Some Franks raided Roman territory, while other Frankish tribes joined the Roman troops of Gaul. In times, Franks became the rulers of the northern part of Roman Gaul. The Salian Franks lived on Roman-held soil between the Rhine, Scheldt and Somme rivers in what is now Northern France, the kingdom was acknowledged by the Romans after 357 CE. Following the collapse of Rome in the West, the Frankish tribes were united under the Merovingians, who succeeded in conquering most of Gaul in the 6th century, which greatly increased their power. The Merovingian dynasty, descendants of the Salians, founded one of the Germanic monarchies that would absorb large parts of the Western Roman Empire, the Frankish state consolidated its hold over the majority of western Europe by the end of the 8th century, developing into the Carolingian Empire. This empire would gradually evolve into the state of France and the Holy Roman Empire, in the Middle Ages, the term Frank was used in the east as a synonym for western European, as the Franks were rulers of most of Western Europe.
The Franks in the east kept their Germanic language and became part of the Germans, Flemings, the Franconian languages, which are called Frankisch in Dutch or Fränkisch in German, originated at least partly in the Old Frankish language of the Franks. Nowadays, the German and Dutch names for France are Frankreich and Frankrijk, the name Franci was originally socio-political. To the Romans and Suebi, the Franks must have seemed alike, they looked the same and spoke the same language, so that Franci became the name by which the people were known. Within a few centuries it had eclipsed the names of the tribes, though the older names have survived in some place-names, such as Hesse. Following the precedents of Edward Gibbon and Jacob Grimm, the name of the Franks has been linked with the word frank in English and it has been suggested that the meaning of free was adopted because, after the conquest of Gaul, only Franks were free of taxation. It is traditionally assumed that Frank comes from the Germanic word for javelin, there is another theory that suggests that Frank comes from the Latin word francisca meaning.
Words in other Germanic languages meaning fierce, bold or insolent, eumenius addressed the Franks in the matter of the execution of Frankish prisoners in the circus at Trier by Constantine I in 306 and certain other measures, Ubi nunc est illa ferocia. Feroces was used often to describe the Franks, contemporary definitions of Frankish ethnicity vary both by period and point of view. According to their law and their custom, writing in 2009, Professor Christopher Wickham pointed out that the word Frankish quickly ceased to have an exclusive ethnic connotation. North of the River Loire everyone seems to have considered a Frank by the mid-7th century at the latest. Two early sources describe the origin of the Franks are a 7th-century work known as the Chronicle of Fredegar. Neither of these works are accepted by historians as trustworthy, compared with Gregory of Tourss Historia Francorum, the chronicle describes Priam as a Frankish king whose people migrated to Macedonia after the fall of Troy
The term is commonly extended in modern English and other vernaculars to the inhabitants of Viking home communities during what has become known as the Viking Age. Facilitated by advanced seafaring skills, and characterised by the longship, Viking activities at times extended into the Mediterranean littoral, North Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia. A romanticized picture of Vikings as noble savages began to emerge in the 18th century, current popular representations of the Vikings are typically based on cultural clichés and stereotypes, complicating modern appreciation of the Viking legacy. One etymology derives víking from the feminine vík, meaning creek, various theories have been offered that the word viking may be derived from the name of the historical Norwegian district of Viken, meaning a person from Viken. According to this theory, the word simply described persons from this area, there are a few major problems with this theory. People from the Viken area were not called Viking in Old Norse manuscripts, in addition, that explanation could only explain the masculine and ignore the feminine, which is a serious problem because the masculine is easily derived from the feminine but hardly vice versa.
