to hold the reins of royal and imperial power despite his excommunication. But Otto's decisive military defeat at the Bouvines forced him to withdraw to the Guelph hereditary lands where, virtually without supporters, he died in 1218. The German princes, supported by Innocent III, again elected Frederick king of Germany in 1215, and he was crowned king in Aachen on 23 July 1215 by one of the three German archbishops. It was not until another five years had passed, and only after further negotiations between Frederick, Innocent III, and Honorius III – who succeeded to the papacy after Innocent's death in 1216 – that Frederick was crowned Holy Roman Emperor in Rome by Honorius III, on 22 November 1220. At the same time, Frederick's oldest son Henry took the title of King of the Romans.
Reign as King and Crusade
Unlike most Holy Roman emperors, Frederick spent few years in Germany. In 1218, he helped King Philip II of France and Odo III, Duke of Burgundy, to bring an end to the War of Succession in Champagne (France) by invading Lorraine, capturing and burning Nancy, capturing Theobald I, Duke of Lorraine and forcing him to withdraw his support from Erard of Brienne-Ramerupt. After his coronation in 1220, Frederick remained either in the Kingdom of Sicily or on Crusade until 1236, when he made his last journey to Germany. He returned to Italy in 1237 and stayed there for the remaining thirteen years of his life, represented in Germany by his son Conrad.
In the Kingdom of Sicily, he built on the reform of the laws begun at the Assizes of Ariano in 1140 by his grandfather Roger II. His initiative in this direction was visible as early as the Assizes of Capua (1220, issued soon after his coronation in Rome) but came to fruition in his promulgation of the Constitutions of Melfi (1231, also known as Liber Augustalis), a collection of laws for his realm that was remarkable for its time and was a source of inspiration for a long time after. It made the Kingdom of Sicily an absolutist monarchy; it also set a precedent for the primacy of written law. With relatively small modifications, the Liber Augustalis remained the basis of Sicilian law until 1819.
The Fifth Crusade
At the time he was elected King of the Romans, Frederick promised to go on crusade. He continually delayed, however, and, in spite of his renewal of this vow at his coronation as the King of Germany, he did not travel to Egypt with the armies of the Fifth Crusade in 1217. He sent forces to Egypt under the command of Louis I, Duke of Bavaria, but constant expectation of his arrival caused papal legate Pelagius to reject Ayyubid sultan Al-Kamil's offer to restore the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem to the crusaders in exchange for their withdrawal from Egypt and caused the Crusade to continually stall in anticipation of his ever-delayed arrival. The crusade ended in failure with the loss of Damietta in 1221. Frederick was blamed by both Pope Honorius III and the general Christian populace for this calamitous defeat.
Reign as Emperor
First royal Imperial election
The Prince-electors were established in year 1218, while Frederick's rule as King of Germany. The electors were originally summoned by the Archbishop of Mainz within one month of an Emperor's death, and met within three months of being summoned. While after the death of Frederick's rival Otto IV, his rule of Germany was given to Frederick, and so to become one of those prince-electors, along with King Ottokar I of the Kingdom of Bohemia also joined the prince-electors the year before. Over three-to-four years after the deposition of Otto IV in 1218, the electors was ready to elected an Emperor. Frederick, who also inherited the Duchy of Swabia and the King of Germany's throne, is the top and popular nominate for Emperor. Frederick's nomination as Emperor is also supported by Andrew II of Hungary, Philip II of France, Henry III of England, High Duke Leszek the White of Poland and Pope Honorius III, and most of his subjects of both the Empire, most is which: Albert I, Duke of Saxony and Albert II, Margrave of Brandenburg. This election was ended on election day of 5 March 1220, when all six prince-electors elected Frederick.
Accession to the Imperial throne
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After being the first elected Holy Roman Emperor at age of twenty-six, at his coronation, he was crowned as "Emperor of the Romans" as Frederick II on 20 November 1220, at the Old St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. Although Frederick was elected in 1212 as King of Germany by four of the seven German Electoral Princes (Cologne, Mainz, the Palatinate and Bohemia), his candidacy was opposed by Alfonso X of Castile who was elected by Saxony, Brandenburg and Trier. The pope and King Louis IX of France favoured Alfonso, but both were ultimately convinced by the powerful relatives of Frederick's cousin-in-law, Eleanor of Provence, to support Henry. Ottokar II of Bohemia, who at first voted for Henry but later elected Alfonso, eventually agreed to support the German King, thus establishing the required simple majority. So Henry had to bribe only four of them, but this came at a huge cost of 28,000 marks.
