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Life of Charlemagne - Essay Example

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Charlemagne is a very popular historical figure whose life has been greatly romanticized with him depicted as both saint and hero. This article is based on the account of Einhard who is described as his friend and employed as a court historian amidst his lack of talent…
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Life of Charlemagne

Download file to see previous pages... However, in the bibliography that he has written he clearly chose to give in to the "lust of immortality to celebrate the glorious deeds of other times (Einhard 1)." The bibliography is obviously written with the purpose of extolling Charlemagne and highlighting his virtues for the knowledge of the generation to come.
The Life of Charlemagne commences by a description of the Merovingian family which used to rule France contrasting their flaws and weaknesses with the virtues of Charlemagne's ancestors. Einhard also admitted his lack of knowledge on the birth and childhood of Charlemagne thereby skipping the time span and concentrating on his military conquest (5). Charlemagne is recognized for his success in battles from his first military undertaking in the Aquitanian War to the Saxon War, Lombard War, Slavic War, and the War of the Huns. Through military force, he is also able to gain the submission of the Breton and Beneventan.
Because of these victories, Charlemagne is able to largely expand his territory: "He so largely increased the Frank kingdom, which was already great and strong when he received it at his father's hands, that more than double its former territory was added to it" (16). Aside from conquering vast lands, the ruler should also be commended by winning the allegiance of several nations which is even strengthened by his fondness of sending them letters (17). He also enhanced the beauty of his kingdom through the construction of establishment including the Basilica of the Holy Mother of God and the bridge over the Rhine at Mayence (18).
The latter portion of the bibliography humanizes Charlemagne by expounding his personal traits and characteristics including his looks, the manner of his dressing, and his private life. Eidhan gave a very good description Charlemagne's and his favorite food: "His meals ordinarily consisted of four courses, not counting the roast, which his huntsmen used to bring in on the spit; he was more fond of this than of any other dish" (25).
After reading the bibliography of Charlemagne, I am able to look at a deeper side of him not as a hero but as an ordinary individual, who has flaws, is fond of music, and of giving. Far from the portrayed picture of him as a hero and saint in history books, the account is much more enlightening. The translator has done a good job from lifting the Latin version into English. The account is very much comprehensible, interesting, and enriching.

Works Cited
Eidhan. The Life of Charlemagne. Trans. S. E. Turner. 2 February 2008 ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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