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The Political West in the Early Middle Ages


An introduction to important political events in the west during the early Middle Ages.


355-8 Julian’s campaigns on Rhine

Julian's campaigns on the Rhine took place in 355-357 AD. The campaigns aimed to evict barbarian marauders from Gaul and to restore the Roman defensive line of fortifications along the Rhine, which had been largely destroyed during the Roman civil war of 350-53. The Battle of Strasbourg in 357 was the climax of Julian's campaigns and the turning point in his effort to restore the Rhine frontier. Until then, Julian was obliged to campaign largely inside Gaul, with the barbarian bands holding the initiative, playing cat-and-mouse with his forces and causing enormous economic damage to a vital region of the empire. In preparation for his campaigns, Julian repopulated seven previously destroyed cities and set them up as supply bases and staging areas. He also had a detachment of lightly armed soldiers cross the Rhine near Mogontiacum and conduct a guerilla strike against several chieftains. After his victory at Strasbourg, Julian was able to repair and garrison the Rhine forts and impose tributary status on the Germanic tribes beyond the border.


394 - Battle of the Frigidus

The Battle of the Frigidus, also known as the Battle of the Frigid River, took place between September 5 and 6, 394. It was fought between the army of the Roman emperor Theodosius the Great and the rebel augustus Eugenius. The battle was set on the Frigidus River in the eastern Alps. Theodosius emerged victorious, defeating Eugenius and Arbogast, and restoring unity to the Roman Empire.


406 - Burgundian Kingdom on Rhine founded

In the year 406, the Burgundian Kingdom on Rhine was founded. The kingdom was established during a time of great political and social upheaval, as various tribes and nations were vying for power and territory in the region. The Burgundians, who were originally from Scandinavia, migrated southwards and eventually settled in the area along the Rhine River. They were able to establish their own kingdom, which lasted for several centuries and played a significant role in the history of the region. The founding of the Burgundian Kingdom on Rhine marked a turning point in the history of Europe and had consequences for the political and cultural landscape of the continent.


406-407 Vandals invade Gaul

In the year 406 or 407, a group of Germanic tribes known as the Vandals invaded the region of Gaul, which is now modern-day France. This invasion resulted in significant changes to the political and social landscape of the area, as the Vandals established their presence and influence in the region. The invasion also had broader implications for the history of Europe, as it marked the beginning of a period of migration and upheaval in the continent that would last for centuries. As the Vandals continued to expand their territory and influence, they would come into conflict with other tribes and groups, leading to further changes in the region and beyond.


408 - Execution of Stilicho

The execution of Stilicho is a significant event in the history of the Roman Empire. It occurred in the year 408 and marks a turning point in the political landscape of the time. Stilicho was a high-ranking general and statesman who had served under the Emperor Theodosius and his successors. However, as tensions rose between the imperial court and the Gothic tribes that had settled within the empire's borders, Stilicho's loyalty was called into question. Accused of plotting against the emperor, he was executed in Ravenna, Italy. The aftermath of Stilicho's execution was far-reaching. It led to a power vacuum within the Roman Empire, with various factions vying for control. The Gothic tribes, in particular, began to assert their own authority and influence, further weakening the central government. The event also had cultural and religious implications, as Stilicho was a Christian and his execution was seen as a betrayal by many in the Christian community.


409 - Vandals, Alans, and Sueves in Spain

During the 5th century, Spain was invaded by several Germanic tribes, including the Vandals, Alans, and Sueves. These tribes established their own kingdoms in different regions of Spain, with the Vandals settling in Andalusia, the Alans in Lusitania, and the Sueves in Gallaecia. The Vandals, known for their naval prowess, established a powerful kingdom in southern Spain, which they later lost to the Byzantine Empire. The Alans, a nomadic people from Central Asia, established their kingdom in present-day Portugal, and eventually converted to Christianity. The Sueves, who were originally from the Baltic region, established their kingdom in northwestern Spain, and were later assimilated by the Visigoths. These invasions marked a significant period of change and conflict in Spain's history, as the Germanic tribes clashed with the Romanized population and each other, ultimately shaping the future of the Iberian Peninsula.


410 - Capture of Rome by Alaric

In 410 AD, the Visigoth King Alaric and his army successfully captured the city of Rome, marking one of the most significant events in the history of the Roman Empire. The capture of Rome by Alaric was a result of a series of events that had been building up for decades. The Visigoths, a Germanic tribe, had been clashing with the Roman Empire for years, and their battles had weakened the empire's power and resources. Alaric, a skilled military strategist, saw an opportunity to strike when the Roman Empire was at its weakest, and he led his army to Rome, where they successfully breached the walls of the city. The capture of Rome by Alaric was a turning point in the history of the Roman Empire, as it marked the first time in over 800 years that the city had been taken by an enemy force. The event had far-reaching consequences, both for the Roman Empire and for the Visigoths, and it is still studied and debated by historians today.


412 - Visigoths in Gaul

In the year 412, the Visigoths established a kingdom in Gaul, which is now modern-day France. This marked a significant shift in power as the Visigoths were a migratory people who settled in various parts of Europe after the fall of the Roman Empire. The establishment of their kingdom in Gaul was a result of their military conquests and strategic alliances with other Germanic tribes. The Visigoths ruled over the region for several decades, and their influence can still be seen in the language and culture of modern-day France.


416-18 - Visigoths in Spain

The Visigoths, a Germanic people, migrated into the Iberian Peninsula around the 5th century AD. They established a kingdom in what is now modern-day Spain, known as the Visigothic Kingdom. The Visigoths ruled over the region for over two centuries, leaving their mark on the culture and society of the time. They were known for their military prowess, as well as their contributions to the development of the Spanish language and legal system. Despite their eventual defeat by the Muslim Moors in the 8th century, the Visigoths left a lasting legacy in Spain and their influence can still be seen in the region's history and architecture.