With no official capital of the Holy Roman Empire, Frederick choice Nuremberg after the Imperial Diet of 1224, which becomes a free imperial city as official capital, which no one will claimed the capital until Holy Roman Empire's collapsed in 1806. Which Nuremberg gained piecemeal independence from the Burgraviate of Frankfurt, during the reign of his cousin and predecessor, Frederick II. Frederick II set out in the June 1222 of southern Italy in the Northern Alpine part of the Empire. His conflict with his son and the uprising of the Romans forced Emperor and Pope of 1223 to closer cooperation. At the instigation of Gregory Conrad IV; was been excommunicated by the Archbishop of Salzburg. Also, the Pope called for the support of Frederick and declared the once paid Heinrich Treueide invalid. 
Frederick II left him long stretched out in humiliating attitude on the ground. Only after the intercession of princes, Henry was allowed to rise. According to the submission ritual (deditio), he received but no mercy, but lost Office. In the next seven years, he was housed in various southern Italian jails, in the February 1242, he died as a prisoner. After a network-theoretical analysis by Robert Gramsch (2013) Charles has not out of consideration for the Prince and the Wainz.
Policies in Italy
In 1225, after agreeing with Pope Honorius to launch a Crusade before 1228, Frederick summoned an imperial Diet at Cremona, the main pro-imperial city in Lombardy: the main arguments for holding the Diet would be to continue the struggle against heresy, to organize the crusade and, above all, to restore the imperial power in northern Italy, which had been long been usurped by the numerous communes located there. Those assembled responded with the reformation of the Lombard League, which had already defeated his grandfather Frederick Barbarossa in the 12th century, and again Milan was chosen as the league's leader. The Diet was cancelled, however, and the situation was stabilized only through a compromise reached by Honorius between Frederick and the League. During his sojourn in northern Italy, Frederick also invested the Teutonic Order with the territories in what would become East Prussia, starting what was later called the Northern Crusade.
The Sixth Crusade
Problems of stability within the empire delayed Frederick's departure on crusade. It was not until 1225, when, by proxy, Frederick had married Yolande of Jerusalem, heiress to the Kingdom of Jerusalem, that his departure seemed assured. Frederick immediately saw to it that his new father-in-law John of Brienne, the current king of Jerusalem, was dispossessed and his rights transferred to the emperor. In August 1227, Frederick set out for the Holy Land from Brindisi but was forced to return when he was struck down by an epidemic that had broken out. Even the master of the Teutonic Knights, Hermann of Salza, recommended that he return to the mainland to recuperate. On 29 September 1227, Frederick was excommunicated by Pope Gregory IX for failing to honor his crusading pledge.
Many contemporary chroniclers doubted the sincerity of Frederick's illness, and their attitude may be explained by their pro-papal leanings. Roger of Wendover, a chronicler of the time, wrote:
... he went to the Mediterranean sea, and embarked with a small retinue; but after pretending to make for the holy land for three days, he said that he was seized with a sudden illness… this conduct of the emperor redounded much to his disgrace, and to the injury of the whole business of the crusade.
Frederick eventually sailed again from Brindisi in June 1228. The pope, still Gregory IX, regarded that action as a provocation, since, as an excommunicate, Frederick was technically not capable of conducting a Crusade, and he excommunicated the emperor a second time. Frederick reached Acre in September. Since all the local authorities and most of the military orders denied him any help, and because the crusading army was a meagre force, Frederick negotiated along the lines of a previous agreement he had intended to broker with the Ayyubid sultan, Al-Kamil. The treaty, signed in February 1229, resulted in the restitution of Jerusalem, Nazareth, Bethlehem, and a small coastal strip to the Kingdom of Jerusalem, though there are disagreements as to the extent of the territory returned.
The treaty also stipulated that the Dome of the Rock and al-Aqsa Mosque were to remain under Muslim control and that the city of Jerusalem would remain without fortifications. Virtually all other crusaders, including the Templars and Hospitallers, condemned this deal as a political ploy on the part of Frederick to regain his kingdom while betraying the cause of the Crusaders. Al-Kamil, who was nervous about possible war with his relatives who ruled Syria and Mesopotamia, wished to avoid further trouble from the Christians, at least until his domestic rivals were subdued.
The crusade ended in a truce and in Frederick's coronation as King of Jerusalem on 18 March 1229, although this was technically improper. Frederick's wife Yolande, the heiress, had died, leaving their infant son Conrad as rightful king. There is also disagreement as to whether the "coronation" was a coronation at all, as a letter written by Frederick to Henry III of England suggests that the crown he placed on his own head was in fact the imperial crown of the Romans.
In any case, Gerald of Lausanne, the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, did not attend the ceremony; indeed, the next day the Bishop of Caesarea arrived to place the city under interdict on the patriarch's orders. Frederick's further attempts to rule over the Kingdom of Jerusalem were met by resistance on the part of the barons, led by John of Ibelin, Lord of Beirut. In the mid-1230s, Frederick's viceroy was forced to leave Acre, and in 1244, following a siege, Jerusalem itself was lost again to a new Muslim offensive.
