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Early Middle Ages

- The Roman-German Conflict -

- The Origins of Church Power -

- The Byzantine Empire -

- The Rise of the Franks -

- Charlemagne -

- New Invasions -

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When Romulus Augustulus was deposed in 476, he had no designated heir, and when Zeno, the Eastern emperor, was told that there was no immediate reason to appoint a successor, the suggestion seemed reasonable. In law, in theory, and in people’s hearts the empire was indivisible and unconquerable. Many emperors’ reigns had been short, many had ended violently, and the belligerent Germanic peoples had been a fact of Roman political life for more than a century. No one at the time could have known that Romulus Augustulus, who ironically bore the name of Rome’s legendary founder, was to be the last Roman emperor in the West and that an age had come to an end.

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