Open main menu
Rachis depicted on a gold coin, 744–749.
Altar of Ratchis in Cividale, dedicated to the memory of his father Pemmo

Ratchis (also spelled Rachis, Raditschs, Radics, Radiks; died after 757) was the Duke of Friuli (739–744) and King of the Lombards (744–749).

BiographyEdit

His father was Duke Pemmo, and he was the nephew of Italian king Liutprand, who appointed him as duke of Friuli in 737 despite former strife with Pemmo. Rachis was married to a Roman woman named Tassia. During his rule of Friuli, he launched an expedition against the Slavs in Carniola, across the Eastern Alps, fighting personally during the battles.

 
Ratchis on an 11th manuscript of the Codex Matritensis Leges Langobardorum.

He became king of (northern) Italy in 744, after the deposition of Hildeprand, most likely with the support of the most autonomist among the Lombard dukes. Ratchis ruled initially in peace, in particular with the nearby Byzantine-ruled Exarchate of Ravenna. However, perhaps pushed by more traditional party of his followers, in 749 he invaded the Pentapolis and besieged Perugia. Pope Zachary convinced him to lift the siege, but this further reduced his authority amongst the dukes, who deposed him in the same year during an assembly held in Milan. His brother Aistulf became the new king. Ratchis initially tried to oppose the decision, but soon was forced to flee to Rome; he later entered the abbey of Montecassino with his family.

After the death of Aistulf in 756, he tried once again to reign over the Lombards. He was able to gain control pf the royal palace in Pavia with the support of several Lombard nobles of northern Italy. However, he was defeated by the Duke of Tuscany, Desiderius, supported, among the others, by Pope Stephen II and the Frank king Pepin the Short. In 757 Ratchis retired again to a monastery, either Montecassino or Cervaro.[1]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "German Tribes org Lombard Kings". GermanTribes.org. Archived from the original on 2010-07-18. Retrieved 2010-07-18.

SourcesEdit

Regnal titles
Preceded by
Pemmo
Duke of Friuli
739 – 744
Succeeded by
Aistulf
Preceded by
Hildeprand
King of the Lombards
744 – 749