Online Medieval Sources Bibliography

An Annotated Bibliography of Printed and Online Primary Sources for the Middle Ages

Source Details

Capo, Lidia, ed., trans., Storia dei Longobardi (Segrate: Fondazione Lorenzo Valla)

Text name(s): Historia Langobardorum; History of the Lombards

Number of pages of primary source text: 358


Dates: 787 - 796

Archival Reference: 

Original Language(s): 

  • Latin


  • Translated into another language (see translation comments).
  • Original language included.

Translation Comments: The translation into Italian is found on facing pages of the original.

Geopolitical Region(s): 

  • Europe
  • Italy

County/Region: Lombardy

Record Types: 

  • Chronicle, Annals

Subject Headings: 

  • Carolingians
  • Clergy - Monks, Nuns, Friars
  • Clergy - Priests, Bishops, Canons
  • Conversion
  • Diplomacy
  • Early Germanic Peoples: Goths, Franks, etc.
  • Historiography
  • Papacy
  • Royalty / Monarchs
  • War - Military History


  • Index
  • Bibliography
  • Introduction


Paul the Deacon was a Benedictine monk, active in the late eighth century, who played a central role in the intellectual circle of Charlemagne and the “Carolingian renaissance.” He is most renowned for his historiographical works, chief of which is the History of the Lombards, an important source for the peoples and events of Lombardy in the early Middle Ages. Covering the years from 568 to 747, the Lombard History describes political, military, and ecclesiastical events in Lombardy, while also preserving many myths and popular beliefs of the period. Incomplete in six books, Paul freely draws from such sources as Bede, Gregory of Tours, and Isidore of Seville. This handsome volume contains not only a critical edition of the text and an Italian translation, but also an extensive historical commentary. This is the most recent critical edition of the Historia Langobardorum; while it works off of the edition of Bethmann and Waitz (as found in the Monumenta Germaniae Historica), it makes numerous emendations, although its editor still refers to the present edition as “provisional.” The full text is also available on-line at the Monumenta Germaniae Historica website (, where it can be found as volume 48 of the “Scriptores rerum Germanicarum in usum scholarum separatim editi.” Indices of the names of the people and places found in the text and of medieval texts cited in the introduction and commentary are included.

Introduction Summary: 

The introduction (26 pp., in Italian) introduces the life and writings of Paul the Deacon and relates them to the political developments of his lifetime.

Cataloger: WLL