Saxon was at this period the common title of all the north German tribes; there was but little difference between Frisians and Saxons either in race or language, and they were closely united for some four centuries in common resistance to the encroachments of the Frankish power.
Finally in 924 Lorraine passed in the reign of Henry the Fowler under German (East Frankish) overlordship. Henry's son, Otto the Great, owing to the disordered state of the country, placed it in 953 in the hands of his able brother, Bruno, archbishop of Cologne, for pacification.
Four years later he was murdered at Vienne in Gaul, probably at the instigation of his Frankish general Arbogast, with whom he had quarrelled.
The Breisgau, originally a pagus or gau of the Frankish empire, was ruled during the middle ages by hereditary counts.
It should also here be noticed that the changes introduced into the holding of the fiefs, whether by altering their boundaries or substituting Frankish for Lombard vassals, were chief among the causes why the feudal system took no permanent hold in Italy.