History With Crusader Kings: Ludwig ‘The German’


Ludwig begins as the king of East Francia, a rather large realm. Though the head of a powerful state, his son and heir severely hate him. Karlmann will be your biggest internal threat to stability. How you deal with it will determine how your efforts to reunite the Franks will go. Ludwig has many claims you can use to further ambitions of unification. However, Ludwig’s old age will be one more big obstacle towards said goal.


Ludwig has pretty average stats with a decent, above-average martial score. Reflective of his attempts to wrest West Francia away from Charles the Bald. Louis’ nickname ‘the German’ did not come to him until much later. Though his contemporary title would refer to him as King of Germania, which didn’t denote the people, rather to an area the Romans had defined as Germania.


Rebellious Beginnings



During his younger years, it was said Ludwig won the affection of his grandfather, Charlemagne. When Louis the Pious, his father, partitioned his empire, Ludwig would receive Bavaria to govern. During this time, he’d take part in wars against Wends, Sorbs, and later lead campaigns against the Bulgarians.


Ludwig would also take part in his brothers’ rebellious wars against their father. He wasn’t involved much during the first civil war. However, he was persuaded to actively take part in the second one through promises of land. Ludwig would invade Alemannia, which Louis the Pious had wanted to give to his youngest, Charles the Bald. Ludwig would fail to take Alemannia, but his father would soon be captured and deposed; though for only a moment. A third civil war would ignite, this time with Ludwig instigating it. Caused by his father’s attempt at granting land to Charles which included a strip of land belonging to Ludwig. His father would take swift action against his second invasion of Alemannia.


Opportunistic Man


When emperor Louis died, Ludwig would join forces with Charles the Bald against their brother, Lothair, who’d styled themselves as emperor. The two would win but not without heavy casualties. The three brothers would meet to negotiate peace and arrange borders, splitting the empire into three. Ludwig would later make many attempts at seizing West Francia from Charles with no real success. Though his first invasion was technically a success, the church continued its support of Charles. With treachery and desertion in his army, Ludwig would make peace with Charles.


When Lothair I died, Ludwig would make plans to divide the former’s lands with Charles. Once Lothair I’s heir, Lothair II, died, Charles would seize Lotharingia. Due to illness and an occupied army, Ludwig wasn’t able to respond in time. After a swift recovery, Ludwig would demand to be given the land promised during the partition agreement.


Poetic Irony


At this point an old man, his reign was troubled by rebellious sons. As he did to his father, his sons enforced demands over land. Ludwig would have his realm partitioned among his sons. The infighting would be halted for a moment when Louis II of Italy had died. Ludwig would attempt to win over the crown for his son Karlmann, but Charles would beat him to the punch. He invades Charles’ Lotharingian possessions in an attempt to strongarm Charles. However, Charles would put a swift resistance to Ludwig’s aggression. Ludwig would soon die in 876 whilst planning for another campaign against Charles. He is seen by some as the founder of the German kingdom as he consolidated a large part of what would later become Germany.



Source: Wikipedia

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