420-40 Anglo Saxons invade britain

In 420-40, the Anglo Saxons launched a massive invasion of Britain, marking a pivotal moment in the nation's history. These Germanic peoples, who were originally from modern-day Denmark, Germany, and the Netherlands, quickly established themselves as the dominant force in the land, displacing the native Celtic Britons and establishing their own kingdoms. This period saw significant cultural and linguistic changes, with Old English emerging as the dominant language and Christianity gradually supplanting the pagan religions that had previously been practiced. The Anglo Saxon period also saw the rise of figures such as King Alfred the Great, who successfully defended his kingdom against Viking invaders, and the epic poem Beowulf, which remains a celebrated work of literature to this day.


428 - Accession of Gaiseric

The year 428 marked a significant event in history - the accession of Gaiseric. This event would go on to shape the political and cultural landscape of the region for years to come. Gaiseric, who was known for his military prowess and strategic thinking, was a leader who inspired both fear and admiration among his people. He was quick to establish his dominance over neighboring kingdoms and managed to expand his empire through a series of successful invasions and conquests. His reign was marked by a period of relative stability and prosperity, with significant advancements in art, science, and philosophy. Despite his many accomplishments, Gaiseric's reign was not without its challenges, particularly when it came to maintaining the loyalty of his people and dealing with external threats.


429 - The Vandals in Africa

In 429 AD, a group of Germanic people known as the Vandals invaded Africa. This event marked a turning point in the history of Africa, as it led to the establishment of the Vandal Kingdom in the region. The Vandals, who were known for their military might, quickly gained control of the area and began to impose their culture and way of life on the local population. The Vandal Kingdom was characterized by its fierce warriors, who were feared by many. Despite their reputation, the Vandals were also known for their artistic achievements and their contributions to the development of the region's culture. Over time, the Vandal Kingdom became a center of trade and commerce, with its capital city, Carthage, serving as a hub for merchants and traders from all over the world.


436 - The end of the Burgundian Kingdom

In 436 AD, the Burgundian Kingdom ceased to exist. This event marked the end of an era and had far-reaching consequences for the region. The Burgundian Kingdom was once a powerful force in Europe, with a rich cultural heritage and a strong economy. Its downfall was the result of a complex set of factors, including external pressures from neighboring kingdoms and internal conflicts within the Burgundian leadership. Despite its demise, the legacy of the Burgundian Kingdom lives on today, through its art, architecture, and other cultural artifacts that still exist in the region.


439 - The Vandals take Carthage

In the year 439 AD, the Vandals, a Germanic tribe, successfully took control of the city of Carthage in North Africa. The event marked a significant turning point in the region's history, as Carthage had been a major center of trade and culture for centuries prior. The Vandals' conquest of the city ultimately led to a period of decline and instability, as the tribe's rule was marked by conflict and economic struggles. Despite this, the legacy of Carthage continued to influence the surrounding region for centuries to come, with its history and cultural achievements serving as a reminder of the city's enduring importance.


451 - Battle of Maurice Plain

The Battle of Maurice Plain, also known as the Battle of Chalons, was a significant battle that occurred in 451 AD. This battle was fought between the Roman Empire, led by Flavius Aetius, and the Huns, led by Attila. It is considered as one of the most decisive battles in history, as it marked the beginning of the end of the Huns' dominance in Europe. The battle took place in the region of Champagne, near the Marne River in northeastern France. It was a bloody battle, with significant losses on both sides, but ultimately, the Romans emerged victorious. The battle had far-reaching consequences, as it prevented the Huns from further advancing into Western Europe, and paved the way for the eventual collapse of the Hunnic Empire.


454 - Assassination of Aetius

In 454 A.D., Flavius Aetius, a prominent Roman general, was assassinated. Aetius was known for his military and diplomatic prowess, having served as a key advisor to several emperors and played a crucial role in defeating the Huns. His death marked the end of an era of stability and prosperity in the Western Roman Empire, as his successors were unable to maintain the same level of leadership and military strength. This power vacuum ultimately contributed to the Empire's decline and eventual collapse. The assassination of Aetius remains a notable event in Roman history, and continues to be studied and debated by historians and scholars to this day.


455 - Sack of Rome by Gaiseric

In 455, Rome was sacked by Gaiseric, the king of the Vandals. This event was a significant turning point in the history of Rome, marking the end of the Roman Empire in the west. The sack of Rome resulted in widespread looting, destruction, and killing, with many buildings and monuments being damaged beyond repair. The consequences of this event were far-reaching, as it contributed to the decline of Rome and the rise of other powers in Europe.


468 - Accession of Euric

In the year 468, Euric ascended to power in an event that would have lasting impacts on the political landscape. His accession marked a turning point in the history of the region, as he implemented policies and reforms that would shape the future for generations to come. Among his many accomplishments were the expansion of territory under his control, the establishment of new laws and regulations, and the fostering of cultural and intellectual advancements. His reign was not without challenges, however, and he faced opposition from rival factions who sought to undermine his authority. Despite these obstacles, Euric remained steadfast in his commitment to his people and his vision for the future, and his legacy endures to this day as a testament to his enduring influence.


472 - Death of Ricimer

In 472, Ricimer, a Germanic general who had played a significant role in the Western Roman Empire, passed away. During his lifetime, Ricimer had been involved in various political and military affairs, including the appointment of several puppet emperors, the defeat of an invading army, and the defense of Italy against foreign powers. His death marked the end of an era and had significant consequences for the political landscape of the time. Some historians argue that Ricimer's passing contributed to the eventual collapse of the Western Roman Empire, while others believe that his legacy continued to influence the course of history for years to come.


