2017/06/28

Table of Rulers: History of the Franks Edition

The Historia Francorum is a wonderful book. It has all the literary complexity of an eight-grade essay, but that does mean it's direct, clear, and obvious. There are no subtle tricks. Gregory's prose is so clear you can almost hear him writing, crossing something out, and rewriting it. You can hear the angry tuts and the dismayed resignation. His struggles with Latin grammar make him very sympathetic. The Penguin translation makes him accessible.

Gregory wrote in a time that could convincingly be called The Dark Ages. I'm not a fan of the term, but if there's anywhere it applies, it's 6th century Gaul. Historians debate if the age was as violent as Gregory said it was, if people were actually as cruel, pointlessly stupid, and utterly remorseless. The 10 books of his History were written at a crossroads of culture. Some families remembered the lost Gallo-Roman villas and senators and carried names like "Heraclius" and "Armentius". They read Latin (sometimes) and tried to keep up the traditions of the ancient world. Mixing with them was the new Frankish culture of "Chilperic" and "Gundovald" and splitting heads open with axes and paying the weregild. Compare the Code of Justinian with the Salic Law. It was a rough, unsophisticated time. I got all the entries below (and then some) from the first 8 books of the Historia Francorum; I was spoiled for choice.

Use these tables to roll up barbarian kings, tormented bishops, feuding dukes, brutal counts, and any other disreputable people your setting might require. Imagine you are reading a history book about your setting, or a ruler in your setting. Roll 2 or 3 times on these tables to get some sentences that might appear in a paragraph about your ruler. Remember that Gregory was a bishop and a moralizer, and he loved to let his subjects speak, even if he had to make up the words. Treat the quotes appropriately.
 

Gregory also asks his readers not to mangle, efface, or alter his work. “…if in all this you are practiced so that my style will seem rude, even so I beg of you do not efface what I have written. But if anything in these books pleases you I do not forbid your writing it in verse provided my work is left safe.” I've had to make a few alterations to the text, but most of what's presented is as Gregory wrote it (and Lewis Thorpe translated it).


Other Tables In This Series:
Table of Rulers: Byzantine Edition

Baptism of Clovis I, Master of Saint Giles, c.1500. Wonderfully anachronistic.




1d100 Ruler Table 1
1 In this way, he won back his kingdom a third time.
2 "He is a strong man," she said, "and a wise one, too. He has often fought for the state against its enemies, and he has always won."
3 "She may come to me and bring her treasure with her. I will receive her and I will give her an honourable place among my people." 
4 They swore an oath to each other that whichever outlived the other would take care of the dead man’s sons as if they were his own.
5 He was a brave man: he leapt on his horse and rode out to meet them and tried to calm them. Later on he had many of them stoned to death.
6 He was extremely ill-advised in nearly everything that he did, and his premature death was a direct result of this.
7 ...and this had made him boastful and often outrageous in his behaviour. As a result he quarrelled bitterly with his brother.
8 Without more ado he cut off the heads of all who would not subscribe to his heretical opinions.
9 He did his best to pacify her with smooth excuses and by denying the truth as convincingly as he could.
10 He then married the widow of his father-in-law and seized the kingship.
11 ...an extremely vain man, puffed up with pride, impudence and arrogance. 
12 I had better tell you how he came to marry the sister of his own wife.
13 "She will hold a higher position at my side than she ever did with my brother, who has died recently."
14 ...with a sort of insane fury they began to disgrace themselves in peculation, physical assaults, murders, adultery and every crime in the calendar.
15 He left a son, who himself died childless and bequeathed the greater part of his possessions to the churches from which his father had stolen them.
16 He was even more sadistic than his predecessor.
17 Not quite knowing how to cover up his treachery, he finally handed him a great silver salver as a present.
18 Later on he recovered his strength and scorned to pay the tribute which he had promised.
19 A white cataract blinded one of her eyes, and in this way her eye-lids lost the sense which had long before departed from her mind.
20 ...vain and arrogant debauchee, who submitted himself to the blandishments of other men and then lusted after them in his turn...
21 He knew that unless he hurried home and reached his father before his death he would be cut off from his inheritance by his uncles and would never be able to return.
22 He wrote two books but the verses were feeble and had no feet to stand on.
23 He never made an oath to any of his friends without being prepared to break it at a moment’s notice.
24 She knelt in supplication and spent the whole night praying that civil war might not break out between her sons.
25 ...a just and charitable man, equitable in his dealings and successful in war.
26 "As a consequence of the sins which I have committed, no male of my own line remains alive, except you who are my brother’s son. I exclude all others from the succession."
27 "I confirm that my nephew shall inherit everything that I manage to keep under my control."
28 He had an audience with his father, but he once more showed that he could not be trusted.
29 He managed to free from their occupation some of the cities which they had wrongfully captured.
30 He began to drink heavily. He was often so completely fuddled with wine that it would take four men to carry him from the table.
31 Things came to such a pitch that they grew tired of insulting each other and resorted to fisticuffs.
32 ...of being a weak, effeminate man. "Where are your darling boys," cried he, "with whom you live in shame and debauchery"
33 Once he flung a priest on a bench, and beat him with his fists to the point that he nearly breathed his last, simply because he had refused to give him wine when he was obviously drunk.
34 ...far too much given to irregular affairs with women.
35 ...and she became so well known that the common people looked upon her as a saint.
36 He was a proud man, it is true, but what he did at this moment excused everything.
37 He was a fatuous and empty-headed fellow, much given to garrulous talk, and he bore this decision ill.
38 In those days the King's sons were still alive, but the elder was already beginning to ail.
39 ...frivolous in his conduct and only serious when it came to personal gain.
40 "Hand over the murderess," they said, "the woman who garrotted my aunt, killed first my father and then my uncle, and who put my two cousins to the sword.
41 Later on he lost his own two sons, who died of some sudden disease. He was greatly distressed at their death, for it left him bereaved and childless.
