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History of the Lombards

Book 6

Chapter XXV.

And so duke Ferdulf having died in this way, Corvolus was appointed in his place, but he held the dukedom only a little while, and when he had offended the king, his eyes were torn out and he lived ignominiously.

Chapter XXVI.

Afterwards indeed Pemmo acquired the dukedom. [1] He was a man of talent and useful to his country. His father was Billo who had been a native of Bellunum (Belluno), but on account of a sedition he had caused at that place he afterwards came to Forum Julii, and lived there peacefully. This Pemmo had a wife, Ratperga by name, who since she was boorish in appearance often asked her husband to send her away and take another wife whom it would befit to be the spouse of so great a duke. But as he was a wise man he said that her behavior and humility and reverent modesty pleased him more than beauty of body. From this wife then Pemmo begot three sons, Ratchis and Ratchait and Ahistulf, [2] energetic men, whose birth raised the humility of their mother to high honor. This duke collected all the sons of all the nobles who had died in the war of which we have spoken, and brought them up in like manner with his own children as if they themselves had been begotten by him.

[1] De Rubeis (319) thinks this was in 705. He held the dukedom about twenty-six years (Hodgkin, VI, 332).
[2] Ratchis and Aistulf were afterwards kings of the Langobards.

Chapter XXVII.

At this time then, Gisulf the ruler of the Beneventines took Sura (Sora), a city of the Romans, and in like manner the towns of Hirpinum (Arpino) and Arx (Arce). [1] This Gisulf at the time of Pope John [2] came to Campania with all his forces burning and plundering, took many captives and set up his camp as far as in the place which is called Horrea,[3] and no one could resist him. The Pontiff sent priests to him with apostolic gifts and redeemed all the captives from the hands of his troops, and induced the duke himself to go back home with his army.

[1] Three towns on or near the river Liris or Garigliano and something over fifty miles southeast of Rome.
[2] John VI, A. D. 701-704. Others think, John V, A. D. 685 (Waitz).
[3] Hodgkin (VI, 336, note 2) believes that Puteoli is intended - Duchesne, followed by Hartmann (II, 2, 116), says it was a place at the fifth milestone of the Via Latina. It seems uncertain whether one incursion or more was meant by this chapter of Paul (Id).

Chapter XXVIII.

At this time [1] Aripert king of the Langobards made restitution by gift of the patrimony of the Cottian Alps [2] which had formerly belonged to the jurisdiction of the Apostolic See but had been taken away by the Langobards a long time before, and he dispatched this deed of gift written in golden letters to Rome. Also in these days [3] two kings of the Saxons [4] coming to Rome to the footsteps of the apostles, died suddenly as they desired.

[1] A. D. 707 (Giansevero).
[2] Paul does not intend to say that this patrimony included the whole province of the Cottian Alps, but simply that part of the papal patrimony was in that province (Hodgkin, VI, 324, note 2).
[3] This is erroneous, the king's pilgrimage did not occur during the papacy of John VI (701-705), to whom Aripert made this gift, but in 709 under Constantine I (Jacobi, p. 50; Hodgkin, VI, 323).
[4] Coinred king of the Mercians and Offa prince of the East Saxons (Hodgkin, VI, 323).

Chapter XXIX.

Then also Benedict archbishop of Mediolanum (Milan) came to Rome and conducted his lawsuit for the church of Ticinum, but he was defeated because from early times the bishops of Ticinum had been consecrated by the Roman Church. [1] This venerable archbishop Benedict was a man of eminent holiness, and the fame of good opinion concerning him shone brightly throughout the whole of Italy.

[1] The date of this is fixed by Paul at too early a period (Jacobi, 56).

Chapter XXX.

Then when Transamund, the duke of the Spoletans had died, [1] Faruald his son, succeeded to his father's place. Moreover, Wachilapus was the brother of Transamund and governed that same dukedom equally with his brother.

[1] He appears to have reigned forty years from 663 to 703 (Hodgkin, VI, 337).

Chapter XXXI.