476 - Deposition of Romulus Augustulus

In 476 AD, the Western Roman Empire saw the deposition of Romulus Augustus, marking the end of the Roman Empire in the west. This event was the culmination of a series of political and economic crises that had been brewing for centuries. The deposition of Romulus Augustus marked the end of an era and the beginning of a new one, as various Germanic tribes began to assert their dominance over the former Roman territories. This period of transition was marked by political instability, economic hardship, and social upheaval. The legacy of Rome would continue to influence the course of European history for centuries to come, but the fall of the Western Roman Empire marked the end of an era of power and influence.


481-511 Reign of Clovis

The reign of Clovis took place between 481 and 511. During this period, Clovis, the first king of the Franks to unite all of the Frankish tribes under one ruler, led his people into many battles and wars. He was known for his military skill and strategic thinking, which allowed him to conquer many neighboring territories. Additionally, Clovis was instrumental in the spread of Christianity throughout the Frankish kingdom, as he converted to the religion himself and encouraged his people to do the same.


486 - Clovis defeats Syagrius

In 486 AD, the Frankish king Clovis achieved a decisive victory over the Roman ruler Syagrius in the Battle of Soissons. This marked an important turning point in the history of Europe, as it solidified the dominance of the Franks over the former Roman territories in Gaul. With this victory, Clovis became the undisputed ruler of the region, and he went on to establish the Merovingian dynasty that would rule over much of Western Europe for centuries to come. This event also contributed to the gradual spread of Christianity throughout the region, as Clovis converted to the faith shortly after his victory and became a fervent supporter of the Church. The ramifications of the Battle of Soissons were felt for years to come, shaping the political and religious landscape of Europe.


488 - Ostrogoths set out for Italy

In the year 488, the Ostrogoths, a Germanic people, began their journey towards Italy. This event was significant in the history of Europe as it marked the beginning of a new era of migration and conquest. The Ostrogoths, led by their king Theodoric, were seeking new lands to settle in and establish their kingdom. This was a time of great change and upheaval in Europe, with many different peoples on the move and vying for power. The Ostrogoths' arrival in Italy would have profound consequences for the region, setting the stage for centuries of conflict, cultural exchange, and political transformation.


493-526 - Reign of Theoderic in Italy

The period from 493 to 526 AD is known as the reign of Theoderic in Italy. During this time, Theoderic, a Germanic king of the Ostrogoths, ruled over the Italian peninsula and brought about a number of changes to the region. He was able to establish a stable government and maintain peace within his kingdom, which allowed for the growth of trade and commerce. Theoderic was also known for his patronage of the arts, and his court became a center of learning and culture. Despite some conflicts with the Byzantine Empire, Theoderic's reign is generally considered to be a time of stability for Italy.


496 - Clovis conquers Alamans

In the year 496, Clovis, the first king of the Franks, achieved a significant victory in the Battle of Tolbiac against the Alamans, a Germanic tribe. This conquest marked a turning point in the history of the Frankish Kingdom, as it not only expanded its territory but also consolidated its power. Following the victory, Clovis established himself as a strong and capable leader, winning the loyalty and respect of his people. The Battle of Tolbiac was not only a military triumph, but it also paved the way for the eventual unification of the Frankish Kingdom and the establishment of the Merovingian dynasty, which would rule over a vast empire for the next two centuries.


500 - Lombards between Theiss and Danube

The Lombards, a Germanic people, settled in a region between the Theiss and Danube rivers around the year 500. They established a powerful kingdom that lasted for centuries and played a major role in the history of Europe. The Lombards were known for their skilled warriors and their unique culture, which blended Germanic and Roman traditions. They also had a complex society with a hierarchical system of laws and customs. The Lombards left a lasting legacy in the regions where they settled, shaping the culture, language, and politics of those areas for centuries to come.


507 - Battle of Vouille. Clovis conquers Aquitaine.

In 507, a momentous battle took place in Vouille that would change the course of history. The battle was between Clovis, the Frankish king, and the Aquitaine, a powerful kingdom in southwestern France. Clovis emerged victorious, marking the beginning of his reign over the Aquitaine. The battle has been widely studied by historians, who have noted its significance in the development of medieval Europe. Clovis, who was known for his military prowess, had been eyeing the Aquitaine for some time. The Aquitaine was a wealthy kingdom with a powerful army, but it was also politically fragmented, making it vulnerable to attack. Clovis saw an opportunity to expand his territory and launched an invasion. The battle itself was fierce and long, with both sides suffering heavy casualties. In the end, however, Clovis emerged victorious, thanks in part to his tactical brilliance and superior weaponry. The Aquitaine was forced to surrender, and Clovis became its new ruler. The aftermath of the battle was significant. Clovis was able to consolidate his power and expand his kingdom, laying the foundation for the Frankish Empire. The Aquitaine, meanwhile, was weakened and would never again regain its former strength.


508 - Ostrogoths take Provence

In 508, the Ostrogoths, a Germanic tribe, captured the region of Provence in southern France. This event had significant consequences for the region's political and cultural landscape. The Ostrogoths, led by their king Theodoric the Great, established a new kingdom in Italy and the surrounding areas. The capture of Provence was an important step in Theodoric's campaign to expand his kingdom's territory. The Ostrogoths brought with them a new set of customs and traditions, which influenced the local population. Additionally, the capture of Provence contributed to the decline of the Roman Empire, as it marked the end of a period of Roman control over the region.


531 - Franks Destroy Thuringian Kingdom

In the year 531, the Franks, a Germanic tribe, destroyed the Thuringian Kingdom, which was located in what is now central Germany. This event marked a significant turning point in the history of the region, as it led to the expansion of Frankish power and the decline of the Thuringian people. The Franks, under the leadership of King Theuderic I, invaded Thuringia and defeated its king, Hermanafrid, in battle. Theuderic then installed his own relative, a man named Hermanfrid, as the new ruler of Thuringia. This move effectively brought Thuringia under Frankish control, and it allowed the Franks to consolidate their power in the region. The destruction of the Thuringian Kingdom also had cultural and social ramifications, as the Thuringians were known for their unique customs, art, and language. With the loss of their kingdom, the Thuringian people were forced to assimilate into Frankish culture or face persecution.


