Nightbringer | The Arthurian Online Encyclopedia


Provance, Provenche, Province

Provence is a historical region in the southeastern part of France, bordering the Mediterranean Sea to the south.

Der Pleier, in Tandareis and Flordibel, contends that it was allied to Arthur, as does the Alliterative Morte Arthure. Malory says that Lancelot owned it, and that Lancelot made Palamedes (Palomides) the Duke of Provence in return for Palamedes’ support in the war against Arthur.

Provence | 0 to 9th century AD

Roman Period | 1st – 5th centuries AD
Provence was part of the Roman province of Gallia Narbonensis. Roman influence in the region was significant, leading to the establishment of cities, roads, and infrastructure. Aix-en-Provence (Aquae Sextiae) and Arles (Arelate) were Roman towns of importance. The region prospered during the Roman Empire, and Roman ruins, including theaters and aqueducts, can still be seen today.

Migration Period | 5th – 6th centuries AD
The fall of the Western Roman Empire marked the beginning of the Migration Period. Barbarian tribes, including the Visigoths and Ostrogoths, moved through the region. In 476 AD, the last Roman emperor was deposed, and the Western Roman Empire officially fell.

Visigothic and Merovingian Rule | 6th – 8th centures AD
The Visigoths established control over Provence in the early sixth century. Their rule was followed by the Merovingian Franks. During this time, Provence experienced a blend of Roman and Germanic influences, and Christianity became more firmly established.

Carolingian Period | 8th – 9th centuries AD
The Carolingian dynasty, led by Charlemagne, became dominant in the Frankish realm in the eighth century. Charlemagne’s conquests and the establishment of the Carolingian Empire extended Frankish rule into Provence. The region was part of the Carolingian Empire’s western border and faced invasions by Saracen (Muslim) forces from the south.

Saracen Invasions | 8th – 9th centuries AD
Saracen raids and invasions from the Iberian Peninsula brought significant challenges to Provence. Cities and towns were sacked, and the region faced the threat of Muslim domination. The Battle of Tours in 732, led by Charles Martel, was a pivotal moment that halted further Muslim advances into Francia.

Creation of the Kingdom of Provence | 9th century AD
After the Carolingian Empire was divided, the Kingdom of Provence emerged in the ninth century. It became a semi-independent entity within the Carolingian realm. Provence had its own rulers, including the Bosonid dynasty, and played a role in the broader politics of the Carolingian Empire.

See also
Francia | The Legend of King Arthur