This was the second of three treaties that divided the Carolingian Empire and followed the Treaty of Verdun (843). The Holy Roman Emperor Lothair I had already seen the domain of his father, Louis the Pious, divided between himself and his two younger brothers, Louis the German and Charles the Bald. His domain now consisted of the realm of Middle Francia, which included the cities of Aachen and Rome. The dying Emperor further divided his realm between his three sons: he granted his eldest son Louis II the imperial crown and the kingdom of Italy; Lothair II was granted Frisia and parts of Austrasia, including the capital of Aachen, later to be known as Lotharingia; Charles became King of Provence, and much of Burgundy.
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