The form occurs as a name on some Swedish rune stones. There is little indication of any negative connotation in the term before the end of the Viking Age and this is found in the Proto-Nordic verb *wikan, ‘to turn’, similar to Old Icelandic víkja ‘to move, to turn’, with well-attested nautical usages. In that case, the idea behind it seems to be that the rower moves aside for the rested rower on the thwart when he relieves him. A víkingr would originally have been a participant on a sea journey characterized by the shifting of rowers, in that case, the word Viking was not originally connected to Scandinavian seafarers but assumed this meaning when the Scandinavians begun to dominate the seas. In Old English, the word wicing appears first in the Anglo-Saxon poem, Widsith, in Old English, and in the history of the archbishops of Hamburg-Bremen written by Adam of Bremen in about 1070, the term generally referred to Scandinavian pirates or raiders. As in the Old Norse usages, the term is not employed as a name for any people or culture in general, the word does not occur in any preserved Middle English texts.
The Vikings were known as Ascomanni ashmen by the Germans for the ash wood of their boats, Lochlannach by the Gaels, the modern day name for Sweden in several neighbouring countries is possibly derived from rōþs-, Ruotsi in Finnish and Rootsi in Estonian. The Slavs and the Byzantines called them Varangians, Scandinavian bodyguards of the Byzantine emperors were known as the Varangian Guard. The Franks normally called them Northmen or Danes, while for the English they were known as Danes or heathen. It is used in distinction from Anglo-Saxon, similar terms exist for other areas, such as Hiberno-Norse for Ireland and Scotland. The period from the earliest recorded raids in the 790s until the Norman conquest of England in 1066 is commonly known as the Viking Age of Scandinavian history, Vikings used the Norwegian Sea and Baltic Sea for sea routes to the south. The Normans were descended from Vikings who were given feudal overlordship of areas in northern France—the Duchy of Normandy—in the 10th century, in that respect, descendants of the Vikings continued to have an influence in northern Europe
Charles the Bald
Charles the Bald was the King of West Francia, King of Italy and Holy Roman Emperor. After a series of wars during the reign of his father, Louis the Pious. He was a grandson of Charlemagne and the youngest son of Louis the Pious by his second wife and he was born on 13 June 823 in Frankfurt, when his elder brothers were already adults and had been assigned their own regna, or subkingdoms, by their father. The attempts made by Louis the Pious to assign Charles a subkingdom, first Alemannia, at a diet in Aachen in 837, Louis the Pious bade the nobles do homage to Charles as his heir. Pepin of Aquitaine died in 838, whereupon Charles at last received that kingdom, which angered Pepins heirs, the death of the emperor in 840 led to the outbreak of war between his sons. In the following year, the two confirmed their alliance by the celebrated Oaths of Strasbourg. The war was brought to an end by the Treaty of Verdun in August 843, Louis received the eastern part of the Carolingian Empire, known as East Francia and as Germany.
Lothair retained the title and the Kingdom of Italy. He received the regions from Flanders through the Rhineland. The first years of Charless reign, up to the death of Lothair I in 855, were comparatively peaceful, during these years the three brothers continued the system of confraternal government, meeting repeatedly with one another, at Koblenz, at Meerssen, and at Attigny. In 858, Louis the German, invited by disaffected nobles eager to oust Charles, Charles was so unpopular that he was unable to summon an army, and he fled to Burgundy. He was saved only by the support of the bishops, who refused to crown Louis the German king, and by the fidelity of the Welfs, in 860, he in his turn tried to seize the kingdom of his nephew, Charles of Provence, but was repulsed. On the death of his nephew Lothair II in 869, Charles tried to seize Lothairs dominions, besides these family disputes, Charles had to struggle against repeated rebellions in Aquitaine and against the Bretons. Led by their chiefs Nomenoë and Erispoë, who defeated the king at the Battle of Ballon and the Battle of Jengland, the Bretons were successful in obtaining a de facto independence.
