When later Carolingians had not been able to exert royal power or defend Eastern Francia against Magyars and Vikings, political units began to collapse on to pre-Charlemagne lines--Saxony, Franconia, Lorraine, Swabia, and Bavaria. Their leaders took the title of count and then duke, following the western custom. From the 870s, they usurped the royal demesne, patronized churches, made the king's officials dependent on them, and tried to appoint bishops. When the weak Louis the Child (899-911) died, they tried to leave the throne vacant. The Church, however, wanted a strong monarchy that would guarantee order and their privileges, as opposed to five warring dukes. Also, Magyar incursions required some coordinated response. Desiring a weak sovereign, the Dukes elected Conrad of Franconia (911-918). He was too weak though, not stopping the Magyars, and allowing Lorraine to fall to the French King, Charles the Simple.
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Otto, Magyars, son Otto, ally Magnus Billung, Italian king Hugh