Whilst Frederick's seeming bloodless recovery of Jerusalem for the cross brought him great prestige in some European circles, his decision to complete the crusade while excommunicated provoked Church hostility. Although in 1230 the Pope lifted Frederick's excommunication at the Treaty of Ceprano, this decision was taken for a variety of reasons related to the political situation in Europe. Of Frederick's crusade, Philip of Novara, a chronicler of the period, said, "The emperor left Acre [after the conclusion of the truce]; hated, cursed, and vilified." Overall this crusade, arguably the first successful one since the First Crusade, was adversely affected by the manner in which Frederick carried out negotiations without the support of the church. He left behind a kingdom in the Levant torn between his agents and the local nobility, a civil war known as the War of the Lombards.
The itinerant Joachimite preachers and many radical Franciscans, the Spirituals, supported Frederick. Against the interdict pronounced on his lands, the preachers condemned the Pope and continued to minister the sacraments and grant absolutions. Brother Arnold in Swabia proclaimed the Second Coming for 1260, at which time Frederick would then confiscate the riches of Rome and distribute them among the poor, the "only true Christians."
War with the Pope and Henry's revolt
During Frederick's stay in the Holy Land, his regent, Rainald of Spoleto, had attacked the Marche and the Duchy of Spoleto. Gregory IX recruited an army under John of Brienne and, in 1229, invaded southern Italy. His troops overcame an initial resistance at Montecassino and reached Apulia. Frederick arrived at Brindisi in June 1229. He quickly recovered the lost territories and trialled the rebel barons, but avoided crossing the boundaries with the Papal States. The war came to an end with the Treaty of Ceprano in the summer of 1230; the emperor personally met Gregory IX at Anagni, making some concessions to the church in Sicily. He also issued the Constitutions of Melfi (August 1231), as an attempt to solve the political and administrative problems of the country, which had dramatically been shown by the recent war.
While he may have temporarily made his peace with the pope, Frederick found the German princes another matter. Frederick's son Henry VII (who was born 1211 in Sicily, son of Frederick's first wife Constance of Aragon) had caused their discontent with an aggressive policy against their privileges. This forced Henry to a complete capitulation, and the Statutum in favorem principum ("Statutes in favor of the princes"), issued at Worms, deprived the emperor of much of his sovereignty in Germany. Frederick summoned Henry to a meeting, which was held at Aquileia in 1232. Henry confirmed his submission, but Frederick was nevertheless compelled to confirm the Statutum at Cividale soon afterwards.
The situation for Frederick was also problematic in Lombardy, after all the emperor's attempts to restore the imperial authority in Lombardy with the help of Gregory IX (at the time, ousted from Rome by a revolt) turned to nothing in 1233. In the meantime Henry in Germany had returned to an anti-princes policy, against his father's will: Frederick thus obtained his excommunication from Gregory IX (July 1234). Henry tried to muster an opposition in Germany and asked the Lombard cities to block the Alpine passes. In May 1235, Frederick went to Germany, taking no army with him: as soon as July, however, he was able to force his son to renounce to the crown all his lands, at Worms, and then imprisoned him.
In Germany the Hohenstaufen and the Guelphs reconciled in 1235. Otto the Child, the grandson of Henry the Lion, had been deposed as Duke of Bavaria and Saxony in 1180, conveying the allodial Guelphic possessions to Frederick, who in return enfeoffed Otto with the same lands and additional former imperial possessions as the newly established Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg, ending the unclear status of the German Guelphs, who had been left without title and rank after 1180.
War in Lombardy
With peace north of the Alps, Frederick raised an army from the German princes to suppress the rebel cities in Lombardy. Gregory tried to stop the invasion with diplomatic moves, but in vain. During his descent to Italy, Frederick had to divert his troops to quell a rebellion of Frederick II, Duke of Austria. At Vienna, in February 1237, he obtained the title of King of the Romans for his 9-year-old son Conrad.
After the failure of the negotiations between the Lombard cities, the pope and the imperial diplomats, Frederick invaded Lombardy from Verona. In November 1237 he won the decisive battle in Cortenuova over the Lombard League. Frederick celebrated it with a triumph in Cremona in the manner of an ancient Roman emperor, with the captured carroccio (later sent to the commune of Rome) and an elephant. He rejected any suit for peace, even from Milan, which had sent a great sum of money. This demand of total surrender spurred further resistance from Milan, Brescia, Bologna, and Piacenza, and in October 1238 he was forced to raise the siege of Brescia, in the course of which his enemies had tried unsuccessfully to capture him.
Frederick received the news of his excommunication by Gregory IX in the first months of 1239:149 while his court was in Padua. The emperor responded by expelling the Franciscans and the Dominicans from Lombardy and electing his son Enzo as Imperial vicar for Northern Italy. Enzo soon annexed the Romagna, Marche, and the Duchy of Spoleto, nominally part of the Papal States. The father announced he was to destroy the Republic of Venice, which had sent some ships against Sicily. In December of that year Frederick marched over Tuscany, entered triumphantly into Foligno, and then in Viterbo, whence he aimed to finally conquer Rome to restore the ancient splendours of the Empire. The siege, however, was ineffective, and Frederick returned to Southern Italy, sacking Benevento (a papal possession). Peace negotiations came to nothing.
