The blinkers of militarisation
Charles the Bald, Lothar I and the Vikings
in Early medieval militarisation
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Carolingian society was profoundly militarised, not only the aristocracy and royalty but also the Church. The west Frankish King Charles the Bald (840–77) has been harshly criticised by contemporaries and some modern historians for what is perceived as his lack of military success against the Viking incursions. It is the contention of this chapter that this judgement is misguided, and has been unconsciously shaped by the militarised mindset of the time. When these blinkers are removed and Charles’ reign re-examined, the king’s resourcefulness, ability and determination in effectively ridding his kingdom of the Scandinavians is revealed.

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