Zeitschrift Aufsätze

Claudia Lydorf

Das Testament Kaiser Ottos IV.

Otto IV. died on the 19. Mai 1218. He
was the first medieval emperor, whose will survived until our days as
a document. The events taking place around his death-bed are
described in the “Narratio de testamento et morte Ottonis
quartuor imperatoris”. Since the first edition of Ottos last
will, the question is discussed in which way these two different
sources are related. Is the document more to be trusted than the
narrative? Does the narration report real events or is its only
purpose the perpetuation of the emperors <i>memoria</i>? Are the
evidences about the making of the will given in the document
supporting the description of the Narratio?
<p class="western" lang="en-GB">But not only the possibility to
compare the document and the Narratio is interesting. From two
different perspectives, these sources are reflecting the difficult
situation Otto faced as an excommunicated and politically abandoned
ruler in Mai 1218. How he tried to be absolved and to maintain his
dignity as a sovereign at the same time, is another important aspect
in this study.


Aufsatz vom 4. August 2007
© 2007 fhi
ISSN: 1860-5605
4. August 2007