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Charlemagne as a leader

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Charlemagne, or Charles the Great, entirely deserves his name. He fulfills the criteria for being great: he changed the course of history, left world better off, and had outstanding ability and character.

Charlemagne was a very determined and decisive warrior. He expanded the territory of his country, the Carolingian Empire, and only Napoleon can rival with Charlemagne’s Empire’ size with the territory he invaded in the nineteenth century. Charles the Great undertook fifty-four military campaigns, although he had relatively small army of eight thousand soldiers. This is a proof what a great leader he was. He defeated parts of today’s Italy, Germany, Spain and France.

Charlemagne was also very intelligent; he became a “patron of learning.” He wanted to preserve Latin culture, and thanks to his efforts, monks copied classical works, like those from Ancient Greece and Rome. Charles the Great kept this heritage alive, and continued the intellectual life of the Catholic Church.

Charlemagne’s coronation was very significant, since it changed the course of history. Pope Leo III on Christmas Day 800 crowned him fro the emperor of the Romans. This was not a sign of rebirth of Roman Empire but of the appearance of a new European civilization, with its power shifted from southern to northern Europe. This coronation is also symbolic because it underlined the diffusion of Roman, Christian, and Germanic cultures, the foundation of new European Civilization.

Although Charlemagne was a great leader, he did not provide his country with an efficient government. The only transportation was on horseback, which enabled the emperor to control local affairs; he could only count on the loyalty of the people, sometimes maintained by force. This would not let the Carolingian Empire to last. After Charlemagne’s death, the Empire was divided among his three sons.

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