Have you heard of Lohengrin? It is a German Opera written and composed by Richard Wagner in 1850. I happen to think that German Opera is more entertaining than Italian Opera, but enough about me.

King Ludwig II

Which brings me to King Ludwig II of Bavaria. If I understand correctly, King Ludwig was very fond of Lohengrin, and built Neuschwanstein Castle as a private world for himself where he could live alone in a fantasy inspired by the Knight of the Swan Legend, on which Lohengrin is based.

But don't judge King Ludwig II too harshly: he was after all a cigar connoisseur, drove a smoking-hot golden carriage, and Neuschwanstein Castle is an excellent place to take selfies. You really should visit the Marstallmuseum at Nymphenburg Palace in Munich and see the golden carriage.

Needless to say, Lohengrin is quite different from the Strauss Operas that your great-great-great Grandmother used to listen to on her smartphone in the bathtub.


So what happens in Lohengrin? King Henry the Fowler fights the Magyars. This means we have to talk about the Magyars, King Henry's Son King Otto I, the Battle of Augsburg which is sometimes called the Battle of Lechfeld, and the Mongols!


Ok, the Magyars are descended from a nomadic-steppe-people who settled on the Hungarian Plain, which is sometimes called the Carpathian Plain.

Unfortunately for them, the Hungarian Plain was not quite vast enough to support a prosperous nomadic lifestyle. And so for some hundreds of years, the Magyars raided and pillaged all over Europe. It should be noted that Hungary considers 1896 to be the 1000th anniversary of the Magyars entering the Carpathian Plain, and in that year many memorials, monuments, and museums were built in Budapest.

As stated above, the Magyars came into conflict with King Henry the Fowler who was the King of East Frankia. East Frankia evolved from the Eastern Parts of the Carolingian Empire that was originally put together by Charlemagne. Indeed, there is today a region of Bavaria called Franconia, which has excellent regional passenger trains connecting innumerable picturesque little cities and towns which are perfect for taking selfies and drinking the local bier. But I digress.

Battle of Lechfeld

The Magyars were finally defeated by King Henry the Fowler's son King Otto I near Augsburg in 955, Augsburg being an ancient city in Bavaria that goes all the way back to the Roman Empire.

King Otto I of East Frankia was the greatest King since Charlemagne, and the Battle of Lechfeld was equal in importance to the Battle of Hastings in 1066, in the context of European History, but deeper analysis of that is above my pay grade. (This is a free blog post)


Anyway, the Magyars gave up their raiding, became Christianized, and adopted a more agrarian lifestyle on the Hungarian Plain where they founded the Nation of Hungary around the year 1000. In the 13th Century, the Mongols invaded Hungary, but were never able to advance beyond Hungary into Western Europe.

For more riveting entertainment about the Mongols, I recommend Dan Carlin's Hardcore History Podcast, in particular the subseries Wrath of The Khans.

Thanks for reading, I'm fresh out of cigars.

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