Charlemagne was a successful leader in the world history who is remembered for the efforts he made towards the progress and development of human civilization. Leaders from different regions referred to him as Charles the Great. He ruled as the king of the Franks, the King of Italy and also as the first emperor in Western Europe. In his years, he demonstrated a unique leadership different from that of many leaders of the time. He encountered both good and bad experiences, but remained outstanding and supported civilization. The paper will offer a detailed investigative report of the life and leadership of Charles the Great. It will outline the way the circumstances of Charles’ life made him make an impact on human civilization.
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From the early stages of man, leadership has been practiced by human beings. Leaders have the responsibility of guiding their followers on sensitive matters of the society. Charles became king in the year 768 after his father died. The circumstance that made him become a top leader in the society is a loss of a close person. It was a difficult situation that required him and his brother to lead the public and still mourn their personal loss. To his understanding, the circumstances through which they attained the power implied that the throne was not an achievement, but a responsibility.
In the first three years of his leadership, he enjoyed the presence of his brother Carloman, who was a co-ruler in 771. Carloman experienced an unexpected death. It was a condition that no person could explain that made Charles the absolute ruler of the Frankish kingdom. It was another difficult situation that imposed more challenges in his leadership and personal life (Wilson 2005). Many people thought that it was a plan made by him to kill his brother and enjoy the leadership position alone. Others argued that he also contributed twards the death of his father. As a leader, he was left with one option of leading well to ensure that he cleanses the negative perception of the public in order to acquire support of all his followers. He adopted a leadership style that was used by his father and continued applying his father’s policy. He became a protector whose responsibility was to defend the papacy from its neighbors and intruders. He also went on to dismiss Lombards who were still in power in the Northern part of Italy.
Religion is among the most influential practices in human life. It defines the way people present themselves to others and defines their conduct. Charles was a devoted Christian. In his leadership, he tried to apply the biblical teachings and follow the way biblical kings applied their administration. He had a good relationship with religious leaders, especially the Pope, who crowned him emperor in the year 800. His faiths made him raise campaigns against non-Christians and even pass death penalties as a way of Christianizing them. Charlemagne sometimes even performed unbelievable acts such as massacres. A good example is the massacre of Verden that occurred during his time. Charles’ strong belief in Christianity is among the issues that made a great impact on the progress of human civilization.
Many believed in Charlemagne’s leadership and thought that he was working according to the Christian teaching. Nevertheless, humanitarians stood against his fight against non-Christians – a factor that made a positive development towards the progress of human civilization. Non-Christians engaged in activities that could be termed as the opposite of civilization. Therefore, his efforts to make Christianity a religion for all helped stop uncivilized actions in the society and promoted civil development. Reading from the evil actions such as the Verden massacre, leaders can learn more civilized ways of punishing those who go against them.
Another important circumstance in the life of King Charles is the place of birth. His father was a leader in the same kingdom. Since childhood, Charles was brought up in a rich family where he was taught different things and witnessed the leadership of his father. Being a firstborn child gave him the responsibility of assisting in family duties – a factor that made him a responsible person in life. He witnessed different cases where his father’s leadership went against humanity; as a result, he tried to avoid such occurrences during his time as a leader (McKitterick 2008). His ambition of attaining high offices of the Frankish people also played a role since one required the support of others apart from the inheritance. Civilization enabled him get the support and, hence, act as a role model to other leaders who adopted civilized ways of acquiring support and high offices.
During his time as both the king and emperor, Charles experienced a number of rebellions such as the Aquitanian rebellion. He also participated in wars such as the Moors war and Saxon wars. Today, human beings are mostly civilized and prefer to use civilized modes of solving conflicts. The leadership of King Charles is used as a reference to indicate the effects of war and alternative civilized methods that can be employed during a crisis.
In conclusion, human civilization has taken a long course to reach the its current state. As a person, Charlemagne was a historical leader who contributed to the progress of human civilization. His faults were also used by humanitarians to criticize uncivil actions in the society. People take his leadership as an example today to portray the effects of war and alternative ways of solving disputes without causing harm to property or life.
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