The career, mental world and writings of Regino, abbot of Prüm, were all defined by the Carolingian empire and, more particularly, by its end. The high Ottonian period of the mid-tenth century also witnessed a revival of historiography, exemplified by the work of the two major authors who wrote about the rise of the dynasty. The first of these was Liutprand of Cremona, whose Antapodosis, a history of European politics from 888 until around 950, and Historia Ottonis, a focused account of events surrounding Otto's imperial coronation, were both written in the earlier 960s. The second was Adalbert, who most probably wrote his continuation to the Chronicle in 967/968. Regino's Chronicle, dedicated to Bishop Adalbero of Augsburg in the year 908, was the last work of its kind for several decades, and as such its author can be regarded as the last great historian of the Carolingian Empire. The Chronicle is divided into two books. The first, subtitled 'On the times of the Lord's incarnation', begins with the incarnation of Christ and proceeds as far as the death of Charles Martel in 741. The second 'On the deeds of the kings of the Franks' takes the story from the death of Charles Martel through to 906. The much shorter continuation by Adalbert of Magdeburg enjoys a place in the canon of works relating to the history of the earliest German Reich and consequently has received considerably more attention.
ruler-biographies, lesser annals and widescreen universal chronicles,
not to mention commentaries on biblical and classical history, make
possible for us the detailed reconstruction of Carolingian politics and
the analysis of ninth-century historical sensibilities. 3 Regino’s
Chronicle , dedicated to Bishop AdalberoofAugsburg in the
year 908, was the last work of its kind for several decades, and as such
Chronicle may have covered all of Frankish
history, but Regino’s focus was clearly on contemporary themes and events.
Moreover, Regino was not a passive observer, but actively participated in the
events he chronicled. On a personal level, he wrote to regain his former influence in the realm. All the treatises he wrote in Trier were dedicated to leading
aristocrats in the hope that they might restore him to a position of a uthority.19
The Chronicle had, for example, been dedicated to Bishop AdalberoofAugsburg, godfather to King Louis ‘the Child’ (d. 911). Sadly, Regino