Image: March scene from the “Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry”(The background contains the Château de Lusignan, a residence of Jean de Berry.)
The following text is taken from a interview with author James Kelley.(Entire Interview can be found at Gnosticmedia.org)
Interviewer, Jan Irvin of Gnosticmedia.com:
Why was it important for Charlemagne to keep the Christian and Roman west separate from the orthodox east?
Interviewee, James Kelley, Author of “Anatomyzing Divinity: Studies in Science, Esotericism, and Political Theology”:
I’m glad you asked that question. There is a theologian who influenced my early work, and he continues to influence me, named John Romanides—-his work is found at romanity.org.—-and it’s very interesting even for people who don’t like Christianity… I think it is an interesting view of history in the Middle Ages that he presents. One thing he says about Charlemagne is, he says look: Charlemagne was part of the Carolingnia family of Franks in the west (in Europe) and a hundred years before the Seventh Ecumenical Council; which is where there was the big conflict between those in the Christian east who were saying “Yes we should venerate icons of the holy images” and then there were others in the east that said, “We shouldn’t”. But what you had with Charlemagne was: he took a middle position on that—-in his national church council called the Council of Frankfurt—-he said “No, we should have icons, but we shouldn’t venerate them”. It was kind of a compromised position, and if you look at what happened just a hundred years before in Charlemagne’s lands there (in what was called Frankia at the time)… there were major uprisings of the non-Frankish peoples—-the people that we would call the peasants—-well…actually, they were just people that weren’t Franks. Because everyone who was in charge, who was a Lord or a Knight, they had blood ties(either perceived or real blood ties). It was the origin of being “blue blooded”: that you were a Frank and thus had the right to rule, to carry weapons, and to be in castles and all that stuff…and that all sounds a bit whacky so I encourage everyone to go to Romanide.org and also to read Joseph P. Farrell’s early work because he talks about the formation of Europe and the Frank’s role in that.
But the reason why Charlemagne wanted to keep the eastern Romans separated from the western Romans is because he was trying to pass himself off as a Roman Emperor. He was crowned Emperor of the Romans in 800 AD; but there already was a Roman Emperor in Constantinople, at the time. Actually it was an Empress…in 800 AD, Empress Irene. There was going to be a marriage between Charlemagne and one of the members of the royal family…actually I think it was a marriage between him and Empress Irene…but that fell through. And so you have a spurned Charlemagne who realizes what he can do is separate the Papal States and the Orthodox Romans in the west from those in the east. So it’s a bit of a divide-and-conquer mentality. And around the same time, Charlemagne had the word ‘Christendom’ inserted into all of the liturgical manuals because he was in control—-all the bishops were Franks; all the Roman bishops had been ousted in the six and seven hundreds, and replaced by Franks. So he had all the liturgical texts changed to say “Christendom is being prayed for”; Not the Roman Empire (or the Roman Emperor) which is what was said before.
Why all this Change? Because it was the embarrassing fact that he wasn’t a Roman Emperor—-there already was one in the east. So there’s a conscious geopolitical scheme here to say “No, I’m the real Roman Emperor and you’re all Europeans, you’re all in Christendom (which is Europe)—-and in the east, their just a bunch of Greek heretics over there…their not the real Romans. So it’s interesting—- because theology, geopolitics, and the formation of Europe; it all comes together in this really strange conspiracy theory sounding thing. But isn’t it wonderful when something sounds…
But isn’t that what history is…
… Just study history, it’s full of conspiracy. In fact, they didn’t even come up with the idea of adding the word ‘theory’ to the end of it until the 90’s…so they could take attention away from themselves, y’know?
…I think the important point to make is: what we have going on in the west (in the European west), under the Franks, is feudalism. Feudalism isn’t just a stage that all societies go through! Feudalism is a specific society construct—- where you have the Lords of the Manor; who have access to resources and weapons, who live in a fortified residence(a castle, which is what that is), and they have the technology and the means to subdue all the other peoples; which are mainly the former Romans citizens. These Roman citizens didn’t just go away when Rome fell in the west.
…You have all these Gallo Romans, these French-Roman peoples(they’re not Franks; they’re everyone but the Franks). They are subjected to ….basically, slavery. I say: why is it always called slavery, unless it is my European forebears that are at the receiving end of it. Then they’re serfs…Y’know, the Latin word ‘servus’ which means slave.
Well, if you want to get technical about it. We’re all slaves right now.
…but most people don’t want to recognize that fact.
…[what was had, at this time, was] a type of society where, simply: because I am a Frank and I have blue Frankish blood in my veins, I am entitled to rule every one else, and they[i.e. everyone else] are all lumped together… And they are called the ‘villains’: those who live in the VILLAGE. That is where ‘villain’ comes from; and interesting enough the word ‘Frank’ means ‘Free’, literally.
Let’s be Frank. Let’s be free. Let’s speak freely…got it.
And the whole term in the English language ‘enfranchise’: given your freedom… En-Frank-ise is what that term really is.
I think this stuff is just so important to politics these days…
Some further information that the reader might find useful:
(These definitions are taken from the Online Etymology Dictionary website found here: Link)
Serf: late 15c., “slave,” from M.Fr. serf, from L. servum (nom. servus) “slave”(see serve)Fallen from use in original sense by 18c. Meaning “lowest class of cultivators of the soil in continental European countries” is from 1610s. Use by modern writers with reference to medieval Europeans first recorded 1761 (contemporary Anglo-L. records used nativus, villanus or servus). Serfdom first attested 1850.
Villain: c.1300, “base or low-born rustic,” from Anglo-Fr. and O.Fr. villain, from M.L. villanus ”farmhand,” from L. villa ”country house” (see villa).
The most important phases of the sense development of this word may be summed up as follows: ‘inhabitant of a farm; peasant; churl, boor; clown; miser; knave, scoundrel.’ Today both Fr. vilain and Eng. villain are used only in a pejorative sense. [Klein]
Meaning “character in a novel, play, etc. whose evil motives or actions help drive the plot” is from 1822.
frank: c.1300, “free, liberal, generous,” from O.Fr. franc ”free (not servile), sincere, genuine, open, gracious; worthy” (12c.), from M.L. Franc ”a freeman, a Frank” (see Frank). The connection is that only Franks, as the conquering class, had the status of freemen. Sense of “outspoken” first recorded in English 1540s.