Episcopium and royal palace 40 this highly explicit

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episcopiumand royal palace.”40Thishighly explicit physical connection, a single road between the bases of spiritual and temporalpower in Tours, demonstrates the interaction between secular and religious sources of powerin Merovingian Gaul. The rule of the Merovingian kings such as Clovis depended heavilyupon support from the Church and especially local bishops. The relationship the kings andecclesiastic leaders developed also benefited the Churchbecause the prestige of the Churchdepended upon the patronage and protection of the Merovingian kings. Urban centers playeda crucial role in edifying and preserving the fragile equilibrium between secular and religiousforces and the continued functioning of local economies.41Later, Gregory notes how “from that day onwards [Clovis] was called consul orAugustus.”42This phrase demonstrates the pretensions upon imperial power that the Merovingian kings,and particularly Clovis, still held on to. Clovis not only met with the Eastern Roman Emperor,but he chose to adopt an imperial Roman title.In doing so, Clovis hoped to emulate Romantraditions such as the triumphal entrance of the emperor and the cult of imperial victory.43AsClovis’ behaviors demonstrate, even if Roman power had long since disappeared in Gaul, newUrban centers played a crucial role in edifyingand preserving the fragile equilibriumbetween secular and religious forces and thecontinued functioning of local economies.A Carefully Constructed History
42RICE HISTORICAL REVIEWpower structures attempted, at least in name, to emulate the highly ordered power structureof the Roman Empire. Nonetheless, it should be observed that while Clovis did adopt someimperial pretensions, he did so on a much smaller political scale; the Merovingian kingdomnever controlled more than a portion of Roman Gaul.Finally, this passage presents an indication to the later urban structure of medievalFrance. Gregory relates how Clovis “left Tours in order to come to Paris where he establishedthe seat of his kingdom.”44The establishment of the center of Merovingian and laterCarolingian power in Paris allowed the city to quickly become the dominant urban centerin medieval France. It is interesting to note that Paris, the center of political and religiouspower, and not Tours, another center of religious power, became the dominant urban centerof medieval Gaul. This demonstrates how the most successful urban centers in MerovingianGaul integrated both religious and secular power structures. Agathias, when describing theprosperity of Merovingian society, notes that the Franks “have magistrates in their citiesand priests and celebrate the feasts.”45Here, by accentuating the benefits of the physicalintegration of religious and secular power structures in urban spaces, Gregory makes the casefor a combined religious and secular political order.

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Term
Winter
Professor
Mrs. cooper
Tags
Franks Gregory

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