In 476 AD the Eastern Roman Empire also known as the Byzantium Empire was reinventing themselves from the old dynasty, forming a new nation more analogous to a “Middle Eastern State” (Rosenwein 54). This era in history would experience many events that would shape its society. One important event in Europe’s history was the Treaty of Verdun, which in 843 ended the three year Carolingian Civil War. According to Rosenwein “after Louis death a peace was hammered out in the Treaty of Verdun (843). The empire was later divided into three parts, an arrangement that would roughly define the future political contours of Western Europe” (Rosenwein 123). Charles the Bald, Louis the Pious son, would inherit what is now France, while Louis the German would be bequeathed Germany, and the “Middle Kingdom” would become Lothar’s half what is now Italy. The agreement would end the struggle for power within Charlemagne grandsons and a violent war (Rosenwein 123).
Charlemagne’s reign before his death was also an important event in the shaping of Europe. Charlemagne (768 -814) also known as “Charles the Great” would raid Italy and capture the Lombard crown adding Northern Italy in 774. He would fight the Saxon’s for over thirty years expanding his territory along the way. The emperor would aggressively convert foreigners after conquering their territory into Christianity. By 800, he extended his territory into the Western and Central regions of Europe. The Carolingian King would create institutions that would mirror the old Roman Empire and set up districts under an appointed authority called a “count” similar to a modern governor.
Charlemagne was also instrumental in establishing an educational system for his people. The emperor would send for intellectual Alcuin to become superior of Saint Martin in 782. On arrival from England the scholar would develop a new era of teachers that would give hope to a marginalized community. According to Rosenwein the women and poor citizens of the Carolingian Renaissance were largely ignored. However, Charlemagne a true believer in education would offer a free education to anyone willing to learn. According to Rosenwein, “one of Charlemagne capitularies ordered that the cathedrals and monasteries of his kingdom should teach reading and writing to all who would learn” (Rosenwein 129). Education equally was available to women as well, however, there were some discontent among the rich who believed that education should only be available to the rich.
Just as important during this era was the Carolingian Renaissance. One great accomplishment was the development of the Caroline minuscule script. According to Rosenwein, “Carolingians experimented with letter forms that were quick to write and easy to read” (Rosenwein 127). The Caroline minuscule writing form would last until the eleventh century and reappear at the start of the fifteenth century (Rosenwein 127). Another revolutionary development during this time was the...