42 His brothers had a strong suspicion that he had connived at the murder of the Queen and they drove him out of his kingdom.
43 He feathered his own nest in the most rapacious way, was always the loudest shouter in any brawl and simply wallowed in promiscuity.
44 When their mother realized that he, too, was at death’s door, she repented of her sins, rather late in the day, it is true.
45 He was a good enough man in other ways, but he was too much given to breaking his word. 
46 This unrelieved sanctity did not last long, for they soon slipped back into their old habits.
47 From all accounts he was a malicious person.
48 ...whose private life was one long debauch, began to seduce the daughters of his subjects.
49 "You must surely resent the wrong which has been done to me. You must do all in your power to avenge the death of my mother and father."
50 ...but his children down to the ninth generation, so that by their death an end might be put to an abominable habit and no more kings be assassinated.
51 ...a man of remarkable holiness and piety, and of great abstinence, too: he was always being plagued with this illness or that through his fasting.
52 ...a man of low intelligence, untrained in logical argument, but distinguished by his hatred.
53 ...and as a result of their sinful behaviour this civil war grew more and more bitter.
54 The woman was simple enough to be taken in by this and in the absence of her husband she promised that he should marry the girl.
55 He trampled underfoot the royal decrees of his own father, thinking that there was no one left alive who was interested in seeing that they should be carried out.
56 "If you set out with the intention of sparing your brother’s life, you will return alive and victorious. If you have any other plans in mind, you will die."
57 He had no time for literature, either sacred or profane.
58 He was a wonderful raconteur, full of good advice, sound in judgement and apparently trustworthy.
59 ...ordained that all the churches in his kingdom should pay a third part of their revenues to the treasury.
60 ...to be ordained as a priest and he made his son a deacon. He objected to this humiliation and burst into tears.
61 He divided his kingdom equally between these two sons, killing off everyone who might be planning to assassinate those who occupied the throne.
62 He came from the most humble origins, but rose to high place by fawning on the King.
63 He remained insane until the day of his death.
64 Later on this child was to be the cause of great grief.
65 ...a wicked and cruel woman: it was she who sowed the seeds of civil war between the two remaining brothers.
66 Poor prince, he did not realize that the judgement of God hangs over anyone who makes such plans against his own father, even if that father be a heretic.
67 He agreed to the suggestion of this evil woman and became the foul murderer of his own son.
68 "Men and women, all people present, I ask you to remain loyal to me, instead of assassinating me, as only recently you assassinated my brothers."
69 Later on, no doubt because of his excesses, he became subject to epileptic fits. All this often occurred in full public view.
70 "If you help me to attack my brother," he said, "so that I can kill him in battle or drive him out of his territory, I will pay you any annual tribute."
71 He himself cared for no one, unless he had some ulterior motive for doing so; and in return he was loved by none.
72 He was deserted by most of his troops, but he made a stand with the few who remained. All the same he did not hesitate to engage the enemy.
73 There was no avarice in him and even less cupidity. He was magnanimous in his behaviour and never swayed in his judgement by the advice of unworthy counsellors.
74 "Our mother keeps the children of our brother close by her side and is planning to give them the throne. We must take counsel together and make up our minds."
75 Several times when she was on her way to church he had dung and other filth thrown over her
76 Although he was arrogant and vain, he was considered to be chaste in body.
77 His wife, who hated him and was consoling herself by having an adulterous relationship with another man, laid a trap for her husband.
78 "...we are mindful of the fact that the axe is still ready and waiting which split open the heads of your brothers."
79 "Go to him and promise him on oath that he can come out safely. When he comes out, kill him, so that his very memory may be obliterated from my kingdom."
80 "Your father is old and he is lame in one leg. If he were to die, his kingdom would come to you of right, and my alliance would come with it."
81 ...an elegant and able young man.
82 ...the reprehensible habit of killing out of hand any king who displeased them and replacing him on the throne by someone whom they preferred.
83 However, he was cunning and astute, and, although he could not beat them in battle, he managed to suborn them later on by bribery.
84 ...a desperate situation, not knowing whether he could escape alive or would be killed instead. At this moment messengers arrived to tell him that his brother was dead.
85 He was afraid that, if he appeared in public, some harm might befall him and he might even be killed.
86 The miserable creature had committed one crime after another, robberies, murders and adulteries, but I prefer not to give you details.
87 Finally he struck her with such violence that she sent to her brother a towel stained with her own blood. He was greatly moved and set off immediately.
88 "It is not right," he said, "for so stupid and debased a man as you to give such an answer to a great King!"
89 Her mother became even more angry and sent a band of armed men to take her into custody.
90 He first tried what he could do by flattery, then he resorted to threats.
91 "You have every reason to be furious," said he, "both because of the injury done to me and for the slaughter of your own relations."
92 While he was committing these outrages he was punished, for he fell ill with jaundice, the King’s evil, and became bright saffron.
93 It is impossible to imagine any vice or debauchery which this man did not practice. He was always on the watch for some new way of torturing his subjects.
94 When she saw that her daughter was a grown-up woman, she was afraid that the King might desire her and take advantage of her. 
95 His dependants committed a long series of thefts, murders, assaults and other crimes, but no one dared to complain openly.
96 He gave a great number of presents to their King and made a treaty with him, with the result that there was peace between the two peoples for the rest of his lifetime
97 His intelligence was keen, he was full of energy, a superb horseman, a fine shot with an arrow and tireless with the lance. 
98 ...an admirable person who was circumspect in all his behaviour.
99 ...but his way of life was too libidinous, and he was deposed...
100 He often committed manslaughter in the very vestibule which led towards the Saint’s tomb, and he behaved there in a drunken and stupid way.



