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Unformatted text preview: Subject: Frankish Govt. & Feudalism Hi everyone! Here is some background and help to go with material on Frankish govt.and Charlemagne. Keep your XP handy. This is material that's easier to manage in writing (rather than in lecture): all the necessary details are here. Go over this carefully, and if you have questions, write them down so you can remember to bring them up in class. Your assignment for this week (week 9--due after Thanksgiving) is to complete the reading on Charlemagne, especially the documents in Tierney, and read this e-mail, and write 1.5-2 pages on the question: What are some of the main features of Carolingian kingship and political and social values presented in The Life of Charlemagne and Carolingian documents? What sorts of models did they establish for Medieval Kings? About Charlemagne: Charlemagne embodied the ideal ruler of the HIGH Middle Ages. His image (immortalized by Einhard, and in the "Song of Roland" and other popular Medieval literature, and all the art, architecture, and cultural monuments Charlemagne left) was the *ideal model* High Medieval kings tried to imitate. (Some were also "high" Medieval kings, especially after long nights in the drinking-hall listening to warrior epics like Beowulf and the "Song of Roland". But as we know from Einhard's Life , Charles himself "abhorred drunkenness." And you'll see that the church imposed stiff penances for getting drunk.) To be like Charlemagne (at least the idealized images of him) was to be a successful king. For this reason Charlemagne's methods of ruling, ideology, image, and examples he set are a good representation of the main features of High Medieval Feudal Monarchy. In History 111 we use Charlemagne and his govt. as a representation of what the Medieval synthesis produced for High Medieval kingship (see XP 35a). General recipe for success: the Medieval synthesis of: ROMAN rational, universal imperial and legal authority and bureaucracy (far-ranging), plus CHRISTIAN theocratic kingship (sacred kingship) and leadership of a new "Savior Empire" like Constantine's Rome, caesaropapism , use of the Church and Xty. to bolster royal/ imperial legitimacy and Medieval European hegemony, plus GERMANIC warrior kingship and charisma, feudalism and very strong personal bonds formed by oath, which allowed Charles to overcome problems and weaknesses of earlier rulers. (See XP33c--with problems and solutions in the dev. of Frankish govt.)....
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This note was uploaded on 04/15/2008 for the course HIST 111 taught by Professor Rutenburg during the Spring '05 term at Maryland.
- Spring '05