|Eastern Roman Empire||Leo VI the Wise (866-912)||Aug. 29, 886||May 11, 912|
|Papacy||John IX (-900)||Jan. 898||Jan. 900|
900 In this cent. no city in Europe has a pop. over 400K. In Jan. Pope John IX (since 898) dies, and in May-June (Feb. 1?) Pope (#119) Benedict IV (-903) is elected. Are you ready for some football? On Feb. 4 after Zwentibold (b. 870) pisses-off the nobility by being too partial to the commoners, causing them to appeal to Louis III the Child (893-911), and Count Reginar I of Hainault kills him near modern-day Susteren, Louis III the Child is elected king of Germany (East Franks) and Lotharingia (until Sept. 911) by the magnates at Forchheim in N Bavaria; in this cent. the Carolingian empire is extinguished under the weight of Norse, Slavic, and Magyar invasions, and the German part degenerates into the stem (Ger. Stamm) (tribe) duchies of Franconia, Lorraine, Swabia, Bavaria, Saxony, and Frisia, with all but Frisia ruled by semi-royal tribal dukes. On June 17 two years after Charles the Simple makes him chancellor, Rheims archbishop (since 882) Fulk the Venerable (b. ?) is assassinated by Count Baldwin II of Flanders. On Oct. 12 after Arpad holds the first Hungarian parliamentary session with 40 other nobles on horseback, and the 200K-250K pop. Magyar Confederation moves to the fields of Pannonia (old base of the Huns), attacking Venice, Provence king (since 887) Louis III the Blind (880-928) (grandson and heir of HRE Louis II), who was invited into Italy by Adalbert II of Tuscany to help with the pesky Magyars, as well as inept king (since 888) Berengar (Berengarius) I (845-924) of Italy, whom he defeats and chases out of Pavia, is crowned with the iron crown of Lombardy on Oct. 12 in the Church of San Michele, going on to encastle his kingdom. Donald II dies in Forres in Moray in N Scotland, and his cousin Constantine (Constantinus) (Castantin) II Mac Aed (874-952) becomes king of Alba (Scotland), going on to extend his domain S to the rich farmland S of the Forth River; the royal city of Scone is first mentioned as the location of a royal council, and a monastery is built there to house the red sandstone Stone of Scone (Destiny) (pr. SKOON), AKA Jacob's Pillow, on which Scottish kings are crowned starting with Constantine II. Atenulf I the Great of Capua declares the indivisibility of the union of Capua and Benevento (until 981). Ya'qub al-Saffar's brother Amr, head of the Shiite Saffarids loses Khurasan to the Persian Sunni Samanids (who add the province to their Tansoxanian territories until 999), but retains control of Sistan. In this cent. Muslim Arabs set up the Sultanate of Mogadishu (Arab "Maqad Shah" = seat of the Shah) in the Horn of Africa in modern-day Somalia on the site of the ancient port city of Sarapion, becoming a trading powerhouse, esp. in gold, with its own currency. In this cent. the original wild and crazy guys, the Celts begin to dissolve into the British crowd? In this cent. England is divided into shires, with county courts in each. In this cent. the spiritual center of Judaism begins switching from Mesopotamia to Spain, where Muslim protection from Millennium Fever is a selling point. In this cent. the city of Timbuktu (Tombouctou) (Tuareg "Tin Abutut" = lady with the big navel) on the S edge of the Sahara Desert 10 mi. N of the main channel of the Niger River (modern-day pop. 54K) is founded by Tuareg leader Imashagan, along with the Sankore Madrasah Islamic univ. in 989, which becomes a major center of learning during the reign of Mansa Musa in 1307-32, reaching 10K pop. in the 13th cent. and 50K in the 16th cent.; in 1468 it is absorbed by the Songhai Empire; in 1591 it is occupied by a Moroccan army, who move their capital there from Gao; in 1612 the new ruling class called the Army establishes independence from Morocco; the French take over in 1893; in 1960 it becomes part of the Repub. of Mali. About this time Norwegian Viking leader Gunnbjorn Ulfsson sights icy ungreen mosquito-plagued Greenland, 200 mi. W of green not-so-icy Iceland, but it is soon forgotten? About this time the city of Oxford, England (modern-day pop. 170K/244K) is founded as a ford for oxen in the Thames River called Oxenforda, becoming a major military frontier town between the kingdoms of Mercia and Wessex and evolving into a center of learning and center of pop. of the county of Oxfordshire in SE England, with Oxford U. first mentioned in 1096; ; in 1191 it is chartered as a city, going on to become known as "the city of dreaming spires" (Matthew Arnold). This year is the traditional date for the founding of the S Kenyan coastal city of Mombasa (modern-day pop. 1.2M/2M) on Mombasa Island by pagan queen Mwana Mkisi; Arab geographer Al Idrisi mentions it in 1151; the first stone mosque is built about 1300 by Shehe Mvita. In this cent. the Vikings raid along the Mediterranean coast - and like they way they look without their shirts? In this cent. the Hungarians (Avars and Turkish Magyars), led by the Magyars settle in Hungary, reestablish their freedom from the Franks, create a political constitution and begin raiding west yearly until 950, going as far w as the Rhine River. In this cent. the Czechs assert their authority over all Bohemian tribes, and the Bohemian fortress of Wrotizlav (Wroclaw) (Vratislavia) (Wrotizlava) (Breslau) in Silesia, Prussia in SW Poland 185 mi. SW of Warsaw on the Oder River (modern-day pop. 638K/1.1M) is founded as a bishopric. In this cent. Lettish tribes settle in Latvia E of the Baltic Sea. In this cent. the monastery of Gaztelugatxe (Basque "craggy fort") on the Biscay coast of Spain is founded. In this cent. the town of Vilna (Vilno) (Vilnius) (Vilnyus) on the Neris River in Lithuania is founded. In this cent. the Basques found a whaling industry in the Bay of Biscay, hunting right whales from small open boats. In this decade Yemen secedes from the Arab caliphate, and the Zaid sect of Shiites founds the Rassite Dynasty of imams, which survives to modern times. In this cent. Ali ibn al-Hassan Shirazi of Persia founds the Kilwa Sultanate off modern-day Tanzania, extending its rule over the entire Swahili Coast. In this cent. the Mayans (Mayas) leave the lowlands of Mexico and emigrate to the Yucatan peninsula; the result of a drought? In this cent. the Toltec Civilization is founded in the Valley of Mexico (until 1200), with capital in Tula, N of the valley (45 mi. N of modern-day Mexico City) near obsidian mines; the city declines by 1200, and is revived by the Aztecs in the 15th cent. In this cent. the Thaton Kingdom (Thuwunnabumi) in Lower Burma is founded (ends 1057). In this cent. Aimar (Aymar) (Adhemar), a lt. of the duke of Aquitaine based in Bourbon Castle in the ancient Roman spa town of Aquae Borvonis in C France founds the House of Bourbon; the town later becomes the spa of Bourbon-L'Archambault, a favorite summer spot for Maurice Talleyrand et al. In this cent. the Schola Medica Salernitana (Medical School of Salerno) in Italy is founded. In this cent. written Spanish is first made in La Rioja, NC Spain by monks in the margins of Latin texts. About this time the Lingchi (death by a thousand cuts) form of executed is instituted in China, spreading to Vietnam; it is outlawed in 1905. Architecture: By this time Christians begin erecting bell towers. In this cent. the Cristo de la Luz Mosque is built in Toledo, Spain, a city divided into Muslim, Jewish, and Roman Catholic sections. In this cent. the Jaina Rock Temple in Ellora, India is built. Inventions: In this cent. farces make their first appearance in Europe. In this cent. the moldboard plow is invented in China. In this cent. Arab soldiers invent a niter-sulfur-copper flamethrower and a terra cotta-naphtha grenade. In this cent. the 2-person hand-cranked bass Organistrum is invented in N Spain, used in churches. Science: About this time Sridhara (870-930) discovers the power of the zero (suro) ("seed") ("circle") (the Sun divinity incarnate?) - are you the fat one in the family? Nonfiction: Anon., The Picatrix, AKA Gayat al-Hakim, Aim of the Sage, or Goal of the Wise; written in Arabic; in the 13th cent. it is trans. into Latin at the court of Alfonso X the Wise of Spain, and becomes a grimoire (magician's handbook). Anon., Senchus Fern Alban (fer n-Albann) (History of the Men of Scotland) is written in this cent., containing genealogies for the kings of Dal Riata along with a census. Anon., Sepher Yetzirah (Jewish Book of Creation) is written about this time. Bishop Asser, Life of Alfred the Great. Suidas, Suda (Souda) (Gr. "fortress"); encyclopedic lexicon with 30K entries written in this cent. Art: Anon., The Massacre of the Innocents (980-93); created for Archbishop Egbert of Trier. Music: In this cent. the part song in fourths, fifths, and octaves is developed, along with neumes in musical notation. About this time the anon. musical treatises Musica Enchiriadis and Scolica Enchiriadis are the earliest surviving examples of Polyphony. Births: Spanish king of Leon (931-51) Ramiro II (d. 951); son of Ordono II (873-924) and Elvira Menendez; brother of Alfonso IV; cousin of Alfonso Froilaz the Hunchback; husband of Adosinda Gutierrez and Urraca of Pamplona; father of Bermudo, Queen Theresa of Pamplona, Ordono III (925-56), Sancho I (932-66), and Elvira. Italian king (950-66) Berengar II of Ivrea (d. 966); son of Margrave Adalbert I of Ivrea (-924) and Gisela of Friuli, daughter of Berengar I of Italy; of Lombard descent; maternal grandson of Berengar I (845-924) and Bertila of Spoleto (860-915); husband (923-66) of Willa of Tuscany (911-70). German archbishop of Cologne (969-76) Gero (d. 976) in Saxony; son of Bilung Count Christian (-950) and Hidda (sister of Margrave Gero the Great); brother of Margrave Thietmar of Meissen. Icelandic poet-warrior baron Egil (Egill) Skallagrimsson (d. 983). Deaths: Lotharingian king (895-900) Zwentibold (b. 870) near Susteren (KIA).
901 On Mar. 1 Byzantine emperor Leo VI the Wise appoints his Italian-born friend Nicholas I Mystikos (Mysticus) (852-925) as ecumenical patriarch of Constantinople (until Feb. 907). Edward I the Elder (-924) takes the title of king of the Angles and Saxons. Louis III the Blind (880-928), son of Boso I of Provence is crowned HRE by Pope Benedict IV (until 905), appointing German nobleman Theophylact as military head of Rome before he leaves, who sets up permanent shop as Count Theophylact I of Tusculum (863-925), controlling election to the papacy and letting his former ho wife Theodora talk him into putting her lovers on the papal throne, bringing the wonderful artist-formerly-known-as era of the Papal Pornocracy (Rule of the Hos) (904-63) - welcome to The View? The Magyars raid Carinthia (S Austria), battling Bavarian forces, leading to the founding of the town of Sankt Veit an der Glan, future birthplace of chef Wolfgang Puck. The Saminid Dynasty in Persia based in Bukhara is founded. Nonfiction: King-Bishop Cormac mac Cuilennain of Cashal (Munster) (836-908), Cormac's Glossary, with etymologies over 1.4K irish words; first linguistic dictionary of a non-classical Euro language.
902 On Apr. 5 caliph (Oct. since 892) Al-Mu'tadid (b. 854) dies of poisoning, and his son by a Turkish slave girl Al-Muktafi bi-Allah (Abu Ahmad Ali ibn Ahmad al-Mu'tamid) (877-908) succeeds him as Abbasid caliph #17 (until Aug. 13, 908), becoming a favorite of the people after he abolishes his father's secret prisons in Baghdad and shows his generosity, going on to battle the Byzantines and pesky vegetarian "Greengrocer" Qarmathians (Carmathians from Al-Hasa in E Arabia, a new religious group that combine Shiite Islam with Persian mysticism. Berengar I defeats Louis III the Blind and forces him return to Provence and never come back to Italy. The Vikings under Ingimund are driven from Dublin by Leinster king Cerball mac Muirecain (-909) allied with Brega king Mael Finnia mac Flannacain into N Wales, where they attack Angelsey Island and are repulsed by Anarawd ap Rhodri. The Saracens conquer and destroy Taormina in Sicily. Deaths: Arab Abbasid caliph #16 (892-902) Al-Mu'tadid (b. 854) on Apr. 5 in Baghdad (poisoned).
903 In Aug. Pope (since 900) Benedict IV dies, and in Aug. Pope (#120) Leo V (-903) is elected, then is assassinated after ruling for 30 days in riotous Rome; Pope Christopher is elected in Sept. The Vikings invade Alba (Scotland), ransacking Dunkled, then overwinter in Fortriu (until 904). Qarmatian anti-Abbasid armies invade Syria and siege Damascus, after which Abbasid forces under Gen. Muhammad ibn Sulayman al-Katin score a crushing V over them in the Syrian desert. The Kurds of N Iraq revolt against the Arabs, causing the latter to conquer them and convert most of them to Islam, leaving the four big Kurdish principalities of Shaddadid (951-1174) in Armenia and Arran, Rawadid (955-1221) in Tabriz and Maragheh, the Hasanwayhid principality (959-1015) and Annazid (990-1117) in E Iraq, and the Marwanid principality (990-1096) in Diyarbakir. Atenulf I of Capua and Gregory IV of Naples defeat the Saracens, after which Atenulf pledges himself as a vassal of the Byzantines in the expectation of receiving military assistance, which never arrives. Zhu Wen (Quanzhong) (852-912), an ally of dead rebel leader Huang Chao (-884) takes over the Tang capital of Chang'an. Louis III the Child appoints Conradine Gebhard of Franconia (888-910) (count of Wetterau and Rheingau) as duke of Lotharingia. Bamberg in Germany is first mentioned as Babenberch Castle. Births: Persian prince and court astronomer Abd-al-rahman Bin Omar Bin Muhammad Bin Sahl Abu 'l-husain al-Sufi al Razi (d. 986); discovers the Andromeda galaxy, which he represents pictorally as a woman dropping her skirt in - I got this funny feeling that someone's watching me?
904 A lunar eclipse is recorded in Britain. In Jan. Pope (since 903) Christopher is invalidated, and on Jan. 29 Pope (#121) Sergius III (859-911) (a known pedophile, enjoying sex with underaged girls) is elected; his 15-y.-o. mistress Marozia (890-937) (daughter of Count Theophylact of Tusculum and Theodora) becomes the mother of Pope Paul XI, aunt of Pope John XIII, and grandmother of Benedict VI. On July 29 after they give up on attacking Constantinople, Salonika (Thessalonica) is surprise-attacked by Muslim pirates led by Leo of Tripoli, who sack it for a week and take 22K POWs, ransoming most of them later, becoming one of the greatest disasters of the cent. for the Byzantine Empire. On Sept. 22 Zhu Wen deposes Chinese emperor (since Apr. 20, 888) Tang Zhao Zong, and installs boy emperor Tang Zhao Xuan (Ai) (Li Zuo) (Li Zhu) (892-908) (son of Zhao Zong) as Tang emperor (#19) (last) on the Tang throne in Luoyang (until May 12, 907). The Abbasids under Gen. Muhammad ibn Sulayman al-Kabit invade Egypt and capture it from the Turkic Tulunids, ending their regime (founded 898) by next year and incorporating Syria and Egypt into the caliphate. The Vikings continue ransacking Scotland, virtually annihilating Strathearn, then heading S for York. The Russians attack Constantinople again. Nonfiction: Ibn Doreid (837-933), Manual of Genealogy and Etymology.
905 A comet is recorded in Britain. On July 21 after invading Italy again and being defeated by Berengar I, Louis III the Blind is er, blinded for reneging on his 902 oath, forced to relinquish his imperial and Italian crowns, and kicked out of Italy back to Provence, where he stumbles, er, stays this time, with Count Hugh of Arles (880-947) dominating Provence. After a coup sponsored by Count Galindo Aznarez II of Aragon desposes his father Garcia Jimenez, Sancho Garces (Garcés) I (860-925) (nephew of the Count of Ribagorza) becomes king of the Kingdom of Pamplona on both sides of the W Pyrenees on the S end of the Bay of Biscay in Spain (between Asturias on the W and Gascony on the E) (until 925), ending the line of Inigo I Iniguez Arista (founded 824); the capital and main city is Pamplona (Iruña) in the Basin of Pamplona linking the Pyrenees Mts. with the Ebro River Valley; the county of Navarre in NC Spain becomes a kingdom after Sancho Garces I proclaims himself king and ends his alliance with the Emirate of Cordoba, going on to expand S along the Ega River to the Ebro River incl. Najera and Calahorra, shrinking the domains of the Banu Qasi family. The Khitan (Qitan) Empire of Mongolians from S Manchuria is founded in NE China. The Saracens destroy the library of the Novalesa Monastery in Italy (6.5K vols.). Poetry: Anon., Kokinshu; an official anthology of Japanese poetry during the past 150 years. Births: Byzantine emperor (913-59) Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus (d. 959) on Sept. 2 in Constantinople; illegitimate son of Leo VI and Zoe Karbonopsina (885-920); nephew of Alexander. Fench oount #2 of Anjou (942-60) Fulk II (the Good) (le Bon) (d. 958); son of Fulk I the Red (870-942) and Roscilla de Loches.