1d100 Ruler Table 2
1 ...his son set assassins on him and had him murdered, so that he might gain possession of his kingdom.
2 They plotted together and planned to assassinate him.
3 He then rode out on his horse and with his own hand showered gold and silver coins among the people present.
4 He would often speak extempore in public without hesitating in the slightest and express whatever he had to say with the greatest clarity.
5 Those who had helped him he murdered, and then he entrusted his secret to a single old man who had sworn never to divulge it.
6 "I can do nothing to prevent you from stealing my possessions. All I want is liberty to go wherever I wish, taking my daughters with me."
7 ...broke his word without more ado, and made no attempt to carry out the promises which he had given.
8 "It is better that this treasure should fall into my hands than that it should remain in the control of this woman who was unworthy of my brother’s bed."
9 He had seven sons by his various wives.
10 He was much given to excessive drinking and was often so intoxicated that he could not walk.
11 He was extremely able as a soldier and he was skilled in the arts of peace.
12 His cupidity was so great that he ordered iron coffers to be made and in them he amassed his wealth in gold coin.
13 With his usual guile he sent a stranger to report to his two brothers that their father had been killed.
14 He said this not because he grieved for their deaths, but because in his cunning way he hoped to find some relative still in the land of the living whom he could kill.
15 He married a second wife, a woman whose father he had only recently killed. She loathed her husband as a result.
16 When they were dead he took possession of their kingdom, their treasure and their people.
17 He was so avaricious that it was a source of great anguish to him if he failed to transfer to himself some part of any territory which was adjacent to his own.
18 ...of medium height, manly in his habits and well-proportioned. He had no bodily infirmity and was spare in physique.
19 He was a voracious glutton: he used to eat aloes to give himself an appetite and to aid his digestion; and he would fart in public without any consideration for those present.
20 He was so above himself in his vain conceit that he imagined that no one was more holy than he.
21 He was led astray by his lust for power and began to plot his father’s death.
22 He bore adversity with great patience, was ready for any exacting enterprise, he scorned danger and was able to endure hunger, thirst and loss of sleep.
23 He had been told that his brother had been killed and imagined that the whole country would now come under his rule. He therefore occupied as much of it as he could.
24 They were awakened by his cries and asked him what was the matter. He replied: "My dear friend and my wife  both of whom I had murdered, were summoning me to atone for my sins."
25 The boy’s mother, who thought that her own end was near, rejected him and wanted to have him killed. She failed in her attempt.
26 He renounced his vows, grew his hair again and took charge of both the wife whom he had deserted when he became a religious and his brother’s kingdom. For this he was excommunicated.
27 By royal decree, he ordered the daughters of certain senators to be abducted forcibly for their entertainment.
28 She was still in a state of nervous depression because of her recent loss, and she worked herself up into a fury.
29 He was extremely gluttonous, and his god was in his belly. He used to maintain that no one was more clever than he.
30 They observed that she was an elegant young woman and clever for her years, and they discovered that she was of the blood royal.
31 According to her he showed no respect for her at all, and she begged that she might be permitted to go back home, even if it meant leaving behind all the treasures which she had brought with her.
32 Beside herself with bitter grief and hardly knowing what she was saying in her anguish, she answered: "If they are not to ascend the throne, I would rather see them dead."
33 Neither the royal status of her sons nor her worldly goods nor earthly ambition could bring her to disrepute. In all humility she moved forward to heavenly grace.
34 He then married a second wife who, as is the habit of step-mothers, proceeded to maltreat and abuse her step-son.
35 He was an emptyheaded and greedy fellow.
36 He was an active man and greatly skilled at carpentry.
37 He had already fled, for he was a man infirm of purpose and vacillating in judgement.
38 He was led astray by the advice of the evil men around him and made up his mind to go over to his uncle and to betray his father.
39 He was a great man and became a famous soldier.
40 A crowd of peasants did follow him, as so often happens, for people are so gullible. They gave him an oath of fealty and did him honour as if he really were their king.
41 The King wrote a number of books of poetry, but his poems observed none of the accepted rules of prosody.
42 ...so sunk in debauchery that he could not even keep his hands off the women of his own family.
43 This young woman was elegant in all that she did, lovely to look at, chaste and decorous in her behaviour, wise in her generation and of good address.
44 He could trust no one, for he himself was every man’s enemy.
45 "He has fallen in love with the daughter of one of your women-servants, and it is through the mother’s magic arts that he has encompassed their death."
46 When he learned this he was panic-stricken, for he was afraid of being killed at any moment.
47 The King fell violently in love with the two of them. As I have implied, they were the daughters of a wool-worker.
48 The young prince’s household was dispersed. His mother was murdered in the most cruel fashion.
49 ...but he was not to hold it for long, for his brothers leagued against him and drove him out.
50 ...split his  skull with his double-headed axe. This unworthy son thus shared the fate of his father.
51 ...a tall man, broad of shoulder, strong of arm, haughty in speech, quick in his reactions and learned in law.
52 She gave alms to the poor and spent her nights in prayer. In chastity and virtue she lived out her blameless life.
53 ...this filthy seducer of his own mother, his sisters and any other women who were closely related to him...
54 From time to time he emerged from the church to break into the homes of various citizens and to rob them quite brazenly.
55 ...in defiance of custom and canonical law he had married his uncle’s widow.
56 ...pursued him with horns and bugles, as if he were chasing a hunted deer. It was only with great difficulty that he managed to return safely to his father.
57 He lost time trying to rescue his wife and daughters: as a result he was overrun by his father’s army, made prisoner and bound.
58 "He knows that he cannot realize his plans as long as you live: he cannot rise unless you fall."
59 "What I have taken so many years to save," she used to say to him, "you are busy squandering in a prodigal way."
60 He hurried off as soon as he received this advice, hoping to forestall his brother and to occupy their father’s throne before him.
61 "You can be sure that if I knew anyone else, even far across the sea, who was more capable than you, I should have sought him out and gone to live with him instead."
62 The pathetic creature had formed this plan in his mind: "I shall never get the better of him unless I trick him by swearing these oaths to him."
63 He was always above himself, boasting and presumptuous.
64 He organized her escape from the nunnery, and married her. He had the King’s formal approval, so that she was able to disregard the threats of her relations.
65 ...a man filled with self-esteem and silly self-admiration.
66 He planned to take his sister home with him, and at the same time to carry off a vast mass of treasure.
67 "It is not for me to shed the blood of one of my fellow kings, for that is a crime; but since things have turned out in this way, I will give you my advice."
68 Among all his associates there was not one capable of giving him good and useful advice. He collected round him a band of young and dissolute people from the lower classes.
69 When he heard of this he began to cast about to see how he could destroy his son.
70 He behaved with great kindness to many of his subjects and made considerable grants to the poor.
71 ...fond of fine living and who was always having affairs with women, a gluttonous man, much given to fornication and other forms of immorality.
72 He found her attractive, fell in love with her, persuaded her to go to bed with him and had intercourse with her.
73 ...he began to boast in a childish way. "Now that my brothers are dead," he kept saying, "the entire kingdom comes to me."
74 ...had an epileptic fit, for he had long been subject to this malady. He lost more and more control of himself, and lay bellowing and moaning for two days.
75 If the King wished to avenge his brother’s death, let him know that this was the ringleader in the crime.
76 In her madness she ran through the whole city, with her hair loose about her shoulders...
77 He also made unforgivable remarks about his stepmother. She came to hear of this and was terrified.
78 "If you fail to do this, you will assuredly not escape, for I will put you to the sword, and your wives and your children, and so avenge the injury which you have done."
79 ...showing himself loyal and affectionate towards the King. He swore that he would always be the most bitter enemy of his own father.
80 ...ready in charity, just in his decisions, most cautious in making up his mind, looking down on no man, but including all in his kindly benevolence.
81 "If we can only manage to kill him," he said, "we will share his kingdom equally between us."
82 His brothers were taking wives who were completely unworthy of them and were so far degrading themselves as to marry their own servants.
83 He turned his back and fled when he saw the treachery of his brother, about whom he had had no suspicion.
84 ...a man of immense malice and a master of every form of necromancy.
85 His cruelty was so great that there are no words to describe it.
86 He frequently brought unjust charges against his subjects with the sole object of confiscating their property.
87 He came of a senatorial family, and was known for his wisdom and refinement.
88 He read so widely that he was held second to none among his contemporaries.
89 To the last day of his life, which I shall later describe to you, he went on acting in this wicked way.
90 "You have encouraged a son to become his father’s enemy, you have bribed the common people so that none should keep the faith which he had promised to me..."
91 Some years before he had become jealous of his wife and his friend, and, although the woman was innocent, he had murdered them both.
92 ...a capable man, strong in body and in mind, full of charity and dedicated to the care of the needy.
93 ...took over his kingdom; he also began to have intercourse with his widow but he stopped when the bishops complained.
94 She soon showed what little sense she had, for, ignoring the advice of her mother, who wanted her to marry a king’s son, she took as lover one of her own slaves.
95 Later he married her. This did not stop him afterwards from arranging for her brother to be murdered by assassins.
96 She was remarkable for her great modesty and her loving kindness.
97 ...a man of most noble birth as honours are counted in this world...
98 He behaved towards those in his service as if he found it difficult to accept that they were human beings at all.
99 He bore all this patiently, only waiting for the chance to return home.
100 She was extremely wealthy and according to the class-distinctions of this world she belonged to a noble senatorial family.

