Byzantine Empire Macedonian dynasty
Norman Problem begins
©Angus McBride
1040 Jan 1

Norman Problem begins

Lombardy, Italy

Between 1038 and 1040, the Normans fought in Sicily along with the Lombards as mercenaries for the Byzantine Empire against the Kalbids. When the Byzantine general George Maniakes publicly humiliated the Salernitan leader, Arduin, the Lombards withdrew from the campaign, along with the Normans and the Varangian Guard contingent. After Maniakes was recalled to Constantinople, the new catapan of Italy, Michael Doukeianos, appointed Arduin the ruler of Melfi. Melfi, however, soon joined other Apulian Lombards in a revolt against Byzantine rule, in which they were supported by William I of Hauteville and the Normans. The Byzantines, however, managed to buy off the nominal leaders of the revolt – first Atenulf, brother of Pandulf III of Benevento, and then Argyrus. In September 1042, the Normans elected their own leader, ignoring Arduin. The revolt, originally Lombard, had become Norman in character and leadership.