In the meantime the Ghibelline city of Ferrara had fallen, and Frederick swept his way northwards capturing Ravenna and, after another long siege, Faenza. The people of Forlì, which had kept its Ghibelline stance even after the collapse of Hohenstaufen power, offered their loyal support during the capture of the rival city: as a sign of gratitude, they were granted an augmentation of the communal coat-of-arms with the Hohenstaufen eagle, together with other privileges. This episode shows how the independent cities used the rivalry between Empire and Pope as a means to obtain maximum advantage for themselves.
The Pope called a council, but Ghibelline Pisa thwarted it, capturing cardinals and prelates on a ship sailing from Genoa to Rome. Frederick thought that this time the way into Rome was opened, and he again directed his forces against the Pope, leaving behind him a ruined and burning Umbria. Frederick destroyed Grottaferrata preparing to invade Rome. Then, on 22 August 1241, Gregory died. Frederick, showing that his war was not directed against the Church of Rome but against the Pope, drew back his troops and freed two cardinals from the jail of Capua. Nothing changed in the relationship between Papacy and Empire, however, as Roman troops assaulted the Imperial garrison in Tivoli and the Emperor soon reached Rome. This back-and-forth situation was repeated in 1242 and 1243.
In 1241-1242, the forces of the Golden Horde decisively defeated the armies of Hungary and Poland and devastated their countryside and all their unfortified settlements. King Béla IV of Hungary appealed to Frederick for aid, but Frederick, being in dispute with the Hungarian king for some time (as Bela had sided with the Papacy against him) and not wanting to commit to a major military expedition so readily, refused. He was unwilling to cross into Hungary, and although he went about unifying his magnates and other monarchs to potentially face a Mongol invasion, he specifically took his vow for the defense of the empire on “this side of the Alps.” Frederick was aware of the danger the Mongols posed, and grimly assessed the situation, but also tried to use it as leverage over the Papacy to frame himself as the protector of Christendom. While he called them traitorous pagans, Frederick expressed an admiration for Mongol military prowess after hearing of their deeds, in particular their able commanders and fierce discipline and obedience, judging the latter to be the greatest source of their success. He called a levy throughout Germany while the Mongols were busy raiding Hungary, but in mid 1241 dispersed his army back to their holdfasts as the Mongols preoccupied themselves with the lands east of the Danube, attempting to smash all Hungarian resistance. He subsequently ordered his vassals to strengthen their defenses, adopt a defensive posture, and gather large numbers of crossbowmen.
A chronicler reports that Frederick received a demand of submission from Batu Khan at some time, which he ignored. He apparently kept up to date on the Mongols' activities, as a letter from Frederick II dated June 1241 comments that the Mongols were now using looted Hungarian armor. A letter written by Emperor Frederick II, found in the Regesta Imperii, dated to June 20th 1241 and intended for all his vassals in Swabia, Austria, and Bohemia, included a number of specific military instructions. His forces were to avoid engaging the Mongols in field battles, hoard all food stocks in every fortress and stronghold, and arm all possible levies as well as the general populace. Thomas of Split comments that there was a frenzy of fortifying castles and cities throughout the Holy Roman Empire, including Italy. Either following the Emperor's instructions or on their own initiative, Frederick II, Duke of Austria paid to have his border castles strengthened at his own expense while King Wenceslaus I of Bohemia had every castle strengthened and provisioned, as well as providing soldiers and armaments to monasteries in order to turn them into refuges for the civilian population. Mongol probing attacks did materialize on the Holy Roman Empire's border states: a Mongol attack on Olomouc failed (the leader being captured in a sortie), a force was repulsed in a skirmish near Kłodzko, 300-700 Mongol troops were killed in a battle near Vienna to 100 Austrian losses (according to the Duke of Austria), and a Mongol raiding party was destroyed by Austrian knights in the district of Theben after being backed to the border of the River March. However a full-scale invasion never occurred, as the Mongols spent the next year pillaging Hungary before withdrawing. After the Mongols withdrew from Hungary back to Russia, Frederick turned his attention back towards Italian matters.