The "Death" table below also includes some implied fates. If you've got a death in mind, use that. If you are stuck, or you want to start with a death and work backwards, use this table. You'll probably need to adapt them significantly. The next table down contains particularly horrible deaths, which the era produced in abundance.

1d100 Death
1 She was jealous of her stepson and encompassed his death. She sent him poison in a drink, so they say, and killed him.
2 There was nothing for it but to chain him up and lock him in his cell. Condemned to this fate, he continued to rave for a couple of years, and then he gave up the ghost.
3 They managed to escape and became wanderers on the face of the earth.
4 In the end he had her garrotted by one of his servants and so found her dead in bed.
5 She popped some poison into the chalice from which her mother was to drink next. Her mother drank from the cup and dropped down dead.
6 ...expelled from his kingdom and banished from his country for having shed the blood of the righteous
7 He had a stroke and could not move from the waist downwards. He gradually became worse and died in the seventh year of his reign.
8 He seized him, thrust his dagger in his ribs and murdered him just as he had murdered his brother. Then they slew all the attendants and the tutors.
9 The father was grief-stricken at what he had done, but it was too late. He threw himself on the dead body and wept most bitterly.
10 As they were threatening to let their hair grow again and then to kill him, he had their heads cut off. 
11 Twenty-four hours before that he died; and with him died his overweening arrogance.
12 The hatred which they bore him became daily more bitter and an order went out that he should be executed in secret.
13 ...after many disputes and wars, he was beaten by his brothers, who had him garrotted.
14 They made repeated efforts to force the door, but had no success at all. In the end they knocked down the wall, burst in and killed him.
15 The eyes of this miserable creature began to hurt so much that he was forced to press them in with his fingers to stop them bursting out of their sockets.
16 When he recovered from his ague, he continued to tremble and was dull-witted. His son and household became white in the face and lost their wits, too.
17 He leant forward on the sword, which pierced his chest and came out at the back through one shoulder-blade. He then held the sword a second time, pierced his chest on the other side, and fell to the ground dead.
18 An argument ensued, in which they all drew their swords, rushed at each other and started killing each other in front of the altar.
19 When he died he took nothing with him on his journey, except the eternal damnation of his soul.
20 ...by his own hand at the fourth mile-stone outside the city, when trying to escape from a revolt which had been stirred up against him.
21 ...killed his brother and drowned his brother's wife after tying a stone round her neck.
22 ...and while he was feasting with a group of people in an upper room there, the roof of the house suddenly fell in.
23 As he rested on this bench, there appeared a cruel assassin who drew a dagger from his belt and struck him under the armpit.
24 On the way he had a stroke. He had just enough strength to reach his destination, but he died almost immediately afterwards.
25 His mother rushed in, beside herself with grief, and fell in a faint on the body of the son whom she had lost, while the whole family bewailed his fate.
26 The assailants tore his clothes off his back, beat up his servants, stole his table silver and all the furnishings of the feast, and left him in a sorry state.
27 She had them stripped of all that they possessed and sent into exile. They were not released until seven months later.
28 There he died on his journey, for he was struck by the judgement of God.
29 ...was bound and dragged off with his wife and children. He disappeared and was never seen again.
30 He had hardly finished speaking when the beam on which he was standing collapsed beneath his feet, and he fell to the ground and was crushed to death.
31 He lay ill for a long time: then his strength gradually failed and he died.
32 One day when he was celebrating his birthday, they sent a mob to attack him with swords and arrows.
33 He was stripped of his weapons and his clothes, and paraded before the Queen in rags and with his arms bound.
34 ...he had the impression that his chest had been pierced and he suffered excruciating pain.
35 One of the servants hurled his lance with all his strength and transfixed his master. He fell to the ground and the other servant cut him about the head with his javelin.
36 ...he is said to have killed himself with poison rather than fall into the hands of his enemy.
37 He could not bear the sight of food and drink, and he made ready for the death which he felt to be near.
38 ...feasting with his friends at supper and was very merry, the candles were blown out and he was struck by a sword as he lay on his couch, thus dying in his turn.
39 His fever abated, but as the result of his low state of health his legs were covered with tumours.
40 It was his leather corselet which saved him and the sheer speed of his horse, but he was very near to death.
41 ...killed three of his brothers. He seized the fourth brother and kept him chained up in prison while he was summoning up courage to kill him, too.
42 ...bewailing the fact that he did not know where their bodies had been thrown after they were slain.
43 No sooner had he done this than a mortal illness attacked his servants, so that they developed a high temperature and died.
44 While he was a prisoner there he was murdered by a stab with a knife. They buried his body immediately.
45 As they slept the husband returned home. He lighted some straw, raised his axe and killed them both.
46 In the end she poisoned her husband, for she had become enamoured of one of his servants.
47 ...was cruelly beaten, his gold and silver and everything else which he had with him was confiscated, and he was left destitute.
48 As he slept a cloth was slipped under his neck and knotted under his chin. Two servants tugged at the ends and so the boy was throttled.
49 He had her murdered, claimed that the vineyard was his and stole all the movable property.
50 ...lay in wait with a band of armed followers and killed him.
51 They pretended that they had something to discuss with him, but they struck him on both sides. He gave a loud cry and fell to the ground.
52 As long as there was breath in his body he continued to cut down every man within his reach. He was killed and his property passed to the King’s treasury.
53 They abused him roundly and hit him with their sticks.
54 He was suddenly seized with a pain in his side. He had his head tonsured, confessed his sins and then gave up the ghost.
55 "As soon as you have cast yourselves at his feet, as if you have come to beg for alms, stab him on both sides."
56 As a result the King was estranged from her and he dismissed her. She died not long afterwards.
57 So strong was their lust for gain that they took no notice: and a part of the hillside which had not previously collapsed now fell on top of them.
58 All their goods were seized and they were sent into exile.
59 They hacked off his head, stuck it on a stake and raised it in the air.
60 When his time came to die, he died deserted by all.
61 He died in the middle of the night, worn to a shadow and hardly drawing breath.
62 The dead bodies were pulled out and left to lie naked on the ground. The killers seized what loot they could and disappeared into the darkness which had now fallen.
63 "As for him who has no respect for the law and for my own commands, let him die, and by dying put an end to this blasphemous behaviour of ours."
64 The reason for his execution was that, after his brother’s death, he had murdered his own wife, after cruelly maltreating her, and had then slept with his brother’s wife.
65 ...dragged him out of the church, punching him and kicking him, and then locking him up in prison.
66 The whole populace bewailed his death: they walked behind his funeral cort├Ęge, the men weeping and the women wearing widows’weeds as if they were escorting their own husbands to the grave.
67 "We can take consolation in this, that she has met her death in such a way that we can look up to her instead of mourning for her."
68 They beat him with sticks until he was thought to be dead. Within a few days he died as a result of the beating.
69 His enemies put poison in a fish’s head, which he then ate without suspecting anything.
70 They revolted against him, for he had always been their enemy, and he died a cruel death from a blow from a spear.
71 ...and made plans to kill him in the morning. When day dawned a great storm blew up over the spot where they were encamped.
72 They set off for home, under the impression that they had dealt with their enemy.
73 In the fifty-first year of his reign, while he was hunting, he fell ill with a high temperature and took to his bed in his villa.
74 ...he ordered him to be punched and kicked, and then had him loaded with chains and thrown into prison.
75 ...and they buried him and so despatched him to join his accomplice in hell.
76 ...who had started all this scandal, died of a stroke. He had no children, so the King handed his property over to various people.
77 She sighed deeply and as her last wish asked that others might die with her, for at her funeral she wanted to have the sound of others bewailing their dead.
78 "As for you, who are the prime mover in these crimes, as long as you live you will be accursed."
79 ...pulled out his axe and split his skull. He fell to the ground dead and was thrown out of the window of the house.
80 ...struck him in the side with his lance and finished him off. His men ran.
81 He wept for his dead nephews as bitterly as when he had seen his own sons buried.
82 He lived, so the story goes, to be a very old man, full of days and full of good works.
83 They encountered him, destroyed his army, and cut off his head.
84 He was broken in battle and ended his life and his reign at the same moment.
85 Somebody accidentally gave him a push and he fell to the ground from the top of the wall. He died, but who pushed him we shall never know.
86 He was given a glass and swallowed some absinth mixed with wine and honey, which is a favourite drink of the barbarians. It was poisoned.
87 ...a man stepped forward, struck him with a knife under the armpit and then stabbed him a second time in the stomach.
88 “That is not what you must do!” he said. “For his sins this man must be cast into the flames.”
89 ...but no sooner had he received baptism than he died in his white robes.
90 A servant stepped forward and handed him a cup. He had no sooner drunk than he dropped down dead. There seems little doubt that he was poisoned.
91 His end was such that death came to thwart him in his own plans, after he had spent his life thwarting those of others.
92 As soon as he set foot in the house he had a fit and collapsed on a bed.
93 ...and while he was occupied in emptying his bowels he lost his soul instead.
94 The enemy revenged themselves on him by cutting off his head and taking it back into the town.
95 Before he could cross the threshold of the building, a soldier threw a javelin at him and wounded him mortally.
96 He fell to the ground, where he was wounded by a number of other blows, and so with his blood poured out his wicked soul.
97 He was bound and flogged until he confessed his secret plan; then he was permitted to return to the Queen who had sent him.
98 As his servant said this to him, he fell down dead on the spot and the goblet slid out of his hand.
99 For a long time he resisted his assailants, but in the end he came to the door. As he stepped out they ran him through from both sides with their lances.
100 ...fell ill of a fever and died in the middle of the night.


