Medieval Counties Project
Counties of Carolingian and
The overall intention is to describe the construction of the comitatus in terms both of the inherited right of counts and of geographical continuity in the pagi. Data coalesces around the reconstruction of family relationships, hence the results are organized according to the families who held counties. The presentation ultimately reflects the establishment of territorial principalities as a final stage of transition.
A significant part of the reconstruction is performed through inferences concerning continuity in the pagi, and the underlying goal of a comprehensive description of the pagi and their relevance is therefore accepted. Essentially this means that in theory the entire area of the Carolingian world is covered. However, in many cases a poverty of data concerning pagi prevents a clear understanding of the geographical basis of comital titles. Ocassionally it may be possible to describe the comital family without ascertaining the precise basis of the comital title.
Nevertheless, in some instances the pagi may become the driving force behind the reconstruction. A province may contain a certain number of counties, each based on a specific pagus. In these circumstances the possibility arises of assigning a given count to the succession in a particular pagus, simply because there is a vacancy in that succession which he can logically fill. In the final analysis, therefore, the pagi themselves may sometimes constitute a key resource in the reconstruction of comital succession, providing one of several methods peculiar to the investigation.
Transition from the Carolingian pagi to dynastic territories, circa 900 to circa 1200
Perseverence or disappearance of comital titles as constitutional manifestation
Point of succession, role of inheritance, description of heritability in terms of law
Higher office: succession principles, idiosyncracies, contrast with fundamental office of count
Differentiation of regional tendencies in reference to legal foundations
Accurate observation of onomastic practices in comital dynasties
Interpretation of heraldic choices in terms of constitutional phenomena