Charles fought against the Vikings, who devastated the country of the north, the valleys of the Seine and Loire, at the Vikings successful siege and sack of Paris in 845 and several times thereafter Charles was forced to purchase their retreat at a heavy price. By the same edict, he ordered fortified bridges to be put up at all rivers to block the Viking incursions, two of these bridges at Paris saved the city during its siege of 885–886. In 875, after the death of the Emperor Louis II, Charles the Bald, supported by Pope John VIII, traveled to Italy, receiving the crown at Pavia. Louis the German, a candidate for the succession of Louis II, revenged himself by invading and devastating Charles dominions, and Charles had to return hastily to West Francia
Pepin the Short
Pepin the Short was the King of the Franks from 751 until his death. He was the first of the Carolingians to become king, the younger son of the Frankish prince Charles Martel and his wife Rotrude, Pepins upbringing was distinguished by the ecclesiastical education he had received from the monks of St. Denis. Succeeding his father as the Mayor of the Palace in 741, Pepin ruled in Neustria and Provence, while his brother Carloman established himself in Austrasia and Thuringia. The brothers were active in suppressing revolts led by the Bavarians, Saxons, in 743, they ended the Frankish interregnum by choosing Childeric III, who was to be the last Merovingian monarch, as figurehead king of the Franks. After Carloman, who was a pious man, retired to religious life in 747. He suppressed a revolt led by his half-brother Grifo, and succeeded in becoming the master of all Francia. Giving up pretense, Pepin forced Childeric into a monastery and had himself proclaimed king of the Franks with support of Pope Zachary in 751.
The decision was not supported by all members of the Carolingian family and Pepin had to put down a revolt led by Carlomans son, Drogo, as King, Pepin embarked on an ambitious program to expand his power. He reformed the legislation of the Franks and continued the reforms of Boniface. Pepin intervened in favour of the Papacy of Stephen II against the Lombards in Italy and he was able to secure several cities, which he gave to the Pope as part of the Donation of Pepin. This formed the basis for the Papal States in the Middle Ages. The Byzantines, keen to make good relations with the power of the Frankish empire. Pepin was, troubled by the revolts of the Saxons. He campaigned tirelessly in Germany, but the final subjugation of tribes was left to his successors. Pepin died in 768 and was succeeded by his sons Charlemagne, although unquestionably one of the most powerful and successful rulers of his time, Pepins reign is largely overshadowed by that of his more famous son. Pepins father Charles Martel died in 741, Charless son by his second wife, demanded a share in the inheritance, but he was imprisoned in a monastery by his two half-brothers.
In the Frankish realm the unity of the kingdom was connected with the person of the king. So Carloman, to secure this unity, raised the Merovingian Childeric to the throne, in 747 Carloman either resolved to or was pressured into entering a monastery
Sarthe is a French department situated in the Grand-Ouest of the country. It is named after the River Sarthe, which flows from east of Le Mans to just north of Angers, in the late 18th century, before it was officially Sarthe, the nobility built their Mansions and Chateaus there, as an escape from Paris. The department was created during the French Revolution on 4 March 1790, pursuant to the law of 22 December 1789, the latter was divided into two departments, Sarthe to the east and Mayenne to the west. In Roman times, this contained the city of Mans. The Roman Thermal Bathhouse attracts many tourists, as does the Theater of Aubigné-Racan, marin Mersenne, perhaps the most important scientific figure in the early 17th century, was born in the vicinity of Sarthe. The department of Sarthe is at the end of the administrative region of Pays-de-la-Loire. It is south of Normandy and on the edge of the Armorican Massif. It is bordered by the departments of Orne, Eure-et-Loir, Loir-et-Cher, Indre-et-Loire, Maine-et-Loire, approximately 300,000 people, comprising more than half of the departments population, live in Le Mans, its conurbation, or the essentially urban communes close by.
The rest of the department retains a rural character, with agriculture as the part of the economy. The arrival of the railways in 1854 boosted trade for the local economy, a TGV connection was constructed in 1989, connecting the community to high-speed transport. In terms of connections, the A11 autoroute, which was constructed to Le Mans from the east in 1978. The department was the base of former Prime Minister Francois Fillon
Louis the Stammerer
Louis the Stammerer was the King of Aquitaine and the King of West Francia. He was the eldest son of emperor Charles the Bald and Ermentrude of Orléans, Louis the Stammerer was physically weak and outlived his father by only two years. He succeeded his younger brother Charles the Child as the ruler of Aquitaine in 866 and his father in West Francia in 877, in the French monarchial system, he is considered Louis II. The pope may have offered him the imperial crown. Louis had relatively little impact on politics and he was described a simple and sweet man, a lover of peace and religion. In 878, he gave the counties of Barcelona and his final act was to march against the invading Vikings, but he fell ill and died on 9 April or 10 April 879, not long after beginning this final campaign. On his death, his realms were divided between his two sons, Carloman II and Louis III of France, during the peace negotiations between his father and Erispoe, duke of Brittany, Louis was betrothed to an unnamed daughter of Erispoe in 856.
