A Brief History Of France Essay

2470 words - 10 pages

France is a country located in Western Europe. It borders Andorra, Germany, Luxembourg, Monaco, Spain, Belgium, Switzerland and Italy. The country of France originally known by the name of Gaul or Gallia is a country with a rich history and culture. The Celts originally occupied and dominated that lands of Gaul. In the year of 121, Julius Caesar led the Roman Army into the country of Gaul. He won a decisive victory over the Celtic tribes that once dominated the area. This area became the first province of the Roman Empire. The Romans would rule the region until the Third Century. Savage Barbarian Forces from the East began invading the area in the Third Century. Uncharacteristically, a group of Franks, Visigoths and Vandals began fighting the Romans for control of the regions of Gaul. Seeing this happening, the people of Gaul began forming alliances with local lords in order to receive protection from the Barbarian invaders. The territory of Gaul eventually fell to the Franks after the Romans retreated. The barbaric people of the Franks were Germanic people from Eastern Europe lead by a man named Clovis. Clovis then became the first Frankish King of the newly Latin named Francia, which is France in the modern day French language.
Dagobert I became the last Merovingian Frankish King. Eventually, he gave way to Charles Martel whom initiated the Carolingian Dynasty. Charles Martel further expanded the Frankish Kingdom to the East. This is something Clovis failed to accomplish. In the year of 732 Charles had trouble stopping a Muslim invasion that came from the south. Charles was succeeded on the thrown by his son Pepin the Short in 751. Lacking knowledge on military and leadership Charles the Great, or Charlemagne as people knew him, soon took control over military operations. Pope Leo III crowned Charlemagne the Emperor of Rome in the year of 800. The successions of the Frankish Kingdom caused a long period in time of wars and conflict during the Middle Ages. The Carolingian Dynasty started a steady decline after the Treaty of Verdun in 843. The Treaty of Verdun split the lands of the Frankish Kingdom between Charlemagne’s three sons and separated France from Germany and Lotharingia. The king of the Carolingian Dynasty lost power during this time due to Norwegian and Danish Viking raids on the Northern Coast. This Northern Coast now goes by the name of Normandy, French for the Scandinavian name for Viking, “Northman.”
With the Viking conquest in France another dynasty soon reigned supreme. Hugh Capet was crowned king in 987, beginning the Capetian Dynasty. This is a period in time in which historians believe are the true beginning of France. The ever changing game of dynasties continued when William the Conqueror. He would later proclaim himself king of France’s biggest enemy, England, in 1066 while remaining the Duke of Normandy.
You can account many different theories to the beginning of what we know as France. It is truly a diverse and...

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