Tuesday, January 18, 2011

New Empire-New Emperor-Charlemagne

The 1st great empire to be formed out of the wreckage of the Western Roman Empire was welded together under the long reign (768-814 CE) of Charlemagne (Charles the Great).
For more than half a century, Charlemagne lead his armies to victories throughout Western Europe. His extended empire covered territories ranging from Spain to Germany and much of Italy.

The rule of Charlemagne, greatest of the Carolingian kings of the Franks, marked the end of the "Dark Ages" of Western Europe. From his time forward Western Europe began the long advance towards regaining the prominent position in the world that was lost with the Fall of Western Rome in the 5th Century.

In 800 CE, he was anointed Imperator Romanorum (Emperor of the Romans) by Pope Leo III. Charlemagne was the first Emperor to rule in the West since the Fall of Rome. His title signaled a new strength in government and social order in Europe. His promotion of education through new schools began a pattern of growth that would lead to the first great universities of the Middle Ages. Knowledge would now grow, slowly at first, but definitely grow, ending the centuries of loss known as the Dark Ages.

As with so many great leaders, his son and grandchildren could not live up to his legacy and his empire was soon divided into three warring states. But while his empire fell, the rest of Europe passed out of the dark and towards a brighter future.

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