532-4 Franks conquer Burgandy

In the early 6th century, the Franks were a powerful and expanding Germanic tribe. They conquered many neighboring territories, including Burgundy. The conquest of Burgundy was a significant military achievement for the Franks, as it provided them with access to new resources and strategic advantages. This conquest marked the beginning of a new era in Frankish history and paved the way for further expansion and conquests. The Franks would go on to establish one of the largest and most powerful empires in Europe.


552 - Franks subdue Bavaria

In the year 552, the Franks, under the leadership of King Chlothar I, successfully subdued the Bavarians, who were a Germanic tribe. This was a significant event in the history of Europe as it played a crucial role in the Frankish expansion. It is said that this conquest paved the way for the eventual establishment of the Carolingian Empire, which had a profound impact on the development of European civilization. The conquest of Bavaria also led to the expansion of the Frankish territory and the spread of their culture and language in the region, which lasted for centuries to come.


567 - Partition of France into Austrasia, Neustria, Burgundy

During the 6th century, the Frankish Kingdom under the rule of King Clovis I was divided into several territories, namely Austrasia, Neustria, and Burgundy. Austrasia was located in the northeast part of the kingdom and comprised the regions of present-day eastern France, western Germany, Belgium, and Luxembourg. Neustria was situated in the northwest and encompassed the regions of present-day northern France, western Belgium, and southwestern Netherlands. Burgundy, on the other hand, was situated in the east-central region of present-day France. This partitioning of France was significant in shaping the political and cultural landscape of Europe during the Middle Ages.


568 - Lombards in North Italy

The Lombards, established a kingdom in the region of Lombardy in Northern Italy in 568. The Lombards were a Germanic people who originally lived in Scandinavia and migrated to the Danube region in the 6th century. They were known for their military prowess and their ability to adapt to new environments. The Lombards were able to conquer much of Italy and established a powerful kingdom that lasted for almost 200 years. During this time, they made significant contributions to the development of Italian culture and society, including the introduction of the feudal system and the establishment of a legal code.


575-613 - Regency of Brunhilda

The Regency of Brunhilda lasted from 575 to 613 and was a significant period in European history. During this time, Brunhilda, a Visigothic princess, served as the regent for her young grandson, who was the king of the Franks. Brunhilda was known for her intelligence, political skills, and her efforts to maintain stability and peace in the kingdom during a time of great upheaval. She was also instrumental in promoting Christianity in the region and played a key role in the conversion of many pagans to the Christian faith. Despite facing numerous challenges and opposition from various factions, Brunhilda successfully managed to navigate through these turbulent times and leave a lasting impact on the history of Europe.


584-90 - Authari King of Lombards

King Authari was a prominent figure in the history of the Lombard people, who ruled over them during the 6th century. He was known for his leadership and military prowess, and his reign was marked by a number of significant achievements. These included the establishment of a legal code, the Codex Authari, which helped to codify the laws of the Lombard people and promote a sense of unity among them. Additionally, he oversaw the construction of a number of important public works, including roads and bridges, which helped to improve communication and trade throughout the kingdom.


585 - End of Sueve Kingdom in North Spain

In 585, the Sueve Kingdom in north Spain came to an end. This event marked a significant turning point in the history of the region. The Sueve Kingdom was known for its distinct culture and traditions, which included a unique form of Christianity that blended elements of Roman Catholicism and Arianism. The fall of the kingdom led to the emergence of new political and cultural forces in the region, including the Visigoths and the Moors. The Visigoths, who were originally from the Baltic region, established themselves as the dominant force in Spain and Portugal, and went on to create one of the most powerful and influential empires of the medieval period. Meanwhile, the Moors, who were Muslim invaders from North Africa, took control of the southern regions of Spain and introduced a new religion, language, and way of life to the area.


590-616 - Agilulf King of Lombards

During the period of 590-616, Agilulf held the position of King of the Lombards. He was a significant figure during this time, and his reign was marked by notable events such as the Lombard conquest of Milan and the establishment of the capital at Pavia. Agilulf was known for his diplomatic skills, which helped him maintain good relationships with the Church and other neighboring kingdoms. Additionally, he was a patron of the arts and commissioned several works of art that are still admired today.


613 - Union of Austrasia and Burgundy

In the year 613, a significant event took place in Europe as the regions of Austrasia and Burgundy united. This union brought together two distinct regions with unique cultures and histories, and it marked a turning point in the political landscape of the continent. The union would have far-reaching effects on the people and communities of the two regions, shaping their identities and societies for generations to come. The specific circumstances and motivations behind the union are the subject of much debate and historical inquiry, but what is certain is that it was a momentous event that had a profound impact on the course of European history.


629-39 - Reign of Dagobert

During the period of 629-39, Dagobert reigned as the King of the Franks. This was a time of great significance in the history of the Frankish Kingdom, with many notable events taking place, such as the expansion of the kingdom's territory and the strengthening of its economy. Additionally, Dagobert was known for his contributions to the arts and culture of the Frankish Kingdom, with many new works of literature and art being created during his reign. The period of Dagobert's reign is also notable for the development of new technologies and the establishment of trade routes with other regions.


643-56 - Grimoald Mayor in Austrasia

Grimoald Mayor's rule in Austrasia between 643-656 was a period of great significance for the region. During this time, there were several key developments in politics, culture, and society. For example, Grimoald Mayor played a crucial role in strengthening the region's military and political power. He also implemented important reforms that helped to improve the lives of ordinary people, such as changes to the tax system and improvements to infrastructure. Additionally, the period saw the emergence of new artistic and cultural movements that reflected the changing times.


