Childebert II

Childebert II
born 570
died Dec. 595

Merovingian king of Austrasia (575–95) and king of Burgundy (592–95).

(See Merovingian dynasty.) He inherited the eastern Frankish kingdom of Austrasia on the death of his father, Sigebert I, and was dominated by his mother in the early years of his reign. His uncle, Guntram of Burgundy, adopted Childebert as his heir in 577. When he came of age he purged the Austrasian nobility (584) and launched a series of unsuccessful campaigns against the Lombards of Italy. He became ruler of Burgundy on his uncle's death in 592.

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▪ Merovingian king
born 570
died 596

      Merovingian king of the eastern Frankish kingdom of Austrasia and later also king of Burgundy.

      Still very young on the death of his father, Sigebert I, in 575, Childebert was dominated by his mother, Brunhild, who was hostile to his uncle, King Chilperic (Chilperic I) of Soissons. The intervention in 575 of a second uncle, Guntram of Burgundy, to protect Childebert's southern lands against Chilperic was followed two years later by Guntram's adoption of his young nephew as his heir. The Austrasian–Burgundian alliance was briefly broken in 581, when Chilperic too adopted Childebert, but Guntram bought off Childebert by the cession of territory.

      After Chilperic's death in 584, Childebert, now of age, purged the Austrasian nobility and, in ostensible alliance with the Byzantine emperor, embarked on a series of unsuccessful but not unprofitable campaigns against the Lombards of Italy. Settling his differences with Guntram, who again recognized him as heir, he duly took over Burgundy on his uncle's death in 592. Free of Guntram's restraining hand, he immediately attacked Chilperic's young son and successor, Chlotar II, but was defeated. He was succeeded by his two young sons, Theodebert II and Theodoric II.

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