Royal Power Grows

Monarchs, Nobles, and the church

Nobles and the church had as much power as monarchs. The pope was more powerful than anybody else.

English Kings Strengthen Their Power

vikings, angles, Saxons invade and settle England. William of Normandy conquers England. William of Normandy set out to impose his control over the land. he granted fiefs to his barons. in 1154 an energetic a well educated king Henry the second, inherited the throne.He broadened the system of royal justice by expanding accepted customs into law.

Evolving Traditions of Government

King John was a clever, cruel, and untrustworthy ruler. He faced three powerful enemies during his reign king Phillip the 2nd of France, pope innocent the 3rd, and his own English nobles. In 1215 a group of rebellious barons cornered john and forced him to sign The Magna Carta. The Magna Carta was the great charter. Today we know this is the new process of law. The Magna Carta was the main basis for the right of Habeas Corpus. Habeas Corpus was the principle that no person can be held in prison without first being charged for a specific crime.

The Development Of the Parliment

During the 1200's the great council evolved into parliament, which later became England's legislature. As parliament acquired a larger role in government it helped unify England. In 1295 king Edward the 1st Summoned parliament to approve money for his wars in France.

Successful Monarchs in France

Unlike William the conqueror in England, monarchs in France did not rule over a united kingdom. The successors to Charlemagne had little power over a patchwork of french territories ruled by powerful nobles.

Phillip Augustus Extends French Power

In 1179 Phillip the 2nd became king of France. Instead of appointing nobles Phillip paid middle class officials who would owe their loyalty to him. Phillip also quadrupled royal land holdings, through trickery diplomacy and war. Before his death in 1223 Phillip had become the most powerful ruler in Europe.

Clashing With the Pope

Louis's grandsons, Philip 4th, ruthlessly extended royal power. He tried to collect new taxes from the clergy. Philip threatened to arrest any of the clergy who didn't pay. Troops tried to invade the popes home but the pope escaped, but he died soon after. Shortly after, in 1305, a french man was elected pope. four years later he moved the papal court to Avignon just outside the southern border of France. where french rulers could exercise more control over it eventually this led to more crises, when a new pope was elected in Rome where rival popes claimed to be true leader of the church.

Forming the Estates General

During this struggle with the pope Philip rallied french support by setting up the estates general in 1302 this body had representatives from all three estates or classes of french society: clergy nobles and townspeople.