It is not known if this was the daughter who married Gurivant. The contract was broken in 857 after Erispoes murder and his first wife Ansgarde of Burgundy had two sons and Carloman, both of whom became kings of West Francia, and two daughters and Gisela. His second wife Adelaide of Paris had one daughter, Ermentrude and a son, Charles the Simple. This article incorporates text from a now in the public domain, Hugh
Charlemagne or Charles the Great, numbered Charles I, was the King of the Franks from 768, King of the Lombards from 774 and Emperor of the Romans from 800. He united much of Europe during the early Middle Ages and he was the first recognised emperor in western Europe since the fall of the Western Roman Empire three centuries earlier. The expanded Frankish state which Charlemagne founded was called the Carolingian Empire, Charlemagne was the oldest son of Pepin the Short and Bertrada of Laon. He became king in 768 following his fathers death, initially as co-ruler with his brother Carloman I, carlomans sudden death in 771 in unexplained circumstances left Charlemagne as the undisputed ruler of the Frankish Kingdom. He continued his fathers policy towards the papacy and became its protector, removing the Lombards from power in northern Italy and he campaigned against the Saxons to his east, Christianising them upon penalty of death and leading to events such as the Massacre of Verden. Charlemagne reached the height of his power in 800 when he was crowned Emperor of the Romans by Pope Leo III on Christmas Day at Old St.
Peters Basilica. Charlemagne has been called the Father of Europe, as he united most of Western Europe for the first time since the Roman Empire and his rule spurred the Carolingian Renaissance, a period of energetic cultural and intellectual activity within the Western Church. All Holy Roman Emperors considered their kingdoms to be descendants of Charlemagnes empire, up to the last Emperor Francis II and these and other machinations led to the eventual split of Rome and Constantinople in the Great Schism of 1054. Charlemagne died in 814, having ruled as emperor for thirteen years and he was laid to rest in his imperial capital of Aachen in what is today Germany. He married at least four times and had three sons, but only his son Louis the Pious survived to succeed him. By the 6th century, the western Germanic Franks had been Christianised, ruled by the Merovingians, was the most powerful of the kingdoms that succeeded the Western Roman Empire. Following the Battle of Tertry the Merovingians declined into powerlessness, for which they have dubbed the rois fainéants.
Almost all government powers were exercised by their chief officer, the mayor of the palace, in 687, Pepin of Herstal, mayor of the palace of Austrasia, ended the strife between various kings and their mayors with his victory at Tertry. He became the governor of the entire Frankish kingdom. Pepin was the grandson of two important figures of the Austrasian Kingdom, Saint Arnulf of Metz and Pepin of Landen, Pepin of Herstal was eventually succeeded by his illegitimate son Charles, known as Charles Martel. After 737, Charles governed the Franks in lieu of a king, Charles was succeeded in 741 by his sons Carloman and Pepin the Short, the father of Charlemagne. In 743, the brothers placed Childeric III on the throne to curb separatism in the periphery and he was the last Merovingian king. Carloman resigned office in 746, preferring to enter the church as a monk, Pepin brought the question of the kingship before Pope Zachary, asking whether it was logical for a king to have no royal power
Lower Normandy is a former administrative region of France. On 1 January 2016, Lower and Upper Normandy merged becoming one region called Normandy and it covers 10,857 km2,3.2 percent of the surface area of France. The traditional districts of Lower Normandy include the Cotentin Peninsula and La Hague, the Campagne de Caen, the Norman Bocage, the Bessin, regions relating to Lower Normandy, Gallia Lugdunensis and Normandy. The traditional province of Normandy, with a history reaching back to the 10th century, was divided in 1956 into two regions, Lower Normandy and Upper Normandy. During the Roman era, the region was divided into several different city-states and that of Vieux was excavated in the 17th century, revealing numerous structures and vestiges bearing testimony to the prosperity of the Caen region. The region was conquered by the Franks in the 5th century, in the 9th century, the Norman conquests devastated the region. Much of the territory of Lower Normandy was added to the Duchy of Normandy in the 10th century, in 1066, Duke William Il of Normandy conquered England.