But Justinian, who had lost his imperial power and was in exile in Pontus, again received the sovereignty by the help of Terebellus, king of the Bulgarians, and put to death those patricians who had expelled him. He took also Leo and Tiberius [1] who had usurped his place and caused them to be butchered in the midst of the circus before all the people. [2] He tore out the eyes of Gallicinus [3] the patriarch of Constantinople and sent him to Rome and he appointed Cyrus the abbot who had taken care of him when he was an exile in Pontus, as bishop in the place of Gallicinus. He ordered Pope Constantine to come to him, and received him and sent him back with honor. [4] Falling upon the earth he asked the Pope to intercede for his sins and he renewed all of the privileges of his church. [5] When he sent his army into Pontus to seize Filippicus, whom he had held there in bondage, this same venerable Pope earnestly forbade him from doing this but he could not, however, prevent it.

[1] Paul has here misunderstood the language of Rede from whom he took this statement and who said that Justinian executed Leo (Leontius) and Tiberius (Apsimar) the patricians who had expelled him. No other patricians are referred to (Jacobi, 50).
[2] Justinian II, who had been exiled to Cherson (see ch. 12, note supra), was rejected by the citizens of that place, whereupon he roamed through the southern part of Russia and took refuge with the Cagan of the Khazars, a Hunnish tribe settled around the sea of Azof, and the Cagan gave him in marriage his sister Theodora. The reigning emperor Tiberius sent messengers to the Cagan offering him great gifts to kill or surrender Justinian. The Cagan listened to the tempting proposals, but Theodora warned her husband, who fled to the Danube, where Terbel or Terebellus joined him in an effort to regain the throne. With the aid of the Bulgarians he attacked and conquered Constantinople. His two rivals, who had successively reigned in his absence, were now both loaded with chains and brought before his throne in the Hippodrome where he placed his feet upon their necks before causing them to be beheaded at the place of public execution (Hodgkin, 365-368).
[3] Callinicus (not Gallicinus) had preached a sermon rejoicing at the overthrow of Justinian ten years before (Hodgkin, VI, 361).
[4] Constantine left Rome October, 710 (Hodgkin, VI, 375) and returned October, 711 (id., p. 379).
[5] It is probable that the decrees of the Quinisextan Council were now accepted by the pope (Hodgkin, VI, 378-379).

Chapter XXXII.

The army too which had been sent against Filippicus joined Filippicus' side and made him emperor. He came to Constantinople against Justinian, fought with him at the twelfth milestone from the city, conquered and killed him, and obtained his sovereign power. Justinian indeed reigned six years with his son Tiberius in this second term. [1] Leo in banishing him cut off his nostrils and he, after he had assumed the sovereignty, as often as he wiped off his hand flowing with a drop of rheum, almost so often did he order some one of those who had been against him to be slain. [2]

[1] In his insane fury for revenge against the people of Cherson who had rejected him when he was exiled, Justinian sent three expeditions against that city to destroy it. In the first of these its leading citizens were seized and sent for punishment to Constantinople, where some were roasted alive and others drowned ; but Justinian still accused his generals of slackness in executing his orders and sent others in their places, who were, however, compelled to give up the bloody work, and then for self-protection to join the party of revolt which gathered around one Bardanis, an Armenian, who was proclaimed emperor under the name of Filippicus, whereupon an expedition set out for Constantinople to dethrone Justinian. It was entirely successful. The tyrant was deserted by his subjects, and with his son Tiberius was captured and slain (Hodgkin, 379-384).
[2] A reign of terror had followed the restoration of Justinian and innumerable victims perished. Some were sewn up in sacks and thrown into the sea, others invited to a great repast and when they rose to leave were sentenced to execution (Hodgkin, VI,369). He was specially infuriated against the city of Ravenna and sent a fleet thither under the patrician Theodore, seized the chief men of the city, brought them to Constantinople, blinded the archbishop Felix, and put the rest to death (pp. 373-374). Justinian then sent as exarch to Italy John Rizokopus, who went first to Rome and put to death a number of papal dignitaries and then proceeded to Ravenna, where in a struggle with the local forces he was killed. The people of Ravenna refused to recognize Justinian, and chose a leader of their own in the person of Georgius, who organized an autonomous government and established a military organization in Italy independent of Byzantium (Hartmann, II, 2, 78-81).

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