1d50 Particularly Horrible Death
1 The woman who had given evidence against him was condemned to be burnt alive. 
2 ...when he fell to the ground with a scream like a horse neighing. Blood poured from his mouth and his nostrils.
3 The blow struck him straight across the eyes and severed his head from his neck. His brother was awakened by the impact and found himself wallowing in blood.
4 On more than one occasion she cut off a man’s penis with part of the skin of his stomach, and she burned the more secret parts of women’s bodies with metal plates which she had made white-hot.
5 ...a block of wood was wedged behind his neck and then they beat him on the throat with another piece of wood until he died.
6 Blood immediately streamed both from his mouth and through the gaping wound, and that was the end of this wicked man.
7 He slipped out of their hands and started to run, although he was already mortally wounded. They struck him a mighty blow on the head with a naked sword.
8 If they were keeping back any more secrets in the depths of their hearts, the terrible torture would force them to confess it, whether they wanted to or not.
9 They had them staked to the ground and then submitted them to all sorts of torture. Then they demanded even more punitive payments.
10 He ordered his son to be burnt alive with his wife and daughters.
11 ...a hot steam-bath prepared and ordered her to be shut up inside it with one of her maids. As soon as she was in the scalding steam she fell to the stone floor and died.
12 In this sarcophagus, on top of the body which was mouldering away there, they buried him alive.
13 ...had her beaten mercilessly and locked her up in her cell. There she remained until her dying day, suffering awful anguish.
14 In his dying hours his body became so black that you would have thought that it had been placed on glowing coals and roasted.
15 He tore himself to pieces with his own teeth and ended his unworthy life in this torment which was a befitting death.
16 She put her in a cart drawn by untamed bulls and had her tipped over a bridge: she fell into the river and was drowned.
17 They struck him with their fists and spat at him. Then they bound his hands behind his back, tied him to a pillar and stoned him to death.
18 He put the girl inside, as if she were already a corpse, had the young man thrown on top of her, fixed a lid over them and filled the grave with earth.
19 ...captured, burned by red-hot irons and died a cruel death, for his body was torn limb from limb.
20 ...swollen up and swarming with vermin, he took a knife to cure his disease and so killed himself with his own hand.
21 They cut off his hands, and his feet, and his ears, and his nose, tortured him cruelly and then despatched him in the most revolting fashion.
22 "They stretched them out over the ruts of their roads, attached their arms and legs to the ground with stakes, and then drove heavily-laden carts over them."
23 "They tied their arms round the necks of their horses, stampeded these animals in all directions by prodding them with goads, and so tore the girls to pieces."
24 In the middle of the night he had him brought out, he was attached to an old wall and then the wall knocked down on top of him.
25 ...dragged along the ground by an untamed horse until she expired.
26 ...ordered that he should receive medical attention until his wounds were cured, and then that he should be submitted to lingering torture.
27 They laid hands on the priest, tied him up and had him thrown into prison. The woman they burned alive.
28 When he told her what had happened and confessed that he had failed in his mission, she punished him by having his hands and feet cut off.
29 "They hung our young men up to die in the trees by the muscles of their thighs."
30 ...as they tore themselves to pieces with their own foul teeth.
31 ...submitted to various tortures and mutilated: then his corpse was hanged from a gibbet.
32 ...suffer many tortures, first the rack, then the flames, then the pincers and after all that death itself.
33 He seized the older boy by the wrist, threw him to the ground, jabbed his dagger into his armpit and so murdered him with the utmost savagery.
34 He was beaten and killed; his dead body was despoiled by his enemies, which is sad to have to relate.
35 The enemy found him there and burned the hut over his head, so that he died without the burial which we all expect.
36 The girl’s mother she had bound and subjected to torture, until she had forced her to admit that the charges against her were true.
37 The second door-keeper, against whom the accusation had been levelled, was arrested, flogged and subjected to a whole series of tortures.
38 The slave was seized, he was cruelly beaten, his hands and feet were cut off, and he was hanged from the gallows.
39 The wounds inflicted on him by his torturers began to fester and it was clear that he could not last much longer.
40 Then she was submitted to a legal interrogation, and tortured by the rack, the flames and the pincers.
41 They pulled out his hair and his beard. Then they left his body unburied on the spot where he had met his death.
42 He was submitted to various tortures and then died by a blow from a sword, paying the penalty which he deserved.
43 ...arrested, put to the torture, beaten, loaded with chains and locked up in prison.
44 Then she ordered all her hair to be cut off, and had her tied to a stake which was stuck up outside her son's lodging. 
45 The mob surrounded him and prodded him with their spears. They tied his feet together with a rope and dragged him through the whole army encampment.
46 One was killed out of hand by the soldiery. The other fled, but he was captured and had his hands and feet cut off. Thus they both perished.
47 He was immediately struck deaf and dumb and he died a raging lunatic.
48 He had him locked up in the most outrageous manner and he went so far as to command that he should be beaten and starved to death.
49 A few days later the woman in question was summoned to trial, but she strangled herself with a rope.
50 "Fly!" he shouted to his companions. "Fly, miserable wretches, from this horror, lest you all perish with me!" They refused to drink and fled at full speed.

This table is useful if you need to add a bit of chaos to an ongoing war, or determine the outcome of  a distant war, or detail some element of a ruler's history or downfall. The Byzantine War table is more useful in general, but this certainly adds local flavour.