After his death, Normandy went to his eldest son and England went to his second son, the victory of Tinchebray in 1106 gave Normandy to the kings of England again. Nearly one hundred years later, in 1204, King Philip II Augustus of France conquered the region, during the Hundred Years War, it was regained by the Plantagenets. However, the French recovered the mainland part of the region between 1436 and 1450, by 1453, the French monarchy controlled much of modern France apart from Calais, which remained in English hands. During the Second World War, the main thrust of Operation Overlord was focused on Lower Normandy, the beaches of Calvados were the site of the D-Day landings in June 1944. Lower Normandy suffered badly during the War, with many of its towns, the regions economy is heavily agricultural, with livestock and dairy farming and fruit production among its major industries. The region is the leader in France in the sectors of butter, fromage frais, soft cheeses, cider apples, leeks, the region breeds more horses than any other in France.
The western part of the region is used mainly for farming, iron ore is mined near Caen. Tourism is a major industry, the region has direct ferry links to England. In addition to French, Normandy has its own regional language and it is still in use today in Lower Normandy, with the dialects of the Cotentin more in evidence than others. Lower Normandy has been the home of many well-known French authors, including Guy de Maupassant, Marcel Proust, notable Norman language authors connected especially with Lower Normandy include Alfred Rossel, Louis Beuve, and Côtis-Capel. In terms of music, composer Erik Satie hailed from this region, in the visual arts, Jean-François Millet was a native of La Hague
Robert Curthose, sometimes called Robert II or Robert III, was the Duke of Normandy from 1087 until 1106 and an unsuccessful claimant to the throne of the Kingdom of England. Robert was the eldest son of William the Conqueror, the first Norman king of England, and Matilda of Flanders, and a participant in the First Crusade. His reign as duke is noted for the discord with his brothers in England, eventually leading to his death in captivity, Roberts birth-date is usually given as 1054, but may have been 1051. As a child he was betrothed to Margaret, the heiress of Maine, but she died before they could be wed, in his youth he was reported to be courageous and skillful in military exercises. He was, prone to laziness and weakness of character that discontented nobles and he was unsatisfied with the share of power allotted to him and quarreled with his father and brothers fiercely. In 1063, his father made him the Count of Maine in view of his engagement to Margaret, the county was presumably run by his father until 1069 when the county revolted and reverted to Hugh V of Maine.
In 1077, Robert instigated his first insurrection against his father as the result of a prank played by his younger brothers William Rufus and Henry, who had dumped a full chamber-pot over his head. Robert was enraged and, urged on by his companions, started a brawl with his brothers that was interrupted by the intercession of their father. Feeling that his dignity was wounded, Robert was further angered when King William failed to punish his brothers, the next day Robert and his followers attempted to seize the castle of Rouen. The siege failed, when King William ordered their arrest and they were forced to flee again when King William attacked their base at Rémalard. Relations were not helped when King William discovered that his wife, at a battle in January 1079, Robert unhorsed King William in combat and succeeded in wounding him, stopping his attack only when he recognized his fathers voice. Humiliated, King William cursed his son, King William raised the siege and returned to Rouen. At Easter 1080, father and son were reunited by the efforts of Queen Matilda, Robert seems to have left court soon after the death of his mother, Queen Matilda, and spent several years travelling throughout France and Flanders.
