Simply put, the Guelphs and the Ghibellines were rival parties in medieval Germany and Italy which supported the papal party and the Holy Roman emperors. The names “Guelph” and “Ghibelline” appear to have originated in Germany, in the rivalry between the house of Welf (Dukes of Bavaria) and the house of. Guelphs and Ghibellines (gwĕlfs, gĬb´əlēnz, –lĬnz), opposing political factions in Germany and in Italy during the later Middle Ages [1].

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Ghibelline swallow-tailed merlons of the “Casa di Romeo”, of the Montecchi family of Verona. Anv dei Ragazzi in Italian. All of Tuscany was in the hands of the Ghibellines except Lucca.

The Florentines, in trying to put an end to the bloodshed, took the leaders of the factions in Pistoia and imprisoned them in Florence.

After which, he decided to end the conflict the Treaties of Anagni, Venice, and Constance that recognized the Pope and the autonomy, if not the de facto independence, of the many Italian states. Florence being the head of the Guelph league in TuscanyLucca was Guelph because it needed Florentine protection; Siena was Ghibelline, because it sought the support of the emperor against the Florentines ghibeellines against the rebellious nobles of its own territory; Pisa was Ghibelline, partly from hostility to Florencepartly from the hope of rivalling with imperial aid the maritime glories of Genoa.

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CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: Guelphs and Ghibellines

During the struggles between the Hohenstaufen emperor Frederick II reigned —50 and the ghibeellines, the Italian parties took gjelphs their characteristic names of Guelf and Ghibelline beginning in Florence and contributed to intensifying antagonisms within and among the Italian cities.

He gives an appalling picture of the atrocities still perpetuated, even by womenunder these names, albeit by that time the primitive signification of the terms had been lost, and declares that the mere professing to belong to either party is in itself a mortal sin. Italy in the Middle Ages Byzantine reconquest of Italy 6th—8th c. Wherein, the repercussions could be, collectively, a horrendous malaise. You can make it easier for us to review and, hopefully, publish your contribution by keeping a few points in mind.


Ezzelino da Romano diedwas a leader of the Ghibelline movement. Italian Wikisource has original text related to this article: These tensions with their political rally points eventually led to civil strife guelphss engulfed many cities such as Genoa and Florence.

Who were the Guelfs and Ghibellines? Peace of Constance 2nd phase: This had the effect of exacerbating the existing rivalry between the two Florentine families, the Guelpus Par. The Welfs were said to have used the name as a rallying cry during the Siege of Weinsberg inin which the rival Hohenstaufens of Swabia led by Conrad III of Germany used “Wibellingen”, the name of a castle today known as Waiblingenas their cry; “Wibellingen” subsequently ghibellnes Ghibellino in Italian.

However, the fateful battle of Montapertiin which the Florentines lost to the Sienese, was to obliterate all that the merchant middle class Guelphs had accomplished politically. His advance to Italy gave him his famous Italian nickname inspired by his red beard — Barbarossa.

But in Italy the divisions became more ugelphs function of rivalries between cities and even local families.

In the international sphere, Guelfism constituted a system of alliances among those who supported the Angevin presence in southern Italy—including the Angevin rulers of Sicily themselves, the popes, and Florence with its Tuscan allies. In the end, the defeated party suffered exile as in the case of Petrarch and Dante.

Nonetheless, Ghibellines continued to dominate the Italy ever since. Retrieved December 22, from Encyclopedia. The Guelphs early became associated with the papacy because of their mutual Hohenstaufen enemy. Ghibellunes this period Florence flourished both economically and politically. After the death of Frederick’s son and successor, Henry VIa struggle ensued in Germany and in Italy between the rival claimants for the Empire: It was decided then that the leaders of both factions be banished from Florence.

Dante Alighieri Society of Massachusetts: Guelphs and Ghibellines

The struggle between these two forces gave rise to a series of conflicts and alliances among Italian citiessince some sided ghibeklines the emperor and others with the Pope. In any case, Guelph and Ghibelline membership quickly changed from its original meaning and in each city often pointed to a choice according to specific economic interests.

Gates of Paradise January 15, Greenwood Publishing Group, ed. He was a friend of Dante and a leading exponent of the dolce stil nuovo. We get the noblest form of these aspirations in the ideal imperialism of Dante’s “De Monarchia”, on the one hand; ghubellines, on the other, in the conception of the ideal popethe papa angelico of St.


Guelphs and Ghibellines

He was then excommunicated by the Pope, and in response expelled the friars from Lombardy and placed his son Enzo as Imperial vicar in Italy, he quickly annexed RomagnaMarcheand the Duchy of Spoleto as well as part of the Papal States.

Sienahitherto the stronghold of Ghibellinism in Tuscanybecame Guelph after the battle of Colle di Valdelsa The Bianchi got their name after Bianca Cancellieri, so the opposing faction chose the color Black as its standard.

According to the more probable theory, it was then that the names of the factions were introduced into Italy. None of the early biographers, including Giovanni Villani who belonged to the opposing faction ever believed that Dante was guilty of any wrong doing.

How the Names Originated: For the most part the latter were descended from Teutonic families planted in the peninsula by the Germanic invasions of the pastand they naturally looked to the emperors as their protectors against the growing power and pretensions of the cities. The name comes through Italian Guelfo from Middle High German Welfthe name of the founder of one of the two great rival dynasties in the Holy Roman Empirea princely family of Swabian origin from which the British royal house is descended through George I.

Ghibelline Political faction in 13th-century Italy that supported the Hohenstaufen dynasty of the Holy Roman Empire and opposed the pro-papal Guelphs. Conrad’s nephew and successor, Frederick I “Barbarossa”attempted to reassert the imperial authority over the Italian cities, and to exercise supremacy over the papacy itself. Their opponents, the Neo-Ghibellines, saw the pope as a barrier to the development of Italian unity.

Posted by Bob Danell Corcuera at 6: However the imperial camp was ambushed by the Guelphs and in the ensuing Battle of Parma the imperial party was routed, losing much of their treasury.