906 On Jan. 9 after he fails to sire a son, Byzantine emperor Leo VI the er, Wise marries his mistress Zoe (Gr. "life") Karbonopsina (Carbonopsina) (Gr. "coal black eyes") (885-920) (same as Ochi Chornie in Russian) after she had given birth to Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus on Sept. 2, which is uncanonical in Eastern Orthodoxy, plus Patriarch Nicholas I Mystikos after baptizing Constantine VII forbade him from marrying a 4th time, causing Leo VI to recruit priest Thomas to perform the marriage and threaten to remove Nicholas, who defrocks Thomas but flops and recognizes the marriage, which doesn't stop Leo VI from replacing him in 907 after apologizing to Christ for marrying too many women. The Magyars (Hungarians) conquer the Slavic kingdom of Moravia. Abdallah ibn Hamdan (-929), son of Hamdan ibn Hamdun is appointed Hamdanid gov. of Mosul in N Iraq. The Shiite Qarmati (Qarmatians) of Kufa, who consider the annual Hajj to Mecca a superstition ambush a pilgrim caravan returning from Mecca and massacre 2K pilgrims. A country that was getting thin is getting fat? Northern invaders end the Tang Dynasty (begun 618), beginning the Five Dynasties Period in China (ends 960); the dynasties (all short-lived military regimes) are Later Liang (907-23), Later Tang (923-34), Later Jin (936-47), Later Han (947-51), and Later Zhou (951-60), ruling the Yellow River Basin; there are also 10 kingdoms in C and S China: Wu, Nantang, Wuyue, Chu, Min, Nanhan, Qianshu, Houshu, Jingnan, and Beiban. Births: Arab Qarmatian ruler (923-44) (Muslim Shiite) Abu Tahir Sulayman Al-Jannabi (d. 944).
907 By this year Edward the Elder has subdued the Danes S of the Humber, as well as the Northumbrian Danes; the land S of the Humber is divided into shires, each with its own earl. In Feb. Byzantine emperor Leo VI the Wise fires patriarch (since Mar. 901) Nicholas I Mystikos and replaces him with Euthymius I Syncellus (834-917), who becomes ecumenical patriarch of Constantinople (until May 912). On June 1 Zhu Wen (Zhu Quanzhong) (852-912) founds the Later Liang Dynasty (ends 923) after seizing the throne in Kaifeng in his own name, later calling himself Emperor Tai Zu (until July 18, 912); about this time foot binding (lotus feet) catches on? On Nov. 3 Tang gen. Wang Chien (Jian) (Guangtu) (847-918) seizes control of the Sichuan and Chongqing region, establishing a centralized monarchy in China under the title of Emperor Gazu of (Former) Shut (until July 11, 918). Retired Bulgarian khan Boris I dies in a monastery. Prince Arpad dies, and his son Prince Zoltan (Zoltán) (Zolta) (Zoltas) (Zsolt) (880-946) becomes grand prince #3 of the Magyars (until 946), going on to destroy the Slavic Moravian Empire and begin raiding into Germany and Italy, pushing into Venetia, Lombardy, Bavaria, Thuringia, Saxony, the Rhineland, and finally Lorraine and Burgundy by 925. Arnulf the Bad (der Bose) (-937) becomes duke of Bavaria (until 937), going on to reorganize defenses against the Hungarian invaders and tried to establish himself as a king in his residence in Regensburg, interfering with Ottonian king Henry I until acknowleding his rule in 921 with reservrations. Varangian Rus leader Oleg of Kiev extorts a 1-sided trade agreement with the Byzantines, followed by a 2nd more lavish one in 911, making the Byzantines give them free supplies and baths coming and going, with the Byzantines requiring them to enter Constantinople in groups of 50 unarmed, live in the St. Mamas quarter, and be on commercial business bringing merchandise and refrain from violence. Architecture: The first castle is built in Totnes, England at the head of the estuary of the Dart River in Devon. Births: Bohemian Premsyl duke (921-35) (patron saint of Czech.) (St.) Wenceslas (Vaclav) ("glorious garland") I (the Good) (d. 935) in Prague; son of Vratislaus I (888-921) (a Christian) and Drahomira of Stodor (877-937) (a pagan); brother of Boleslaus I the Cruel (915-67); raised by his Christian grandmother Ludmila, wife of Borivoy I. Arab Abbasid caliph #20 (934-40) (Sunni Muslim) Al-Radi (d. 940). Deaths: Magyar grand prince #2 (895-907) Arpad (b. 845).
908 On Aug. 13 Abbasid caliph (since 902) al-Muktafi (b. 877) dies after sending a banner recognizing the accession of a new Samanid prince in Khorasan, and his 13-y.-o. brother Al-Muqtadir (Arab. "mighty in Allah") (895-932) succeeds him as Abbasid caliph (until Oct. 31, 932), living for pleasure while letting the Iraqi irrigation system go to pot? - a real Mouseketeer? On Sept. 13 after one of his lt.'s horses stumbles and throws him, which is considered a bad omen, causing many desertions from his army, renowned scholar, abbot, archbishop and king of Munster (since 902) Cormac mac Cuilennain (Cuilennáin) (b. ?) is KIA by Irish forces under high king (877-) Flann Sinna (Flann of the Shannon) (847-916) and his son-in-law Cerball mac Muirecain (-909) (king of Leinster) in the Battle of Bellaghmoon (Belach Mughna) near Castledermont in S County Kildare, Leinster, falling from his horse and breaking his neck, and after beheading his head is taken to Flann Sinna, who calls it an "evil deed" and kisses and carries it around him 3x to show respect. Fulk I the Red (le Roux) (870-942) becomes the first count of Anjou, France (until 942). This year marks the end of the Classic Period in Mayan History. Births: Arab Abbasid caliph #21 (940-4) (Sunni Muslim) Al-Muttaqi (d. 968). Deaths: Irish king of Munster (since 902) Cormac mac Cuilennain (Cuilennáin) (b. ?) in Leinster (KIA).
909 On Apr. 30 William I "the Pious", Duke of Aquitaine, Count of Auvergne (875-918) founds the Benedictine Cluny (Gael. "from the meadow") Abbey in Burgundy on the site of his hunting lodge, consecrated to St. Peter and St. Paul, led by abbot #1 (until 925) (St.) Berno of Baume (850-927) under direct papal jurisdiction, but with the pope's hands tied with respect to the power of transferring title or appointing an abbot without the consent of the monks, going on to become the #1 monastery in Europe within a cent. by benefitting from the lack of oversight from anarchic Rome, choosing abbots of high social backgrounds, and allowing affiliates to accept royal patrons, with the abbots becoming internat. statesmen, reaching its max influence from the mid-10th cent. through the 12th cent.; the first female members were admitted in the 11th cent.; Berno institutes the Benedictine Cluniac Reforms; for awhile the duke forgets to remove his hunting dogs to make room for the monks. The combined forces of Wessex and Mercia launch a 5-week exploratory attack against the Northumbrian Danes at Lindsey, successfully capturing the relics of St. Oswald of Northumbria. Alfonso III the Great of Spain moves his seat of govt. to Ociedo, but only lasts a year after surving a conspiracy by his sons Garcia, Ordono, Gonzalo, Fruela, and Ramiro backed by Garcia's father-in-law that causes him to briefly flee to Boiges. Tahert is taken by the Fatimids, ending the Rustamid Dynasty in N Africa (begun 761); the Fatimid Dynasty in Kairouan, N Africa is founded; the Khariji survivors flee to the S oasis of Wargala, the oasis of Mzab, the island of Jerba, and Jabal Nafusa; the Fatimids also end the Aghlabid Dynasty in N Africa (begun 800), which attempted to defend itself using an African slave army. Cadell ap Rhodri (b. 854) dies, and his son Hywel Dda ("Howell the Good") (880-950) (who worked together to conquer the SW Welsh kingdom of Dyfed in 904-5, with Hywel becoming king) becomes king of Seisyllwg in S Wales, going on to become sole king in 920 and establish Deheubarth ("right-hand part" = the South) (ends 1197) before conquering most of Wales from Prestatyn to Pembroke and become known as "king of the Britons", promulgating the Laws of Hywel (Cyfraith Hywel).
910 On June 22 Duke Gebhard of Lotharingia (b. 888) is KIA near Augsburg +n a battle against the Magyars, and his son Reginar I Longneck (850-915) becomes duke #2 of Lorraine (until 915). In June Atenulf I dies, and his son Landulf I (AKA Antipater) (-943) becomes prince of Capua and Benevento, signing a treaty next July 2 with Duke Gregory IV of Naples as part of a gen. alliance with Christian rulers of S Italy (Mezzogiorno). On Aug. 5 after the pissed-off Northumbrian Vikings retaliate for last year's raid by sailing up the Severn River into the heart of Mercia, ravaging and plundering, giving Edward I the Elder of Wessex time to block their escape route at Bridgnorth with a combined Wessex-Mecian army and force them into an open battle, he decisively defeats them at the Battle of Tettenhall (Wednesfield?) in Staffordshire, Mercia, killing Viking kings Eowils and Halfdan, plus 10 war leaders; Edward's brother-in-law Aethelred of Mercia dies next year of wounds from the battle, which becomes the last major Viking army to ravage England; meanwhile the Dublin Vikings under Ragnall (Ragnvald) (Rognvald), fresh from ransacking Scotland beat Edward to the punch and retake Jorvik (York), setting up a dynasty. On Dec. 20 king (since May 27, 866) Alfonso III the Great (b. 848) dies in Zamora after building the Church of Santo Adriano de Tunon (Tuñón) in Tunon, Asturias on Jan. 24, 891), and his kingdom is divided among his three sons by Jimena of Pamplona, with eldest son (by Jimena of Pamplona) Garcia I (871-914) becoming king of the new macho-sounding Kingdom of Leon (León) (Sp. "lion"), 2nd son Ordono (Ordoño) II (873-924) becoming king of the new Kingdom of Galicia (modern-day Portugal) (until 924) (also Leon after Garcia I dies in 914), and youngest son Fruela (Froila) II of Asturias (875-925) becoming king of tried-true Asturias based in Oviedo (until 925), which is still considered to have primacy, taking on the job of consolidating the region later called Castile and keeping its counts in check. Byzantine emperor Leo VI pays tribute to the Magyars. Ubayd Allah, founder of the Isma'ili Shiite dynasty, claiming descent from the son of the seventh imam Isma'il (-760) declares himself caliph in Qayrawan with the support of the Kutama Berbers, while the Qarmati Sevener Shiites violently oppose his pretentions; he fails to inculcate his faith to the pop. of the region. A plaque thanking caliph al-Muqtadir for a land grant in Jerusalem is discovered in 2010. Music: Hucbaldus becomes the first person to write a musical score. Births: German queen Aedgyth (Edith) of England (d. 946); daughter of Edward the Elder of England (870-924); wife (929-46) of Otto I of Germany (912-73); her bones are found bundled in silk in Magdeburg Cathedral in Germany, and identified in 2010. Danish king (958-86) Harald I Bluetooth (Blaatand) Gormsson (d. 987); son of Gorm the Old Hardeknudsson (860-958) and Thyra; father of Sweyn Forkbeard (960-1014). Deaths: Spanish king of Asturias (866-910) Alfonso III the Great (b. 848) on Dec. 20 in Zamora. German duke of Lotharingia (903-10) Gebhard of Lahngau (b. 888) on June 22 near Augsburg (KIA), and Reginar I Longneck (850-915) becomes duke #2 of Lorraine (until 915). Sufi mystic Abu al-Qasim al-Junayd (b. ?); master of the Baghdad school of Sober (Sahw) Sufi Mysticism, which split from the Drunken (Sukr) Sufi School of Bayazid al-Bistami (-874), seeking to integrate the divine into the soul of the world without claiming personal union with it.
911 On Apr. 14 Pope (since 904) Sergius III dies, and in June Pope (#122) Anastasius III (-913) is elected. In the spring Norse Viking chief Rollo (Hrolf) (Rolf) Ragnvaldsson (the Ganger) (the Walker) (Wend-a-Foot) (845-930) (who once explored the E coast of North Am. as far S as Conn.?) sails down the Seine River with a raiding and settling party, and sieges Chartres, then prepares to ransack gay Paris, until whimpy king of the West Franks (Charles III, you are no Charlemagne?) Charles III the Simple (879-929) (probably hearing that the Vikings can be bought off, like Eli Wallach in the 1960 film "The Magnificent Seven", and saying something like, "Rollo, please do not sack gay Paree, just take this box of treasure, and I'll make you a duke and give you my beautiful daughter, the hottest French poontang in the land, and you can move into the bad side of France and have the left bank of the Seine, plus a little of the right bank, where you can have some Lebensraum and act as bouncers for any other Vikings, how about it, guy"?) cops out, and in the fall signs the Piece, er, Treaty of Saint-Clair-sur-Epte (Fr. "sint clair" = "clear well or pool"), granting them land on the left bank of the Seine River (the bad side of France?), with Rouen (on the right bank) (named after him, which is convenient, because it was originally the Gallic city of Ratumacos) as their new capital, on the condition that they defend the land, receive Christian baptism, and do homage to Charles as their overlord; Charles also sweetens the pot by giving Rollo his daughter (sister?) (all made up?) Gisela of France in marriage to cement the deal; when Rollo's proxy goes to perform the rite of allegiance by kissing the king's foot, the rude Viking stands erect, lifts the royal foot to his mouth and topples Charles over backward, causing Rollo's men to have a good laugh?; Rollo founds the French duchy of Normandy (Northmen Duchy - get it?), becoming duke #1 (until 927), and is baptized under the name Robert, becoming Duke Robert I; the Norsemen acquire the French language and culture (which they proceed to inject with Norse words and turn into their own dialect), learn to ride horses, build forts and siege machinery, and continue their raids on Brittany; Charles III's act is so unpopular with his barons that they start calling him Charles the Simple, and later depose and imprison him for it; On Sept. 20/24 Louis III the Child (b. 893) dies, ending the East Frankish line of the Carolingians; on Nov. 10 to avoid accepting a West Frankish ruler, the German magnates elect Conrad I (890-918), duke of Franconia, who becomes the first elected king of the dying Carolingian Empire (until Dec. 23, 918), fighting Magyar raids and ducal rebellions in Saxony, Bavaria, and Swabia. Aethelred of Mercia dies from his wounds from the Battle of Tettenhall, and his wife (since 887) (eldest daughter of Alfred the Great) Aethelflaed (Ethelfleda) (872-918) becomes ruler of Mercia ("Lady of the Mercians"), ruling with leather balls from her newly fortified capital at Stafford (until June 12, 918). Wilfred II Borrell dies, and his younger brother Sunifred II (-950) (count of Urgell) becomes count of Barcelona, Girona, and Ausona (until 947), deciding to go on the offensive against the pesky Moors to the S. Births: Italian queen consort Willa of Tuscany (d. 970); daughter of Margrave Boso of Tuscany and Willa of Burgundy; wife of Berengar II of Italy; niece of King Hugh of Italy; mother of Adalbert (932-75), Guy, Conrad, and Rozala of Italy. Deaths: Arabic rationalist scholar Ibn al-Rawandi (b. 827). East Frankish king (900-11) Louis III the Child (b. 893) on Sept. 20 (Sept. 24?) in Frankfurt am Main.