A new pope, Innocent IV, was elected on 25 June 1243. He was a member of a noble Imperial family and had some relatives in Frederick's camp, so the Emperor was initially happy with his election. Innocent, however, was to become his fiercest enemy. Negotiations began in the summer of 1243, but the situation changed as Viterbo rebelled, instigated by the intriguing local cardinal Ranieri Capocci. Frederick could not afford to lose his main stronghold near Rome, so he besieged the city. Innocent convinced the rebels to sign a peace but, after Frederick withdrew his garrison, Ranieri nonetheless had them slaughtered on 13 November. Frederick was enraged. The new Pope was a master diplomat, and Frederick signed a peace treaty, which was soon broken. Innocent showed his true Guelph face, and, together with most of the Cardinals, fled via Genoese galleys to Liguria, arriving on 7 July. His aim was to reach Lyon, where a new council was being held since 24 June 1245. Despite initially appearing that the council could end with a compromise, the intervention of Ranieri, who had a series of insulting pamphlets published against Frederick (in which, among other things, he defined the emperor as a heretic and an Antichrist), led the prelates towards a less accommodating solution. One month later, Innocent IV declared Frederick to be deposed as emperor, characterising him as a "friend of Babylon's sultan," "of Saracen customs," "provided with a harem guarded by eunuchs," like the schismatic emperor of Byzantium, and in sum a "heretic."
The Pope backed Heinrich Raspe, landgrave of Thuringia, as rival for the imperial crown and set in motion a plot to kill Frederick and Enzo, with the support of the pope's brother-in-law Orlando de Rossi, another friend of Frederick. The plotters were unmasked by the count of Caserta, however, and the city of Altavilla, where they had found shelter, was razed. The guilty were blinded, mutilated, and burnt alive or hanged. An attempt to invade the Kingdom of Sicily, under the command of Ranieri, was halted at Spello by Marino of Eboli, Imperial vicar of Spoleto.
Innocent also sent a flow of money to Germany to cut off Frederick's power at its source. The archbishops of Cologne and Mainz also declared Frederick deposed, and in May 1246 Heinrich Raspe was chosen as the new king. On 5 August 1246 Heinrich, thanks to the Pope's money, managed to defeat an army of Conrad, son of Frederick, near Frankfurt. Frederick strengthened his position in Southern Germany, however, acquiring the Duchy of Austria, whose duke had died without heirs. A year later Heinrich died, and the new anti-king was William II, Count of Holland.
Between February and March 1247 Frederick settled the situation in Italy by means of the diet of Terni, naming his relatives or friends as vicars of the various lands. He married his son Manfred to the daughter of Amedeo di Savoia and secured the submission of the marquis of Monferrato. On his part, Innocent asked protection from the King of France, Louis IX, but the king was a friend of the Emperor and believed in his desire for peace. A papal army under the command of Ottaviano degli Ubaldini never reached Lombardy, and the Emperor, accompanied by a massive army, held the next diet in Turin.
Battle of Parma
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An unexpected event was to change the situation dramatically. In June 1247 the important Lombard city of Parma expelled the Imperial functionaries and sided with the Guelphs. Enzo was not in the city and could do nothing more than ask for help from his father, who came back to lay siege to the rebels, together with his friend Ezzelino III da Romano, tyrant of Verona. The besieged languished as the Emperor waited for them to surrender from starvation. He had a wooden city, which he called "Vittoria", built around the walls.
On 18 February 1248, during one of these absences, the camp was suddenly assaulted and taken, and in the ensuing Battle of Parma the Imperial side was routed. Frederick lost the Imperial treasure and with it any hope of maintaining the impetus of his struggle against the rebellious communes and against the pope, who began plans for a crusade against Sicily. Frederick soon recovered and rebuilt an army, but this defeat encouraged resistance in many cities that could no longer bear the fiscal burden of his regime: Romagna, Marche and Spoleto were lost.
War with Denmark
The relationship with the Kingdom of Denmark and Frederick II with King Eric IV of Denmark, who had a special relationship with each other. Eric IV's death in 10 August 1250, Eric's brother Abel become King. Both Abel and Frederick II met in Lübeck with peace treaty with Denmark, which the war between Denmark and Holy Roman Empire during Otto IV's reign. When Abel died in 1252, with his brother, Christopher acceded the Danish throne. The relationship between Christopher I and Frederick II is become stall.
Christopher I become suspensions with Frederick by taken Lübeck, a war broke out in March 1257 between the Holy Roman Empire and Kingdom of Denmark over the control of Lübeck. The first siege of Lübeck by the Danes on 4 June 1257; which the Danes was successful for a short while. Frederick was anxious to get it back by force. The Danish King was able to hold Lübeck for a couple of months until fall the following year. With the second siege of Lübeck; which ended the Imperial was victory under Conirad was command. While Frederick II was at war with two fronts, he made peace with Poland. The Lubeck War ended on 4 or 6th of July 1258.
Death and succession
Frederick's health become to faded when on fall 1257, after his war against Denmark and for the Italian crown. The electors refused, however, claiming inability to support two kings, but in reality, perhaps, wary of the increasing power of the House of Habsburg. However Frederick II then abdicated the Germanic throne in 20 December 1250 to Rudolf I as King of Germany.
His major trouble of his health that Frederick  His second was he suffered from pains in his stomach, causing his health slowly declining draining his twenties and thirties. His first illness fall on winter of 1257 when his health first becoming to decline, but soon recovered March 1258.
