Anscario first appears in 879, when he was sent as an envoy to Ludwig/Louis of Germany by those loyal to the sons of Louis le Bègue ["... miserunt Vultarium episcopum Aurelianensem et Goiramnum ac Ansgerum comites ad Hludowicum apud Viridunum, " Ann. Bertin., s.a. 879, 149]. He appears on a donation of king Carloman to Montieramey on 17 November 882 ["... illustres fideles nostri Rotbertus et Anscarius, dilecti nobis comites ..." Giry (1896), 131 (#18)], and on another charter of Carloman dated 6 March 883 ["Theodericus et Anscharius comites ambasciaverunt." RHF 9: 430]. On 15 January 887, he appears as count of Oscheret in a charter of the emperor Charles the Fat ["... et in comitatu Oscarensi villa quae Fiscinis nuncupatur, ex jam dicti comitis Anscarii honoribus ..." Ronserot (1893), 525 (#14)]. In 889, with his brother Guy/Guido, he was a major supporter of Guido of Spoleto (later emperor) in his struggle for the Italian throne, and the brothers led 500 men against Berengario I, with Anscario's brother dying in the second battle between the two rivals [Gesta Berengarii imperatoris, ii, 15, Dümmler (1871), 97; ibid, ii, 189 (p. 107); see below under Guy/Guido]. Anscario appears as marchio in charters of emperor Guido on 21 February 891 ["Anscherius marchio" Dipl. Guido & Lamb., 12 (#5), 17 (#7)] and 29 June 892 ["Anskerii nostri strenuissimi marchionis" ibid., 41 (#15)], and in a charter of the emperor Lamberto on 25 July 896 ["dilectissimus marchio noster atque fidelissimus comes Anscharius" ibid., 82 (#5)]. Soon after the death of Lambert (15 October 898), Anscario reconciled with king Berengario I, with whom he appears in an act of 1 December 898 ["Ascherium illustrem marchionem" Dipl. Bereng. I, 70 (#23)]. Anscario may have been the man of that name who appeared in a letter of pope John IX in May 899 ["Anscharium comitem dilectum filium nostrum" PL 131: 30 (#3)]. He was definitely deceased by 21 April 902, when his son Adalberto appears as "Adalbertus marchio filius quondam Anscherii" [Hlawitschka (1960), sketch of Adalbert von Ivrea, citing Dipl. Lodov. III, 51 (#18) (not seen by me)].
Date of birth: Unknown.
Place of birth: Unknown.
Date of death: 898×902.
Place of death: Unknown.
See the Commentary section for some conjectures about the parentage of Anscario.
Adalberto, margrave of Ivrea;
m. (1) Gisela, daughter of Berengario I, king of Italy.
m. (2) Ermengarde, daughter of Adalberto II, margrave of Tuscany, by his wife Bertha.
Brother: Guy/Guido, d. 889, count.
Guido is mentioned as one of the early supporters of king (later emperor) Guido of Spoleto against Berengario I ["Anscherio cum fratre simul, ..." with the gloss "cognominis erat duci Gallorum, id est Wido." Gesta Berengarii imperatoris, ii, 15, Dümmler (1871), 97; "Hic uidet Anscherius fratrem ..." with the gloss "suum, scilicet Widonem" ibid, ii, 189 (p. 107)]. He has been identified with a Burgundian count Guy who appears from 877 to 882 [Dümmler (1871), 23, n. 1; Poupardin (1901), 82, n. 1]. This Guy appears in the Capitulary of Quierzy in 877 [MGH Leg. 1: 540], and in a charter of the emperor Charles the Fat dated 4 November 882 ["Wido comes" Sickel (1869), 414 (#9)].
Poupardin (1901), Chaume:
Conjectured father: Guy, d. 20 June, before 869, count.
Guy possessed the villa of Vendoeuvre some time before 865 ["... villa quae Vendopera dicitur, quam piae memoriae Hludowicus imperator sancto Petro tradiderat et Wido quidam comes per plures annos tenuerat, ..." Ann. Bertin., s.a. 865, 78], and died on a 20 June, before 869 [Poupardin (1901), 82, n. 1]. While Poupardin does not explicitly call this Guy the father of Anscario, he conjectures Guy to be the father of Anscario's brother, the Guy who died in 889 [ibid., 82, n. 1, 168]. The earlier Guy is then conjectured by Poupardin to be the son of yet another Guy, the count of Maine who died in 834 [ibid., 82, n. 1]. Like Poupardin, Chaume conjectures Anchier/Anscario and Guy/Guido (d. 889) as the sons of Guy, d. before 869, who is then conjectured to be the brother of an Anchier and son of count Amédée of Langres [Chaume (1925), 1: 539 (table 6); see the next conjecture].
Conjectured father: Amédée, count of Langres.
This possible parentage, suggested by Poupardin in 1907, who apparently overlooked that this disagreed with his 1901 conjecture [Poupardin (1907), 22], is based on a charter of Richard le Justicier, duke of Burgundy, dated 18 May 918, in which he restored certain possessions in the pagus of Langres to the canons of Langres which had been previously granted by a certain count Amédée and his wife (unnamed) and his son Anchier ["... in pago Lingonico, quam ex longinquo tempore Amadeus comes in suo nomine et uxoris suae, necnon et filii ejus Anscharii ..." Ronserot (1897), 184 (#13)]. This theory depends on the identification of the Anchier of that charter with Anchier/Anscario of Oscheret and Ivrea. The major weakness of this theory is that there is no clear evidence as to when the count Amédée and his son Anchier lived. As noted above, Chaume placed them a generation earlier.