He visited Italy seeking the hand of the great heiress Matilda of Tuscany but was unsuccessful, during this period as a wandering knight Robert sired several illegitimate children. His illegitimate son, seems to have spent much of his life at the court of his uncle William Rufus. This Richard was killed in a accident in the New Forest in 1099 as was his uncle, King William Rufus. An illegitimate daughter was married to Helias of Saint-Saens. In 1087, the elder William died of wounds suffered from an accident during a siege of Mantes
William the Conqueror
William I, usually known as William the Conqueror and sometimes William the Bastard, was the first Norman King of England, reigning from 1066 until his death in 1087. A descendant of Rollo, he was Duke of Normandy from 1035 onward, after a long struggle to establish his power, by 1060 his hold on Normandy was secure, and he launched the Norman conquest of England six years later. The rest of his life was marked by struggles to consolidate his hold over England and his continental lands, William was the son of the unmarried Robert I, Duke of Normandy, by Roberts mistress Herleva. His illegitimate status and his youth caused some difficulties for him after he succeeded his father, during his childhood and adolescence, members of the Norman aristocracy battled each other, both for control of the child duke and for their own ends. In 1047 William was able to quash a rebellion and begin to establish his authority over the duchy and his marriage in the 1050s to Matilda of Flanders provided him with a powerful ally in the neighbouring county of Flanders.
By the time of his marriage, William was able to arrange the appointments of his supporters as bishops and his consolidation of power allowed him to expand his horizons, and by 1062 William was able to secure control of the neighbouring county of Maine. In the 1050s and early 1060s William became a contender for the throne of England, held by the childless Edward the Confessor, his first cousin once removed. There were other claimants, including the powerful English earl Harold Godwinson. William argued that Edward had previously promised the throne to him, William built a large fleet and invaded England in September 1066, decisively defeating and killing Harold at the Battle of Hastings on 14 October 1066. After further military efforts William was crowned king on Christmas Day 1066 and he made arrangements for the governance of England in early 1067 before returning to Normandy. Several unsuccessful rebellions followed, but by 1075 Williams hold on England was mostly secure, Williams final years were marked by difficulties in his continental domains, troubles with his eldest son, and threatened invasions of England by the Danes.
In 1086 William ordered the compilation of the Domesday Book, a listing all the landholders in England along with their holdings. William died in September 1087 while leading a campaign in northern France and his reign in England was marked by the construction of castles, the settling of a new Norman nobility on the land, and change in the composition of the English clergy. He did not try to integrate his various domains into one empire, Williams lands were divided after his death, Normandy went to his eldest son, Robert Curthose, and his second surviving son, William Rufus, received England. Norsemen first began raiding in what became Normandy in the late 8th century, permanent Scandinavian settlement occurred before 911, when Rollo, one of the Viking leaders, and King Charles the Simple of France reached an agreement surrendering the county of Rouen to Rollo. The lands around Rouen became the core of the duchy of Normandy. Normandy may have used as a base when Scandinavian attacks on England were renewed at the end of the 10th century.
In an effort to improve matters, King Æthelred the Unready took Emma of Normandy, sister of Duke Richard II, as his second wife in 1002
Le Mans is a city in France, on the Sarthe River. Traditionally the capital of the province of Maine, it is now the capital of the Sarthe department, Le Mans is a part of the Pays de la Loire region. Its inhabitants are called Manceaux and Mancelles, since 1923, the city has hosted the internationally famous 24 Hours of Le Mans endurance sports car race. First mentioned by Claudius Ptolemy, the Roman city Vindinium was the capital of the Aulerci, Le Mans is known as Civitas Cenomanorum, or Cenomanus. Their city, seized by the Romans in 47 BC, was within the ancient Roman province of Gallia Lugdunensis, a 3rd-century amphitheatre is still visible. The thermae were demolished during the crisis of the century when workers were mobilized to build the citys defensive walls. The ancient wall around Le Mans is one of the most complete circuits of Gallo-Roman city walls to survive, as the use of the French language replaced late Vulgar Latin in the area, with dissimilation, became known as Celmans. Cel- was taken to be a form of the French word for this and that, and was replaced by le, gregory of Tours mentions a Frankish sub-king Rigomer, who was killed by King Clovis I in his campaign to unite the Frankish territories.
