Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.

Conrad III

Conrad III., of the Hohenstaufen or Swabian dynasty, succeeded Lothaire III. as Emperor in 1138. Henry the Proud of Saxony was a formidable competitor, and the struggle between the Saxon house of the Guelphs (Welf) and the Franconian house of the Ghibellines (Wibelung) dates from this period. Conrad crushed his opponent in the battle of Weinsberg (1140), and subsequently joined in the Crusades with Louis VII. of France. After an unsuccessful attempt to take Damascus, he returned to Germany in 1149, was again victorious over the Guelphs, and died in 1152, leaving as heir his nephew Frederick Barbarossa.