Dawn To Demise of Roman Empire: 5. Otto I Re-Establishes Holy Roman Empire
This is the fifth article in the series of Dawn To Demise of The Roman Empire. I recommend you to read all the article one by one. I will set up the links once I publish all the article. (Fourth article: Dawn To Demise of The Roman Empire: 4. The Demise of Rome 476 AD)
Charlemagne’s empire was inherited by his intended successor, Louis the Pious (778-840 AD). After Louis died, infighting among his sons caused the empire to collapse into pieces. This void was filled by the Catholic Church itself, which began to assert increasing political as well as spiritual power.
Europe, however, had begun to sink back into the Dark Ages. The disunity that proceeded Charlemagne’s brilliant ruled had returned. Both Italy and France was a morass of warring factions, but among the Germans, a new leader emerged. Henry I (876-936 AD), known as “The Fowler,” was a forceful leader who consolidated the German states, leaving to his son successor, Otto I (912-973 AD), a formidable power base.
Otto I sought to bring unity to the lands that had once comprised Charlemagne’s vast empire. Again, as it had been with Charlemagne, Otto’s authority sprang from the pope’s desire for a strong Northern Europe that would restore order in Italy. Pope John XII was at war with the Italian king Berengar and offered Otto the crown and title of Holy Roman Emperor if he would defeat Berengar and unite the peninsula. This accomplished, Otto I was crowned on February 2, 962 AD.
The idea of a Holy Roman Empire had been born with Charlemagne and now it was reborn with Otto I. So we can say that Otto I Re-Establishes Holy Roman. Charlemagne’s empire survived his death by only 27 years.