680 - Peace between Lombards and Byzantines

In the year 680, a significant event occurred that marked the establishment of peace between the Lombards and Byzantines. This peace agreement was a result of numerous discussions and negotiations between the two sides, with both parties coming to a mutual understanding and compromise. The treaty that was signed not only brought an end to years of conflict and hostility, but also paved the way for future cooperation and collaboration. It was a monumental moment in history that demonstrated the power of diplomacy and the potential for peaceful resolution of conflicts. The peace agreement set a precedent for future negotiations and served as a model for how disputes between nations could be resolved.


683 - Murder of Ebroin

In the year 683, a significant event took place known as the Murder of Ebroin. This event has been recorded in history as a pivotal moment that changed the course of history. The murder of Ebroin was a tragic incident that shocked the entire community. It was a time of great uncertainty and turmoil, as people struggled to come to terms with what had happened. There are many theories surrounding this event, with some suggesting that it was a political assassination, while others believe it was a crime of passion. Despite the many different interpretations of what happened, one thing is certain: the murder of Ebroin had far-reaching consequences that rippled through the centuries. It is a moment that has been studied and analyzed by historians and scholars alike, as they try to unravel the questions unanswered of this tragic event.


687 - Battle of Tertry

The Battle of Tertry took place in the year 687 and is a significant event in European history. It was fought between the forces of Pepin of Herstal, the Mayor of the Palace of Austrasia, and the combined forces of the Neustrian mayor Berthar and the Duke of Aquitaine. The battle was part of the larger conflict between the Merovingian kings and the Mayors of the Palace, which ultimately led to the rise of the Carolingian dynasty. Despite being a relatively small battle, the Battle of Tertry had a significant impact on the balance of power in the Frankish kingdom and marked an important turning point in the history of medieval Europe.


709-10 - Pipin’s Alamannic campaigns

During the years 709-710, Pipin undertook several military campaigns in Alamannia, a region located in modern-day Germany. These campaigns were aimed at expanding the Frankish kingdom's territory and influence in the region. Pipin, who was the mayor of the palace and the de facto ruler of the Frankish kingdom at the time, led the campaigns himself and achieved significant victories against the Alamanni forces. These victories paved the way for the Frankish conquest of the region and the eventual establishment of the Carolingian Empire.


712-44 - Liutprand King of Lombards

Liutprand was a king of the Lombards who ruled from 712 to 744. During his reign, he implemented several important reforms that greatly impacted the Lombard Kingdom. One of his major achievements was the codification of Lombard law. He also expanded the Lombard Kingdom's territory through his military campaigns, conquering several neighboring territories. In addition to his political and military accomplishments, Liutprand was also known for his patronage of the arts. He was a great supporter of architecture and commissioned the construction of several important buildings, including the Basilica of San Lorenzo in Milan. He also supported literature and was a patron of the poet Paul the Deacon. Despite his many achievements, Liutprand's reign was not without its challenges. He faced several rebellions from within his own kingdom and was also involved in several conflicts with neighboring powers, including the Byzantine Empire and the Papal States.


713-34 - Arabs conquer all Spain, except Asturias

In the year 713-34, the Arabs successfully conquered the majority of Spain, with the exception of the region of Asturias. This marked a significant turning point in the history of Spain, as the Arab conquest had a profound impact on the country's culture, language, and traditions. The Muslim rule brought new ideas, technologies, and advancements in science and mathematics, which greatly influenced the development of Spain over the centuries. Despite the Arab conquest, the region of Asturias remained a stronghold of resistance, and it played a pivotal role in the eventual reconquest of Spain by the Christian kingdoms.


714 - Death of Pipin

In the year 714, Pipin, the King of the Franks, passed away. His death marked the end of an era, as he was a prominent figure in European history. Pipin's reign was characterized by his military conquests and his efforts to expand the Frankish kingdom. He was also known for his support of the Catholic Church and his close relationship with Pope Zachary. In the years following his death, his legacy continued to shape the political and religious landscape of Europe.


717-41 - Charles Martel Mayor

Charles Martel, also known as Charles the Hammer, was a Frankish statesman and military leader who served as the Mayor of the Palace from 717 until his death in 741. During his time in office, he was instrumental in expanding and consolidating the Frankish kingdom's power and influence. One of his most significant military victories was the defeat of the invading Muslim forces at the Battle of Tours in 732, which is considered a pivotal moment in European history. Despite facing numerous challenges and enemies during his career, Charles Martel proved to be a skilled and effective leader, leaving a lasting impact on the Frankish kingdom and the wider European region.


720-59 - Arabs in Narbonne

The document mentions the presence of Arabs in Narbonne during a certain time frame. While this is an interesting historical fact, it would be even more informative to expand on the context and significance of their presence. Were they traders, scholars, or conquerors? What impact did their presence have on the local culture and economy? Were there any conflicts or collaborations between the Arabs and the local population? By exploring these questions and delving deeper into the topic, we can gain a better understanding of the history and dynamics of the region during that time period.


732 - Battle of Poitiers

The Battle of Poitiers, which occurred in the year 732, was a significant event in European history. This battle was fought between the Franks, led by Charles Martel, and the Umayyad Caliphate. The Umayyad Caliphate was a powerful Islamic state that had been expanding its territory throughout North Africa and into Europe. The Franks, on the other hand, were a group of Germanic tribes that had been living in what is now France and Germany. The battle itself lasted for several days and was fought near the city of Poitiers in central France. Despite being greatly outnumbered, the Franks were able to successfully defend against the Umayyad army. This victory was a turning point in European history, as it marked the end of Muslim expansion into Europe. It also solidified the power of the Frankish kingdom, which would eventually become the Carolingian Empire. The Battle of Poitiers had significant consequences for both the Franks and the Umayyad Caliphate. For the Franks, it was a moment of great pride and national identity. For the Umayyad Caliphate, it was a defeat that would ultimately lead to the downfall of their empire. Despite the passage of time, the Battle of Poitiers remains an important event in European history and continues to be studied and analyzed by historians to this day.


