Life of Charles the Great Translation of Vita Karoli Magni Einhard's Preface SINCE I have taken upon myself to narrate the public and private life, and no small part of the deeds, of my lord and foster-father, the most lent and most justly renowned King Charles, I have condensed the matter into as brief a form as possible. I have been careful not to omit any facts that could come to my knowledge, but at the same time not to offend by a prolix style those minds that despise everything modern, if one can possibly avoid offending by a new work men who seem to despise also the masterpieces of antiquity, the works of most learned and luminous writers. Very many of them, l have no doubt, are men devoted to a life of literary leisure, who feel that the affairs of the present generation ought not to be passed by, and who do not consider everything done today as unworthy of mention and deserving to be given over to silence and oblivionbut are nevertheless seduced by lust of immortality to celebrate the glorious deeds of other times by some sort of composition rather than to deprive posterity of the mention of their own names by not writing at all.
During the Carolingian Renaissance, as it is called by modern scholars, Frankish rulers… Early years Around the time of the birth of Charlemagne—conventionally held to be but likely to be or —his father, Pippin III the Shortwas mayor of the palacean official serving the Merovingian king but actually wielding effective power over the extensive Frankish kingdom.
His early years were marked by a succession of events that had immense implications for the Frankish position in the contemporary world.
Pippin also intervened militarily in Italy in and to restrain Lombard threats to Rome, and in the so-called Donation of Pippin in he bestowed on the papacy a block of territory stretching across central Italy which formed the basis of a new political entity, the Papal Statesover which the pope ruled.
When Pippin died inhis realm was divided according to Frankish custom between Charlemagne and his brother, Carloman. Almost immediately the rivalry between the two brothers threatened the unity of the Frankish kingdom.
King of the Franks The age of Charlemagne Charlemagne assumed rulership at a moment when powerful forces of change were affecting his kingdom. By Frankish tradition he was a warrior king, expected to lead his followers in wars that would expand Frankish hegemony and produce rewards for his companions.
His Merovingian predecessors had succeeded remarkably well as conquerors, but their victories resulted in a kingdom made up of diverse peoples over which unified rule grew increasingly difficult.
Complicating the situation for the Merovingian kings were both the insatiable appetite of the Frankish aristocracy for wealth and power and the constant partitioning of the Frankish realm that resulted from the custom of treating the kingdom as a patrimony to be divided among all the male heirs surviving each king.
Real power had been assumed by an aristocratic dynasty, later called the Carolingians after Charlemagne, which during the 7th century clawed its way to dominance by utilizing the office of mayor of the palace to establish control over the royal administration and royal resources and to build a following strong enough to fend off rival Frankish families seeking comparable power.
During the 8th century the Carolingian mayors of the palace Charles Martel — and prior to becoming king Pippin III — increasingly turned their attention to activities aimed at checking the political fragmentation of the Frankish kingdom.
Charlemagne was thus heir to a long tradition that measured a king by his success at warwhich in turn required him to devise means of governance capable of sustaining control over an increasingly polyglot population. New forces were at work in the mid-8th century to complicate the traditional role of Frankish kingship.
The assumption of that new burden came at a time when religious renewal was gathering momentum to add a new dimension to the forces defining, directing, and sustaining the Christian community.
The 8th century witnessed intellectual and artistic stirrings throughout Latin Christendom which focused on reestablishing contact with the Classical and patristic past as a crucial requirement for the renewal of Christian society. The Frankish social system, which had been based on kinship ties, on bonds linking war leaders and their comrades in arms, and on ethnicitywas being overlaid by social bonds created when one individual commended himself to another, thereby accepting a condition of personal dependence that entailed the rendering of services to the superior in return for material considerations granted to the dependent party.
Moreover, the world beyond Francia was being reshaped politically and economically by the decline of the Eastern Roman Empirethe triumphal advance of Arab forces and their Islamic religion across the Mediterranean world, and the threat posed by new Scandinavian, Slavic, and Central Asian invaders.
His personal qualities served him well in confronting that challenge. The ideal warrior chief, Charlemagne was an imposing physical presence blessed with extraordinary energy, personal courage, and an iron will.
He loved the active life—military campaigning, hunting, swimming—but he was no less at home at court, generous with his gifts, a boon companion at the banquet table, and adept at establishing friendships.
Never far from his mind was his large family: Although he received only an elementary level of formal education, Charlemagne possessed considerable native intelligence, intellectual curiosity, a willingness to learn from others, and religious sensibility—all attributes which allowed him to comprehend the forces that were reshaping the world about him.
These facets of his persona combined to make him a figure worthy of respect, loyalty, and affection; he was a leader capable of making informed decisions, willing to act on those decisions, and skilled at persuading others to follow him.
Page 1 of 5.Charlemagne, or Charles the Great, was king of the Franks between and , and emperor of the West between and He founded the Holy Roman Empire, strengthened European economic and political life, and promoted the cultural revival known as the Carolingian Renaissance.
Charlemagne became king of the Franks, of Charlemagne, wrote a biography of the emperor after his death. In the work, titled “Vita Karoli Magni (Life of. Charlemagne, the King of the Franks and Emperor of the West was one of the greatest medieval kings. (c. ) who wrote biography of Charlemagne – Vita Karoli Magni (Life of Charlemagne), Charlemagne studied himself and practiced writing in his bed but he also noted that he started learning too late in life and achieved little success.
Vita Karoli Magni Vita Karoli Magni (Life of Charles the Great) is a biography of Charlemagne, King of the Franks and Holy Roman Emperor, written by Einhard. Watch video · Pepin III Biography General, King (c.
–) Pepin III, father of Charlemagne, was the first King of the Franks and played an integral role in the foundation of the Holy Roman Empire.
King of the Franks The age of Charlemagne. New forces were at work in the mid-8th century to complicate the traditional role of Frankish kingship. personal courage, and an iron will. He loved the active life—military campaigning, hunting, swimming—but he was no less at home at court, generous with his gifts, a boon companion at the.