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Aachen

Aachen  

(town, palace) West central German town, known for its hot springs. Aachen’s significance is linked to Charlemagne, who created a Carolingian palace complex there, where he was buried. Successive ...
Abbo of Saint-Germain

Abbo of Saint-Germain  

(9th c.)A strange war correspondent, Abbo, a monk of the monastery of Saint-Germain-des-Prés, described the siege of Paris by the Vikings in 885–886. Having come from the west (Neustria) ...
ablutions

ablutions  

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Religion
1 The washing of fingers and chalice by the celebrant after Communion in the Eucharist. The ceremony became part of the Eucharistic rite in the 10th or 11th cent.; details have varied.2 In the RC ...
acrostic

acrostic  

A poem, word puzzle, or other composition in which certain letters in each line form a word or words. The word is recorded from the late 16th century, and comes via French from Greek akrostikhis, ...
Adalard of Corbie

Adalard of Corbie  

(751–826)A cousin of Charlemagne, Adalard was raised at court with his brother Wala. He retired to Corbie where, after a stay at Monte Cassino, he returned as abbot (780). ...
Adalbero of Laon

Adalbero of Laon  

(c.947–1030)Politically active bishop of Laon (r. 977–1030). Adalbero is notorious for betraying Charles of Lorraine, the last Carolingian claimant to the throne, whom he turned over to Hugh Capet ...
Adam and Eve

Adam and Eve  

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Religion
The first parents of the human race, whose story is told in the opening chapters of the book of Genesis. There is no doubt that until the nineteenth century Adam and Eve were held to be historical ...
Adrian I, pope

Adrian I, pope  

(died 795)A Roman, Adrian I was consecrated on 9 Feb 772 and died on Christmas day 795. His was certainly one of the most important pontificates, from a politico-religious ...
Aelius Donatus

Aelius Donatus  

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(4th century),Roman grammarian. The Ars Grammatica, containing his treatises on Latin grammar, was the sole textbook used in schools in the Middle Ages.
Alamanni

Alamanni  

[CP]A confederation of several Germanic tribes who amalgamated in the 3rd century ad. In c.ad 260 they conquered the Roman frontier lands between the Rhine and the Danube, and remained there, despite ...
Alia musica

Alia musica  

(early 10th century)Compendium of theoretical treatments applying Greek concepts of octave species and modes (from Boethius) to Carolingian church music, albeit with misinterpretations that would ...
Alps

Alps  

Of Celtic origin, the word “Alps” means “high summit”, “rock”, and designates the largest and highest of the European mountain ranges, extending in the form of an arc 1000 kilometres ...
Alsace

Alsace  

The territory between the Vosges Mountains, Rhine river, and Jura Mountains, known by the 7th century as ‘Alsace’. Roman military settlement in the area included a base at what would ...
altar

altar  

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Religion
The table in a Christian church at which the bread and wine are consecrated in communion services; a table or flat-topped block used as the focus for a religious ritual, especially for making ...
Amalarius of Metz

Amalarius of Metz  

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(died after 850)The Carolingian liturgist and theologian Amalarius of Metz was a pupil of Alcuin at Tours before being appointed archbishop of Trier in 811. During Agobard's exile (c.834), he was ...
Ambrosian chant

Ambrosian chant  

Liturgical song of the Ambrosian rite of Milan. Strophic ‘Ambrosian’ hymns (some by Ambrose) were widely influential. Some prose chants are related to eastern Greek troparia.PJT. Bailey, The ...
Ambrosian rite

Ambrosian rite  

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Religion
The rite used in the old archiepiscopal province of Milan, and one of the few non-Roman rites which survive in the RC Church. It takes its name from St Ambrose, Bp. of Milan, but there is no evidence ...
amelioratio terrae

amelioratio terrae  

Medieval term for land reclamation. An initial colonizing phase of settlement extension covered Carolingian Europe in the 8th and 9th centuries. The second wave swept almost all of Europe from ...
Aniane

Aniane  

Founded by Benedict of Aniane in 782 in the diocese of Montpellier, and endowed by Charlemagne, Aniane was one of the two ‘exemplary cloisters’ of the Carolingian monastic reform. Embroiled ...
Anjou

Anjou  

A former province of western France, on the Loire. It was an English possession from 1154, when it was inherited by Henry II as count of Anjou, until 1204, when it was lost to France by King John; it ...

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