1d100 War
1 He raised an army and made preparations to march, having first, or so they say, divided all that he possessed between his sons and his wife.
2 ...had a suspicion that his brother or his nephew might set an ambush for his daughter, so he ordered her to be escorted by a force of soldiery.
3 "We have captured your wife and your children. No doubt by this time your sons have been put to death. What earthly purpose is there in what you are doing?"
4 Some time later a decree was issued by the judges that anyone who had shown unwillingness to join this military expedition should be fined.
5 As they advanced they robbed and plundered to an extent which beggars all description.
6 As the inhabitants were led away into slavery, it rained in torrents, although not a drop had fallen for the previous thirty days.
7 "You must therefore bring all your food-supplies and all your equipment inside the circuit of your walls, so that you may not die of famine."
8 Those who survived swore to a man that they would not cut their hair or trim their beards until they had taken vengeance on their enemies.
9 ...murdered the inhabitants out of hand, just as if they were in an enemy country.
10 ...certain ships had been looted, their cargo stolen, their crews wounded or even killed, and some of their men taken captive.
11 They abandoned everything that they had captured on the march, and even the things which they had brought with them.
12 As a result he was responsible for endless robberies, attacks, assaults, woundings and crimes of all sorts, on land and down the rivers.
13 ...not a house remained standing, not a vineyard, not an orchard; everything was razed to the ground and utterly ruined.
14 Sons were torn from fathers, mothers were separated from daughters. They parted with groans and curses.
15 He constructed wagons, which he fitted with battering-rams and protected with wattle-work, old leather saddles and planks of wood.
16 I should not be surprised if it were his fault that the fortress was allowed to fall into enemy hands, for until this moment it had always been inviolate.
17 ...in their innocence welcoming him and his men as if they really came in peace.
18 Meanwhile his troops, who were cut off from their leader, marched up and down outside and made a show of using their weapons.
19 A short time later the locals attacked the boy and he was killed, together with a number of nobles.
20 They discovered such a vast quantity of corn and wine that, had they resisted like men, they would have had supplies to last them many years.
21 There was no end of the evil done until the very last of these men arrived home.
22 When he learned that his father was marching with his army to attack him, he made plans to repel the invader and even to kill him if necessary.
23 They ravaged the whole region, but some of the soldiers, more avid for booty than their comrades, wandered too far afield and were killed by the peasants.
24 The houses and all other property were pillaged by the enemy, and some of the inhabitants were even led away into slavery.
25 He picked out three hundred armed men from the many thousands under his command and stationed them inside the fortress.
26 ...and then to shut themselves up inside these fortifications together with their property and their wives and children.
27 At the very moment when this army was about to take the field, a document was discovered in the possession of certain peasants.
28 "This way! This way! We are your own troops!" He believed them, wheeled in their direction and rushed headlong into the middle of his enemies.
29 Vast supplies were stockpiled along the road, at the expense of the cities through which they passed.
30 He had intended to abandon these cities to the tender mercies of their enemies, but his advisers prevented him from doing this.
31 He added that they were lucky to have escaped with their lives, instead of paying for the betrayal of their rulers by being tortured to death.
32 ...destroying the corn, hay, wine and whatever else he could lay his hands on in such houses of the townsfolk as he came to, breaking down the doors without waiting for the keys.
33 "It will be an example to the whole army if one of its leaders is executed. We must here and now make up our minds what is to be done."
34 He was besieged in his own city, where he defended himself valiantly.
35 When day dawned the gates were flung open and the army was allowed in. All the common people were put to the sword.
36 When they reached this town they found the gates left open for them by the citizens and they marched in without meeting resistance.
37 They gave him many gifts and promised to be his faithful subjects.
38 These two now made a pact to have him killed, and they sent an army against him with that end in view.
39 With a vigour which would have become a man she rose in her wrath and took her stand between the two enemy forces.
40 Darkness and the deep recesses of the forests offered safety and refuge to a few survivors.
41 ...so the invaders laid waste the surrounding countryside, not being strong enough to break into the towns themselves.
42 ...consented to pay the third of a gold piece as ransom for each man, rather than let them be slaughtered.
43 Thereupon the entire army was stricken with panic and the men made up their minds to return home.
44 He made a night attack and killed every one of them, doing great damage to the region round the bridge.
45 They captured those whom they did not kill, returning them, or most of them, it is true, but only after stripping them of all that they had.
46 They killed many men, burned buildings and seized booty even in their own territory.
47 The moment they came near, rocks were dropped on their heads, so that all who approached the city walls were killed.
48 He was blocked by the snows and forced to abandon his booty, making his way through with great difficulty and with a very small escort.
49 After his death, a fire destroyed the greater part of the city. All those quarters which had survived enemy action now perished in the flames.
50 ...captured a number of other cities which were his by right of inheritance. What is worse, civil war then broke out between the two of them.
51 "Follow me," said he, "and I will lead you to a land where you will be able to lay your hands on so much gold and silver that even your lust for loot will be satisfied."
52 They ravaged the region several times, and in the end the inhabitants had to recognize the King, although they did it with an ill grace.
53 For some time they shouted orders at each other, but in the end the Queen prevailed and stopped the conflict.
54 Most of them survived, but quite a few of the servants were drowned. The local inhabitants stole such of their effects as were washed ashore.
55 They assembled their army and set off with their wives and children, for they intended to take up residence there.
56 On the way they committed so many crimes, murders, robberies and seizures of property, even in their own region, that it would take too long for me to tell you all the details.
57 You must know that unless you hand it over he will come to attack you at the head of an army.
58 His nephew’s troops had not yet shown up, but their leaders and messengers were in his camp.
59 They wept bitterly and refused to go. He had them guarded closely, ready for the day when he could send them abroad.
60 People said that more than five thousand met their end in these disasters; but their fate did not deter the others who remained alive.
61 When he saw what was happening, he returned home, he and his troops carrying vast riches which they had stolen.
62 They say that quite a few of the serfs hanged themselves in their distress, dreading to be carried off from those near and dear to them.
63 Then they scattered through the villas of the near-by towns, seizing booty, making prisoners and causing great destruction.
64 "My answer is this, that no one shall see you alive again, even if you have tricked me by your false promise." He dashed his javelin between his shoulders.
65 This is the message which he sends to you: “When we meet on the battlefield, God will make it clear whether or not I am the King's son.”
66 The two armies were drawn up and stood face to face with all their weapons and ready for battle but a storm suddenly arose with violent thunder and lightning.
67 ...they submitted to his authority, for they were afraid that they might be cut to pieces by his troops.
68 Many a district did he ravage and burn, not once but many times. He showed no remorse at what he did, but rather rejoiced in it.
69 He made him swear an oath that he would never fight against him again. He later broke his oath, which was a dishonourable thing to do.
70 They had his permission to bring home with them not only every single thing which they could steal in the region but also the entire population.
71 The King made no provision whatsoever from the public purse, everything being requisitioned from the poor inhabitants.
72 They left nothing inside the houses and nothing outside the houses, and then they knocked the houses down
73 They seized a vast amount of booty, ravaged the fields, stripped the vineyards of their grapes and captured the inhabitants.
74 ...witnessed the defeat of his army and prepared to slip away in flight. He was arrested by his own troops...
75 He set off from his city in great agony of spirit, for he was afraid that he himself would be attacked on the way.
76 In their search they came upon camels and horses, still carrying huge loads of gold and silver, which his men had abandoned along the roads.
77 ...were besieged, but they retained their liberty, for they bribed the invaders not to take them captive.
78 “You know very well that you and I have a pact. I ask you to stop ambushing my men."
79 ...came home victorious, carrying enough booty to satisfy the cupidity of any man, or so one would have thought.
80 He himself escaped more dead than alive, and many of his men were injured. This did not stop him from going on with the evil deeds which he had been doing.
81 ...setting fire to everything there and causing great devastation.
82 The army ran riot through the whole region, attacking everything, destroying everything.
83 In the end he marched his entire army forward, attacked the fortress, defeated the garrison and burned the place down.
84 He made his way to a certain fortified town, gave his word, and those inside opened the gates of their own free will.
85 "If he does harm him, trouble will immediately arise between the two of us, a quarrel will ensue, and we who have such cause to live in peace will be divided."
86 No day passed and, indeed, no part of a day, in which he did not occupy himself in plundering his citizens or in quarreling with them about something or other.
87 The slaughter was immense, more than seven thousand being killed from the two armies.
88 He stretched a piece of canvas and told armed men to stand behind it. The canvas was not long enough to reach the ground, and the men’s feet were plainly visible.
89 They duly arrived, but, when they had stayed fifteen days, they set off home again, taking with them a vast amount of loot.
90 ...but they had obtained no promise of peace. On the contrary, the rift had become even deeper.
91 His military commanders quarreled with each other and came back home without having gained any material advantage.
92 Then a new quarrel arose between the two Kings, and the hostages were reduced to state labour, or became the slaves of those in whose custody they had been placed.
93 "You must know that if the person who has done this deed is not brought to book, our King will march here with his army and put this whole region to the sword and lay it waste with fire."
94 He destroyed a number of places with fire and sword, but this merely roused the inhabitants to greater fury.
95 ...but he was bought off with twenty-two pounds of silver and marched on.
96 A vast horde of troops continued to advance, but with fear in their hearts.
97 "You must not march into battle, for we shall be beaten if you do. If you insist upon advancing, then advance without me!"
98 A little later he conscripted an army with the intention of invading, but he never took the field.
99 "How can we expect to win a victory nowadays," he asked, "when we no longer keep to the conventions of our forefathers?"
100 Quite a few, who had less presence of mind, were drowned in the river.


The "Event" table is a grab bag of interesting sentences that didn't fit anywhere else. Use it to add some flavour to a ruler's reign, add an omen, or just introduce chaos.


