Capitulare de Villis

Capitulare de Villis Facsimile Edition

Fulda or the Rhineland (Germany) — Between 825 and 850

An inside look into the administration of Charlemagne’s empire during the latter years of his reign as he settled the Carolingian court in Aachen

  1. Intended to manage the logistics of a new fixed capital and preparations for military campaigns

  2. Most of the text is devoted to the duties of an iudex, an official charged with collecting taxes

  3. Other chapters are devoted to dispensing justice, agricultural land use, and regulating trade

Capitulare de Villis

  1. Description
  2. Facsimile Editions (1)
Capitulare de Villis

The Capitulare de Villis originates from the later years of the reign of the Emperor Charlemagne and lists a series of regulations for the overall management of royal property. It is one of several capitularies issued by Carolingian royalty concerning the organization and administration of their estates and reflects Charlemagne’s reforms to the government of the Franks. Details surrounding the origins of the manuscript are disputed, but it is generally believed that it was created at a time when the Carolingian court became settled in Aachen. It was likely intended to manage the logistical difficulties of supplying and maintaining food and equipment for administrators and soldiers at a fixed capital far from most of the estates, or in preparation for a military campaign. Although divided into seven chapters including justice, agricultural land use, taxes, and regulating trade, the majority of the text is devoted to describing the duties of the iudex, a royal official charged with managing royal properties, prosecuting criminals, and collecting taxes – both in cash and in kind – to be brought to the Carolingian court. The document is thus of great importance for understanding Carolingian material culture and political administration.


Alternative Titles
Caroli Magni imp. Cap. de villis, Leo III papa
Size / Format
16 folios / 30.8 × 12.5 cm
Between 825 and 850
Carolingian Minuscule Uncial
Leo III papa, epistolae ad imperatorem Carolum Magnum (ff. 1r-8r)
Brevium exempla, ad describendas res ecclesiastiacas et fiscales (ff. 9r-12r)
Carolus Magnus imperator: Capitulare de villis vel curtis imperii (ff. 12r-16r)
Previous Owners
Matthias Flacius Illyricus
Herzog Heinrich Julius
University library Helmstedt

Available facsimile editions:
Müller & Schindler – Simbach am Inn, 1971
Facsimile Editions

#1 Capitulare de Villis

Müller & Schindler – Simbach am Inn, 1971

Publisher: Müller & Schindler – Simbach am Inn, 1971
Commentary: 1 volume by Carlrichard Brühl
Language: German
1 volume: Exact reproduction of the original document (extent, color and size) Reproduction of the entire original document as detailed as possible (scope, format, colors). The binding may not correspond to the original or current document binding.
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