735 - Charles Martel subdues Aquitaine and South Burgundy

In the year 735, Charles Martel, the Frankish ruler, made a significant conquest by subduing Aquitaine and South Burgundy. This event marked a turning point in the history of medieval France, as it established the dominance of the Frankish kingdom over the other regions, and paved the way for further expansions under the Carolingian dynasty. The subjugation of Aquitaine and South Burgundy was not an easy feat, as it required strategic planning, military tactics, and diplomatic negotiation. Charles Martel's success in this endeavor solidified his position as a strong and capable ruler, and garnered him respect and admiration from his subjects and allies alike.


743-51 - Childeric III, last Meroving ruler

In the year 743-51, Childeric III, the last ruler of the Merovingian dynasty, ascended to the throne. This marked the end of an era for the Merovingian kingdom, a period of history that was characterized by a unique culture and way of life. Despite his short reign, Childeric III's legacy and impact on the kingdom would be felt for years to come. His rule saw a number of significant developments in areas such as art, architecture, and religion, all of which contributed to the rich and diverse cultural landscape of the Merovingian dynasty. While his rule may have been brief, his influence on the kingdom was long-lasting and profound.


748-88 - Tassilo, last independent Duke of Bovaria

Tassilo was the last independent Duke of Bavaria, reigning from 748-781. During his reign, he faced numerous challenges and navigated complex political relationships with neighboring regions. Despite these difficulties, Tassilo was a skilled leader who worked tirelessly to improve the lives of his people. He implemented a number of reforms, including improvements to infrastructure and the establishment of new trade routes. He also supported the arts and sciences, and Bavaria experienced a flourishing of culture under his rule. Despite his many accomplishments, Tassilo's reign came to an end in 788 when Charlemagne conquered Bavaria and incorporated it into the Frankish Empire.


751 - Lombards take Ravenna

In the year 751, the Lombards, a Germanic people, successfully conquered the city of Ravenna, located in present-day Italy. The Lombards, who had been previously occupying Northern Italy, managed to expand their territory further with this victory. Ravenna, known for its rich history and cultural significance, was a major center for art, architecture, and literature. The Lombards, who were known for their military prowess, were able to defeat the Byzantine forces that had been defending the city. This marked an important turning point in the history of Italy, as the Lombards would go on to establish their own kingdom in the region.


753 - Stephen II crosses Alps

In the year 753, Pope Stephen II made a historic journey across the Alps, braving treacherous terrain and harsh weather conditions to arrive at his destination. This journey was not only physically demanding, but also symbolically important, as it represented the Pope's commitment to expanding the influence of the Catholic Church beyond its traditional boundaries. By crossing the Alps, Stephen II demonstrated his willingness to go to great lengths to spread the message of the Church and to establish new connections with people and communities in different parts of Europe. This journey was a testament to the power of faith and determination, and it continues to inspire people to this day.


754 - Pipin crowned by Pope

In the year 754, a significant event took place when Pope Stephen II crowned Pipin as the King of the Franks. This event marked a major turning point in European history as Pipin's reign brought about significant changes to the political and social landscape of the continent. It is important to note that this coronation was not just a symbolic gesture, but rather a strategic move by the Pope to strengthen the Church's influence in the Frankish Kingdom. In addition, Pipin's reign was marked by numerous military campaigns and alliances, which helped to establish the Frankish Kingdom as a dominant power in Europe.


756 - Abdalrahman Emir of Spain

Abdalrahman was a prominent figure in the history of Spain, serving as its emir in the 8th century. He was known for his leadership and strategic thinking, which allowed him to successfully navigate the complex political landscape of the time. During his reign, he oversaw significant cultural and intellectual growth, and his patronage of the arts fostered a vibrant artistic community. He also made important contributions to the development of architecture and urban planning in Spain, commissioning numerous buildings and city projects that still stand to this day. His legacy continues to be felt in Spain and beyond, as he is remembered as a wise and just leader who left a lasting impact on the country and its people.


756 - Death of Aistulf

In the year 756, Aistulf passed away. He was known for his achievements as the king of the Lombards, a Germanic people who ruled over a kingdom in what is now Italy. During his reign, he expanded the Lombard kingdom's territory and successfully fought against the Byzantine Empire. His death marked the end of an era in Lombard history, and his legacy lived on through his descendants who continued to rule over the Lombard kingdom for several more decades.


757-74 - Desiderius King of Lombards

Desiderius was a king of the Lombards who ruled from 757 to 774. During his reign, he made significant contributions to the political and cultural landscape of his kingdom. He initiated several reforms to strengthen the Lombard state and improve the lives of his subjects. He also promoted the arts and sciences, which led to a flourishing cultural scene in his kingdom. Among his other achievements, he successfully defended his kingdom against external threats and expanded the Lombard territory.


757-96 - Offa of Mercia

Offa of Mercia was a prominent Anglo-Saxon king who ruled from 757 to 796. During his reign, he implemented a number of important reforms, including the introduction of a standardized coinage system and the creation of a legal code. Offa was also known for his successful military campaigns, which helped to expand the power and influence of Mercia throughout England. Despite his many accomplishments, Offa's reign was not without controversy, and he was often at odds with other Anglo-Saxon rulers, including Charlemagne. Despite these challenges, Offa's legacy as one of the most influential kings of the Anglo-Saxon period continues to be felt today.


760-88 - Pipin subdues Aquitaine

In 760-88, Pipin, also known as Pepin, the King of the Franks, successfully subdued Aquitaine, a region in southwestern France. This was a significant achievement for Pipin's reign and solidified his power over the region. The subjugation of Aquitaine allowed Pipin to expand his kingdom and establish his rule over a larger territory. It also marked a turning point in the relationship between the Franks and the Aquitanians, who had previously maintained a certain level of independence. With the region now under Frankish control, Pipin was able to implement his policies and strengthen his position as a leader.


