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The Franks. World History I February 23, 2014. Europe After the Fall of Rome. The Dark Ages overlapped with the Fall of Rome This was a time of cultural, social, and political change Europe was once one large unified empire, and had now shattered into a collection of warring tribes.

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the franks

The Franks

World History I

February 23, 2014

europe after the fall of rome
Europe After the Fall of Rome
  • The Dark Ages overlapped with the Fall of Rome
  • This was a time of cultural, social, and political change
  • Europe was once one large unified empire, and had now shattered into a collection of warring tribes
the geography of western europe
The Geography of Western Europe
  • Europe was small compared to many other civilizations
  • From about 500-1,000 C.E. this region was considered frontier land
    • Frontier = underdeveloped land on the outskirts of the civilization
  • Though it was small and underdeveloped, there was a large amount of natural resources
    • Fresh water, trees, harbors, fertile soil
who are the franks
Who are the franks?
  • In the lands on the outskirts of the Roman Empire, the people were organized into smaller nomadic tribes
    • Farmers and herders
  • They did not have cities, organized governments, or laws
    • Unwritten laws based on Pagan religious customs
    • Elected leaders to lead them into battles
  • Between 400-700 C.E., Germanic tribes carved Western Europe into smaller kingdoms
  • The Franks were a group of Germanic people who lived in Northern Gaul
    • Present day France
  • They were one of the only kingdoms to rise out of the Dark Ages
king clovis
King Clovis
  • Was the first of the Frankish kings
    • Conquered the former Roman province of Gaul
      • This united the Germanic tribes into one civilization
  • He ruled the Franks according to traditional customs but also tried to preserve Roman traditions
  • He was polytheistic and worshipped Pagan Gods
    • His wife, Clotilda, was a Catholic and encouraged him to convert to Christianity
      • After a significant victory in battle, he converted, making Catholicism the official religion of the Franks
  • He created The Law of the Salian Franks
    • A written code of laws combining customs, Roman law, and Christian ideals
charles martel
Charles Martel
  • He was son of Pippin the Middle, King of the Franks
    • His mother was Pippin’s mistress, which made him the illegitimate successor
    • On his father’s deathbed, his wife convinced him to disinherit Charles as his child and choose her nephew as his heir
  • Years later he escaped captivity and found support among the Frankish military
  • He led a civil war against his cousin
    • He regained his title as mayor of the palace or Prince of the Franks
  • He focused his attention on preventing the invasion of the Moors
    • He is considered the “Savior of Christianity”
the battle of tours
The Battle of Tours
  • Fought on October 10, 732
    • Between the advancing Muslims (Moors) and the Christians (Franks)
      • Muslims led by Abdul Rahman
      • Christians led by Charles the Hammer
  • Muslim army was looking to expand the Islamic Empire and gain land, money, and power
  • The Christians were vastly outnumbered
    • The Muslims had the fiercer and more organized army
  • The Christians were able to stop the northward advance of Islam
  • This preserved Christianity as the controlling faith in England
    • This spread the religion and made it an even more dominant force
  • In 800 Charles Martel’s grandson united much of Europe under his control
    • Empire reached from France, to Germany, and part of Italy
  • Charlemagne’s name translates to “Charles the Great” because he had many accomplishments
    • Strengthened and brought order to Europe
    • Helped the Romans hold off the Muslims
    • Started the MissiDominici
      • Group of nobles who saw that the laws were followed
    • Rebuilt Trade
    • Focused on Education
    • Spread Christianity
fall of the franks
Fall of the Franks
  • When Charlemagne died in C.E. 814, his empire began to crumble
  • His empire was divided into 3 parts, one for each of his sons
    • Called The Treaty of Verdun
      • Charles
      • Lothair
      • Louis
  • In 45 years the land continued to be divided up into smaller and smaller sections
  • Invaders, like the Vikings, played a role in the deteriorating land