912 On May 11 Byzantine emperor (since 886) Leo VI the Wise (b. 866) dies, leaving his younger brother Alexander III (870-913) as sole emperor, becoming Roman Byzantine emperor #134 (until June 6, 913), becoming the first Byzantine emperor to use the term "autocrator" on his coinage, immediately dismissing most of Leo VI's advisors incl. Adm. Himerios and Patriarch Euthymios and reinstating Patriarch Nicholas Mystikos (until May 15, 925), going on to become known for laziness, drunkenness, and lechery, and making sacrifices to a golden boar in the Hippodrome to cure his impotence; his 7-y.-o. nephew Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus (905-59), son of Leo VI and his 4th wife Zoe Karbonopsina also claims the throne, causing him to lock Zoe in a nunnery; his nickname "born of porphyry" is propaganda to advertise how he was born in the Purple Room of the imperial palace, reserved for royal heirs (which legitimizes him even though a 4th marriage is uncanonical and makes him illegitimate otherwise); Euthymios doesn't give up, launching a war with Mystikos - sounds like Madonna's brother? On June 17 a solar eclipse is recorded in Britain. On Oct. 15 'Abdullah ibn Muhammad (b. 844) dies after allowing local warlords to seize control throughout his kingdom (incl. Seville by Ibrahim ben al-Hajjaj), and his grandson Abd-ar-Rahman III (889-961) becomes Umayyad caliph #8 (until 961) of cool Cordoba (Córdoba) (Cordova) in Andalusia (Andalucia), S Spain ("the ornament of the world" - Roswitha of Gandersheim) (pop. 500K, incl. 1.6K mosques, 900 public baths, 80.5K shops, and a 400K-vol. library), assuming the title of Amir al-Mu'minin to assert Islamic supremacy over the Abbasid caliphs of Baghdad, and going on to pacify his realm, centralize the govt. admin., beef up the navy (most powerful in the Mediterranean), and introduce the cultivation of rice, sugar cane, oranges, lemons, grapefruits, eggplants, and carrots, using field irrigation and crop rotation to create a green rev.; he practices religious tolerance, and institutes crystal and paper manufacture, learning and the arts, even the Indian game of chess; he earmarks equal parts of his revenue for govt., new bldgs., and hoarding, turning Cordoba into the military-industrial complex of Muslim Spain, as well as the most cultured city in Europe; the happy Jews set up shop there, eventually led by diplomat-scholar Hasdai Ibn Shaprut (915-70) and grammarian Menahem ben Sharuk (910-70), causing Cordoba to eclipse Babylon as the center of Jewish learning; after falling in love with 13-y.-o. Christian court slave boy St. Pelagius of Cordoba, who refuses to do the wild thing (and/or convert to Islam), the caliph has him tortured and dismembered - the plus and minuses of a land without Jeezus? On Nov. 30 Henry the Fowler becomes duke of Saxony. Edward the Elder takes possession of London and Oxford (50 mi. WNW of London at the confluence of the Cherwell and Isis Rivers, a tributary of the Thames), and annexes the Thames River Valley, then launches an offensive to take Jorvik (York) from the pesky Vikings. Sunifred II of Barcelona attacks the Moorish wali of Lerida, and his army is defeated in the Tarrega Valley. Prince Oleg dies, and his son Prince Igor I (-945) becomes Varangian ruler of Kiev (until 945); he and his mentor Grand Prince Oleg sail with a large army towards Constantinople, raiding the villages along the Bosporus and obtaining a treaty giving Russian merchants privileges along with shiploads of bribes for their "druzhina" (friends). The city of Caen (modern-day pop. 108K) becomes the W capital of Normandy; William the Conqueror is buried there in 1087. The Church of the Resurrection in Alexandria, Egypt is burned down by Muslims. Science: Just as the Muslim Kingdom of Cordoba promises a Renaissance, Reason and Science go into the Ashari Can in the Muslim World for the next millennium? Basra-born Arab Sunni Muslim theologian Abu al-Hasan al-Ashari (Ash'ari) breaks with Mutazalite teacher Abu 'Ali Muhammad al-Jubbai'i (-915) and the liberal Aristotelian Mutazilite School, and founds the fundamentalist Neoplatonist Ashari (Ash'ari) (Kalam) School of Islam, which rejects freewill and the rationality of God, and becomes dominant in Islam, later leading to terrorists like Osama bin Laden who claim that because God is pure will and power, and above reason, there is no barrier to mandatory violence? Births: Italian Roman patrician Alberic II (d. 954); son of Marozia (890-937) and Hugh of Italy (886-948). German king (936-73) and HRE (962-73) Otto (Otho) I (the Great) (d. 973) on Nov. 23; son of HRE Henry I the Fowler (876-936) and Mathilda of Ringelheim (895-968); brother of Duke Henry I of Bavaria (919-55) and Archbishop Bruno I of Cologne (925-65). Roman Byzantine emperor #138 (963-9) Nicephorus (Nicephoros) (Nikephoros) II Phocas (Phokas) (d. 969). Deaths: Swiss poet-hymn writer Notker Balbulus (b. 840) on Apr. 6. Chinese Later Liang emperor (907-12) Tai Zu (b. 852) on July 18. Byzantine emperor (886-912) Leo VI the Wise (b. 866) on May 11.
913 On June 6 after provoking a war with Simeon I of Bulgaria by refusing to send tribute on his accession, Byzantine emperor Alexander III (b. 870) dies of exhaustion after a game of polo, leaving 8-y.-o. Constantine VII the Purple Room Kid as sole possessor of the purple under a 7-man regency led by Constantinople Patriarch (901-6, 912-925) Nicholas I Mystikos; meanwhile Simeon I of Bulgaria invades Thrace and Macedonia, but fails to take Constantinople, and in Aug. Mystikos negotiates a peace, crowning Simeon I emperor of the Bulgarians in a makeshift ceremony, with Simeon trying to dress it up with presents to young emperor Constantine VII along with promises to marry one of his daughters to him, actually plotting to take the Byzantine crown for himself. In June-Aug. Pope (since 911) Anastasius III dies, and in Aug. Lando of Sabina, son of Taino is elected Pope (#123) Lando (-914), becoming the last pope not to adopt a name used by a predecessor (until ?) - the original Lando Calrissian? On Dec. 2 Abd-ar-Rahman III conquers rebel Seville after it allies with pesky anti-Umayyad rebel Omar ben Hafsun (850-918) (of Visigoth descent?). Edward the Elder recaptures Essex from the Danes. The Magyars raid Saxony, Thuringia, and Swabia. Armenian King Smbat I is captured by the Amir of Azerbaijan. The Shiite Fatimids unsuccessfully raid Morocco (until 915), beginning a long losing struggle against the Sunnis and Sufis (ends 973). Architecture: Alfred the Great's daughter Ethelfleda erects the great earthen mound of Warwick Castle. Births: Italian Jewish physician Shabbathai ben Abraham (AKA Donnolo) (d. 970) near Otranto; captured by the Muslims, he studies Arabic medicine in Palermo, Sicily, then returns to Italy to practice. Deaths: Persian Muslim geographer and Abbasid spy director Ibn Khordadbeh (b. 820). Byzantine emperor (912-3) Alexander III (b. 1870) on June 6.
914 In Mar. Pope (since 913) Lando dies, and in Mar. archbishop John of Ravenna is elected Pope (#124) John X (-928) after his babe Theodora, ruler of Rome has him transferred and talks her hubby Count Theophylact I of Tusculum into it - reversing the usual roles when sleeping one's way to the top? In Mar. with support from magistros John Eladas (-914), Leo VI's widow Zoe Karbonopsina overthrows and replaces patriarch Nicholas I Mystikos as leader of the regents, removing the rest and ruling alone, then revoking the peace agreement with Simeon, provoking a new war. On Aug. 2 Canterbury archbishop (since 890) Plegmund dies, and Wells bishop Athelm (an uncle of Dunstan?) becomes Canterbury archbishop #20 (until Jan. 8, 926). After Patriarch Nicholas Mystikos makes peace with Simeon I of Bulgaria and recognizes him as Bulgarian emperor (an unpopular move), Zoe seizes power in Constantinople, pissing Simeon off and causing him to make war and inavde Macedonia, Thessaly and Albania, and capture Adrianople while the Byzantine army is busy in the east. Sunifred II of Barcelona counterattacks the Moorish wali of Lerida and pushes him back, repopulating the county of Penedes. Smbat I dies in captivity, and his son Ashot II Yerkat (the Iron) (-929) becomes Christian king of Armenia (until 920), visiting Constantinople to receive aid from Constantine VII, then returning to crush pesky harassing Sajid Muslim emir of Azerbaijan (since 901) Yusuf ibn Abi'l Saj (-928). Abd-ar-Rahman III campaigns in the Rayya Mts. near Malaga, obtaining the surrender of most of the Christian castles after promising mild treatment. Garcia I (b. 871) dies without heirs after fortifying the Duero River and repopulating Roa, Osma, Clunia, and San Esteban de Gormaz, expanding his kingdom to the E (W of Aragon and Navarre) and constructing many castles, which eventually turns into the new kingdom of Castile (Castilla) (Sp. "the castled part") (later divided into Old Castile on the N and New Castile on the S), and his kingdom passes to his brother Ordono II (until 924). Abdallah ibn Hamdan becomes gov. of Baghdad. Large Viking fleets return to Ireland and found Waterford (ON "Vedrafjoror" = windy fjord) in the SE (Munster) (modern-day pop. 50K), becoming the oldest Irish city with a Norse name - because it almost sounds English? Landulf I of Capua and Benevento gets the Abbey of Monte Cassino transferred from Teano to Capua, with his man John as the abbot, whom he sends to Constantinople next year to renew the bonds of allegiance set up by his daddy. Nonfiction: Anon., Life of St. Winwaloe. Deaths: Armenian Bagratuni king #2 (b. 850) Smbat I (b. 850) in Yernjak. Spanish king of Leon (910-14) Garcia I (b. 871) in Zamora.
915 On May 28 Egypt after is invaded from Tunafishia, er, Tunisia by Fatimid armies under Abul Qasim, they retreat to Raqqada after being defeated in Alexandria by an Abbasid army with Turkish archers. In June after getting fed-up with their raids, the Battle of Garigliano near Minturno (modern-day Lazio) in WC Italy (ancient city of Minturnae) on the Garigliano River sees the Christian League of Mezzogiorno (S Italy), formed and led personally by Pope John X, incl. Landulf I of Benevento and Capua, Guaimar II of Salerno, John I and his son Docibilis of Gaeta, Gregory IV and his son John of Naples, plus forces of Italian king (since 888) Berengar I from Spoleto and the Marche led by Duke Alberic I of Spoleto and Camerino, plus Byzantine forces from Calabria and Apulia under Bari strategos Nicholas Picingli siege the pesky Muslim fort, push them to the nearby hills until they run out of food, and capture or kill them all as they make a run for the coast to escape to Sicily; Count Gilbert of the Maasgau's son Reginar I Longneck (b. 850) dies. in Dec. big hero Berengar (Berengarius) I of Italy (845-924) is crowned HRE by Pope John X (until Apr. 7, 924). and his son Gilbert (Giselbert) (890-939) becomes duke #3 of Lotharingia (until 939). The Vikings occupy and expand the 6th cent. monastic settlement (founded by St. Finbarr) of Cork (Gael. "corcach" = marsh) on the Lee River in Munster, SW Ireland (modern-day pop. 125K/208K), turning it into a trading port, with its harbor becoming one of the largest natural harbors on Earth by navigational area; the city is granted a charter by Prince John in 1185. Byzantine troops defeat an Arab Muslim invasion of Armenia and negotiate a peace, freeing the Byzantines to campaign against the Bulgarians, who have raided deep into Thrace and captured Adrianople. Arabic-speaking Egyptian-born Jewish rabbi Saadia Gaon (Saadia ben Joseph al-Fayyumi) (882-942) leaves Egypt for Babylonia, setting up a Jewish Mental Ashcan School that clones the arguments of Abu al-Hasan al-Ashari to smother Jewish philosophy and skepticism, writing Emunoth ve-Deoth (Beliefs and Opinions) (933), the first systematic attempt to combine Jewish theology and Greek philosophy, based on the rules of the Muslim Mu'tazilla rationalistic dogmatists, founding the School of Jewish Kalam, modeled on the Islamic version, which disses Aristotle and claims that the Bible is part of Jehovah's essence and therefore was not created. Architecture: The Abbey Church of Cluny in France is consecrated. Births: French duke of Acquitaine (959-63) William III (Towhead) (d. 963) in Poitiers; son of Ebalus Manzer (870-935) and Emilienne. Arab poet #1 Abul Tayyeb al-Mutanabi (d. 965). Persian Buyid emir #1 of Iraq (945-67) (Shiite Muslim) Ahmad ibn Buya Mu'izz al-Dawla (Arab. "fortifier of the dynasty") (d. 967) in Daylam; Islam convert father; brother of Rukn al-Dawla (898-976). Bohemian duke (935-67) Boleslaus (Boleslav) I (the Cruel) (d. 967) (d. 972?); son of Vratislaus I and Drahomira; brother of Wenceslaus I (907-356). Jewish physician-diplomat-scholar (in Cordoba, Spain) Hasdai Ibn Shaprut (d. 970) in Jaen. Deaths: French duke of Lorraine (910-15) Reginar I Longneck (b. 850). German-born French monk St. Tuotilo (b. 850) in St. Gall. Chinese painter Ching Hao (b. 855).
916 In June the kingdom of Italy leads the attack against the Muslims, finally expelling them from mainland Italy by the end of the year. Another large Viking fleet arrives in Waterford, Ireland. Anarawd ap Rhodri dies, and his son Idwal (Iudgual) (Jothwel) (Judwalum) Foel (the Bald) ap Anarawd (-942) becomes king of Gwynedd (until 942), being forced to acknowledge Athelstan of England as overlord. The Synod of Hohenaltheim convenes at Hohenaltheim near Noerdlingen, with papal delegate Bishop Petrus of Orte presiding. Yelu Abaoji (872-926) declares himself emperor of the Mongolian Khitans in NE China, founding the Liao Dynasty (ends 1124). The Petersburg Codex of the Latter Prophets is written, becoming one of the oldest copies of the Old Testament to survive to modern times. Births: Syrian ruler Sayf al-Dawla (Ali ibn Abul-Hayja Abdallah ibn Hamdan ibn al-Harith Sayf al-Dawla al-Taghlibi) (d. 967) on June 22; founder of the Arab Hamdanid Dynasty of Aleppo. Deaths: Bulgarian scholar St. Clement of Ohrid (b. 840) on July 27 in Ohrid (modern-day Macedonia).
917 A comet is recorded in Britain. On Aug. 20 after rhe Patzinaks are incited (bribed) by Byzantine empress Zoe Karbonopsina to invade and occupy Bulgarian Wallachia to slow Simeon I down, complete with transportation by the imperial free, which just makes him madder, sending two small armies to deal with them, his 60K-man main army kicks Byzantine Greek butt under gens. John Bos and Leo Phocas the Elder (Zoe's favorite) at the Third Battle of Anchialus (Achelous) (Anchialos) (708, 763) near Pomorie on the Bulgarian Black Sea Coast, killing 60K of 62K Byzantines, 75 years later Byzantine historian Paulus Deakon observes tens of thousands of skeletons there; meanwhile after fleeing back to Constantinople with the Bulgarians in pursuit, and being defeated again outside the city, white-as-a-sheet Byzantine empress Zoe Karbonopsina warns the Bulgarians against attacking the Queen City of Constantinople because their "commander in chief" Virgin Mary will destroy him, and proposes a peace treaty, which is accepted, and Simeon enters the city in triumph and is crowned as "tsar of all Bulgarians and Greeks" (2nd time), forcing the Byzantines to acknowledge equality of the two empires; he also demands that his daughter be betrothed to Zoe's son Constantine, which pisses her off, causing her to refuse and ally with Serbia and Hungary against him. The Magyars raid S Germany and Alsace. The Battle of Confey (Cenn Fuait) in Leixlip (10 mi. from Dublin) sees Irish forces under Leinster king Augaire mac Ailella defeated the Norse Vikings under king Sitric (Sigtrygg) Caech (Gael) (Gale) "the Blind"), who is KIA, after which the Vikings recapture Dublin. The Danes in East Anglia are defeated, and Saxons take back control; Danish-held Mercia falls to the combined efforts of King Edward the Elder and Aethelflaed. The Battle of San Esteban de Gormaz on the border of Castile and Leon is a V for Ordono II of Leon and Sancho Garces I of Navarre over Cordoba emir Abd-ar-Rahman III, allowing them to take Arnedo and Calahorra next year, causing him to organize a revenge tour called the Campaign of Muez in 920 against the County of Castile along the Duero River, which is Leon's S line of defense.
918 On July 6 duke (since 893) Aquitaine William I the Pious (b. 875) dies in Brioude childless, and his nephew (son of his sister Adelinda) William II the Young(er) succeeds as duke of Aquitaine and count of Auvergne (until Dec. 12, 926). In Aug. after the Bulgarians defeat the Serbs, Gen. Romanus leads a coup, deposes empress Zoe and confines her to the Monastery of St. Euphemia-in-Petrum, then resumes the purple himself. Aethelflaed captures Derby in Mercia from the Danes, then defeats them at Leicester, causing the Danes of York to offer her their allegiance as protection against the Norwegians of Ireland; too bad, after invading Wales she dies in Tamworth, and is buried in Gloucester, a city she had rebuilt from Roman ruins; her daughter Aelfwynn succeeds as ruler of Mercia, proving that Anglo-Saxons let rule "fall to the spindle side"; too bad, her uncle Edward I the Elder takes her captive and sticks her in a nunnery, and Mercia becomes part of the kingdom of Wessex; meanwhile King Ragnall of York pushes N and settles colonists between the Tees and Wear Rivers in Northumbria, causing King Ealdred to flee to the court of Constantine II of Alba, who uses it as an excuse to invade S to the Tyne River, fighting Ragnall at Corbridge and bringing the country N of the Tyne under Scottish control, then deciding to back York against the pesky Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Wessex. Odo (Eudes) dies, and his eldest son Raymond II (-924) becomes count of Toulouse, Nimes and Albi (until 924). Conrad I dies after nominating his strongest foe Duke Henry of Saxony as his successor. Ordono II of Leon takes Arnedo and Calahorra from Cordoba. Kyong Myong Wang dies, and Wang Kon (Geon) becomes king of Koguryo in Korea, changing his name to Taejo (T'aejo) I (877-943), and renaming it Koryo (Goryeo), eventually reunifying Korea (ends 1392), starting the tradition of granting surnames, growing to 300 by 2000, with the most common being Kim, Lee, and Park. Baghdad appoints a dir. of hospitals. Deaths: British Anglo-Saxon female Mercian monarch (911-18) Aethelflaed (Ethelfleda) (b. 872) on June 12 in Tamworth, Staffordshire. French duke of Aquitaine (893-918) William I the Pious (b. 875) on July 6 in Brioude.