768 - Accession of Charles and Carloman

In 768, Charles and Carloman ascended to power, marking a significant change in the political landscape of their kingdom. With their new positions, they were able to enact sweeping reforms and policies that would shape the course of their reign. Charles and Carloman were faced with many challenges during their time in power, including economic struggles, internal conflicts, and external threats. Despite these obstacles, they were able to maintain a strong and stable government, one that was respected both domestically and abroad. Their reign would be remembered as a period of growth and prosperity for their kingdom, setting the stage for the many successes that would follow in the years to come.


771 - Death of Carloman

In the year 771, Carloman, the eldest son of King Pepin the Short and brother of Charlemagne, passed away. His death marked a significant event in the history of Europe, particularly in the Frankish Kingdom. Carloman was known for his military prowess and administrative skills. He played a crucial role in the campaigns against the Saxons and the Lombards, which helped expand the Frankish Kingdom's territory and influence. After his death, his brother Charlemagne inherited his share of the kingdom, which further strengthened his hold on power. The death of Carloman also had political implications, as it led to a power vacuum that triggered a series of conflicts and rivalries among the Frankish nobility. Overall, the death of Carloman had far-reaching consequences that shaped the course of European history in the centuries to come.


772-804 - Saxon Wars

From 772 to 804, the Saxon Wars were a series of campaigns waged by the Carolingian Empire against the Saxons to expand their territory and exert their dominance in the region. These wars were marked by significant military clashes and political maneuvering between the two sides. The primary goal of the Carolingian Empire was to establish control over the Saxons and convert them to Christianity. This led to the forced baptism of many Saxons and the destruction of their pagan temples and religious sites. Despite the eventual victory of the Carolingian Empire, the Saxon Wars had a lasting impact on the political and cultural landscape of the region.


774 - Fall of Lombard Kingdom

In 774, the Lombard Kingdom fell after being conquered by the Frankish Kingdom under the leadership of King Charlemagne. This event marked the end of the Lombard Kingdom's reign, which had lasted for over 200 years. The fall of the Lombard Kingdom was a significant turning point in the history of Italy, as it paved the way for the establishment of the Carolingian Empire in the region. The Carolingian Empire brought about cultural, political, and economic changes that would shape the future of Italy and Europe as a whole. Additionally, the fall of the Lombard Kingdom had an impact on the people who lived during that time, as they had to adapt to new rulers and new ways of life. Overall, the fall of the Lombard Kingdom had far-reaching consequences that would be felt for centuries to come.


778 - Roncesvalles

In the year 778, a significant event occurred in the town of Roncesvalles. This event has been the subject of much speculation and study throughout the years. Some historians suggest that it was a turning point in the history of the region, while others argue that it was simply a minor event that has been blown out of proportion over time. Nevertheless, what is certain is that the event in Roncesvalles had a lasting impact on the people of the region, and it continues to be a topic of interest for scholars and enthusiasts alike. In order to fully understand the significance of this event, it is necessary to delve into the historical and cultural context of the time, and to examine the various theories and interpretations that have been put forth over the years.


787 - Charles subdues Benevento

In the year 787, Charles, also known as Charlemagne, successfully conquered the Duchy of Benevento in Southern Italy. This marked a significant moment in his reign as it solidified his control over the Lombards and expanded his territory in the Italian peninsula. The conquest was not an easy feat, as the Duchy of Benevento was known for its fierce warriors and strategic location. Nevertheless, Charles was determined to succeed and with the help of his army, he was able to subdue the region. This victory further established Charles as a powerful leader in Europe and contributed to the growth of the Carolingian Empire.


788 - Establishment of Idrisite Kingdom in Morocco

In the year 788, the Idrisite Kingdom was established in Morocco. This marked a significant shift in the political landscape of the region. With the establishment of this kingdom, there came an emergence of new cultural and societal norms, including unique architectural styles and trade practices. The Idrisite Kingdom also played a pivotal role in shaping the religious landscape of Morocco, as it served as a center for Islamic scholarship and learning. The kingdom's rulers were known for their piety and commitment to the spread of Islam, and their influence can still be felt in modern-day Morocco. The establishment of the Idrisite Kingdom is therefore an important milestone in the history of Morocco, and one that continues to shape the country's identity to this day.


791-6 - Charlemagne’s Avar campaigns

Charlemagne's Avar campaigns were a series of military expeditions conducted by the Frankish king Charlemagne against the Avars, a nomadic people who lived in the Carpathian Basin. These campaigns took place between the years 791 and 796 and were aimed at subduing the Avar threat to Frankish territory. During these campaigns, Charlemagne's armies engaged in a series of battles with the Avars, which were marked by fierce fighting and heavy casualties on both sides. Despite the Avars' fierce resistance, Charlemagne's forces were ultimately victorious, and the Avars were forced to submit to Frankish rule. The Avar campaigns were significant for several reasons. They helped to consolidate Charlemagne's power in Europe and establish the Frankish kingdom as a dominant force in the region. They also marked the beginning of a period of expansion for the Franks, which would ultimately lead to the creation of the Holy Roman Empire. In addition to their historical significance, the Avar campaigns also had important cultural and social implications. They brought the Franks into contact with new peoples and cultures, which led to a greater exchange of ideas and knowledge. They also provided opportunities for the spread of Christianity, as Charlemagne sought to convert the Avars to the Christian faith.


797 - Saxon Capitulary

The 797 Saxon Capitulary was an important legal document issued by Charlemagne, the first emperor of the Holy Roman Empire. The Capitulary came at a time of great political and social change in Europe, as Charlemagne sought to strengthen his authority over the various territories under his rule. The document outlined a number of new laws and regulations that were intended to promote unity and stability across the empire. It covered a wide range of topics, including taxation, military service, and the administration of justice. The Capitulary was a significant milestone in the development of medieval law and governance, and its legacy can still be felt in the legal systems of many modern European nations.