1d100 Event
1 "Look! Here is the very document, signed with your own names and confirming your own connivance in what I have said!"
2 They rushed out of the church, for they thought that the whole town would be destroyed by this fire, or else that the earth would open and swallow it up.
3 They say that one of these envoys was murdered in secret, but no one knows by whom, although suspicion turned on the King.
4 Beneath it they found a vast hoard of treasure, amounting to more than a hundred thousand pounds of gold.
5 He forbade his troops to take any booty as they marched in, or to rob any man of his possessions.
6 The populace which had fled now came back, but they were wiped out once more by disease.
7 ...imagining in their cowardly stupidity that by doing so they had gained a conclusive victory.
8 While the Kings were quarreling with each other again and once more making preparations for civil war, dysentery spread.
9 In the end he received all his goods back, but only after giving the King a bribe.
10 In honour of the event, the King ordered all the prisons to be opened, those incarcerated to be freed and all fines owing to the treasury to be cancelled. 
11 "...but if it is you who are disobeying my royal commands and failing to carry out my orders, it is in your skulls that the axe should be buried."
12 ...but he failed in his assault, for his lance shattered and his sword fell to the ground.
13 The entire populace is without faith, given to perjury, prone to theft, quick to commit murder: and no justice can be seen to flourish among them.
14 A mob gathered: the people seized the tax-collector’s demand-books and burned them to ashes. The King was furious.
15 I have no idea what all this meant.
16 Two swarms of locusts appeared at this time.
17 At this time, too, a fifth star, moving in the opposite direction, was seen to enter the circle of the moon.
18 They found so much gold and silver that those who were charged with clearing it spent many days in carrying it away.
19 Even the richer citizens lost their all, and if anyone managed to salvage anything from the flames it was immediately snatched away by thieves.
20 ...for they pretended that, if he would join them, they would throw off their allegiance to his father and accept him as their leader.
21 A council of bishops was convened: it settled a number of matters which were in dispute and punished certain people who had proved unsatisfactory.
22 An agreement was sworn to between them to that effect, hostages were exchanged, and then the envoys went off home.
23 Portents appeared. Rays of light were seen in the northern sky, although, indeed, this happens often.
24 ...after all the feasting and the songs, after the wantonness and the dancing...
25 They engaged in a quarrel with their own congregations and beat quite a few of them with wooden clubs, until in their rage they made the blood flow.
26 "It is true enough", he added as an afterthought, ‘that his mother threatened to murder me, but as far as I am concerned that is a matter of small moment."
27 They ate and drank together, and loaded each other with gifts suitable to the occasion, each then going his way in peace.
28 "Take all this," they said, "with half of all the territory which we hold, only leave our wives and little children free and let there be no war between us."
29 They went on with their argument until the sun went down and night began to fall.
30 He seized their possessions and added them to the royal treasury.
31 Round the moon stretched the circle which is usually a sign of rain.
32 A number of charges were levelled against them, and they were accused of adultery and of murder.
33 Wolves found their way inside the walls of the town of and ate the dogs, showing no fear whatsoever of human beings.
34 The house-servants refused to obey the orders of so rude a person, but he beat some with sticks and others with rods.
35 Many cattle were drowned, the crops were ruined and buildings inundated.
36 He ordered the priest to be removed forcibly from his presence and to be driven into exile in a car filled with thorns.
37 He carried rich bribes with him, but on the road he was attacked and his gifts were stolen.
38 ...was shaken by frequent earthquakes, and savage packs of wolves and stags came in through the gates and ranged through the entire city...
39 He had no sooner finished speaking when he became blind.
40 ...and was so overwhelmed by dark thoughts of such a sinful nature, that she made her way through the pitch-black night to the church-house.
41 They then alleged that he had done this by his magic arts. They rose up in rebellion against him and dragged him away.
42 He gave him a piece of land of his own on which he lived in freedom with his wife and children all the days of his life.
43 Three times the sun was in eclipse, so that only a third part of it was visible
44 They loaded their ships with what they had stolen and the men they had seized, and then they set sail for home.
45 This they graciously granted and they sent her off with a great dowry of expensive jewellery.
46 They made light of what they had been told and pretended that it was all empty dreams.
47 Once they had spotted the trick, they advanced with more circumspection.
48 ...made their way back home, stripped of all their equipment, deprived of their horses and thoroughly ashamed of themselves.
49 He ordered the others to dismiss. They were filled with mighty dread at what he had done.
50 A bright star was seen shining in the very centre of the moon, and other stars appeared close to the moon, above it and below. 
51 ...and immediately set about looting, knocking down and destroying the buildings which he had occupied illegally.
52 "It would be better for you to abandon your stupid, malicious behaviour, and to turn your mind to higher things."
53 Twenty rays of light appeared in the north, starting in the east, and then moving round to the west.
54 He gave him three pairs of everything which a king could need, arms, clothes and ornaments, with some silver dishes and a team of horses.
55 The King gave him permission to depart, and held the boy as hostage.
56 ...unless the inhabitants surrendered, the whole place would be burnt to the ground and they themselves made captive.
57 To this day one is still amazed and astonished at the disasters which befell these people.
58 He deprived them of their horses, their servants and all their possessions.
59 Many were deceived by this, ruining themselves by handing over their goods and receiving bronze in exchange.
60 He left behind a close friend of his who was able to soothe the minds of his angry subjects with his honeyed words.
61 She till had two iron daggers made, which she ordered to be deeply grooved and smeared with poison.
62 In the end he restored them to his favour and gave them back all that had been taken from them.
63 Then the whole hillside was split open and separated from the mountain nearest to it, and it fell into the river, carrying with it men, churches, property and houses.
64 ...but they began to quarrel, accusing each other in turn of adultery and fornication, and heaping lies on each other
65 ...opened the tomb and stole as many of the precious objects from the dead body as they could lay their hands on.
66 "An unlucky omen!" people muttered, for some saw it as poor promise for the future.
67 Even before they had been given an audience by the King, they were foolish enough to reveal to quite a number of people what they were trying to achieve.
68 He doled out a meagre allowance to the Princess, this to last her until he should come back to the city.
69 He handed his son over as a hostage and swore that he would be faithful to the King.
70 ...who were highly skilled in necromancy, made a number of phantom figures dance before their eyes and so beat them easily.
71 The treaty was confirmed, promises were sworn, and they, too, came back loaded with gifts.
72 Many of them were pardoned, but only after paying considerable fines, and even then they were ordered to go and explain themselves to the King.
73 A great pestilence caused the death of many people.
74 Then a star, which some call a comet, appeared over the region for a whole year, with a tail like a sword, and the whole sky seemed to burn.
75 There was such a vast assemblage of objects that the gold, silver and other precious things filled fifty carts.
76 They posted an armed guard all around and sent messengers to his father. As soon as he heard the news, he set out at speed.
77 They promised to give the King a thousand pieces of gold if this delay were agreed to, but he refused.
78 The two brothers had supper together, and then spent the rest of the evening in a drinking-bout, with the result that they became completely intoxicated
79 Thereupon they departed, mad with anger. The King was furious at what they had said. He ordered decaying horse-dung to be flung over their heads as they went.
80 ...inflicted terrible punishments on the populace, having them tortured and even put to death out of hand.
81 That year the winter weather was harsh and more bitter than usual. The mountain torrents were frozen solid and people walked across them as if they were dry ground.
82 ...offered not only two thirds of the land but all the flocks and herds on it, if only the they would refrain from war.
83 He was astonished when he heard this, for he knew that four months earlier she had borne a son. All the same, he let her go.
84 No one in the household heard anything. Day dawned and they were terrified at the crime which it revealed
85 Both parties swore an oath that they would never make further trouble against each other. So the feud came to an end.
86 No sooner had they left the scene than the two broke into his houses and stole all his property.
87 They handed over many thousands of gold coins in payment for what they had done. Then they were allowed to cross the river.
88 Many other taxes were levied, not only on land but also on the number of workmen employed, until it became quite impossible to meet them.
89 He asked for his money back, but the King was so sure of his power that he did not even send an answer.
90 However, he became the subject of so much ridicule and humiliation that he decided to remain silent.
91 He chose a band of his most valiant followers and marched swiftly to join them. They thereupon set up the ambush which they had prepared.
92 They promised to make good the damage, but they did not carry out their promises.
93 In my opinion this happened because of all the crimes which had been committed and all the blood which had been shed.
94 ...stayed to despoil the dead man: then he himself made off unmolested, taking his daughters with him.
95 This extraordinary phenomenon filled me with foreboding, for it was clear that some disaster was about to be sent from heaven.
96 They were furious at this recital of the crimes committed by their enemy and they all agreed to invade.
97 He was so terrified and reduced to such straits that he threatened to kill himself with his own hands.
98 When the funeral ceremony was over, the King was forced by this dying wish of his evil consort to commit the foul deed which she begged of him.
99 "Either you must prove your daughter’s innocence or else let her die, for we cannot permit her adultery to bring disgrace upon our family."
100 When she saw how hesitant they were, she drugged them with a potion and packed them off on their mission.


Finally, here are 3 tables for naming your Frankish leaders. The second "Male Names" table is 75% "Roman", so use it for bishops and people from senatorial families. Gregory recorded far fewer female names than male names.


