|Louis the Pious|
|Pinabel of Sorrence|
|Emperor of the Frankish Empire. Louis I (778-840) was often called Louis the Pious. He was the son and successor of Charlemagne (813-833, 834-840).
In the legend, he was portrayed as a weaker king than his father, although, not exactly a villain, he was shown to be ungrateful to those who serve him.
Historically, Louis’ mother was Hildegard. He was the brother of Charles, Pepin, Rotrud and Hildegard. Louis had ruled the kingdom of Aquitane from 781, at the age of three. He was married to Irmingard, a daughter of Count Ingram, in 794, and had five children by her – Lothair, Louis the German, Pepin (and I am not certain of the names of his daughters.
He was sole heir to the throne when his older brothers had died – Charles and Pepin. He became co-emperor with his father in 813, until Charlemagne’s death.
Trouble brewed when Louis remarried to Judith, and became father of Charles. His elder sons along with many allies revolted against Louis showing favoritism towards his younger son (830). In 833, he was forced to abdicate and join the monastery, but his three sons squabbling over the division of the empire, resulted in Louis being reinstated as empire.
He ruled until his death in 840, where the kingdom was divided into 3 between his surviving sons – Lothair received Italy, Louis the German received the German kingdoms, and Charles II ruled received France, who was known as Charles the Bald.
|The villainous stepfather of Roland and brother-in-law of Charlemagne. According to poems found in the Geste de Doon de Mayence, Ganelon was a son of Griffon d’Hauteville, and grandson of Doon de Mayence. Ganelon was married to Charlemagne’s sister, whose name is not given in the Chanson de Roland; her second husband. (Note that historically, Charlemagne’s actual sister had never married.) By Charlemagne’s sister, Ganelon was the father of Baldwin.
Ganelon was the cleverest adviser of Charlemagne, however, but the relationship between him and Roland, were often hostile. Ganelon, like Roland, was bad-tempered.
Though, he was described as treacherous, his physical appearance was that of handsome man of noble bearing.
When Charlemagne returned to Aix with his army, he had Ganelon tried for treason, because he was responsible for Roland’s death as well as the death of other members of the Twelve Peers and 20,000 men at Rencesvals. Charlemagne wanted his brother-in-law, but thirty of Ganelon’s kinsmen supported him, including Pinabel of Sorrence.
The decision of his innocence or guilt was decided by single combat between Pinabel and Thierry. Pinabel was killed, so Ganelon and his 30 kinsmen were killed. His kinsmen by the gallows, while he suffered from a worse fate; his limbs ripped from his body; each limb tied to a horse.
His warhorse was called Tachebrun. Murgleis was his sword.
|A kinsman of Ganelon. Pinabel was a lord of Castel de Sorence. Pinabel was not only a very formidable knight, but also a skilled spokesman.
During the trial of Ganelon, Pinabel became Ganelon’s advocate and champion in the trial by combat. Ganelon’s other kinsmen had also supported the traitor. Pinabel challenged Charlemagne, and due to his prowess, many of the king’s supporters were unwilling to face Pinabel in single combat; Roland or any of the Twelve Peers would have accepted Pinabel’s challenge but they were all dead from the battle of Rencesvals. Thierry of Anjou volunteered to fight on behalf of Charlemagne.
Pinabel was a more stronger and quicker warrior than Thierry. But in the end, it was Pinabel who lost the fight and his life, his kinsman Ganelon was executed for treason.
According to Orlando Furioso, Pinabel was a villain, whom Bradamante (sister of Rinaldo/Renaud) killed for his treachery.