By 730 , who had been at Toulouse, was the. He had trained a core of his men year round, using mostly Church funds, and some had been with him since his earliest days after his father's death. The two founders of Catholic France, Clovis and Charlemagne, wrote the heroic beginning of its history. Charlemagne sought an alliance with the Lombards by marrying 770 the daughter of their king, Desiderius reigned 757-774. Through his program of cultural revival and changes to the Church, he succeeded in improving the level of civilization in the West. At first, legend pictured him as the champion of Christendom; later he appeared as a vacillating old man, almost a comic figure. His favorite residence from 794 on was at Aachen.
The eldest son of , he inherited half the Frankish kingdom 768 , annexed the remainder on his brother Carloman's death 771 , and built a large empire. Charlemagne became the King of the Franks in 768. Charlemagne's aggressive domination of religious life in his realm proceeded without alienating the Frankish episcopacy which generally gave its full support to the ruler's program. Among other legislation, all local regional governors were subject to regular inspections by royal emissaries to make sure no injustices were being done. Aachen Cathedral, famous Roman Catholic church built on the order of Charlemagne 4 He was the driving force behind the Carolingian Renaissance Depiction of Alcuin of York At his royal court in Aachen, Charlemagne gathered the cream of available intellect, most notably the English scholar Alcuin of York. Pepin raised both boys to succeed him, since it was the Frankish custom for a king to divide his lands between his sons.
To these ends came also the utilization of the church hierarchy as well as lay officials as a means of social control; both groups were expected to give effect to the legal rules and pious exhortations expressed in capitularies promulgated in Latin by the assemblies that brought together bishops, abbots, and leading laymen in 779, 789, and frequently in later years. When Pepin died in October 768, Charlemagne came into his inheritance. To his empire Charlemagne added the Bavarian duchy, or territory controlled by a duke. At the height of his reign or when he had expanded the most, his kingdom included Germany, the Netherlands, present day France, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Belgium, northern Italy and northern Spain. He would wake and get up from bed four or five times during the night. His concern for religious reform was motivated in part by his personal piety. The Frankish position in Italy also led to confrontations with the.
From 760 on, Pepin's main military efforts went into the conquest of Aquitaine, the lands south of the Loire River. They did not consider it dishonorable to violate any law, human or divine. Two days later on Christmas day as Charlemagne prepared to celebrate Mass in the basilica of St. He was naturally gregarious, loquacious, and intellectually inquisitive, allowing him to be the dominant person in his court circle. It was inspired by an awareness of defects in contemporary religious life that needed correction in accordance with norms laid down by earlier church councils and encoded in collections of. The livre was subdivided into 20 sous, each of 12 deniers.
Between 720 and 723, Charles was fighting in Bavaria, where the dukes had gradually evolved into independent rulers, recently in alliance with. Martel never became king of the Franks, but instead continued in his position as Mayor of the Palace and deputy for the last Merovingian kings of the Franks. Although by the end of the 8th century the papacy was extended recognition as the titular head of Christendom, both Adrian I and were fully aware of the extent to which the survival of the Papal States and of the pope's authority over those who inhabited the Papal States depended on the protection of the Frankish ruler; thus, neither was inclined to challenge his religious policy. Charlemagne would leave local customs and laws to remain in place after gaining control of territories, and made sure they were written down and recorded. At Rome, Charlemagne was received by Adrian as patrician of the Romans a title he had received with his father in 754 , and he confirmed his father's donation to the.
Odo engaged Abdul Rahman on the Garonne River at the , but was defeated. Interesting Charlemagne Facts: The title of Emperor of the Romans of the Holy Roman Empire was largely a non-power titled but it led to him being highly respected throughout most of Europe. Scholars from many countries came to take advantage ofhis royal benevolence. A notable administrative reform was the implementation of a system by which he could supervise his administrators in even the most distant lands. Military victory was accompanied by the effective extension of a missionary effort, already begun by the Bavarian clergy, aimed at converting the inhabitants of the Avar Empire. He directed a school at Charlemagne's palace, a training ground for young men who would later work in the government.
Charlemagne divorced his first wife Desiderata within a year of their marriage. Charles' father, Pepin of Herstal, was able to unite the Frankish realm by conquering and. What he actually achieved during his reign laid a firm basis upon which an orderly, civilized society was later built in western Europe. He had some success there and a portion of Spain became part of the Frankish Empire. The reign of Charlemagne can be considered a turning point in medieval history, both politically and culturally, after which conditions improved greatly in many ways. One of the tragic episodes in Charlemagne's life was marked by the death of four of his children in a two-year span from 810 to 812, including Pepin and Charles, both destined to succeed their father.
Despite the distance, he had diplomatic relations with the Abbasid Caliphate in northern Africa, the Middle East, and western Asia he even received the gift of an elephant and with the Byzantine Empire. And it also indicated that he wished to exclude the papacy from any role in providing legitimacy for the imperial title. He appeared where his enemies least expected him, while they were marching triumphantly home and far outnumbered him. The offices created or adapted by Charlemagne would persist for centuries in the variations of counts, dukes and marquises across Europe and Britain. He also maintained a small group of elite warriors, the vassi dominici, who acted as his personal retinue and helped him enforce imperial authority. Such uniformity not only strengthened the Church but facilitated the political task of integrating and centralizing the administration of the empire.
In 778 he led an expedition into Spain in an attempt to take advantage of internal dissension among the ruling Muslims by establishing a Frankish presence south of the Pyrenees that would hinder Muslim incursions into Frankish territories in southern Gaul. He embarked on a long and brutal conquest of Saxony 772—804 , annexed 788 and defeated the Avars of the middle 791—96, 804. The victorious Martel pursued the fleeing king and mayor to Paris, but as he was not yet prepared to hold the city, he turned back to deal with Plectrude and Cologne. Supported by these scholars, he started an era which, among other things, saw the flowering of scholarship, literature, art, and architecture. The analogous cases of Tom-a-Lincolne, Tannh äuser, and Thomas the Rhymer are also relevant. In general, Charlemagne's diplomatic encounters with the emperors in the East allowed him to strengthen his position vis- à-vis the.