Illustrated Catholic Family Annual – Charlemagne


Charlemagne (whose name is formed from combining the two Latin words “Carolus Magnus” – Charles the Great), son of Pepin, King of the Franks was born in the castle of Salzburg, in Bavaria, about the year 742. After the death of his father in 768, and of his only brother, Carloman in 771, he became the sovereign of all France and of nearly one-half of Germany. After several just and victorious wars against the Saxons, Saracens, and Lombards in Germany, Spain, and Italy, Charles who had everywhere protected religion and shown himself an enlightened and devoted son of the Church, was solemnly crowned Emperor of the West in Saint Peter’s at Rome, by Pope Leo III, on Christmas day, A.D. 800. He was then the legitimate and undisputed master of the greater part of Europe. He died, full of years and good works, in the mouth of January, A.D. 814, and was buried with extraordinary pomp, amidst the veneration of the faithful, which has continued ever since, in the cathedral at Aix-la-Chapelle. Charlemagne was the regenerator of Western Europe after the fall of the Roman Empire. He was the civilizer and instructor of many nations, adding to the fortunes of a successful conqueror the qualities of a wise legislator and Christian statesman. One of the most famous of English historians is obliged to acknowledge, although unfavorable to the genius and virtues of a Catholic ruler, that “the appellation of great has been often bestowed, and sometimes deserved, but Charlemagne is the only prince in whose favor the title has been indissolubly blended with the name.”

MLA Citation

  • “Charlemagne”. Illustrated Catholic Family Annual, 1880. CatholicSaints.Info. 14 January 2017. Web. 24 October 2020. <>