Falsely attributed father: Eudes, d. 870×1, count of Anjou, Châteaudun, Troyes.
[For Eudes, see the Commentary section of the page of Robert the Strong.]
Falsely attributed brother: Eudes (Otus), killed 889.
Wüstenfeld bases this theory on the supposed appearance of Anscario in book 2, line 158 of the MGH edition of the Gesta Berengarii ["Ascherium sternens heros Atesinus et Otum" Panegyricus Berengarii, ii, 158, MGH SS 4: 199], but Dümmler's more accurate edition shows that Ascherium is a misreading ["Alcherium sternens heros Athesinus et Othum" Gesta Berengarii imperatoris, ii, 158, Dümmler (1871), 106]. Based on this inaccurate reading, Wüstenfeld concluded that the brother of Anscario named at lines 15 and 189 was this Otus of line 158, when in fact the important manuscript glosses to the Gesta Berengarii (which were not given in the MGH edition that Wüstenfeld was using) show that Anscario's brother was named Guido [see above]. Wüstenfeld interprets the name Otus as being Odo/Eudes (the name Otto is another possibility), and points out another record in which an Anchier and Eudes are in close relationship, a charter of Charles the Bald from 16 August 851 in which the deacon Anchier received a grant from Charles at the request of Eudes, count of Anjou [RHF 8: 518; Wüstenfeld (1863), 420-1]. Based on this slim and mistaken evidence, Wüstenfeld conjectured that Eudes of Anjou was the father of Anscario.
brother: Guido of Spoleto,
d. December 894, king of Italy, emperor.
This error is due to a careless reading of a few lines in Gesta Berengarii imperatoris, in which the fratris of Anscherius was wrongly identified as Guido of Spoleto [Gesta Berengarii imperatoris, ii, 13-15, Dümmler (1871), 97]. This error is discussed by Wüstenfeld [Wüstenfeld (1863), 419ff.] and Dümmler [Dümmler (1871), 22-3].
Ann. Bertin. = G. Waitz, ed., Annales Bertiniani (MGH SRG 6, Hannover, 1883).
Chaume (1925) = Maurice Chaume, Les origines du duché de Bourgogne, 4 vols. (Dijon, 1925).
Dipl. Bereng. I = Luigi Schiaparelli, ed., I diplomi di Berengario I (vol. 1, Rome, 1903).
Dipl. Guido & Lamb. = Luigi Schiaparelli, ed., I diplomi di Guido e di Lamberto (vol. 1, Rome, 1906).
Dipl. Lodov. III = Luigi Schiaparelli, ed., I diplomi italiani di Lodovico III e di Rodolfo II (Fonti per la storia d'Italia, 37, Rome 1910). [I have not seen this work.]
Dümmler (1862-88) = Ernst Dümmler, Geschichte des Ostfränkischen Reiches (Leipzig, 1862-88).
Dümmler (1871) = Ernst Dümmler, Gesta Berengarii Imperatoris (Halle, 1871).
Giry (1896) = Arthur Giry, "Étude carolingiennes", in Études d'histoire du Moyen Age dédiées à Gabriel Monod (Paris, 1896), 107-136.
Hlawitschka (1960) = Eduard Hlawitschka, Franken, Alemannen, Bayern und Burgunder in Oberitalien (774-962) (Freiburg, 1960).
MGH Leg. = Monumenta Germaniae Historica, Leges series.
MGH SRG = Monumenta Germaniae Historica, Scriptores rerum Germanicarum (separate editions).
PL = P. Migne, Patrologiae Cursus Completus, series Latina, 221 vols. (Paris, 1844-1859).
Poupardin (1901) = René Poupardin, Le royaume de Provence sous les Carolingiens (Paris, 1901).
Poupardin (1907) = René Poupardin, Le royaume de Bourgogne (888-1038) - Étude sur les origines du royaume d'Arles (Paris, 1907).
RHF = Recueil des historiens des Gaules et de la France.
Ronserot (1893) = Alphonse Ronserot, "Diplòmes carolingiens originaux des archives de la Haute-Marne", Bulletin de la Société des Sciences Historiques et Naturelles de l'Yonne 47.1 (1893), 503-539.
Ronserot (1897) = Alphonse Ronserot, "Chartes inédites des IXe et Xe siècles appartenant aux archives de la Haute-Marne (851-973)", Bulletin de la Société des Sciences Historiques et Naturelles de l'Yonne 51.1 (1897), 161-207.
Sickel (1869) = Th. Sickel, "Diplome des 8., 9., and 10. Jahrhunderts", Forschungen zur Deutschen Geschichte 9 (1869), 403-434.
Wüstenfeld (1863) = Ch. Wüstenfeld, "Ueber die Herzoge von Spoleto aus dem Hause der Guidonen", Forschungen zur Deutschen Geschichte 3 (1863): 383-432.
Compiled by Stewart Baldwin
First uploaded 20 September 2008.
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