As the principal city of Maine, Le Mans was the stage for struggles in the century between the counts of Anjou and the dukes of Normandy. When the Normans had control of Maine, William the Conqueror successfully invaded England, in 1069 the citizens of Maine revolted and expelled the Normans, resulting in Hugh V being proclaimed count of Maine. Geoffrey V of Anjou married Matilda of England in the cathedral and their son Henry II Plantagenet, king of England, was born here. The airfield was declared operational on 3 September and designated as A-35 and it was used by several American fighter and transport units until late November of that year in additional offensives across France, the airfield was closed. Le Mans has an old town and the Cathédrale St-Julien, dedicated to St Julian of Le Mans. Remnants of a Roman wall are visible in the old town and these walls are highlighted every summer evening in a light show that tells the history of the town. Arboretum de la Grand Prée Part of the former Cistercian abbey de lEpau, founded by Queen Berengaria, jardin des Plantes du Mans Musée de la reine Bérengère, a museum of Le Mans history located in a gothic manor house.
Musée de Tessé, the arts museum of the city, displaying painting. Le Mans has an oceanic climate influenced by the mild Atlantic air travelling inland, summers are warm and occasionally hot, whereas winters are mild and cloudy. Precipitation is relatively uniform and moderate year round, at the 1999 French census, there were 293,159 inhabitants in the metropolitan area of Le Mans, with 146,105 of these living in the city proper
The Normans were the people who, in the 10th and 11th centuries, gave their name to Normandy, a region in France. They were descended from Norse raiders and pirates from Denmark and Norway who, under their leader Rollo, through generations of assimilation and mixing with the native Frankish and Gallo-Roman populations, their descendants gradually adopted the Carolingian-based cultures of West Francia. The distinct cultural and ethnic identity of the Normans emerged initially in the first half of the 10th century, the Norman dynasty had a major political and military impact on medieval Europe and even the Near East. The Normans were famed for their spirit and eventually for their Christian piety. They adopted the Gallo-Romance language of the Frankish land they settled, their becoming known as Norman, Normaund or Norman French. The Normans are noted both for their culture, such as their unique Romanesque architecture and musical traditions, and for their significant military accomplishments and their chief men were specially lavish through their desire of good report.
They were, moreover, a race skillful in flattery, given to the study of eloquence, so that the boys were orators. They were enduring of toil and cold whenever fortune laid it on them, given to hunting and hawking, delighting in the pleasure of horses, and of all the weapons and garb of war. The treaty offered Rollo and his men the French lands between the river Epte and the Atlantic coast in exchange for their protection against further Viking incursions. The area corresponded to the part of present-day Upper Normandy down to the river Seine. The territory was equivalent to the old province of Rouen. Before Rollos arrival, its populations did not differ from Picardy or the Île-de-France, the Norman language was forged by the adoption of the indigenous langue doïl branch of Romance by a Norse-speaking ruling class, and it developed into the regional language that survives today. The Normans thereafter adopted the growing feudal doctrines of the rest of France, the new Norman rulers were culturally and ethnically distinct from the old French aristocracy, most of whom traced their lineage to Franks of the Carolingian dynasty.
Most Norman knights remained poor and land-hungry, and by 1066 Normandy had been exporting fighting horsemen for more than a generation, many Normans of Italy and England eventually served as avid Crusaders under the Italo-Norman prince Bohemund I and the Anglo-Norman king Richard the Lion-Heart. Opportunistic bands of Normans successfully established a foothold in Southern Italy, probably as the result of returning pilgrims stories, the Normans entered Southern Italy as warriors in 1017 at the latest. In 999, according to Amatus of Montecassino, Norman pilgrims returning from Jerusalem called in at the port of Salerno when a Saracen attack occurred. The Normans fought so valiantly that Prince Guaimar III begged them to stay, the Hauteville family achieved princely rank by proclaiming prince Guaimar IV of Salerno Duke of Apulia and Calabria. He promptly awarded their elected leader, William Iron Arm, with the title of count in his capital of Melfi