Obverse: Cross within inner circle.
Legend: + CARLVS REX R
Reverse: Inscription in two lines.
Legend: MET / ALO
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Charles III (17 September 879 â€“ 7 October 929), called the Simple or the Straightforward (from the Latin Carolus Simplex), was the King of Western Francia from 898 until 922 and the King of Lotharingia from 911 until 919â€“23. He was a member of the Carolingian dynasty.
Charles was the third and posthumous son of Louis the Stammerer by his second wife, Adelaide of Paris. As a child, Charles was prevented from succeeding to the throne at the time of the death in 884 of his half-brother Carloman. The nobles of the realm instead asked his cousin, Charles the Fat, to rule them. He was also prevented from succeeding the unpopular Charles, who was deposed in November 887 and died in January 888, although it is unknown if his deposition was accepted or even made known in West Francia before his death. The nobility elected as king Odo, the hero of the Siege of Paris, though there was a faction that supported Guy III of Spoleto. Charles was put under the protection of Ranulf II, the Duke of Aquitaine, who may have tried to claim the throne for him and in the end used the royal title himself until making peace with Odo.
Finally, in 893 Charles was crowned by a faction opposed to Odo at Reims Cathedral, though he only became the effectual monarch with the death of Odo in 898.
Also in 911, Louis the Child, the King of Germany, died, and the nobles of Lotharingia, who had been loyal to him, under the leadership of Reginar Longneck declared Charles their new king, breaking from Germans who had elected Conrad of Franconia king. Charles had tried to win their support for years, for instance by marrying in April 907 a Lotharingian woman named Frederuna. He also defended the country against two attacks by Conrad, King of the Germans. Queen Frederuna died on 10 February 917 leaving six daughters and no sons. so the succession was uncertain. On 7 October 919 Charles married again to Eadgifu, the daughter of Edward the Elder, King of England, who bore his only son, the future King Louis IV of France. By this time Charles' excessive favouritism towards a certain Hagano had turned the aristocracy against him. He endowed Hagano with monasteries that were already the benefices of other barons, alienating them. In Lotharingia he earned the enmity of the new duke, Gilbert, who declared for the German king Henry the Fowler in 919. Opposition to Charles in Lotharingia was not universal, however; he retained the support of Wigeric.