So it ends up with anyone who really is interested
being presented with certain facts, rather like pieces of a jigsaw
puzzle but it's a puzzle that is never put completely together. So
often one finds oneself up against contradictions and inconsistencies
and yet still expects the complete picture.
Gaps and uncertainties diminish the reader's
appraisal but the reader often forgets the Middle Ages cover a
period between about AD 500 and 1500, a period of some thousand years.
As regards this matter, family researchers have a
more realistic attitude but are nevertheless aware of the difficulties
in obtaining complete data even when only looking back two or three
Reliable sources are often lacking, particularly during
the time of the Crusades, which witnessed a plethora of forged documents
claiming ownership of land or legal rights to make use of such land.
These rights often did not end with the death of the claimant but were
inherited through the male line. 
It wasn't until the reign of Holy Roman Emperor Friedrich I
(1125-1190) [Frederick Barbarossa] that such matters as donations and
feudal contracts had to be provided with certification together with
an authentic seal, thereby finally providing legal certainty. 
If we confine ourselves to Hesse we shall encounter the
Conradines and the Saxons, the lineages of Werner and Giso, of the
Ziegenhainer and the archbishopric of Mainz. We shall encounter
fiefs and demesnes, doubtful successions, wars, intrigue, and
assassinations. We shall discover the importance of Amöneberg,
Wetter, Gudensberg, Hersfeld, Fulda and Mainz, and the old castles
In terms of the heart of this work we shall establish the
lineage of the Gisones with particular reference to the fortress
ruins of Hollende, situated within our locality, the centre of their
domain, which was the so-called family seat of the counts of Oberlahngau
(in the Upper Lahn valley).