919 On Mar. 25 after her crushing defeats by the Bulgarians weakens her grip on power, poorly-educated but military-savvy Armenian Adm. Romanos (Romanus) I Lecapenus (Lecapenos) (Lekapenos) (870-948) (whose father guardsman Theophylaktos "the Unbreakable" Romanos was born in Lakape) seizes Boukoleon Palace and removes Zoe Karbonopsina from power and puts her in a convent, then in Apr. marries his daughter (by Theodora) Helena Lekapene (Lecapena) (910-961) to Byzantine emperor Constantine VII, takes the title of Caesar on Sept. 24 along with the title "father of the emperor", and on Dec. 7 is crowned senior emperor, becoming Roman Byzantine emperor #135 (until 944), really ruling alone; Romanos I promotes his sons Christopher Lekapenos (Lecapenus) (eldest), Stephen Lekapenos (Lecapenus) (-963) (middle), and Constantine Lekapenos (Lecapenus) (youngest) to co-emperors; meanwhile the Byzantines extend their empire to the Euphrates and Tigris Rivers - just imagine, Saddam Hussein will one day rule here too? On May 24 Saxon duke (since Nov 30, 912) Henry the Fowler (876-936) of Saxony is elected king Henry I of East Francia, becoming its first non-Frankish king, founding the Saxon (Ottonian) Dynasty, a new line of Saxon emperors (ends 1024); he is called the Fowler because the messengers announcing his election find him hawking; cool to the Church, he avoids coronation by ecclesiastics; by his wife Matilda he fathers three sons, Otto I (the Great) (912-73), Duke Henry I of Bavaria (919-55), and Archbishop (St.) Bruno I the Great of Cologne (925-65), and two daughters, Gerberga (who later marries Louis IV of France), and Hedwig (who later marries Duke Hugh the Great and has son Hugh Capet of France) - the original German couch potato? On Sept. 14 Niall Glundrub and 5-12 other chieftains (the cream of the Ui Neill) fall to the Dublin-based Vikings of the Ui Imair (Ivar Dynasty) under Sitric (Sihtric) Caech (Cáech) (Sigtrygg Gále) (-927) at the Battle of Islandbridge (Ath Cliath) near Islandbridge, County Dublin. Births: Spanish Jimenez king #2 of Pamplona (925-70) Garcia Sanchez I (d. 970); son of Sancho I (860-925) and Toda Aznarez (885-971) (aunt of Cordoba caliph Abd-ar-Rahman III); father of Sancho II Garces Abarca (936-94). Bavarian duke (948-55) Henry I (d. 955) in Nordhausen, Thuringia; 2nd son of Henry the Fowler (876-936) and St. Matilda (895-968); brother of Otto I (912-73).
920 On July 26 after emir Abad-ar-Rahman III of Cordoba recovers Osma and San Esteban de Gormaz from Leon, he invades Navarre and defeats Sancho Garces I of Navarre and Ordono II of Leon at the Battle of Valdejunquera, and takes the bishops of Tui and Salamanca captive; he has so much booty that he decides to leave Pamplona without crushing it, allowing Sancho Garces I to team with Bernard I of Ribagorza and Amrus ibn Muhammed (son of Muhammed al Tawil) and take Monzon, joining Basse-Navarre to his dominions and extending them to Najera; meanwhile Ordono II blames his D to the failure of the counts of Castile to come at his call, causing him to have them killed at Tejares, which causes Navarre to seize La Rioja and annex Najera and Viguera. Vratislav I dies, and (St.) Wenceslaus (Vaclav) I (the Good) (907-35) succeeds him as duke of Bohemia, with his pagan mother Drahomira of Stodor (the Arrogant) (877-937) as regent, having his grandmother-nanny Ludmilla arrogantly murdered. King Ragnall of York acknowledges South Saxon suzerainty, and Constantine II of Alba plays power broker, making a treaty with Alfred the Great's son Edward the Elder to allow the latter to attack Northumbria. The Fatimids unsuccessfully raid Morocco for a 2nd time (first 913-5). The kingdom of Deheubarth in SW Wales is founded by the merger of Seisyllwg and Dyfed by Hywel Dda. In this decade a missionary priest named Gabriel is sent from the Byzantine empire to convert the magnificent Magyars. Architecture: In this decade Archbishop Herve of Rheims builds the Fortress of Coucy-le-Chateau-Auffrique in Piccardy, becoming the home of the Lords of Coucy, starting with Aubrey (Alberic) of Coucy, who is appointed earl of Northumbria by William the Conqueror in 1080. Inventions: Stay busy, stay beautiful, no sweat? Since Jeezy didn't come back, maybe it's time to figure out how to sweat a living out of the ground more efficiently? About this time the Horse Collar comes into use in Europe, permitting horses to replace oxen, increasing food production; the Horseshoe permits all-terrain and all-weather horse use. Births: French West Frankish king (936-54) Louis IV d'Outremer (Transmarinus) (d. 954) on Sept. 10 in Laon; son of Charles III the Simple of the West Franks. Bohemian duke (967-99) Boleslaus (Boleslav) II (the Pious) (d. 999); son of Boleslaus I (-967) and Biagota. Greek Byzantine monk Athanasios of Trebizond (Athanasius the Athonite) (d. 1003) (AKA Abraham) in Trebizond; feast day: July 5. Deaths: Hindu scholar Sankara Acharya (b. 789); leaves Commentaries on the Upanishads, elaborating the monistic Advaita Vedanta. Byzantine empress (906-12) Zoe Karbonopsina (b. 885) in Constantinople; dies in the St. Euphemia Convent.
921 On Dec. 19 a lunar eclipse is recorded in Britain. Henry I the Fowler forms an alliance with Charles III the Simple. Arnulf the Bad finally acknowledge the rule of Ottonian king Henry I, giving him a free hand to campaign against Premyslid duke Wenceslaus of Bohemia. Edward the Elder conquers the Danish center of Huntingdonshire (Hunts) in EC England, and establishes a fort at the mouth of the Clwyd (Clyde) River in W Scotland. Duke (since 915) Vratislaus I (b. 888) dies, and his son "Good king" (Christian) Prince (St.) Wenceslaus (Wenceslas) (Vaclav) I (the Good) (907-35), grandson of Borivoy I, who was educated by his Christian grandmother St. Ludmilla becomes duke of the Premysl Dynasty (pr. shesh-MEE-zel) in Bohemia after his "bad" anti-Christian pagan mother Drahomira of Stodor (the Arrogant) (877-937) is deposed, plotting a comeback with his brother Boleslaus (Boleslav) I the Cruel (915-67); the Bohemians under Wenceslaus embrace Christianity. The White City of al-Mahdiyya (modern-day Mahdia) on the coast of Tunisia S of Monastir and SE of Sousse in N Africa is founded as the Fatimid capital of Ifriqiya by Caliph Abdallah al-Mahdi. Births: English king #9 (939-46) Edmund (Eadmund) I (the Elder) (the Just) (the Deed-Doer) (the Magnificent) (d. 946); son of Edward the Elder (870-924); brother of Eadred (-955); half-brother of Athelstan (895-939). Deaths: Bohemian duke (915-21) Vratislaus I (b. 888) on Feb. 13 in Prague.
922 Robert I (866-923), count of Paris (brother of Odo) and duke of West Francia (between the Seine and Loire) leads a rebellion against Charles III the Simple of France and his favorite Hagano, supported by his sons-in-law Count Herbert of Vermandois and Duke Rudolf of Burgundy, and drives Charles into Lorraine, then is crowned anti-king of the West Franks by the nobles on June 29 in Rheims. A revolt of Italian nobles against Berengar I is led by French king Robert I's son-in-law Raoul (Rudolph) (Rudolf) (Rodolphe) (Radulf) (Ralph) II (880-936) (duke of Upper Burgundy since 912), whom they elect king of Italy at Pavia, beginning a civil war (ends 926), starting with a defeat of Berengar I at Piacenza. The Volga Bulgars are converted to Islam by Ahman ibn Fadlan. The city of Dresden in Germany is founded as a Slavonic settlement (modern-day pop. 543K). The town of Goslar on the NW slopes of the Harz Mts. in Lower Saxony, Germany (modern-day pop. 50K) is founded after a knight named Ramm ties a horse to a tree and it digs up some silver, causing the hill to be called Rammelsberg and the town to be named for his wife; it later become the site of HRE Henry II's imperial palace. Arab traveler Ahmad ibn Fadlan, member of an embassy of the Abbasid caliph of Baghdad to the king of the Bolva Bulgars describes pagan Rus (Volga Viking) sacrifices for trading missions, along with a ship burial. Births: German Salian duke of Lorraine (944-55) Conrad the Red (d. 955); son of Count Werner of Speyergau and ? (sister of Conrad I); husband (947-) of Liutgard, daughter of Otto I and Eadgyth; father of Otto of Worms (-1004); great-grandfather of HRE Conrad II (990-1039). Polish Piast king (960-92) Mieszko I (d. 992) (b. 930?) (b. 940?); husband (965-) of Doubravka of Bohemia (940-77); father of Boleslav I the Brave (967-1025); the first historic ruler of Poland? Tunisian Muslim Maliki scholar Abu Muhammad Abdullah ibn Abi Zayd al-Qayrawani (d. 996) in Al-Qayrawan. Deaths: Muslim Sufi mystic poet Husayn al-Hallaj (b. 858) in Baghdad; executed for heresy for claiming divinity and contacts with anti-Abbasid Isma'ili Shiite groups.
923 The winter of 922-3 sees a great frost in England that freezes the Thames River hard enough for wheeled traffic to cross for 13 weeks. On June 15 after Charles III the Simple regroups and returns with an army, uppity West Frankish king Robert I is KIA in the bloody Battle of Soissons (in single combat with Charles?), leaving his son Duke Hugh the Great (-956) as the king of West France, although too young to rule; Charles III the Simple is then defeated and imprisoned, and Raoul (Rudolph) (Rudolf) (Rodolphe) (Radulf) (Ralph) II (880-936) is elected king of the West Franks (until Jan. 15, 936) by the nobles, and crowned on July 13 at Saint-Medard de Soissons; Charles III's wife takes their son Louis IV to England for safety; Raoul's wife Emma of France (894-934) (daughter of Robert I) goes on to become a manly woman who leads the army. Lorraine is restored to the German kingdom of Henry I and unified into the Duchy of Lorraine, which becomes a spiritual and intellectual center. The Qarmati under new leader Abu Tahir Sulayman Al-Jannabi (906-44) raid Basra, followed by Kufa in 927, defeating an Abbasid army. Li Cun Xu declares himself king in Liang (Leyang), beginning the Later Tang Dynasty (ends 934). Births: English king #10 (946-55) Eadred (Edred) (Aedred) (d. 955) in Wessex; son of Edward the Elder (870-924) and 3rd wife Eadgifu; brother of Edmund I (921-46). Islamic polymath scholar Levi Ibn al-Tabban (d. 981) in N Africa. Deaths: Persian scholar Muhammad al-Tabari (b. 839); leaves The History of the Prophets and Kings (covering from Creation to 915), and Exegesis of the Quran. Persian physician Rhazes (b. 860); leaves Kitah al-Mansuri, Kitah al-Hawi (Comprehensive Book), Treatise on the Smallpox and Measles, and The Spiritual Physick of Rhazes. French king (922-3) Robert I (b. 866) on June 15.
924 On Apr. 7 HRE Berengar I (b. 845) is assassinated at the instigation of Raoul (Rudolf) II, who rules Italy (until 926) and Upper Burgundy, residing alternately in both kingdoms; end of the Holy Roman Empire until 962; meanwhile Berengar I's maternal grandson Berengar II of Ivrea (912-66) (a Lombard) vies for the throne, which remains vacant for 38 years (until 962). On July 17 Alfred the Great's heir Edward the Elder (b. 869) dies in Farndon-on-Dee in Cheshire while leading his army against a Welsh-Mercian rebellion after allegedly receiving the submission of Constantine II of Scotland (later used by English kings as justification for their claims to Scotland), and his sons Athelstan (Ethelstan) (the Glorious) (895-939), Edmund I (921-46), and Eadred (Edred) (923-55) survive him, becoming English kings in turn, with Athelstan gloriously going first (until 939), becoming the the first to receive the Saxon title of honor of thane, from which the word "captain" (chief thane) later evolves (Lat. "caput" = chief); during Athelstan's reign Freemasonry comes to England (via the Planta ducal family of Brittany?). King (since 910) Ordono II (b. 873) dies, and his eldest surviving brother Fruela II of Asturias (-925) becomes king of Leon (until July 925), assassinating Gebuldo and Aresindo (sons of Olmundo who claim descent from Wittiza) and exiling Olmundo's son Bishop Frunimio of Leon, alienating the nobility. Arnold the Bad of Bavaria invades the kingdom of Italy in an attempt to obtain the Iron Crown of Lombardy for his son Eberhard, but gives up next year. Raymond II dies, and Raymond Pons (-950) becomes ruler of Toulouse (until 950). Abd-ar-Rahman III sacks the capital of Sancho I of Pamplona, going on to push Ramiro II of Leon back to Burgos by 934. The Magyars raid Pavia in N Italy, and defeat German forces near the Lech River, causing them to agree to a truce and pay tribute (until 933). Duke Robert (Rollo) of Normandy acquires the Bessin (middle Normandy), along with main town Bayeux. Architecture: Sancho Garces I of Pamplona founds the Convent of Albelda as a thanksgiving offering for his battle Vs. Births: English prelate and kingmaker archbishop of Canterbury (960-88) (St.) Dunstan (d. 988) near Glastonbury; educated by Irish pilgrims; feast day: May 19. Deaths: Italian HRE (915-24) Berengar I of Friuli (b. 845) on Apr. 7 in Verona (murdered); never won a battle in 40 years of campaigning? English king (899-924) Edward the Elder (b. 869) on July 17 in Farndon-on-Dee, Cheshire.
925 In July king (since 910) Fruela II (b. 875) dies of leprosy, and his son Alfonso Froilaz (the Hunchback) (-926) succeeds, but the sons of Ordono II (Sancho I Ordonez, Alfonso IV, and Ramiro II) make a comeback and depose him, and he flees to become king of Galicia (Portugal) (until 926), while they split the rest up, with Alfonso IV (the Monk) (890-933) becoming king of Leon and Asturias (until 931), and Sancho I Ordonez (895-929) taking Froilaz down and becoming king of Galicia next year (until 929). On Dec. 11 king (since 905) Sancho Garces I (b. 860) dies, and since his 6-y.-o. son Garcia Sanchez I (919-70) is too young, his brother Jimeno II Garces (-931) becomes king of Pamplona (until 931). Henry I conquers Lorraine from the Magyars, pushing them into Burgundy, beginning a fortification of the Elbe and Weser Valleys (Saxony and Thuringia), incl. palisading of towns, villas, and monasteries, and the establishment of garrisons which grow into towns incl. Naumburg and Quedlinburg. Athelstan (Aethelstan) (Ethelstan) (OE "noble stone") (895-939) is crowned Saxon king of Wessex at Kingston (Surrey), king #8 of all England, and first king of a unified England (until Oct. 27, 939) in All-Saints Church; on Aug. 10 a Viking army attempts to break the Saxon position in Essex at the Siege of Maldon, which is saved by a relief force, allowing the Saxons to advance N to York, although Saxon leader Byrhtnoth is KIA. Simeon I proclaims himself emperor (tsar) of the Romans and Bulgarians (Byzantine emperor), and gets the pope to recognize him, despite the Greek emperor throwing a hissy fit; the Bulgarian Church finally separates from both Rome and Constantinople. Duke (since 910) Tomislav (-928) becomes king of Croatia (until 928), accepting his crown from the pope, and ruling over the territory as far S as Montenegro, except for the Byzantine-controlled coastal towns, allying with the Byzantines against the Bulgarians, expanding into the Duchy of Pannonia while fighting with the Hungarians. Nonfiction: The Aleppo Codex, the earliest surviving ms. of the Hebrew scriptures is made this year in Palestine by Shlomo Ben Boya'a of Tiberias, and ed. by Aaron Ben-Asher, becoming the oldest mss. of the Hebrew Bible to survive to modern times; it is given to the Jewish Karaite community in Jerusalem in 1040-1050, is held for ransom by Crusaders during the First Crusade in 1099, ends up in Cairo, where it is consulted by 12th cent. scholar Maimondes, then ends up in Aleppo, Syria in the late 14th cent.; in 1947 anti-Jewish riots cause it to disappear until Jan. 1958, when it is smuggled into Israel in a washing machine by Syrian Jew Murad Faham and presented to the govt., with 40% (196 of 487 pages) incl. nearly all of the Torah missing, triggering a worldwide search. Plays: The Easter play begins as the Dialogue of the Three Maries and the Angels, performed in European churches on Easter morning. Poetry: Ekkehard of St. Gallen (Gall's) writes the epic poem Walter of Aquitaine (Waltherius), inspired by German legends. Births: Spanish king of Leon (951-6) Ordono (Ordoño) III (d. 956); so of Ramiro II and Adosinda Gutierrez. German archbishop of Cologne (953-65) (St.) Bruno (OG "brown-skinned") I (the Great) (d. 965)in May; brother of Otto I (912-73) and Duke Henry I of Bavaria (919-55); feast day: Oct. 11. German Saxon historian Widukind of Corvey (d. 974). Roman Byzantine emperor #139 (969-76) John I Tzimiskes (Tzimisces) (Zimisces) (d. 976). Bavarian duchess Judith (d. 985); eldest daughter of Arnulf the Bad of Bavaria (-937) and Judith of Friuli; wife of Henry I of Bavaria (919-55). French king of Burgundy (937-93) Conrad I (the Peaceful) (d. 993); son of Rudolph II (-937) and Bertha of Swabia (907-66). Deaths: Greek patriarch of Constantinople (901-7, 912-25) Nicholas Mysticus (b. 852). Persian Muslim philosopher-physician Muhammad al-Razi (b. 854) in Rayy; dies in poverty after becoming the first to use mercurial ointment, animal gut for sutures, and plaster of Paris for casts, pioneering opthalmology and founding pediatrics, leaving 131 books, incl. the 20-vol. Kitab al-Hawi (Liber Continens), containing a pharmacopeia, listing 50 methods of contraception; Treatise on Smallpox and Measles, the first accurate study of infectious diseases, and first to diagnose the difference between smallpox and measles; Kitab al-Mansuri (Liber Almansoris) (9 vols.); vol. 9 "Nonus Almansoris" is popular in Europe until the 16th cent. Spanish king of Pamplona (905-25) Sancho Garces I (b. 860) on Dec. 11 in Resa.
