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Charlemagne Essays: Table of Content
The Life of Charlemagne Essay
Einhard, in his The Life of Charlemagne, makes clear the fundamental integration of politics and religion during the reign of his king.Throughout his life, Charles the Great endeavored to acquire and use religious power to his desired ends.But, if Charlemagne was the premiere monarch of the western world, why was religious sanction and influence necessary to achieve his goals?In an age when military power was the primary means of expanding one’s empire, why did the most powerful military force in Europe go to such great lengths to ensure a benevolent relationship with the church?One possibility may be found in the tremendous social and political influence of Rome and her papacy upon the whole of the continent.Rather than a force to be opposed, Charlemagne viewed the church as a potential source of political power to be gained through negotiation and alliance.The relationship was one of great symbiosis, and both componants not only survived but prospered to eventual! ly dominate western Europe.For the King of the Franks, the church provided the means to accomplish the expansion and reformation of his empire.For the Holy Roman Church, Charles provided protection from invaders and new possibilities for missionary work. The blessing of the church helped to unify and strengthen the resolve of the Frankish people as they withstood or conquered the heathen Viking and eastern Germanic tribes.The fact that Charles was Christian and was backed by the Catholic church must have certainly helped keep other christian powers from allying with these barbarians.For Rome, there were suddenly new peoples to convert, and keep from direct opposition to the The Great Christian Emperor. Additionally, Charlemagne provided Rome with badly needed protection from Islamic invaders.Indeed, Charles saved most of Italy from Muslim piracy.When Rome became one with Carolingian empire, he “Defended and made it beautiful (page 285).
Charlemagne’s Kingdom Essay
When Pepin, the King of the Franks died in 768, his sons Charlemagne and Carloman were appointed as his successors. The kingdom was divided equally between them.Charlemagne became sole ruler of the Frankish kingdom in 771 when his brother Carloman died.So began Charlemagne’s reign as one of the greatest kings in medieval times.Under Charlemagne’s rule, a common government, a common faith and a common culture united much of Western Europe. That was his legacy. It was not Charlemagne’s military prowess that won him a vast kingdom, as Einhard believed. It was Charlemagne’s strong personality that was the driving force behind his military successes, as well as the glue that held his kingdom together.
Charlemagne was a simple man with strong family ties and religious beliefs. He was a man of great vision and determination with a diplomatic flair that few men of his time possessed. His exceptional organizational skills and his belief in education were the hallmarks of his administration. During his reign, Charlemagne engaged in numerous military campaigns. “He so largely increased the Frank’s kingdom, which was already great and strong when he received it at his father’s hands, that more than double its former territory was added to it.”While this was true, it was not principally Charles’ military leadership that brought him victory.
“Many battles were fought in his name, but he rarely accompanied his armies and fought no campaigns that are remembered for strategic brilliance.”Charles’ fierce determination helped win him the empire as evidenced in the Aquitanian War. This was Charles’first military undertaking.
How Charlemagne United His Kingdom Essay
In order to unify his kingdom, Charlemagne did many things.He created a system, which allowed him to supervise his administrators, even in the distant lands.They were called “missi dominici”, or king’s envoys.They traveled through the land to check on the local administrations.He set up barriers to prevent invasions from foreign lands.He created a state where law and order were once again enforced after 300 years of disintegration. Charlemagne supported the education of even the poorest of his people. Charlemagne extended Christianity throughout Europe, with his help the gospel was preached to the people.On Christmas day, Charlemagne came to Rome and restored the pope to his position; Roman nobility removed the pope from office, a year earlier. At the Christmas service Charlemagne knelt at the alter and the pope placed a crown on his head.The crowds shouted, “To Charles Augustus crowned of god, great and pacific Emperor of the Romans, long life and victory.”The ceremony acknowledged that his authority came from god through the church. After Charlemagne’s death his empire was divided among his three grandsons.They tried to continue his projects but were unable to maintain them.There was no central power to organize them; one raid after another devastated Germany and France.Although the invaders were driven out, there was no leader strong enough to put an end to the invasions.As a result feudalism arose.Feudalism is a system of rights and duties in which private individuals exercised political power locally, instead of through the bureaucracy of the state.
Charlemagne and Religion Essay
Charlemagne was born April 2, 742. After he beat the barbarians he restored education and culture while he took his place in political rights. Churches became the “driving force” of Charlemagne’s life after he devoted himself to them. He became the sole king of the Franks after his brother Carloman died in 771. In his determination to strengthen his kingdom and bring back order to Europe he started a 30-year campaign that Christianized the Saxons in the north. Which he sent out over 50 military expeditions and he rode as commander in at least half of them. When it was possible he tried to settle problems peacefully and calmly like when he offered money to the king of Lombard Desiderius to return his land to the pope, but Desiderius refused and Charlemagne took over his kingdom. The fact that Charlemagne was so very organized was the key to his many conquests. Charlemagne was acknowledged as the ruler of Western Europe in 800. Pope Leo III was crowned emperor on Christmas day in 800. With Charlemagne being rule over the former Roman empire in Western Europe that confirm the split between the Byzantine and Roman empires. The invade of Norse and Danes troubled the end of Charlemagne’s time in power so Charlemagne took forceful actions for the construction of a fleet. The land he had already was protected by the creation of marches. In 813, Charlemagne chosen his son as co-emperor and crowned him. Trying to improve the people in his kingdom in many ways: he set up money standards trying to promote trade, he tried to rebuild the Rhine-Danube canal, he promoted the spread of education and Christianity, and also he advised better farming methods. He opened school to young boys and nobles. Also, the palace school became famous; numerous schools for children of all classes were also built throughout the empire during Charlemagne’s time in power.