A medieval David

Two Lives of CharlemagneTwo Lives of Charlemagne by Einhard

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Chronicles of Charlemagne’s life by his courtier Einhard and a monk named Notker the Stammerer are presented in this book. Both presented Charlemagne as a fearsome warrior and a man of great Christian piety. Classical and Biblical references peppered both texts, especially Notker’s. Notker made parallels with King David’s life multiple times. You can also see, especially in Notker’s first book, the leadership that Charlemagne had over the church in his domains and the seeds of the Investiture Controversy that later pitted popes against emperors in what would come to be called the Holy Roman Empire.

I assigned the book for my Western Civ to 1648 class, and we had some good discussions over the past week. I enjoyed reading it as well, and want to read more about Charlemagne since my knowledge of him is pretty general.

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