926 On Jan. 8 Athelm dies, and Wells bishop Wulfhelm (-941) becomes Canterbury archbishop #21 (until Feb. 12, 941). The Bulgars under Simeon I conquer and devastate Serbia. The Italian nobles turn against Raoul (Rudolph II, and invite Hugh of Arles (Provence) (Vienne) (886-947) of Lower Burgundy (Provence) to become king of Italy (until 948), causing Raoul to gallop back to Upper Burgundy for protection, leaving Hugh a free hand to move on in. Athelstan drives Guthfrith (Gothfrith) (Godfrey), regent of king Sihtric (Sitric) of Deira (-927) out of Northumbria and annexes his realm; the kings of Wales, Strathcylide, and Scotland allegedly submit to him; Sihtric acknowledges suzerainty. An independent Bulgarian patriarchate is formed, with Leontius of Preslav as patriarch. The Idrisid Shiite Dynasty in Morocco (founded 789) is ended by the Fatimids. The Korean kingdom of Parhae in Manchuria (founded 713) is conquered by the Mongolian Khitan, who later found the Liao dynasty. The British kingdom of Damnovia in Cornwall (set up after the Saxon conquest) falls to the king of Wessex, and the Saxons gain control of it until the 1066 Norman Conquest. By this year the Frankish kingdom has paid thirteen danegelds, seven of which total 39.7K lbs. of silver - oh mother tell your children not to do what I have done, spend my life in sin and misery in the House of the Rising Hun? Births: Italian king (948-50) Lothair II of Arles (d. 950); son of Hugh of Provence and German princess Alda (Hilda); husband (947-) of St. Adelaide; father of Emma, wife of Emma (948-). Japanese emperor #62 (946-67) Murakami (Nariakira) (d. 967) on June 2; 14th son of Daigo (885-930).
927 On May 27 Bulgarian tsar (since 893) Simeon I (b. 864) dies, and his weak pious son Peter I (-970) becomes tsar (don't say khan) of the Bulgarian First Empire (until 969), while Byzantine Emperor Romanus I Lecapenus, whose granddaughter he is married to asserts his authority to keep him in the Orthodox family and give up all that talk about being emperor of the Romans; meanwhile Peter has his hands full with pesky Magyars and Patzinaks? Sihtric of Deira dies, and his Norse-Gael son Olaf Sihtricsson (Sitricson) (the Red) (927-81) (AKA Amlaib Cuaran) becomes king of Norwegian Northumbria (York); King Athelstan of Wessex, who is married to one of Olaf's sisters claims the kingship, conquers York and expels Olaf along with his regent Guthfrith (Gothfrith) (Godfrey), bringing all of Anglo-Saxon England under Wessex control; meanwhile Constantine II of Scotland backs Guthfrith as king. The city of Perpignan (Perpiniano, Pirpinianum, Perpenya) (modern-day pop. 118K/305K) in Septimania in SE France is first mentioned as part of the County of Roussillon, going on to become the capital; in 1172 Count Girard II bequeaths it to the counts of Barcelona, beoming a partly self-governing commune in 1197, and capital of the new Kingdom of Majorca in 1276, launching a golden age and becoming a center for the manufacture of cloth, leather, gold, and other luxury crafts; in 1344 it again becomes part of the County of Barcelona, only to lose half its pop. a few years later to the Black Death; in 1463 Louis IX of France captures and occupies it, leading to a violent uprising in 1473; in 1493 Charles VIII of France restores it to Ferdinand II of Aragon; in Sept. 1642 the French recapture it; on Nov. 7, 1659 the Treaty of the Pyrenees formally cedes it back to France. Abbot Odo of Cluny establishes a code of disciple for Benedictines. Architecture: Rila Monastery (Monastery of St. John of Rila) on the Rilska River Valley in the NW Rila Mts. 70 mi. S of Sofia is founded by St. Ivan Rilski (John of Rila) (876-946), the first Bulgarian hermit. Births: Norse pagan-to-Christian-convert king of Jorvik (941-4, 949-52) and Dublin (945-47, 952-80) Olaf Cuaran ("sandal") (Amlaib mac Sitric) (d. 981). French count of Rennes (958-92) and duke of Brittany (990-2) Conan I (d. 992); son of Judicael Berengar, brother-in-law of William I Longsword of Normandy. Deaths: French abbot #1 of Cluny (910-25) St. Berno (b. 850) on Jan. 13 in Cluny. Bulgarian tsar (893-927) Simeon I the Great (b. 864) on May 27.
928 On Jan. 21 Malaga, run by the son of late anti-Umayyad rebel Omar bin Hafsun finally surrenders to Abd-ar-Rahman III. In May after Pope (since 914) John X is arrested in the Lateran and imprisoned in Castel Sant'Angelo by Marozia (daughter of his mistress Theodora) and her new hubby Margrave Guy of Tuscany (-929), he is smothered, and Marozia seizes power, getting puppet Pope (#125) Leo VI (-928) elected in May; he dies in Dec., and in Dec. puppet Pope (#126) Stephen VIII (VII) (-931) is elected. The original Brandenburg concerto? Henry I the Fowler leads a Saxon expedition across the frozen Havel River against the Wends, storms the Slav province of Branibor (Brennabor) (Brandenburg), and drives the Wends back up the Elbe, his son Otto I creating the German marks (countships) of Branibor, Meissen, and later Lusatia to guard the middle Elbe; the pesky Slavs are not subjugated for two more cents. until Margrave Albert I comes along (1150-70). The Vikings massacre Irish at Dunmore Cave in County Kilkenny, Ireland. Henry I's daughter marries the duke of Lorraine. King Athelstan decrees that there be only one currency in Britain. Ashtot II dies, and his brother Abbas I (-953) becomes king of Armenia (until 953). The Qarmati unsuccessfully attempt to raid Baghdad, extracting payment from pilgrims leaving on the annual Hajj to Mecca, then pillage the countryside in Iraq. Deaths: Frankish HRE (901-5) Louis III the Blind (b. 880) on June 28.
929 On Jan. 16 Abd-ar-Rahman III gives himself a promotion from emir and declares himself caliph of Cordoba despite not ruling over the sacred cities of Mecca and Medina, based on his ancestry, severing ties with the Abbasid and Fatimid caliphs. On Oct. 7 Charles III the Simple (b. 879), deposed king of the Franks dies in captivity at Peronne, Somme (France), leaving Rudolf (Raoul) II as the sole ruler of France (until 936); Duke Hugh the Great, master of Burgundy and Neustria declines the crown, preferring to rule through young Rudolph. German king Henry I subdues Bohemia and the Slavs E of the Elbe in Brandenburg, and begins converting them to Christianity. Ashot II dies, and his brother Abas I becomes Bagratuni king of Armenia (until 953), ruling from the fortress city of Kars, bringing peace and prosperity. There is a rebellion in miles-high Tibet. The Qarmati seize Mecca, preventing the annual hajj until 950, causing Muslims to begin making an alternate pilgrimage to Jerusalem, where they rub elbows with Jews and become more intolerant than ever. Nasir al-Dawla al-Hasan (-969), Hamdanid gov. of N Iraq revolts from the Abbasids and founds the independent Hamdanid Dynasty in Mosul (ends 990), supported by his brother Sayf al-Dawla (916-67). Saxon prince Otto I of Germany marries Edith (Aedgyth) (Eadgyth) of England (910-46), daughter of Edward the Elder and Aelfflaed of Saxon England; she goes on to introduce the cult of St. Oswald into Germany. Marozia's hubby Guy of Tuscany dies, and she gets the marriage of his half-brother Hugh of Arles (king of Italy) annulled to marry him; meanwhile her son Alberic II (912-54) leads the opposition to their rule, becoming ruler of Rome in 932-54 after deposing her and her hubby King Hugh of Italy. Meissen in Saxony is founded. Deaths: West Frankish king (893-923) Charles III the Simple (b. 879) on Oct. 7 in Peronne. Muslim astronomer #1 Muhammad al-Battani (b. 858) in Qasr al-Jiss (near Samarra); discovers equations for calculating tangents and cotangens, producing the first table of cosecants ("shadows"); leaves Kitab az-Zij (On Stellar Motion), which accurately calculates planetary movements, and gives the precession of the equinoxes as 54.5 sec. a year, and the inclination of the ecliptic as 23 deg. 55 min., making fans of Euro astronomers Copernicus et al. Spanish king of Galicia (926-9) Sancho Ordonez (b. 895) on Aug. 15.
930 On Oct. 23 emperor (since 897) Daigo (b. 885) goes, er, dies, and in 939 a long civil war against imperial rule begins (ends 1185). The Moors are finally kicked out of Corsica after 120 years. Iceland founds the Althing ("all-assembly"), the first parliament in Europe, which functions continually except from 1798-1874 - our thing is an old thing but a good thing? The anti-Abbasid Qarmatis (Qaramitas) sack Mecca and carry off the holy Black Stone of the Qa'aba (Ka'ba), and hide it in their base in Ahsa, Bahrain; it is not returned until 951. The Sunni Gilaki Ziyarid Dynasty based in Isfahan, N Iran is founded by Mardawij ibn Ziyar (-935), a native of Daylam who claims descent from pre-Islamic Persian royalty, conquering Rayy, Qasvin, Zanjan, and Qum and asserting independence from the Abbasids in Tabaristan (Mazandaran) on the S shore of the Caspian Sea, going on to expand throughout N and W Iran (ends 1090), Nonfiction: Ekkehard of St. Gall, Waldhere (Walthsrius); discovered in 1860 by Danish royal librarian E.c. Werlauff in Cophenhagen. Births: German Swabian duke (950-4) Liudolf (d. 957); only son of Otto I the Great of Germany (912-73) and 1st wife Eadgyth (910-46) (daughter of Edward the Elder of England). Spanish count #1 of Castile Ferdinand (Fernan) Gonzales (Gonzalez) (-970); son of Gonzalo Fernandez de Lara and Muniadona Ramirez. Deaths: Norwegian Viking duke of Normandy #1 (911-27) Rolf (b. 846) in Normandy. Indian mathematician Sridhara (b. 870); leaves Trisatika (Patiganitasara) and Patiganita. Japanese Yamato emperor #60 (897-930) Daigo (b. 885) on Oct. 23.
931 In Feb. Pope (since 928) Stephen VIII dies, and in Feb.-Mar. Pope (#127) John XI (910-35), illegitimate son of Pope Sergius III and Marozia (daughter of John XI's mistress Theodora of Rome) is elected, and mommy Marozia runs both Rome and him. The Ziyarids take Hamadan and Isfahan. Abd-ar-Rahman III helps the Berbers take Ceuta. Abu Tahir Al-Jannabi sets up young Persian prisoner named Abul Fadl al-Isfahani as the new Mahdi and caliph; after ordering the burning of Muslim religious books and restoring the age-old Zoroastrian worship of fire, he goes too far and orders the execution of Bahrain nobles incl. Al-Jannabi's family, causing him to change his mind about him and have him executed. King (since 925) Alfonso IV the Monk abdicates and enters a monastery, and his brother (son of Ordono II) Ramiro II (900-51) becomes king of Leon, Asturias, and Galicia (until Jan. 1, 951); too bad, next year Alfonso changes his mind and tries a coup, and is defeated, blinded and sent back to his cloister in Sahugun, where he dies in 933. On May 29 Jimeno II Garces dies, and his 12-y.-o. nephew (Sancho I's son) Garcia Sanchez I (919-70) becomes king of Pamplona (until 970), with his mother Toda Aznarez as regent (until 934), fighting off usurpers until they make a deal with Cordoba caliph Abd-ar-Rahman III to allow his troops to pass through their territory on their way to invading Leon. Abassid vizier (913-28) and physician Ali ibn Isa al-Jarrah (859-946) organizes a traveling staff of physicians. Births: Hungarian grand prince #4 (955-72) Taksony (d. 972); son of Zoltan. Italian-German Queen (St.) Adelaide (d. 999) in Burgundy, France; daughter of Raoul (Rudolf) II of Burgundy and Bertha of Swabia; wife (937-50) of Lothair II of Arles (926-50) and (951-) HRE Otto I (912-73); mother of Otto II (955-83); canonized in 1097; feast day: Dec. 16. Deaths: Japanese Yamato emperor #59 (887-97) Uda (b. 867) on July 19. Spanish Muslim philosopher Muhammad ibn Masarra (b. 883).
932 "England 932 A.D., a kingdom divided. To the West, the Anglo-Saxons. To the East, the French. Above, nothing but Celts and some people from Scotland. Legend tells us of an extraordinary leader who arose from the chaos to unite a troubled kingdom... Arthur, King of the Britons." - Spamalot. In Dec. after King Hugh of Italy slaps him at the wedding, Alberic II stirs up a Roman mob to overthrow him and his mommy Marozia, and he becomes ruler of Rome (until 954), marrying Hugh's daughter Alda in 936, who gives birth in 937 to son Octavian (later Pope John XII) whom Alberic nominates as pope on his deathbed in 954. Baby, it's the Love Shack? Duke Robert (Rollo) (b. 860) dies after having a hundred Christian POWs beheaded to honor his pagan gods, then repenting, getting baptized and distributing a hundred pounds of gold to Christian churches, and his son William (Guillaume) I Longsword (893-942) becomes duke #2 of Normandy, facing a rebellion from Normans who feel he has become to Frenchified; before dying, Robert acquires Cotentin and Avranches (W Normandy), recruiting fresh settlers from Scandinavia, which keep coming for the rest of the cent.; by 1000 the duchy of Normany is French in speech and law - nothing feels better than the feeling of love? Abd-ar-Rahman III of Cordoba captures Toledo from the rebels of Ibn Marwan, who surrendered in 930, causing all rebels to follow suit, pacifying al-Andalus under his rule, allowing him to begin going after the pesky Christians, starting with Ordono II of Leon. Al-Muqtadir dies, and his brother Al-Qahir (Arab. "victorious") (899-950) succeeds him as Abbasid caliph #19 (until 934), proving to be too cruel to be kind, incl. torturing Al-Muqtadir's mother and other relatives, and having his newphew-heir walled up alive, causing a conspiracy to depose him to arise. The Ziyarids consolidate control of the provinces of Tabaristan and Gurgan. The Turkic Qarakhanid Dynasty is founded, with capital at Kashgar. Chinese minister Feng Tao (882-954) orders the printing of the Confucian classics using movable wood blocks, making him the Gutenberg of the East. Births: Persian Muslim Buyid Neoplatonist philosopher-historian Abu Miskawayh (d. 1030) in Rey. Spanish king of Leon (956-8, 960-6) Sancho I (the Fat) (d. 966); son of Ramiro II of Leon and Urraca Sanchez of Pamplona; half-brother of Ordono III (925-56). Deaths: Egyptian Jewish physician-philosopher Isaac Israeli ben Solomon (b. 832) in Kairouan, Tunisia; dies childless; leaves a bunch of medical and philosophical works written in Arabic that are translated into Hebrew, Latin, and Spanish, becoming part of the curriculum in European univs. in the early 13th cent., incl. The Book of Fevers (Kitab al-Hummayat) (5 vols.), The Book of Remedies (Kitab al-Adwiyah al-Mufradan wa'l-Aghdhiyah), Treatise on Urine (Kitab al-Baul), The Book of Antidotes (Kitab fi al-Tiryak), The Book of Elements (Kitab al-Istikat), Kitab al-Hudud wal-Rusum, Kitab Bustan al-Hikima (metaphysics), Kitab al-Hikman (philosophy), Kitab al-Madkhai fi al-Mantik (logic), Sefer ha-Ruah weha-Nefesh (philosophical difference between the spirit and the soul), Commentary on Genesis.
