LECTURE OUTLINE FOR HISTORY 203

Prof. Martha Carlin

Week 7: Tuesday  

THE RISE OF THE  CAROLINGIANS



Music:
    Late Carolingian music, from an Acquitainian manuscript (MS lat. 1154) of the late 800s-early 900s (3:48 min.):
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ev3O_pX5JkI


Click here for family trees of the Merovingian kings (481-751) and the Carolingians (751-987)

Seal-ring portrait of Childeric I (c. 440- c. 481), son of Meroveus (Merovech) and father of Clovis, from his tomb in Tournai

Map of the Merovingian kingdoms

A Merovingian map (8th cent.) showing the Mediterranean world (North is to the left)

7th C.        Weak Merovingian "sluggard kings"; division of Francia (Neustria, Austrasia, Burgundy)

                      and rise of  mayors of the palace

680-714     Pepin of Heristal, mayor of the palace of Austrasia, conquers Neustria (687) and establishes
                    Carolingian hegemony over Burgundy as well

714-741     Charles Martel ("the Hammer")

    716-754    St. Boniface of England: missionary to Frisians and Germans, and reformer of Frankish Church (shown
                        here in an 11th-cent. manuscript from Fulda)

    726-843    Iconoclasm Controversy in Byzantine Empire

    726            Pope Gregory II (715-31) incites tax revolt against Byzantines in Ravenna

    729            Lombards and Byzantine exarch (viceroy) temporarily unite to besiege Rome; pope reconciles with them

    731-41      Pope Gregory III holds a synod denouncing iconoclasm (731); rebuilds walls of Rome after Ravenna
                        falls to Lombards (temporarily) in 733; when Lombard King Liutprand marches on Rome, Gregory
                        sends embassies begging military aid (739 and 740) to Charles Martel, who does not reply.

          732            Defeat of Muslim army at Tours

741-768      Pepin the Short

    740s          "Donation of Constantine" (forgery by papal chancery, claiming imperial status for pope; click here for
                         the text and for a later painting of this fictitious event)

    751            Lombards capture Ravenna and expel Byzantines; query from Pepin to Pope Zacharias I (741-52)
                        ("Who should have the crown?") results in coronation of Pepin (by Boniface, at Soissons)
                        and alliance between Franks and papacy

    754            2nd coronation of Pepin, by Pope Stephen II (at St. Denis), leads to Pepin's
                            campaign against Lombards and grant of lands to papacy ("Donation of Pepin")

768-814        Charlemagne ("Carolus magnus" = Charles the Great):

                                        Map of Europe at Charlemagne's death in 814
                                        Partition of Charlemagne's empire in 843 by the Treaty of Verdun

    771-804        Conquest of Saxony and Bavaria

    774               Conquest of Lombards (Charlemagne henceforth styles himself "King of the Franks
                            and the Lombards")

    778                Campaign against Spanish Muslims; Count Roland killed by Basques at Roncevaux (or Roncesvalles);
                                establishment of Spanish March

    790s              Destruction of Avars

    794                Establishment of permanent capital at Aachen (or Aix-la-Chapelle), with palace school headed

                                by Alcuin of York (shown here presenting his student, Hrabanus Maurus, to St. Martin of Tours).
                                See also:
                                  Reconstruction of Charlemagne's palace at Aachen (with captions in French)
                                  Charlemagne's Palatine Chapel at Aachen: exterior and interior
                                  Charlemagne's monogram  on parchment and  on his coinage
 

    Christmas 800     Crowned "Emperor of the Romans" by Pope Leo III (795-816) at St. Peter's, Rome (both are shown
                                    here, kneeling before St. Peter, in a 9th-cent. mosaic from the Lateran Palace).  See also:
                                      Silver penny (denarius) of Charlemagne , minted after his imperial coronation
                                      St. Mark and the opening page of the St. Marks's Gospel, from Charlemagne's
                                            "Coronation Gospels" (Aachen c. 800)
 

Important terms include:
    Count
    Margrave
    Missi dominici (royal emissaries)

Primary sources include:
    Capitularies (laws, ordinances)
    Einhard, Life of Charlemagne



Week 7:  Thursday

  Music:
    Old Roman chant: "Inveni David servum meum" (7th century? 7:31 min.):
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WhP654dN3Ww

    Gregorian chant: "In cena domini: de missa solemni vespertina" (Plainsong melodies for the commemoration
        of the Lord's Supper on Maundy Thursday; 53:50 min.):
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eC6OKIYXBxQ

    Some achievements of the "Carolingian Renaissance" (later 700s-800s):

        Capitulary of 789 mandated schools in every cathedral and monastery to teach students
            and to correct and copy texts (more than 90% of extant Classical Roman texts owe their
            survival to Carolingian copyists)
        Every monastery required to follow Benedictine Rule (reiterated 817-840, with expanded Rule)
        Accurate new edition of Latin Bible produced by Alcuin of York (d. 804)
        New, clear script developed ("Caroline minuscule")  Click here for another example (a Carolingian gospel book, British Library, MS Add. 11848)
        History of the Lombards and book of model sermons written by Paul the Deacon (d. 799)
        Encyclopedia and handbook on clerical instruction written by Rabanus Maurus, abbot of Fulda (d. 856)
        Neo-Platonic texts translated (from Greek) and written by John Scotus Eriugena (d. 877)
        Lives of saints written by Walafrid Strabo, scholar, poet, and gardener, tutor to Charles the Bald,
            and abbot of Reichenau (d. 849; click here for a plan of his garden)

Weaknesses of Charlemagne's empire:

        Very unwieldy to govern large; multi-ethnic and multi-lingual empire; no standard laws or taxation system
        Long-distance trade weak; transport and communications very slow and hazardous
        Heavy reliance on personal loyalty of counts, margraves, and bishops to emperor
        Constant expansion of empire required to pay army and aristocracy with loot and land ("pyramid scheme")
        Charlemagne's son and heir (Louis the Pious) cash-poor and weak
        Fratricidal warfare among Charlemagne's grandsons (Lothar, Louis the German, and Charles the Bald) divides empire
        External attacks after Charlemagne's death (Vikings, Magyars, and Muslims)

Additional primary sources include:

    Charlemagne, Capitulary De villis

    Inventory of Charlemagne's estate at Asnapium (Annapes)

    Monastic annals