By May 1258, Frederick suffered a stroke, left him paralyzed. Before Frederick II's death, his elder son, Rudolf I was chosen to be his successor, and went on to be elected in October of five years after Frederick's death. Frederick II retired to his imperial palace in Nuremberg, despite continual pain and discomfort from his series of wounds of battles where he died on 13 October 1258 at the age of 63, of his lingering wartime wounds. He was buried in Goslar Cathedral in Goslar. He is the only canonized Hohenstaufen Holy Roman Emperor, and couple of his successors were named Frederick.
In the immediate aftermath of Frederick's death, Frederick's son, Rudolf successfully claimed his father's lands; he later left his son Emperor Rudolf I on the contuning War of the Sicilian Vespers and went on to win as King of Italy. Frederick's contemporaries called him stupor mundi, the "astonishment of the world"; the majority of his contemporaries were indeed astonished – and sometimes repelled – by the pronounced unorthodoxy of the Plantagenet-Lusignan emperor and his temperamental stubbornness. Frederick earned the nicknames, the "Hammer of Christianity" (French: Serré-blindé) which means "tight mail" in English by the cursaders because the reason that Frederick was in tight chain-mail that was given by his father in his 14th birthday; because of his most successful Seventh Crusade.
Frederick was a popular emperor and a lot of monarchs expressed much grief on news of his death. Writing in the 1290s, Louis IX's grandson, Philip IV commented that "he lost an favorite ally". He was a religious sceptic. Despite accusations of blasphemy and paganism, and the presence of pagan and oriental elements in his imperial conceptions, Henry remained substantially linked to traditional Christianity, as shown by his early contacts with both the Franciscans and the Cistercians (in 1215 he was admitted to that order's praying community), as well as with St Elizabeth. In spite of this, Henry 's religious scepticism was unusual for the era in which he lived, and to his contemporaries was highly shocking and scandalous. His papal enemies used it against him at every turn; he was subsequently referred to as preambulus Antichristi (predecessor of the Antichrist) by Pope Gregory IX, and, as Frederick allegedly did not respect the privilegium potestatis of the Church, he was excommunicated.
Personality and appearance
Frederick inherited French, English, German, Norman, and Sicilian blood, but by training, lifestyle, and temperament he was "most of all Sicilian." Maehl concludes that "To the end of his life he remained above all a Sicilian grand signore, and his whole imperial policy aimed at expanding the Sicilian kingdom into Italy rather than the German kingdom southward." Cantor concludes that "Frederick had no intention of giving up Naples and Sicily, which were the real strongholds of its power. He was, in fact, uninterested in Germany." At the young age, Frederick was appearance of an femboy, who is act very feminine.
A Damascene chronicler, Sibt ibn al-Jawzi, left a physical description of Henry based on the testimony of those who had seen the emperor in person in Jerusalem: "The Emperor was covered with blonde hair, was bald and myopic. Had he been a slave, he would not have fetched 200 dirhams at market." Henry's eyes were described variously as blue, or "green like those of a serpent".
Saint Frederick the Great
Portrait of Conrad III from the Karlsschrein (1284)
|Holy Roman Emperor, Confessor|
|Venerated in||Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Communion|
|Canonized||11 July 1297 by Pope Boniface VIII|
|Attributes||Depicted as Holy Roman Emperor, generally with a crown, holding a sceptre with a fleur-de-lys on the end, possibly with green-yellow clothing with a trim of gold and with the coat of arms of the Lusignan Dynasty.|
|Patronage||Holy Roman Empire, German monarchy, Order of Saint James of Altopascio, Order of Saint Benedict, Goslar Cathedral, hairdressers; passementiers (lacemakers)|
Frederick become the patron saint of the Order of Saint James of Altopascio, together with French King Louis IX, Pope Boniface VIII proclaimed the canonisations of Louis and Frederick on 11 July 1297; he is the only German king and the second Holy Roman Emperor to be declared a saints respectfully. The impact of his canonization was so great that an couple of his successors were named Frederick.
His feast day is on Frederick 's death date, 13 October. While being venerated in within the Roman Catholic Church as well as the Anglican Communion, which possibility of Frederick's actually in the communion, or not.
Literature and science
Besides his great tolerance (which, however, did not apply to Christian heretics), Henry had a great thirst for knowledge and learning. Frederick employed Jews from Sicily, who had immigrated there from the holy land, at his court to translate Greek and Arabic works.
He played a major role in promoting literature through the Sicilian School of poetry. His Sicilian royal court in Palermo, saw the first use of a literary form of an Italo-Romance language, Sicilian. The poetry that emanated from the school had a significant influence on literature and on what was to become the modern Italian language. The school and its poetry were saluted by Dante and his peers and predate by at least a century the use of the Tuscan idiom as the elite literary language of Italy.