933 On Mar. 15 after Henry I ends the Magyar truce, he kicks their butts at the Battle of Riade on the Unstrut River (their first great defeat), followed by the Battle of Gotha and the Battle of Merseburg, and occupies the land between the Schlei and Eider Rivers (Charlemagne's old Dane Mark), erecting the mark of Schleswig to guard the mouth of the Elbe River; the Danish king is made tributary and forced to receive Christian missionaries. Harald I Fairhair (b. 850) dies at age 83 after a reign of 70 years, leaving 16-20 sons, and his youngest (oldest?) son Eric (Erik) Bloodaxe (Bloody Axe) (895-954) becomes king #2 of Norway (until 954), becoming "the most famous Viking of them all", although his cruelty leads to pesky revolts. Mardawij ibn Ziyar is pressured to enter the service of the Samanids in an effort to overthrow the Abbasid caliph in Baghdad. After the Italians change their minds and invite Raoul (Rudolf) II back, he signs a treaty giving him the kingdoms of Cisjurane and Transjurane (Lower Burgundy) in exchange for all claims to the Italian throne, and betrothes his daughter infant daughter Adelaide to Hugh of Arles' son Lothar II of Arles, creating the combined Upper-Lower Kingdom of Burgundy (Arles) (ends 1246), with capital at Constantine the Great's old residence city of Arles in SE France on the left bank of the Rhone River 45 mi. NW of Marseille, incl. the regions of Provence, Dauphine (Dauphiné), Franche-Comte (county of Burgundy), and Savoy. Architecture: King Athelstan founds the Benedictine Milton Abbey in the rolling hills of Dorset. Births: Norman duke #3 (942-96) Richard I the Fearless (d. 996) on Aug. 28 in Fecamp; son of William I Longsword (893-942); grandson of Rollo. Deaths: Norwegian king #1 (872-930) Harold I Fairhair (b. 850) (d. 932?).
934 Eldgja (Eldgjá) Fissure System in Iceland erupts, becoming the largest basalt flood in modern times (18 cubic km). Henry I the Fowler and his Christian army defeats a pagan Viking army under Gnupa, and conquers the key town of Hedeby (Haithabu) (Heidiba) ("heath yard") in S Denmark on the land route between the North and Baltic Seas; Henry I acquires the Schleswig marches. King Athelstan, pissed off at Constantine II's support of Guthfrith and his marriage of his daughter to Olaf Guthfrithsson invades Scotland by land and sea, penetrating N to Dunnottar while his fleet ravages the coast of Caithness, attacking both the Scots and their Norse allies, which only makes them mad; Guthfrith dies, and his son Olaf Guthfrithsson (Godfreyson) (-941) becomes king of Dublin - will he remember what he learned in Viking school? The Magyars raid Bulgaria for the first of 4x in four decades (943, 958, 962). Byzantine emperor Constantine VII's gen. John Kurkuas captures the Muslim outpost of Melitene (Malatya), gaining control of the upper Euphrates and Tigris Rivers. In May-June Dailamite Zaydi (Fiver) Shiite Iranians Ali ibn Buya (Imad al-Daula) (891-949) and his two younger brothers al-Hassan and Ahmad capture Shiraz from Turkish gen. Yaqut and seek recognition by mean Abbasid caliph al-Qahir, who is drugged, blinded, and imprisoned by Al-Radi (907-40), son of Al-Muqtadir succeeds him (until 940), becoming a puppet in Baghdad controlled by supreme cmdr. (amir al-umara) Abu Bakr Muhammad ibn Ra'iq (-942); Ali ibn Buyah and his brothers found the Shiite Buwayhid (Buyid) Dynasty, which takes Iran and Iraq (until 1055), using the Abbasid sultans as fronts; the Abbasid govt. goes bankrupt; Fars and Jibal are conquered in this decade; in 945 al-Qahir is freed, and becomes a pathetic blind beggar in rags and wooden sandals - contribute to my reelection for tyrant campaign, please? Ali ibn Buya, a mercenary for Mardawij ibn Ziyar from Daylan in N Iran assembles his own army and captures the Fars region of W Persia, founding the Buyid (Buwayhid) Dynasty (ends 1055), sharing power with his brothers Hasan, who takes C Persia, and Ahmad, who takes Iraq and Baghdad. After his first cousin caliph Abd-ar-Rahman III of Cordoba intervenes, Garcia Sanchez I assumes personal rule in pampered Pamplona (until 970); meanwhile Abd-ar-Rahman III leads a 100K-man army N and declares jihad on the pesky Christian devils. Koryo begins reunifying the Later Three Kingdoms of Korea (Later Paekche or Baekje, Silla, Koryo), beginning with Later Paekche (Baekje) (ends 936), defeating the armies of the Later Baekje (AKA Hubaekje) in modern-day Hongseong County in South Korea. Deaths: Persian Muslim physician-scientist Abu Zayd al-Balkhi (b. 850); leaves Figures of the Regions (Climates) (Suwar al-Aqalim), containing geographical maps; Sustenance for Body and Soul (Masalih al-Abdan wa al-Anfus), introducing the concept of mental hygiene, with the soundbyte: "If the psyche gets sick, the body may also find no joy in life and may eventually develop a physical illness." French queen Emma (b. 894) on Nov. 2; dies trying to help her hubby stop a vassal revolt.
935 On Sept. 28 Boleslaus (Boleslav) I (the Cruel) (915-67) is assassinated on his way to Mass in Prague by his younger pagan brother Boleslaus (Boleslav), who succeeds as duke Boleslaus (Boleslav) I (the Cruel) (915-67) carrying on constant warfare against the encroaching Germans; Prague becomes the center of a Christian Wenceslaus cult, and by 1100 he is Bohemia's patron saint, with his crown the symbol of Czech independence. In Dec. Pope (since 931) John XI dies. Fernan II Gonzalez (910-70), count of Burgos since 930 becomes the first count of Castile, and uses the Muslims to play off rival Leon and become autonomous and hereditary. Mardawij ibn Ziyar is murdered by his Turkish slave troops, but his Ziyarid Dynasty staggers on, squeezed by Buyids and Samanids in N Iran until 1090. Eric Bloodaxe flees the country, and Harald's son Hakon I the Good (920-61), who had been raised in the Christian court of King Athelstan becomes king of Norway, unsuccessfully trying to Christianize it - but a good thing to try? The Fatimids try an unsuccessful 3rd raid on Morocco (913-5, 920). Turkic slave soldier Muhammad ibn Tughj (882-946), AKA Ikhshid (Pers. "prince") arrives in Fustat, Egypt as the new Abbasid gov. (until 946), founding the Ikhshidid Dynasty (ends 969), defending Egypt against Fatimid raids and centralizing the govt. Zoroastrian-to-Shiite Muslim convert Prince Marrdavij dies, allowing hostage Hasan Rukn al-Dawla (898-976) to escape and take Isfahan, becoming Buyid emir of Jibal; the Ziyarids retake it in 938, after which Hasan retakes in 940 and occupies Rayy after defeating Vushmgir. The Koryo Dynasty in Korea defeats the Silla Dynasty. Births: German nun and poet-playwright Roswitha (Hroswitha) (Hrotsvitha) (Old Saxon "strong honour") (pr. like Hrotsuit) of Gandersheim (d. 1000); first person since antiquity in the Latin West to compose drama. Deaths: French duke of Aquitaine (927-35) Ebalus Manzer (b. 870). Bohemian duke (921-35) St. Wenceslaus I the Good (b. 907) on Sept. 28 in Stara Boleslav.
936 On Jan. 3 Pope (#128) Leo VII (-939) is elected. On Jan. 14/15 king (since July 11, 923) Raoul (Rudolf) II (b. 880) dies, and his son (by Bertha of Swabia) Conrad I (the Peaceful) (925-93) becomes king #2 of Burgundy; Charles III the Simple's son (by Eadgifu, daughter of Edward the Elder of Wessex) Louis IV d'Outremer (Transmarinus) (920-54) becomes Carolingian king of the West Franks (until Sept. 10, 954), returning from exile in England; French duke Hugh the Great continues to hold most of the northern barons under his suzerainty. On July 2 king (since May 24, 919) Henry I the Fowler of East Francia dies, and his son Otto I (the Great) (912-73) is crowned king of Germany in Aachen by the archbishop of Mainz, his coronation banquet reviving the Carolingian tradition (based on the Roman tradition), with the duke of Franconia serving as ceremonial steward, the duke of Swabia as cupbearer, the duke of Lorraine as chamberlain, and the duke of Bavaria as marshal; he establishes Quedlinburg in Germany as his seat; beginning of the Ottonian Period in Architecture (ends 1050); Otto begins a 3-year war to reduce the duchies of Bavaria, Franconia, Lorraine, and Saxony, and later keeps all of them except Saxony in his own hands or those of his family. The Irish recapture Limerick from Scandinavian invaders. Sunifred II of Barcelona campaigns against the Muslims (until 937), defeating the kingdom of Valencia incl. the Germanic Quadi tribe. An army of rebel Mozarabs (Arabic-speaking Christians) led by Mutarraf is massacred by the Moors in their stronghold in Calatayud, Spain. With help from Khitan, Shi Jing Tang crowns himself king in Kaifeng, founding the Later Jin (Hou-Chin) Dynasty in China (ends 947). Traditional date of the arrival in India of the first Zoroastrian Parsees from Persia. Births: Persian Buyid emir (949-83) (Shiite Muslim) Adud al-Dawla (Arab. "pillar of the dynasty") Fana Khusraw (d. 983) on Sept. 24 in Isfahan; son of Rukn al-Dawla (898-976); brother of Fakhr al-Dawla (-997). Spanish Jimenez king of Pamplona (970-94) Sancho II Garces (Garcés) Abarca (Sp. "sandal") (d. 994); son of Garcia Sanchez I (919-70) and Andregota (daughter of Count Galindo Aznarez II of Aragon). African Muslim ascetic theologian-mystic Al-Qabisi (d. 1012) in May in Tunisia. Spanish Muslim physician ("Father of Modern Surgery") Abu Al-Qasim Khalaf ibn Abbas Az-Zahrawi (Albucasis) (d. 1013) in Cordoba, Andalusia. Deaths: Arab Muslim theologian Abu al-Hasan al-Ash'ari (b. 874). East Frankish king (919-36) Henry the Fowler (b. 876) on July 2 in Memleben. French West Frankish king (923-36) Rudolph (b. 880) on Jan. 14/15 in Auxerre.
937 On July 11 Raoul (Rudolf) II of France dies, and his son (by Bertha of Swabia) Conrad I (the Peaceful) (925-93) becomes king #2 of Burgundy; Charles III the Simple's son Louis IV d'Outremer (Transmarinus) (920-54) becomes king of France (until 954), returning from exile in England; French duke Hugh the Great continues to hold most of the northern barons under his suzerainty. The fate of Britain is forged in one big bloody battle? King Athelstan of Wessex meets the Northern Alliance of Danish, Norwegian, and Celtic forces (Danes, Scots, and Strathclyde Britons) seeking to restore Dublin king Olaf Guthfrisson at the Battle of Brunanburh (Brunanburgh) (Vinheidr) in the Mersey River estuary in a "hazzelled field" (fenced with hazel branches, which by tradition forces the Vikings to fight there before ravaging the surrounding territory) and crushingly defeats them in a battle lasting from dawn to dusk, establishing the kingdom of England, with himself as "Rex totius Britanniae", causing his renown to spread to the Continent, becoming "the moment when Englishness came of age" (Michael Livingston); the E bank of the Tamar River is fixed as the boundary between Anglo-Saxon Wessex and Celtic Cornwall; Constantine II of Scotland, who headed the alliance and thought he was going to confirm his domination of Britain N of the Humber River loses a son, but continues to dominate and keeps working with Guthfrithsson to take York; the Brunanburh is written to celebrate the battle, claiming that Constantine II saved Scotland; the battle really took place in County Durham? Sunifred II of Barcelona's Vs cause the Moors to temporarily abandon Tarragona, while Tortosa is forced to pay tribute. Abd-ar-Rahman III conquers 30 castles in Leon and compels Queen Toda of Navarre to submit to him as a vassal, then captures Zaragoza and pardons gov. Muhammad ibn Hashim at-Tugib for allying with Ramiro II. Births: French duke of Aquitaine and count of Poitou (963-90) William IV (Fierebras) (Fierebrace) (Iron Arm) of Aquitaine (d. 995); son of William III (915-63) and Gerloc (daughter of Rollo I); brother of Adelaide (945-1004) (wife of Hugh Capet); father of William V (969-1030). Deaths: Bohemian duchess consort (915-21) Drahomira of Stodor (b. 877). Roman papal mistress Marozia (b. 890).
938 The Chinese-speaking Mongolian Annamese defeat the S Han Chinese at the Battle of Bach Dang, freeing Annam (Vietnam) from Chinese control for 1K years (until 1940, except 1407-1428), adopting the name Dai Co Viet (Great Viet State); the Annamese begin driving the aboriginal Caucasoid Chams to the S. The Khitans leave the old Chinese capital on the Liaotung Peninsula, and establish a new capital at Yanjing (Yenching) (Nanking) ("southern capital") on the site of modern-day Beijing (until 1153). Louis IV unsuccessfully tries to invade Lorraine. Franconia and Bavaria rebel against Otto I. Supreme Abbasic cmdr. Ibn Ra-iq is deposed by Turkish military leaders, regaining the post in 941. An African Muslim army devastates a wide area of SW Sicily (ends 940). This year and next the Magyars raid through Germany into France, over the Alps and home again via N Italy. A rich silver vein is discovered in the Rammselsberg on the N edge of the Harz range in Lower Saxony, providing much of Europe's silver, copper, and lead for the next two cents., and funding the rise of Otto I. Births: French count #3 of Anjou (960-87) Geoffrey I Greymantle (Grisegonelle) (d. 987); eldest son of Fulk II the Good (905-58) and 1st wife Gerberga. French Capetian king #1 (987-96) Hugh (Hugues) Capet (d. 996); son of Duke Hugh the Great (-956). Spanish Sunni Muslim gen.-statesman Abu Aamir Muhammad Ibn Abdullah Ibn Abi Aamir, Al-Hajib Al-Mansur (Almanzor) (the Victorious Chamberlain) (d. 1002) in Algeciras; father of Abd al-Rahman (Sanchuelo) (983-1009). Deaths: French Angevin Dynasty founder Count Fulk I the Red of Anjou (b. 888).
939 On May 26 Edmund I (the Elder) (the Just) (the Magnificent) (921-46) becomes king #9 of England (until 946); Olaf Guthfrithsson, son of prior king Olaf Sihtricsson's regent Guthfrith takes advantage and recaptures York with Scottish help; Idwal Foel of Gwynedd sees his chance and revolts. On July 13 Pope (since 936) Leo VII dies, and on July 14 Pope (#129) Stephen IX (VIII) (-942) is elected - poor coverup for Pope Joan here? On July 19 the 100K-man army of Abd-al-Rahman II of Cordoba arrives at Simancas and encounters an eclipse of the Sun, which spooks his troops and keeps them from fight for two days, after which they are defeated on July 21 by a coalition of Ramiro II of Leon, Ferdinand Gonzalez of Castile, and Garcia Sanchez I of Navarre in the Battle of Simancas (Alhandega) (al-Khandaq); the border of Leon on the Duero River advances to the Tormes River; the Muslims lose Madrid to the kingdom of Leon; Rahman blames the D on traitors in the Arabic part of his army and quits participating personally in military campaigns, turning into a lecher always lazing around in the harem. On Oct. 2 the Battle of Andernach sees an army led by Otto I of Germany defeat rebel duke Eberhard III of Franconia (b. 885) (who is KIA by Count Odo of Wetterau) and Giselbert (Gilbert) of Lotharingia (Lorraine) (b. 890) (who switched allegiance to the king of France in 936 (who is taken POW then escapes and drowns while trying to cross the Rhine River); Henry I of Bavaria (919-55) is forced to leave Germany, causing him to flee to the court of Louis IV of France until he makes up with his brother and is given the duchy of Lorraine. Hamdanid emir Sayf al-Dawla begins raiding Armenia over the next 18 years. On Oct. 27 king (since 924) Aethelstan (b. 895) dies after improving the laws, building monasteries, and trying to get the Bible translated into vernacular, and his half-brother Edmund (Eadmund) I the Elder (the Just) (the Magnificent) (the Deed-Doer) (921-46) becomes king of the Anglo-Saxons (until May 26, 946), while the men of York choose Viking king of Dublin Olaf Guthfrithson as their king as Anglo-Saxon control collapses. The Ikhshidids take Jerusalem (until 969). A Muslim rising in Askalon plunders and destroys the Greek Orthodox Church of Mary. Ngo Quyen (898-944) declares himself king of Annam (Vietnam). Births: English king (924-7) Aethelstan (b. 894) on Oct. 27 in Gloucester; buried in Malmesbury Abbey. Persian "Shahnameh" #1 epic poet (Shiite Muslim) Firdawsi (Firdausi) (Firdowsi) (Ferdowsi) (Firdusi) (Pers. "garden") (Abul Kasim Mansur) (d. 1020) in Tus (near Mashhad); inherits his father's estate in Bazh (near Tus).
