|Lotharingia is the yellow area in the center between the green and orange.|
Date of Birth: 1 January 871
Spouse(s): Oda, daughter of Otto I, duke of Saxony
Predecessor: Lothair II
Reign: 895 – 900
Summary: Zwentibold was an unlikely last king of Lorraine, or the more appropriately named kingdom called Lotharingia, after its founder, Lothair II. Zwentibold was an illegitimate son of Arnulf, king of Germany and Roman Emperor. He first entered the political arena in West Francia when a feud broke out between Duke Odo of Paris and King Charles III the Simple. At first Zwentibold intended to act as an intermediary, but soon he began to covet the contested throne. Zwentibold had been removed from the Carolingian succession according to both the 870 Treaty of Meerssen and the 880 Treaty of Ribemont. Most of Lotharingia went to Germany. In 893, Zwentibold's hope to become his father's heir was destroyed when his father produced a legitimate son, Louis, who supplanted Zwentibold. To compensate the disenchanted princeling, Arnulf gave him Lotharingia as a sub-kingdom of Germany.
Zwentibold did little to rule Lorraine. He was an unskilled military and political leader. Failures in Italy during the previous decade had forced Zwentibold's father to step in and take control over military affairs. In Lorraine, the archbishops of Cologne and Trier contacted Arnulf rather than Zwentibold when instructions were needed. The nobility continuously called for help from Arnulf because Zwentibold preferred to help the commoners over the nobility. When Arnulf finally died in 899, Zwentibold made his power play in Lorraine, attempting to sever all ties with Germany. What actually happened, though, was that the nobility fled to Germany and requested the aid of King Louis' regents. Count Reginar I of Hainault finally killed the Lotharingian king in August 900 near the town of Susteren. Louis took over direct management of Lorraine afterwards. Lorraine would never rise to be a kingdom again and its administration fractured into several parts with the newly-named duchy of Lorraine forming out of the largest ruins of the old kingdom. Zwentibold was canonized by the Catholic Church as a martyr.
Date of Death: 13 August 900
Successor: Gebhard (as duke of Lorraine)