It is a scientific book, approaching the subject from Aristotle but based closely on observation and experiment throughout, Divisivus et Inquisitivus, in the words of the preface; it is at the same time a scholastic book, minute and almost mechanical in its divisions and subdivisions. It is also a rigidly practical book, written by a falconer for falconers and condensing a long experience into systematic form for the use of others.
Frederick's pride in his mastery of the art is illustrated by the story that, when he was ordered to become a subject of the Great Khan (Batu) and receive an office at the Khan's court, he remarked that he would make a good falconer, for he understood birds very well. He maintained up to fifty falconers at a time in his court, and in his letters he requested Arctic gyrfalcons from Lübeck and even from Greenland. One of the two existing versions was modified by his son Manfred, also a keen falconer.
Frederick loved exotic animals in general: his menagerie, with which he impressed the cold cities of Northern Italy and Europe, included hounds, giraffes, cheetahs, lynxes, leopards, exotic birds and an elephant.
He was also alleged to have carried out a number of experiments on people. These experiments were recorded by the monk Salimbene di Adam in his Chronicles. Amongst the experiments included shutting a prisoner up in a cask to see if the soul could be observed escaping though a hole in the cask when the prisoner died; feeding two prisoners, sending one out to hunt and the other to bed and then having them disemboweled to see which had digested their meal better; imprisoning children without any contact to see if they would develop a natural language.
In the language deprivation experiment young infants were raised without human interaction in an attempt to determine if there was a natural language that they might demonstrate once their voices matured. It is claimed he was seeking to discover what language would have been imparted unto Adam and Eve by God. In his Chronicles Salimbene wrote that Frederick bade "foster-mothers and nurses to suckle and bathe and wash the children, but in no ways to prattle or speak with them; for he would have learnt whether they would speak the Hebrew language (which had been the first), or Greek, or Latin, or Arabic, or perchance the tongue of their parents of whom they had been born. But he laboured in vain, for the children could not live without clappings of the hands, and gestures, and gladness of countenance, and blandishments."
Frederick was also interested in the stars, and his court was host to many astrologers and astronomers, including Michael Scot and Guido Bonatti. He often sent letters to the leading scholars of the time (not only in Europe) asking for solutions to questions of science, mathematics and physics. In 1224 he founded the University of Naples, the world's oldest state university: now called Università Federico II, it remained the sole atheneum of Southern Italy for centuries.
Historians rate Frederick II as a highly significant European monarch of the Middle Ages. This reputation was present even in Frederick's era. Lansing and English, two British historians, argue that medieval Palermo has been overlooked in favor of Paris and London:
one effect of this approach has been to privilege historical winners, aspects of medieval Europe that became important in later centuries, above all the nation state.... Arguably the liveliest cultural innovation in the 13th century was Mediterranean, centered on Frederick II's polyglot court and administration in Palermo....Sicily and the Italian South in later centuries suffered a long slide into overtaxed poverty and marginality. Textbook narratives therefore focus not on medieval Palermo, with its Muslim and Jewish bureaucracies and Arabic-speaking monarch, but on the historical winners, Paris and London.
Modern medievalists no longer accept the notion, sponsored by the popes, of Frederick as an anti-Christian. They argue that Frederick understood himself as a Christian monarch in the sense of a Byzantine emperor, thus as God's "viceroy" on earth. Whatever his personal feelings toward religion, certainly submission to the pope did not enter into the matter in the slightest. This was in line with the Hohenstaufen Kaiser-Idee, the ideology claiming the Holy Roman Emperor to be the legitimate successor to the Roman Emperors.
20th century treatments of Frederick vary from the sober (Wolfgang Stürner) to the dramatic (Ernst Kantorowicz). However, all agree on Frederick II's significance as Holy Roman Emperor. In the judgment of British historian Geoffrey Barraclough, Frederick's extensive concessions to German princes—which he made in the hopes of securing his base for his Italian projects—undid the political power of his predecessors and postponed German unity for centuries.
Frederick left numerous children, legitimate and illegitimate:
- First wife: Constance of Aragon (1179 – 23 June 1222). Marriage: 15 August 1209, at Messina, Sicily.
- Second wife: Matilda of Swabia (1212 – 25 April 1228). Marriage: 9 November 1225, at Brindisi, Apulia.
- Third wife: Isabella of England (1214 – 1 December 1241). Marriage: 15 July 1235, at Worms, Germany.
- Jordan (born during the Spring of 1236, failed to survive the year); this child was given the baptismal name Jordanus as he was baptized with water brought for that purpose from the Jordan river.
- Agnes (b and d. 1237).
- Henry (18 February 1238 – May 1253), named after Henry III of England, his uncle; appointed Governor of Sicily and promised to become King of Jerusalem after his father died, but he, too, died within three years and was never crowned. Betrothed to many of Pope Innocent IV's nieces, but never married to any.
- Margaret (1 December 1241 – 8 August 1270), married Albert, Landgrave of Thuringia, later Margrave of Meissen.