940 A group of Magyars led by Bultsu are baptized in Constantinopole. Archbishop Wulfstan of York and the Archbishop of Canterbury arrange a peace whereby the Five Boroughs are given back, and the border between Olaf Guthfrithsson of York and Edmund I is set at Watling St. in York. Olaf Guthfrithsson becomes joint ruler of Northumbria (York) with his younger cousin Olaf the Red Sihtricsson (until 941). Caliph (since 934) Al-Radi (b. 907) dies, and Al-Muttaqi (908-68) succeeds him as Abbasid caliph #21 (until 944). Art: A Portrait of Christ at St. Catherine's Church on Mt. Sinai is painted; a replica of the Shroud of Christ at Edessa? Births: Persian Muslim mathematician-astronomer Abdu ala-Wafa Muhammad ibn Muhammad ibn Yahya ibn Ismail ibn al-Abbas al-Buzjani (al-Buzhjani) (d. 998) onu June 10 in Buzhgan. Irish Ard Ri (high king) Brian (Gael. "strength") Boru (Gael. "raven") (Boruma) (Boramhe) of Munster (d. 1014) (pr. BREEN boh-ROH); his castle is just N of Killaloe. Deaths: Muslim mathematician Al-Nayrizi (b. 875) in Baghdad; leaves commentaries on Ptolemy and Euclid. Arab Abbasid caliph #20 (934-40) Al-Radi (b. 907) on Dec. 23. Muslim Shiite theologian Abu Ja'far Muhammad bin Yaqoub al-Kulayni (b. ?); leaves Foundations of the Compendium (Usul al-Kafi), the first major collection of Shiite hadith - the original Sh--te hadith?
941 In winter 940-1 a bad winter freezes lakes and rivers in Ireland. On Feb. 12 Wulfheim dies, and Danish-descent Oda (the Good) (the Severe) (-958) becomes Canterbury archbishop #22 (until June 2, 958). On ? (Easter) after failing to gain control in Lorraine and being stripped of his dukedom, Henry I plots to assassinate his older brother Otto I in Quedlinburg, but is discovered and imprisoned in Ingelheim, then released after doing penance at Christmas. The Danes of York declare war on Edmund; Olaf Guthfrithsson dies on a raid into N Northumbria, leaving Olaf Sihtricsson as sole ruler (until 944). Kievan Rus ruler Igor leads a huge fleet (10K ships?) from the Black Sea and terrorizes the coastal areas around Constantinople for several mo. until the Byzantines reservice some mothballed ships and equip them with Greek fire. Berengar II becomes a refugee at the court of Otto I. Births: English king #11 (955-9) Edwy (Eadwig) (the Fair) (All-Fair) (d. 959) in Wessex; eldest son of Edmund I (921-46) and St. Elviga; brother of Edgar I (943-75); nephew of Eadred (923-55). West Frankish Carolingian king (954-86) Lothair III (d. 986); son of Louis IV of France; nephew of Otto I of Germany; husband (965-) of Emma (948-). Frankish Capetian king #1 (987-96) Hugh (Hugues) Capet (the Great) (d. 996) in Paris; son of Hugh the Great (898-956) and Hedwige of Savoy; father of Robert II (972-1031), Countess Hedwig of Mons, and Countess Gisele of Ponthieu.
942 In Feb. supreme Abbasid assahola Ibn Ra'iq is assassinated. In Oct. Pope (since 939) Stephen IX dies, and on Oct. 30 St. Ciriacus is elected Pope (#130) Marinus II (-946), setting out to restore Rome as the moral capital of the world before the Big Three Cherries - he must not be able to count, since he's way too early? On Dec. 17 William I Longsword (b. 893) is assassinated by Arnulf's followers at a peace conference, and his son Richard I (the Fearless) (Sans Peur) (933-96) becomes duke #3 of Normandy, and the first to actually hold the title. Edmund kills rebel king Idwal Foel of Gwynedd, and wins back the Five Boroughs of Mercia in a single campaign, incl. the S midland shire of Buckingham N of the Thames River, known for the chalk hills of Chiltern and the Vale of Aylesbury; Hywel Dda, ruler of S Wales sees his chance and invades Gwynedd, exiling Idwal's son Iago and Idwal, and adding Gwynedd to his realm (until 950). Hungary is Christianized - 42 down, 58 to go? Count (since 908) Fulk I the Red (b. 870) dies, and his son Fulk II (the Good) (le Bon) (905-58) becomes count #2 of Anjou (until 958), becoming known for his literary-artistic attainments while warring with the Bretons. King T'aejo I of Korea snubs the emissaries of the Khitans in Manchuria, calling them barbarians. The empire of the Muslim caliph has 1K stations at the disposal of postal and news carriers. Flanders begins manufacturing woolens and linens. The Arabs export kettledrums and trumpets to Europe. Arab poet Abu Dalaf from Bukhara who visited China refers to visiting Christians and Christian churches there. A pair of conjoined twins from Armenia are taken to Constantinople for medical evaluation. Architecture: Augsburg Cathedral in Germany is begun. Births: Russian Kievan prince (964-72) Sviatoslav (Svyatoslav) I (d. 972); son of Igor (-964); first Russian ruler with a Slavic name. Japanese Buddhist priest-theologian Eshin Shozu (Genshin) (d. 1017). Deaths: French count #1 of Anjou (908-42) Fulk I the Red (b. 870) in Tours. Norman duke #2 (927-42) William I Longsword (b. 893) on Dec. 17 in Picquigny (assassinated).
943 On Apr. 10 Landulf I dies, and his son Landulf II the Red (-961) becomes prince of Capua and Benevento. The Magyars invade Italy again, as well as Bulgaria. "Hoary-haired" Constantine II resigns his throne and becomes a monk at the chief royal monastery of St. Andrews, becoming abbot and continuing to influence political affairs; his cousin Donald II's son Malcolm I (Mael Coluim Mac Domnaill) (897-954) becomes king of Alba (Scotland). (St.) Dunstan (909-88), a hermit monk expelled from King Athelstan's court for practicing black arts is recalled by Edmund and appointed as abbot of Glastonbury Abbey, which he rebuilds and makes famous, starting a monastic revival and introducing the Benedictine Rule. Korean king T'aejo I (b. 877) dies, and anarchy follows until 949. Births: English king Edgar I (OG "ead" + "gar" = prosperous spear or spearman) (the Peaceful) (the Peaceable) (d. 975) (OE "rich spear") in Wessex; younger son of Edmund I (921-46) and Elgiva; brother of Edwy (941-59); father of Edward II the Martyr (963-78) and Ethelred the Ill-Advised (968-1016).
944 On Dec. 16 Byzantine emperor (since 920) Romanos I Leucapenus is deposed by his sons Stephen and Constantine after his guilt over usurping the throne from Constantine VII makes him refuse to elevate them, and they force him to become a monk on the Prince's Islands. Edmund expels sick whimp Norse King Olaf Sihtricsson the Red from Northumbria (until 949), and he moves to Dublin and becomes its king (until 949). After learning how the Magyars softened them up, the Patzinaks stage a great raid into Tsar Peter's Bulgaria. Khariji Berber leader Abu Yazid Mukhallad ibn Kayrad (Sahib al-Himar) (Owner of the Donkey) leads a large tribal coalition against the Fatimids in N Africa (ends 947). Qarmatian leader Abu Tahir Al-Jannabi (b. 906) dies of smallpox, after which his three brothers succeed him, and the movement falls apart. Rajendravarman II (-968), nephew of Yasovarman I becomes ruler of Angkor (Cambodia) (until 968), becoming known for his conquests and architectural achievements. The Mandylion (Gr. "towel") of Edessa, the alleged Shroud of Christ is captured by the Byzantines in Muslim-ruled Edessa and taken to Constantinople with a big parade on Aug. 15, where it remains until 1204? Grand Prince (since 912) Igor I of Kiev (-945) attacks Constantinople with a fleet of 1K ships, and the smaller Byzantine fleet kicks their butts with Greek fire, setting most of the Russian fleet ablaze and causing them to turn tail and return to Kiev - where'd you get that sunburn? Al-Muttaqi is deposed and blinded by Turkish gen. Tuzun, and Al-Mustakfi (-946) succeeds him as Abbasid caliph (until 946). The city of Algiers (Arab. "al-Jazair" = the islands) (Arab. "Jazair Bani Mazghana = the islands of the sons of Mazghana) on the W side of a bay on the Mediterranean Sea (modern-day pop. 3.4M/5M) is founded by Berbert-Zind-Sanhaja Dynasty founder Buluggin ibn Ziri (-984), becoming known as El-Behdja or Alger la Blanche (Algiers the White) for its white bldgs. Births: Polish Premyslid princess (965-) Doubravka (Dobrava) (Dobrawa) of Bohemia (d. 977); daughter of Boleslas I the Cruel of Bohemia; wife (965-) of Mieszko I (930-92). Deaths: Arabian Qarmatian ruler (923-44) Abu Tahir Sulayman Al-Jannabi (b. 944) (smallpox): "In this world, three people have corrupted mankind: a shepherd, a physician, and a camel-driver, and the last one was the worst pickpocket and prestidigitator of all time" (quote transmitted to HRE Frederick II by Averroes, who may have together written "The Treatise of the Three Imposters").
945 In Jan. after Romanus I's sons Stephen and Constantine threaten the throne of Constantine VII, the pop. revolts, and they are sent to join their father in exile in Samothrace, after which Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus (905-59) reigns alone as Roman Byzantine emperor #136 (until Nov. 9, 959), negotiating another commercial treaty with Grand Prince Igor of Kiev, who soon dies fighting rebels in Dereva, leaving his wife Princess (St.) Olga of Kiev (890-969) in charge as regent for her boy son Sviatoslav I (until 964), going on to wipe out the rebels to the last man and teaching him to chuck spears at them, and consolidate Kiev's control over cities as distant as Novgorod; the commercial treaty mentions luxury items they want from the Byzantines incl. silk; Constantine VII requires pesky untrustworthy antichrist Jews testifying in Christian courts to take the humiliating Oath More Judaico, which continues in use in Euro courts until the 20th cent. In Dec. the Buyids (Buyides) (Buwayhids) from the Caspian region (Daylamites and Turkish slaves), led by Ahmad ibn Buya (-967), brother of Rukn al-Dawla take control of Baghdad after turning a large part of it into ruins (until 1055); caliph al-Mustafki recognizes Ahmad as supreme cmdr. (amir al-umara), with the honorific title of Mu'izz al-Dawla (Arab. "fortifier of the dynasty"), becoming Buyid emir #1 of Iraq (until Apr. 8, 967); the Abbasid Caliphate (founded 750), which started as a movement to get non-Arabs into power in monolithic Islam backfires, disintegrating into a number of independent provincial regimes, ruling from Baghdad, Shiraz, and Rayy, reviving Persian traditions; the Abbasid Dynasty remains in existence until 1258, but with the caliph as a mere figurehead puppet; with local support from bedouin leader Banu Kilab, Sayf al-Dawla, cmdr. of Hamdanid forces in Iraq (son of Nasar al-Dawla) ousts the Egyptian Ikhshidids from N and C Syria (incl. Homs), and establishes a branch (emirate) of the Hamdanid Dynasty based in Aleppo (until 1016), acting as a buffer between the Ikhshidids (who retain Damascus and Palestine), Byzantines, and Iraqi states, causing him to gain a rep. as a Muslim crusader; until the Ottomans reunite them in the 16th cent., the Muslim nations have ever-shifting state boundaries and on-again off-again dynasties? French king Louis IV is taken POW by Hugo the Great (901-56), earl of Paris and duke of Francia. Edmund conquers and ravages Strathclyde, but gives it back to Malcolm I of Scotland, a gesture recognizing Northumbria as the N limit of Anglo-Saxon England and also recognizing Scottish control S of the Forth River (as if they couldn't see Hadrian's Wall standing there?); the Scots annex Cumberland and Westmoreland. Olaf Cuaran ("sandal") (Amlaib mac Sitric) (927-81), ruler of Jorvik since 941 becomes king of Dublin (until 980, except 948-51). Otto I creates Conrad the Red (922-55) (whose mother is a sister of Conrad I) as duke of Lorraine, and in 947 he marries Otto I's daughter (by Eadgyth) Liutgard. Births: Arab Muslim geographer Muhammad ibn Ahmad Shams al-Dain al-Muqaddasi (the Hierosolomite) (d. 991) in Jerusalem. English queen consort (964-75) Elfrida (Alfrida) (Aelfthryth) (Elfthryth) (d. 1000); wife (956-62) of Aethelwald (Aethelwold) (-962) and (964-) of Edgar (943-75); mother of Edward the Martyr (962-78), Edmund (966-70), and Aethelred (968-1016). Deaths: Arab historian Abu Muhammad al-Hasan al-Hamdani (b. 893) in Sana'a, Yemen (in prison?); leaves Al-Iklil (The Crown), an anthology of historical, topographical, and genealogical info. on Arabia, incl. his poem "Al-Damighah" (The Cleaving), and al-Jawharatayn al-Atiqatayn, describing all known metals and attempting to explain Earth's gravity magnetically.
946 In early May Pope (since 942) Marinus II dies, and on May 10 Pope (#131) Agapetus (Agapitus) II (-955) is elected. On May 26 (St. Augustine's Day) Edmund I (b. 921) is murdered by exiled thief Leofa during a party in Pucklechurch after he is spotted in the crowd and dragged before the king by the hair then pulls a knife and slays him, then is cut up by the king's men "into smalle partes", and is succeeded on Aug. 16 by his younger brother Eldred (Edred) (Eadred) (923-55) as the 10th monarch of Britain (until 955); under this whimp St. Dunstan becomes virtual ruler of England, instituting policies of political unification, beefing up royal authority, and making religious reforms, while Viking princes Olaf Sihtricson and Eric Bloodaxe help themselves to Northumbria. Louis IV is released to Hugh the Great, who makes him concede Laon to win his freedom; Louis IV then gains the aid of Otto I the Great against him, and Otto I advances to Paris and Rouen. ? becomes the 2nd Later Jin emperor; when he refuses to pay tribute to Khitan, it attacks (ends 947). Al-Mustakfi dies, and Al-Muti (Arab. "obedient to Allah") (914-74) succeeds him as Abbasid caliph (until 974). Births: The original I thought I thaw a putty tat? French super-learned pope (999-1003) ("Stupor Mundi") (Wonder of the World) Sylvester II (Gerbert of Aurillac) (d. 1003) in Belliac, Auvergne. Deaths: Bulgarian monk St. Ivan Rilski (b. 876). Japanese poet Ki no Tsurayuki (b. 884). German queen (929-46) Aedgyth of England (b. 910) on Jan. 26. English king (939-46) Edmund I (b. 921) on May 26 in Pucklechurch, Gloucestershire (murdered by exiled thief Leofa during a party).
947 On Apr. 10 Hugh of Arles (b. 886) dies, and his son (by Hilda or Alda) Lothair II of Arles (926-50), a descendant of Boso I of Provence becomes king of Italy (until 950), exercising only nominal power, while Berengar II is the real power. On Dec. 12 Lothair II of Arles (b. 926) marries 15-y.-o. (St.) Adelaide (931-99), daughter of Raoul (Rudolf) II of Burgundy and Bertha of Swabia. Duke Berthold of Bavaria dies, and Otto I gives Bavaria to his brother Henry I (919-55), husband of Judith, daughter of Duke Arnulf the Bad, pissing-off Berthold's son Henry III the Younger (940-89), who weighs his chances of a revolt. Byzantine emperor Constantine VII orders the immediate restitution of all peasant lands without compensation, giving the landed peasantry their best financial condition in a cent. Prince Zoltan dies, and his son Taksony (931-72) becomes Arpad grand prince #4 of pagan Hungary (until 972), stopping raids on neighboring countries while getting a bad rap from HRE Otto I as ungodly, causing relations with the Byzantines to go downhill, even after requesting the pope to send a bishop to Hungary, which Otto I thwarts. Eric Bloodaxe retakes York for the Vikings and is crowned king of Northumbria (York) (until 948). The Abu Yazid Revolt in N Africa (begun 943) is suppressed by the Fatimids with much difficulty. Liao Si Zhong becomes king #1 of the Later Han Dynasty (ends 951). The Mongolians of Khitan take Kaifeng and N China, ending the Later Jin Dynasty (begun 936). Jews begin settling in China - so that's how they learned to run those family restaurants and laundries? Otto I confers the gruit (beer spice) right on the church of Liege, Belgium, after which the bishop of Metz confers the gruit right on the monastery of Saint Trond, and the bishop of Cologne confers it on the church of Neuss (near Dusseldorf), cementing Church control of the beer industry. Births: Toltec king Quetzalcoatl (d. 999); son of Toltec king Mixcoatl. Arab Abassid caliph (991-1031) (Sunni Muslim) Al-Qadir (d. 1031); son of Al-Muttaqi; father of Al-Qa'im. Deaths: Italian king (924-48) Hugh of Arles (b. 880) on Apr. 10.