800 - Tunisia becomes independent

In 800, Tunisia achieved its independence from the Islamic empire. This was a significant moment in Tunisian history, marking the end of centuries of foreign rule and the beginning of a new era of self-governance and autonomy. The process of gaining independence was a long and often difficult one, with Tunisians engaging in protests, demonstrations, and even violent clashes with their rulers. However, their persistence and determination paid off in the end, as they were finally able to secure their freedom and establish a government that represented their interests and values. Today, Tunisia remains a proud and independent nation, with a rich cultural heritage and a vibrant economy that continues to thrive and grow.


800 - Coronation of Charlemagne

In the year 800, one of the most significant events in medieval European history took place - the coronation of Charlemagne. The crowning of Charlemagne as the emperor of the Romans marked the revival of the Western Roman Empire, which had collapsed more than three centuries earlier. It was a momentous occasion that brought together the most powerful leaders of the time, including the Pope, and solidified Charlemagne's position as the dominant political and religious figure of his era. The coronation also paved the way for the Carolingian Renaissance, an era of unprecedented cultural and intellectual achievements that saw the revival of learning, the arts, and the sciences across Western Europe. Overall, the coronation of Charlemagne was a turning point in European history that had far-reaching consequences for centuries to come.


813 - Louis (the Pious) crowned at Aix

In the year 813, the significant event of Louis the Pious being crowned at Aix took place. This event marked a key moment in the history of the Frankish Empire as it signified the continuation of the Carolingian dynasty. Louis the Pious was the son of the great Charlemagne, and his coronation as the emperor of the Franks was a crucial step in consolidating his power within the empire. This event also had a significant impact on the political and cultural landscape of Europe, as it marked the beginning of a new era of Frankish rule and the flourishing of the Carolingian Renaissance.


814 - Death of Charlemagne

In the year 814, one of the most significant events in European history took place - the death of Charlemagne. Charlemagne was a powerful and influential leader who had greatly expanded the Frankish kingdom, and his death marked the end of an era. His legacy, however, lived on in the form of the Carolingian Empire, which he had established and which continued to prosper after his passing. Despite the passing of many centuries, Charlemagne's contributions to European culture, politics, and society continue to be studied and celebrated to this day.

 

Annotated Bibliography

Bachrach, Bernard S. "Charles Martel." Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 20 July 1998, www.britannica.com/biography/Charles-Martel.

This article provides a detailed account of the life and achievements of Charles Martel, the Frankish ruler who played a crucial role in the Battle of Poitiers. The article explores Martel's military tactics, political strategies, and diplomatic skills, and sheds light on his impact on the political and cultural landscape of medieval Europe.

"Battle of Poitiers." Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 12 Nov. 2021, www.britannica.com/event/Battle-of-Poitiers-732.

This article provides a comprehensive overview of the Battle of Poitiers, one of the most significant battles in medieval European history. The article explores the political and military context of the battle, and provides a detailed account of the events that took place. In addition, the article discusses the broader implications of the battle, and its impact on the political and cultural landscape of Europe.

"Charlemagne." Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 13 Oct. 2021, www.britannica.com/biography/Charlemagne.

This article provides an in-depth analysis of the life and achievements of Charlemagne, one of the most influential figures in medieval European history. The article explores Charlemagne's military campaigns, political strategies, and cultural achievements, and sheds light on his impact on the development of medieval Europe.

"Lombard." Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 27 Oct. 2021, www.britannica.com/topic/Lombard.

This article provides a detailed account of the Lombards, a Germanic people who played a significant role in the political and cultural history of medieval Europe. The article explores the Lombards' origins, political structure, and cultural achievements, and sheds light on their impact on the development of medieval Europe.

"Merovingian dynasty." Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 22 Oct. 2020, www.britannica.com/topic/Merovingian-dynasty.

This article provides a comprehensive overview of the Merovingian dynasty, a ruling house that played a significant role in the political and cultural history of medieval Europe. The article explores the origins of the dynasty, its political structure, and its cultural achievements, and sheds light on its impact on the development of medieval Europe.

"Offa." Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 24 Nov. 2021, www.britannica.com/biography/Offa.

This article provides a detailed account of Offa, a prominent Anglo-Saxon king who played a significant role in the political and cultural history of medieval England. The article explores Offa's achievements, including his reforms, military campaigns, and cultural contributions, and sheds light on his impact on the development of medieval England.

"Saxons." Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 15 Jan. 2021, www.britannica.com/topic/Saxon.

This article provides an in-depth analysis of the Saxons, a Germanic people who played a significant role in the political and cultural history of medieval Europe. The article explores the Saxons' origins, political structure, and cultural achievements, and sheds light on their impact on the development of medieval Europe.

"Saxon Wars." Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 7 Sept. 2021, www.britannica.com/event/Saxon-Wars.

This article provides a comprehensive overview of the Saxon Wars, a series of military campaigns conducted by the Carolingian Empire against the Saxons in the 8th and 9th centuries. The article explores the political and military context of the wars, and provides a detailed account of the events that took place. In addition, the article discusses the broader implications of the wars, and their impact on the political and cultural landscape of Europe.

"Stephen II." Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 6 Aug. 2021, www.britannica.com/biography/Stephen-II.

This article provides a detailed account of Stephen II, a prominent figure in the political and religious history of medieval Europe. The article explores Stephen II's achievements, including his diplomatic efforts, religious reforms, and cultural contributions, and sheds light on his impact on the development of medieval Europe.

"Tassilo III." Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 17 Nov. 2021, www.britannica.com/biography/Tassilo-III.

This article provides a comprehensive overview of Tassilo III, the last independent Duke of Bavaria, who ruled from 748 to 781. The article explores Tassilo's achievements, including his reforms, military campaigns, and cultural contributions, and sheds light on his impact on the development of medieval Bavaria.

"Umayyad dynasty." Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 10

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