- Frederick had a relationship with Bianca Lancia (c. 1200/10 – 1230/46), possibly starting around 1225. One source states that it lasted 20 years. She bore him three children:
Matthew of Paris relates the story of a marriage in articulo mortis (on her deathbed) between them when Bianca was dying, but this marriage was never recognized by the Church. Nevertheless, Bianca's children were apparently regarded by Frederick as legitimate, evidenced by his daughter Constance's marriage to the Nicaen Emperor, and his own will, in which he appointed Manfred as Prince of Taranto and Regent of Sicily.[lower-alpha 1]
Mistresses and illegitimate issue
- Unknown name, Sicilian Countess. Her exact parentage is unknown, but Thomas Tuscus's Gesta Imperatorum et Pontificum (c. 1280) stated she was a nobili comitissa quo in regno Sicilie erat heres.
- Frederick of Pettorano (1212/13 – aft. 1240), who fled to Spain with his wife and children in 1240.
- Adelheid (Adelaide) of Urslingen (c. 1184 – c. 1222). Her relationship with Frederick II took place during the time he stayed in Germany between 1215 and 1220. According to some sources, she was related to the Hohenburg family under the name Alayta of Vohburg (it: Alayta di Marano); but the most accepted theory stated she was the daughter of Conrad of Urslingen, Count of Assisi and Duke of Spoleto.
- Matilda or Maria, from Antioch.
- An unknown member of the Lancia family:
- Manna, niece of Berardo di Castagna, Archbishop of Palermo:
- Richard of Chieti (1224/25 – 26 May 1249).
- Anais of Brienne (c. 1205–1236), cousin of Isabella II of Jerusalem:
- Blanchefleur (1226 – 20 June 1279), Dominican nun in Montargis, France.
- Richina of Wolfsöden (c. 1205 – 1236):
- Margaret of Swabia (1230–1298), married Thomas of Aquino, count of Acerra.
- Unknown mistress:
- Gerhard (died after 1255).
- Frederick II was crowned King in Germany in 1212. He deposed his rival Otto IV in 1215 and received the Imperial coronation in 1220.
- Even though that Frederick II named his son Rudolf his successor in 1254, but will have to gained the Prince-electors in the upcoming election in 1258, but eventually win the elector as Emperor on October 1260.
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|Historipedia has media related to: Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor|
- Abulafia, David (1988). Frederick II. A Medieval Emperor. Penguin Press. ISBN: 88-06-13197-4.
- Barraclough, Geoffrey (1984). The Origins of Modern Germany. Norton. ISBN: 0-393-30153-2.
- Cassady, Richard F. (2011). The Emperor and the Saint: Frederick II of Hohenstaufen, Francis of Assisi, and Journeys to Medieval Places. DeKalb: Northern Illinois University Press.
- Cavendish, Richard (December 2000). "Death of the Emperor Frederick II". History Today 50 (12).
- Davis, R. H. C. (1988). A History of Medieval Europe. Longman. ISBN: 0-582-01404-2.
- Kantorowicz, Ernst (1931). Frederick the Second, 1194–1250., the fundamental scholarly biography
- Maalouf, Amin (1989). The Crusades Through Arab Eyes. Schocken. ISBN: 0-8052-0898-4.
- Masson, Georgina (1957). Frederick II of Hohenstaufen. Martin Secker & Warburg. ISBN: 88-452-9107-3.
- Powell, James M. (April 2007). Church and Crusade: Frederick II and Louis IX. 93. pp. 251–264. doi:10.1353/cat.2007.0201.
- Smith, Thomas W. "Between two kings: Pope Honorius III and the seizure of the Kingdom of Jerusalem by Frederick II in 1225." Journal of Medieval History 41, 1 (2015): 41–59.
- Van Cleve, T. C. (1972). The Emperor Frederick II of Hohenstaufen: Immuntator Mundi. Oxford. ISBN: 0-198-22513-X.
- The Art of Falconry: Being the De arte venandi cum avibus of Frederick II of Hohenstaufen. Stanford: Stanford University Press. 2004 [c. 1250]. ISBN: 978-0-8047-0374-1. OCLC 474664651.
- Page at Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani website (Italian)
- Frederick II – Encyclopædia Britannica
- Psalter of Frederick II from around 1235-1237
- Template:Geschichtsquellen Person
- Stupor mundi Italian website
- Deed by Frederick II for the branch of the Teutonic Order in Nuremberg, 30 January 1215, Template:LBALink.
Frederick II, Holy Roman EmperorBorn: 26 December 1194 Died: 13 October 1258
| Duke of Swabia
Title last held byOtto IV
| King of Germany
|— DISPUTED —
King of Italy
Disputed by Pope Alexander IV
Reason for dispute:
Wars of the Lombardy Crown (1254 – 1272)
Title next held byRudolf I
| Holy Roman Emperor|
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