I use the following points to emphasize what a huge shift this was in the Byzantine Empire: We also discuss what it meant that Irene ruled alone (without a husband, father, or son as co-ruler) from 797-802. En tant Public opinion now held that “he who reigns in Constantinople is always victorious,” which made usurpation not only criminal but, what was worse, foolish. Although that image is, I ask the students to imagine what Irene’s thoughts might have been when she received news of Charlemagne’s coronation. However, Charlemagne’s coronation caused significant tension between the two “Roman Empires,” tensions which Charlemagne hoped to alleviate by—get this—marrying Irene, and against all odds, she actually said yes! Le roi des Francs, au cours d’un voyage à Rome, avait été couronné Empereur des Romains, le 25 décembre 800, par le pape Léon III. During this time, Charlemagne was at war with the Saxons, and would later become the new king of the Franks. Like Rome, Byzantium had no law of succession, at least until the end of the ninth century. Then, through the use of a bride-show, Irene selected Maria of Amnia as Constantine's bride. If not, I have them work in pairs or small groups with each image. In this Eastern monarchy, even women might ascend the throne – a thing unknown in the West – and those such as Irene, Theodora and Zoë were popular.”8. The Greeks called her Erythro and sent a monk to educate her in Greek language and manners. 6 John Julius Norwich, Byzantium: The Early Centuries. Irene’s unprecedented position as an empress ruling in her own right was emphasized by the coincidental rise of the Carolingian Empire in western Europe, which rivaled Irene’s Byzantium in size and power. Irene went as far as to send an official to instruct the Frankish princess in Greek; however, Irene herself broke off the engagement in 787, against her son's wishes. She was very insecure in her position, which led her to become ruthless. Additionally, the students see that the building, as exotic as it looks, is essentially a pagan, Roman design (a basilica and a dome, inspired by Roman law courts and the massive dome of the Pantheon) reinforcing the idea that Byzantines were still Romans in many ways. The Original Odd Couple: Constantine and Irene–Lesson for Grades 9-12, 2. She negotiated a marriage between her son, Constantine, and Rotrude, a daughter of Charlemagne by his third wife, Hildegard. The union would have brought East and West together for the first time in centuries. I'm not really sure : Bevenent was playing one said against the other historically (not that it did bring them any luck) and in the ASB event of such union, it would probably like as sort of condominum between both spheres of the super-duper Carolingio-Byzantium behemoth. In the following year –, the tenth indiction – he dispatched ambassadors to gain. Quality summaries of books. Imperial wives often had to wait for this honour, which was sometimes bestowed after the successful delivery of a male child.” I will stop to ask: Is it significant that Maria did not receive this honor and Irene did, even before her marriage? So, she begins her sole rule in 797 with this event. Thesis is substantiated with adequate historical evidence from the sources found, Uses at least two sources, demonstrating understanding and analysis, Essay makes at least one or two relevant, direct comparisons between societies (Franks and Byzantines), Analyzes at least one reason for a similarity or a difference in a comparison, 1. The Byzantine influence that was felt in central Italy was lost. ‘A’ is for Affeccioun: Strategies for Teaching the History of Emotions in Medieval Studies, 2. In normal circumstances the only conceivable answer to that question would have been the Emperor at Constantinople; but the imperial throne was at this moment occupied by Irene. I give them a few minutes to write down what they think her reaction was. However, her overthrow prevented her marriage to Charlemagne. I then project onscreen for students a number of other icons from the time period (8th – 10th century) and ask students for descriptors and for their speculations about the symbolism. Irene of Hungary Komnenos (born House of Arpad) was born on month day 1088. It exacerbated the continued problem of the right of the emperor to intervene in religious disputes. In spite of the rumours that he was poisoned under her commands, Irene became Empress-Regent on behalf of her son and soon worked to have an alliance with Charlemagne by arranging a betrothal between his daughter and Constantine, but this would be later called off against his wishes. She is most remembered for her marriage to Charlemagne in 803, unifying the Franks and the Byzantines. It may not display this or other websites correctly. The couple were married in November 788. Or perhaps – since she was a woman – her personal opinions were of no consideration to the emperor when he chose a bride for his son. The second day’s lesson on iconoclasm can be omitted altogether for the sake of time, and the essays can be used alone, without the other writing prompts, although they are most effective when students have enough time to process the material over several days. In Einhard’s famous phrasing, “[H]e kept them close beside him at home until his death, saying that he could not stand to be parted from their company.”1. Skills: historical interpretation, synthesis, creating and supporting an historical argument, causation, patterns of continuity and change over time. In other words, Irene entered a foreign city that allowed no images in churches or homes, and yet within decades she had managed to call a Church council that would bring icons back in both worship and in private use. It was for the emperors of the Macedonian line ‘to give imperial branches of dynasty.’ Thenceforward it was more difficult to overthrow so firmly rooted a tree; an imperial family now existed, whose members were given the name of Porphyrogeniti, and it is from this period that we may trace an increasing emphasis on legitimacy …Even usurpers respected the lawful dynasty, and among the people there grew up an attachment – a loyalist devotion – to the ruling house. I think the decision to marry Charlemagne would cause Empress Irene a great deal of political trouble back home. I designed this four-part lesson as part of a larger unit on the early Middle Ages which questions the reasons why we have always perceived Charlemagne’s kingdom as the natural successor to the Roman Empire. But bearing the idea in mind, what if in 801 Irene had offered Charlemagne a proposal of marriage, with the idea in theory of reuniting the "Roman People" against an outside threat. Some students will argue in her favor that she was empress when her husband died, so there should be no question about her right to rule. Typically, I will write their comments on the board as each group discusses each source: “But the fall in 751 of Ravenna, the centre of the Byzantine exarchate in central Italy, and the inability of Constantine V to halt the Lombards because of his intensive military campaigns against the Bulgars and the Arabs, isolated the papacy. Constantine had some success on the battlefield, but also suffered some serious defeats which may have damaged his credibility. For Justinian’s reconquest of Rome, I suggest to students that for sixth-century residents of Constantinople, the memory of Rome’s fall to barbarian tribes would be roughly equivalent to our remembrance of World War II. From his grave? I have found that when the question is framed as which emperor is the rightful one, the students become quite passionate about arguing for their favored candidate. Was he thinking to make himself truly a Roman emperor by marrying the last Roman empress? The acceptance of icons profoundly changed subsequent religious art. Irène, épouse de Léon IV, a d'abord été régente durant la minorité de son fils Constantin VI. In 802, Irene was overthrown in a palace coup by Nikephoros. From this I would assume that they would not have children; but I cannot see the marriage … We usually begin by sharing research from the homework: what did the students discover about Irene? The idea of a single emperor was deep set, and this event marked more than anything else the split between Italy and Byzantium as well as that between the Latin and the Orthodox Churches. Charlemagne Carolingian, Duke of Bavaria, King of the Franks, King of the Lombards, Holy Roman Emperor, was born 2 April 747 in Herstal, Belgium to Pepin the Short (714-768) and Bertrada of Laon (720-783) and died 28 January 814 in Aachen, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany of unspecified causes. Her reign was beset by rebellions and wars. She negotiated a marriage between her son Constantine and Rotrude, a daughter of Charlemagne by his third wife Hildegard. In Einhard’s famous phrasing, “[H]e kept them close beside him at home until his death, saying that he could not stand to be parted from their company.”1. Who, in other words, was qualified to pass judgement on the Vicar of Christ? Irene of Athens (c.752-30 September 806), also known as Irene Sarantapechos, was the Byzantine Empress regnant from 797 to 806. While the marriage must have been celebrated in identical style, the young bride from Amnia was not raised to the higher status of empress. He proposed marriage to Empress Irene, which she consented. As with any primary or secondary source I provide them, I require them to look up words they do not recognize on their own. Did her Greek heritage pre-dispose her towards a love of images and icons? 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