Discuss the political organization of the empire created by Charlemagne. How did he rule?
Charlemagne had an empire consisting of numerous ethnic and linguistic peoples spread over a large geographical area. Maintaining his rule over this empire required some creative touches; however, Charlemagne did not institute major innovations in the way he ruled. Rather, he adapted the pre-existing institutions of feudalism to suit his needs and make them more efficient for his empire. Many of these changes became standard in the way later European rulers governed throughout the middle ages.
Charlemagne remained the central source of power and authority in his realm. He had absolute power to make laws, reward allies, and punish opponents and dissenters. To manage all this, Charlemagne had a palatium, or traveling court of family members and supporters that followed him wherever he was in his kingdom. This court served as advisors and officials to carry out the affairs of state. He used these coveted positions in his court to reward allies and maintain their loyalty.
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