1d100 Male Names 1d100 Male Names 1d40 Female Names
1 Macliaw 1 Ursus 1 Basina
2 Alboin 2 Nectarius 2 Chroma
3 Huneric 3 Armentius 3 Clotild
4 Rauching 4 Ennodius 4 Radegund
5 Theuda 5 Nantinus 5 Amalaberg
6 Theudat 6 Antidius 6 Guntheuc
7 Agila 7 Patroclus 7 Placidina
8 Aregisel 8 Eustochius 8 Alchima
9 Gararic 9 Ascovindus 9 Deuteria
10 Leuvigild 10 Ferreolus 10 Wisigard
11 Trasamund 11 Heraclius 11 Audofleda
12 Rignomer 12 Cymulus 12 Amalasuntha
13 Traguilla 13 Injuriosus 13 Papianilla
14 Chramn 14 Leucadius 14 Ingund
15 Merovech 15 Asteriolus 15 Chlothsind
16 Faraulf 16 Pappolus 16 Aregund
17 Munderic 17 Albinus 17 Chunsina
18 Godin 18 Firminus 18 Vuldetrada
19 Magnulf 19 Mummolus 19 Caesaria
20 Maurilio 20 Ausanius 20 Veneranda
21 Chilperic 21 Eunomius 21 Marcatrude
22 Senoch 22 Jovinus 22 Austrechild
23 Waroch 23 Faustianus 23 Bobilla
24 Theudemer 24 Emperius 24 Ingoberg
25 Theuderic 25 Anianus 25 Marcovefa
26 Bertram 26 Lampadius 26 Merofled
27 Theudebert 27 Eufronius 27 Theudechild
28 Sunno 28 Gaudentius 28 Brunhild
29 Clovis 29 Desiderius 29 Fredegund
30 Ragnemod 30 Austregesil 30 Galswinth
31 Chanao 31 Paulellus 31 Audovera
32 Vindimialis 32 Peonius 32 Susanna
33 Marachar 33 Armentarius 33 Goiswinth
34 Bladast 34 Avius 34 Rosamund
35 Dragolen 35 Dalmatius 35 Ingitrude
36 Leuva 36 Galienus 36 Rigunth
37 Zaban 37 Cautinus 37 Sidonia
38 Badegisil 38 Desideratus 38 Leuba
39 Alaric 39 Celsus 39 Domnola
40 Amalaric 40 Nicetius 40 Chlodosind
41 Berthar 41 Nanninus

42 Theudebald 42 Felix

43 Vedast 43 Ursicinus

44 Winnoch 44 Secundinus

45 Ebero 45 Aegidius

46 Respendial 46 Promotus

47 Sigismund 47 Praetextatus

48 Marileif 48 Salvius

49 Gogo 49 Modestus

50 Cunimund 50 Revocatus

51 Bodic 51 Aridius

52 Guntram 52 Anastasius

53 Cyrola 53 Eugenius

54 Scapthar 54 Egidius

55 Gundomar 55 Sidonius

56 Richemer 56 Maiorianus

57 Chlodobert 57 Agroetius

58 Gundovald 58 Sisinnius

59 Hermanfrid 59 Bricius

60 Sigibert 60 Sagittarius

61 Ragnachar 61 Longinus

62 Gailen 62 Transobadus

63 Aunulf 63 Priscus

64 Ullo 64 Baudinus

65 Baderic 65 Alithius

66 Waddo 66 Salonius

67 Chlodomer 67 Aravatius

68 Siggo 68 Tetricus

69 Ingomer 69 Syagrius

70 Caluppa 70 Andarchius

71 Riculf 71 Nicasius

72 Thorismund 72 Attalus

73 Buccelin 73 Aetius

74 Andica 74 Eunius

75 Marcomer 75 Magnachar

76 Ansovald 76 Ricchar

77 Theodoric 77 Auno

78 Chloderic 78 Ethelbert

79 Garachar 79 Agilan

80 Brachio 80 Imnachar

81 Sichar 81 Ageric

82 Gundobad 82 Childeric

83 Beppolen 83 Dacolen

84 Chramnesind 84 Geilamir

85 Childebert 85 Farro

86 Euric 86 Gunthar

87 Leudast 87 Occila

88 Lothar 88 Chariulf

89 Arbogast 89 Martin

90 Sigivald 90 Warinar

91 Sunniulf 91 Sigeric

92 Genobaud 92 Odovacar

93 Willachar 93 Recared

94 Sigulf 94 Clodio

95 Leudegisel 95 Chonomor

96 Wilichar 96 Hermangild

97 Godigisel 97 Charibert

98 Theudovald 98 Athanagild

99 Eberulf 99 Medard

100 Gunderic 100 Chlodovald


Example:Baron Summerland is not a particularly kind Baron. Let's see what his life is like. I don't need much info, so I'll just roll twice on the first Ruler table:
16) He was even more sadistic than his predecessor.
100) He often committed manslaughter in the very vestibule which led towards the Saint’s tomb, and he behaved there in a drunken and stupid way.

Seriously Gregory, tell us how you really feel. Before I go on I'll roll twice on the Events table to see if it offers any insight.
49) He ordered the others to dismiss. They were filled with mighty dread at what he had done.
93) In my opinion this happened because of all the crimes which had been committed and all the blood which had been shed.
If we put it all together:
I will now tell you of Baron Summerland. He was even more sadistic than his predecessor, and showed no respect to the Church, his followers, or his lord. He often committed manslaughter in the very vestibule which led towards the Saint’s tomb, and he behaved there in a drunken and stupid way. I will tell you of one incident. [death] He ordered the others to dismiss. They were filled with mighty dread at what he had done.[omens] In my opinion this happened because of all the crimes which had been committed and all the blood which had been shed.
So now we need a death. Not for the Baron (he's still alive) but for the person he killed in Church.
79) ...pulled out his axe and split his skull. He fell to the ground dead and was thrown out of the window of the house.
How appropriate. Picking an appropriate result from the Events table to round it off, we get.
I will now tell you of Baron Summerland. He was even more sadistic than his predecessor, and showed no respect to the Church, his followers, or his lord. He often committed manslaughter in the very vestibule which led towards the Saint’s tomb, and he behaved there in a drunken and stupid way. I will tell you of one incident. The Baron was arguing with a priest over some trivial matter. Suddenly, full of rage, he pulled out his axe and split the priest's skull. He fell to the ground dead and was thrown out of the window of the church. After this, he ordered his followers to dismiss. They were filled with mighty dread at what he had done. In the next month, many lights appeared in the sky, moving from north to south. There was also a terrible flood in the Baron's lands. Many cattle were drowned, the crops were ruined and buildings inundated. In my opinion this happened because of all the crimes which had been committed and all the blood which had been shed.
Let's also find out how Baron Summerland's feud with Baron Greenfield is going. 

First, Baron Greenfield. I'll roll twice on the second Ruler table:
37) He had already fled, for he was a man infirm of purpose and vacillating in judgement.
72) He found her attractive, fell in love with her, persuaded her to go to bed with him and had intercourse with her.
Once on the War table:
20) They discovered such a vast quantity of corn and wine that, had they resisted like men, they would have had supplies to last them many years.
And on the Horrible Death table:
43) ...arrested, put to the torture, beaten, loaded with chains and locked up in prison.
And putting it all together:
By the time Baron Summerland's troops reached the town, Baron Greenfield had already fled, for he was a man infirm of purpose and vacillating in judgement. I will give you an example. His wife had recently taken in a new serving girl. He found the girl attractive, fell in love with her, persuaded her to go to bed with him and had intercourse with her. Then he immediately became tired of her and cast her from his house. This is the kind of man he was. When Baron Summerland took the town, he discovered such a vast quantity of corn and wine that, had they resisted like men, the citizens would have had supplies to last them many years. Baron Greenfield was captured a few miles away, arrested, put to the torture, beaten, loaded with chains and locked up in prison. The King later had him released and restored to his position.





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