948 Eric Bloodaxe is dethroned by King Eldred and flees. Hugh the Great's attempt to rule through Louis IV ends with his excommunication and submission. Prince Falicsi (Fajsz) (-955) becomes ruler of Hungary (until 955). Conrad I the Peaceful of Burgundy inherits Provence, becoming known also as Conrad III of Provence. Otto I's pesky brother Henry I acquires the dukedom of Bavaria via his marriage to Bavarian heiress Judith (925-986), eldest daughter of Arnulf the Bad and Judith of Friuli, going on to also acquire Friuli in NE Italy. Sunifred II of Barcelona (-950) retires to a monastery, leaving the counties of Barcelona, Girona, and Ausona to his son Borrell II (-993), and the county of Urgell to his son Miro I (-966), who rules jointly. The Kingdom of Nri in W Africa is founded by the Nri-Igbo, becoming the oldest kingdom in Nigeria (ends 1911); the priest-king has no military power over his subjects, and limits himself to religious matters, trade, and diplomacy. Olaf Sihtricsson regains the throne of Northumbria (until 952). The Byzantines present a ms. of 1st-cent. Greek physician Dioscorides to the court of Cordoba. after his uncle Imad al-Dawla dies childless, Adud al-Dawla Fana Khusraw (936-83) becomes emir of Fars, with the Abassid caliph giving him the title of Adud al-Dawla (Arab. "pillar of the dynasty"); in 949 he becomes emir of Fars, followed in 967 by Iraq, with capital in Baghdad, patronizing Shiite scholars incl. al-Mufid and renovating Shiite shrines, sponsoring scientific projects incl. a new observatory in Isfahan. The bishopric of Brandenburg is founded. Deaths: Byzantine emperor (920-44) Romanos I Leucapenus (b. 870) in June.
949 Kwangjong (925-75) becomes king #4 of Koryo (Korea), restoring order and beginning a military push against the Khitans toward the Yalu River. Births: Greek Orthodox Christian theologian (St.) Symeon the New Theologian (-1022) in Galatia, Turkey; sent to Constantinople at age 11; third Theologian after John the Apostle and Gregory of Nazianzus.
950 About this time the Medieval Climate Optimum (Climatic Anomaly) (Warm Period) in the North Atlantic begins (ends 1250), becoming the warmest period in the Northern Hemisphere since the Roman Warm Period of -250 to 400, with temps 1C-1.4C higher than modern temps; the tropical Pacific region is colder than normal; Tree Ring Growth in this half-cent. and the next cent. are especially rapid, indicating a warm period; the warmest period is between 950-1100, becoming the warmest period of the last 2K years prior to the 20th cent., allowing commercial winemaking in S England to compete with France 500 km to the N, and vineyards in Germany to be planted at 780m above sea level (vs. 560m today); first proposed by English climatologist Hubert Horace Lamb (1913-97) in his 1965 report "The early medieval warm epoch and its sequel, based on data from the realms of botany, historical document research and meteorology", whose diagram of global temperature variations over the last thousand years is pub. in the IPCC's First Assessment Report in 1990, massaged to obliterate the Medieval Warm Period?; it was global? On Nov. 22 Lothair II (b. 926) dies, and on Dec. 15 usurper Berengar II of Ivrea (900-66) (leader of the aristocratic opposition to kings Hugh and Lothair II in 940) has himself and his son Adalbert (OG "brilliant", "highborn") of Ivrea (932-75) crowned kings of Italy, then attempts to force Lothair II's widow Queen (St.) Adelaide (931-99) of Italy (Burgundy) (daughter of King Rudolf II of Burgundy, and sister of Otto I's ally Conrad I of Burgundy) (daughter, daughter-in-law, and widow of the last three kings of Italy) to marry Adalbert to legitimize his rule; Otto I the Great's only son Liudolf (930-57) (whose wife Ida is a relative of Adelaide) becomes duke of Swabia (until 954), planning an invasion of Lombardy by his Swabian army without permission of his father, pissing him off; Boleslav I of Bohemia is forced by Otto I to accept German suzerainty, and Bohemia becomes tributary to Germany. About this time Cluniac abbot Adso of Montier-en-Der (-992) writes a letter to Queen Gerberga of France, claiming that the reign of Antichrist will be started by a Frankish emperor of Rome, who will go to Jerusalem and put off his scepter and crown on the Mount of Olives, consummating the Christian empire and conquering all non-Christians before the Antichrist arrives. Raymond Pons dies, and his son Raymond III (-978) becomes count of Toulouse (until 978). Ramiro II defeats a Muslim force in Talavera. Constantine II of Scotland comes out of retirement in a monastery for once last wee fun raid into England? The Qarmati are ousted from Mecca, and the annual Hajj resumes. Tahitian navigator Kupe becomes the first human to sight New Zealand. A Viking warrior grave in Birka, Sweden turns out to be a woman. By this time the Gypsy (Romany) people have left SE India, and reach Persia, dividing into the Bhen (Bheni), who head to Africa and Asia, the Bosa, who head to Armenia and the S Caucasus Mts., and the Byzantine Gypsies, who reach Europe about 1300, and later go to America; the Byzantines end up calling them "Atsinkanoi" (touch-me-nots), which turns into Atzigan (Gr.), Zigeuner (Ger.), Zingari (It.), Tshingian (Turk.); others confuse Armenia with Egypt and call them Gypsies, Gitanos (Span.), Gyphtos (Gr.), Pharao Nephka ("Pharaoh's People") (Hung.), Faraon (Romanian); the French call them Bohemians, and others prefer Tartars, Saracens, Nubians, and heathens; they call themselves Rom (Europe), Dom (Syria), or Lom (Armenia) - gypsies, tramps and thieves, sing it? The Shaddadid Dynasty of Kurds in Azerbaijan is founded in this decade. The Lapps enter Norway in this decade. About this time the Bogomils, a dualistic Gnostic heresy possibly inspired by the Paulicians is settled in Thrace by the Byzantine emperor. In this decade the Madrasa (religious college) system of Muslim education arises in Khurasan, teaching the four major schools (mdhhabs) of Islamic law, the Hanafi, Shafi'i, Maliki, and Hanbali; the shari'a (Islamic law) is finalized, with standardized legal manuals and collections of fatwas (legal opinions), complete with legal devices (Hiyal) to get around certain taboos without violating the letter of the law. The Pueblo I Period (begun 750) ends, and the Pueblo II Period (houses above ground) in SW North Am. begins (ends 1150). The Toltecs of the capital city of Tula engage in child sacrifice as early as this half-cent., later teaching the Aztecs how. Architecture: About this time the fortress-like stone-brick-tile cross-in-a-square Church of Hosios Loukas is built in the Phocis region of C Greece on the slopes of Mt. Helicon on the Gulf of Corinth (home of Delphi, the former pagan Lourdes) by the hermit St. Lukas (-953), who predicts the eventual conquest of Crete by Emperor Romanos II. The city of Stuttgart near Bad Cannstatt on the Neckar River in SW Germany (modern-day pop. 623K/5.2M) starts as a stud farm for the war horses of Duke Liudolf of Swabia; it is granted a charter in 1320, becoming capital of the House of Wurttemberg from the 15th cent. to 1918, becoming known for always bouncing back after catastrophes incl. WWII bombing, and known as "the cradle of the automobile"; it is spread across several hills, valleys, and parks. The Khajuraho Temples in Madhya Pradesh, C India begin to be built (until 1050), depicting explicit if not hot sex in the jungle. Nonfiction: Constantinus Cephalas, Palatine Anthology. The Book of the Prefect on the guild org. of Constantinople is written. About this time Armes Prydein Vawr (The Greater Prophecy of Britain) is written; "Who dies not, hides not, nor ever fails,/ Who withers never, bends not, but endures." About this time The Life of Admnan is written in Kells. Births: French count of Blois (978-96) Odo (Eudes) I (d. 996) in Marmoutier Monastery, Tours; son of Theobald I the Trickster of Blois (913-75) and Luitgard of Vermandois (914-78) (daughter of Herbert II of Vermandois). Norwegian explorer (redhead) Erik (Eric) Thorvaldsson the Red (d. 1003) in Rogaland; son of Thorvald Asvaldsson; father of Leif Ericsson (970-1020); founder of the Cushing family. Egyptian Arab Muslim astronomer-mathematician Ibn Yunis (d. 1009) in Fustat; father is "Egypt's most celebrated early historian and first known compiler of a biographical dictionary devoted exclusively to Egyptians" (Dale F. Eickelman and James Piscatori). Indian polymath mystic-philosopher Abhinavagupta (Sans. "competence, authoritativeness, etc.") (d. 1016) in Kashmir. Deaths: Muslim scholar-philosopher Abu Nasr Muhammad Ibn al-Farabi (b. 870); leaves Philosophical Writings, and Grand Book of Music (Kitab al-Musiqi al-Kabir); about 970 a pupil founds the Sidjistani Society in Baghdad to discuss philosophy. Arab Abbasid caliph #19 (932-4) Al-Qahir (b. 899); spends his last years as a beggar. Italian king (948-50) Lothair II (b. 926) on Nov. 22 in Turin (poisoned by Berengar?). German Hapsburg (Habsburg) family founder Count Guntram the Rich (b. ?).
951 The Vikings of Dublin experience outbreaks of smallpox and blood flux. On Jan. 1 king (since 931) Ramiro II (b. 931) dies, and his son Ordono (Ordoño) III (925-56) becomes king of Leon (until 956), dealing with the claims of his half-brother Sancho I the Fat of Castile (who is backed by Navarre and Castile), followed by an internal rebellion in Galicia, plus attacks from the Muslims of Al-Andalus, which end after raiding as far as Lisbon in 955 and capturing a load of booty, causing Abd-ar-Rahman III to decide to concentrate on the Fatimids of N Africa and signs a peace with him before launching an expedition against Tunis. After St. Adelaide refuses to marry Berengar II, she flees, and is tracked down and imprisoned for 4 mo. at Castle Garda in Como in NE Italy, where Berengar II's consort Willa of Tuscany (911-70), daughter of Count Boso of Arles mistreats her, after which she escapes to the protection of Adalbert Atto (Azzo), 1st Count of Canossa (-988), where Berengar II sieges her; meanwhile she sends an emissary to throw herself on the mercy of Otto I the Great of Germany, who sees his chance and plots to take the Italian throne and marry her himself, making his first expedition to Italy with his brother Duke Henry I of Bavaria and marrying her in the former Lombard capital of Pavia and taking control of Lombardy in N Italy allegedly to keep the mountain passes open, foiling the plans of his headstrong son Duke Liudolf of Swabia to invade Lombardy, beating his army there and making him play second fiddle and taking the Iron Crown of Lombardy for himself, while Berengar II holes-up in San Marino; Otto I returns to Germany after appointing his son Conrad the Regent as regent in Pavia. The Later Han Dynasty ends, and the Later Zhou Dynasty is founded in China (ends 960). The Fatimids persuade the Qarmatis (Qaramitas) to return the Black Stone of the Ka'ba (Qa'aba) to Mecca (stolen 930), raising Fatimid prestige; it is wrapped in a sack and thrown into the Friday Mosque of Kufa with a note attached reading "By command we took it, and by command we have brought it back"; too bad, it is broken into seven pieces - maybe they returned a fake? The Tenjin Festival in Osaka, Japan is founded. Births: Bavarian duke (955-76, 985-95) Henry II (the Wrangler) (The Quarrelsome) (d. 995); son of Henry I of Bavaria (919-55) and Judith of Bavaria; father of St. Henry II (973-1024). Deaths: Spanish king of Leon (931-51) Ramiro II (b. 900) on Jan. 1 in Leon.
952 Otto I returns to Germany, and faces a rebellion of his nobles; Berengar II of Ivrea is forced into vassalage at the Reichstag in Augsburg, and cedes the marches of Verona, Friuli, and Istria (the keys to the Alp Passes) to Otto's younger brother Duke Henry I of Bavaria as the March of Verona and Aquileia (ends 1167); the pissed-off pope refuses to crown Otto I HRE (until Feb. 2, 962). The Northumbrians overthrow Olaf the Red Sihtricsson, and Eric (Erik) Bloodaxe, son of King Harald Fairhair of Norway returns to York and reassumes the throne of Northumbria, becoming the last Viking king of York (until 954); Sihtricsson returns to rule Dublin (until 980). Otto I returns to Germany, and faces a rebellion of his nobles; Berengar II of Ivrea is forced into vassalage at the Reichstag in Augsburg, and cedes the marches of Verona, Friuli, and Istria (the keys to the Alp Passes) to Otto's younger brother Duke Henry I of Bavaria as the March of Verona and Aquileia (ends 1167); the pissed-off pope refuses to crown him HRE (until Feb. 2, 962). Deaths: Scottish (Alba) king Constantine II (b. 874) in St. Andrews; buried in Iona.
953 Otto I appoints his brother (St.) Bruno (OG "brown-skinned") I (the Great) (925-65) (not to be confused with the sainted founder of the Carthusian Order of monks who lives in the 11th cent.) as archbishop of Cologne, followed by duke of Lotharingia next year (until 965); meanwhile pesky Duke Liudolf of Swabia (930-57) (only son of Otto I by his 1st wife Eadgyth, daughter of Edward the Elder of England) rebels against his father Otto I, and is joined by Otto I's son-in-law Duke Conrad the Red of Lorraine in an attack on the March of Verona, sieging Canossa Castle, but they are defeated by Duke Henry I of Bavaria, and both are stripped of their dukedoms; Lorraine is granted to Bruno I of Cologne. Abas I dies, and Ashot III (the Merciful) (the Gracious) (-977) becomes king of Armenia (until 977). Art: The 5.78m (19 ft.) high x 6.5m (21 ft. 4 in.) long x 3.17m (10 ft. 5 in.) wide 45-ton Buddhist Cangzhou Lion (Sea Guard Howler) is cast in Cangzhou, Hebei Province, China 110 mi. SW of modern-day Beijing, becoming the largest iron casting in history (until ?). Births: Spanish king of Galicia (982-99) and Leon (984-99) Bermudo (Vermudo) II (the Gouty) (El Gotoso) (d. 999); son of Ordono III (926-56); father of Alfonso V (994-1028).
954 On Sept. 10 Louis IV (b. 920) dies, and his 13-y.-o. son (nephew of Otto I) Lothair (Lothar) (941-86) becomes king of France (until 986). The English conquest of the Danelaw is complete? The Northumbrians, led by Saxon earl Oswulf of Bamburgh turn against Eric Bloodaxe and kill him at the Battle of Stainmore along with his son Harek and brother Ragnall (Ragnvald) and several other nobles, making him the last Viking king of York, and leaving Eldred (Eadred) as ruler of Northumbria, thus ending its hopes for permanent independence; "Here the kings of Northumbria came to an end, and henceforth the province was administered by earls" (Simeon of Durham); "From that time to the present, Northumbria has been grieving for want of a king of its own, and for the liberty they once enjoyed" (John of Wallingford); the marooned Danes take two cents. to assimilate into Saxon then Norman life? - I never said a word about Paris? Malcolm I is killed in Moray (by his own relatives?), and Constantine II Mac Aed's son Indulf (Indulfus) (Indulb) Mac Causantin (-962) (Norse name?) becomes king of Alba (Scotland) (until 962), going on to annex part of Lothian. Lorraine is divided into two duchies, Upper and Lower Lorraine. About this time Gregory I (-1012), descendant of Theophylact I and Theodora I becomes the first count of Tusculum, ruling the C Italian cities of Arce (in the Liri River Valley), Galeria, and Preneste, and becoming a consul, duke, and senator of Rome in 961; the houses of Tusculum and Spoleto end up as rivals in C Italy, the first representing the imperial power and the latter the papal. Births: English archbishop of Canterbury #29 (1006-12) (St.) Aelfheah (Elphege) (Alfege) (Godwine) (d. 1012) (b. 953? in Weston, Somerset); feast day: Apr. 19. Deaths: Chinese minister Feng Dao (b. 882). Norwegian king #2 (933-54) Eric I Bloodaxe (b. 895). Roman patrician Alberic II (b. 912). French West Frankish king (936-54) Louis IV (b. 920) on Sept. 10 in Reims.
955 The Viking raids of Ireland end after a total of 43 raids - out of which come half-Viking half-Irish Hollywood actors Chuck Connors and Patricia Blair? The 10th century version of Go West Young Man? On Aug. 10 after they invade Germany, Prince Arpad and his Magyars are defeated by Otto I the Great at the Battle of Lechfeld (a plain drained by the Lech River) near Augsburg in SW Germany, stopping their expansion into Europe and causing them to settle down in Pannonia (modern-day Hungary); Conrad the Red, who reconciled with Otto I is KIA fighting at his side after he loosens his armor in the hot sun and catches an arrow in the throat. In Oct. Otto I defeats the Slavs (Wends) under Nako (Nakko) (Nakon) (-966) and his brother Stoignew (who live in a ringwall of fortress in Mecklenburg, Starigard, Liubice, and Lenzen or Lunkini) at the Battle of the Recknitz River, and Christianizes them, reestablishing and colonizing (along with the Bavarians) Charlemagne's old East Mark (Austria) - the real origin of the Wendslav (Winslow) family name, or am I just mentally masturbating? In Oct. Pope (since 946) Agapetus II dies, and on Dec. 16 18-y.-o. Octavius (Ottaviano), son of Alberic II, and grandson of Marozia is elected Pope (#132) John XII (937-64); a foot-long bisexual and avowed atheist known for his dozens of lovers of both sexes, incl. his father's former concubines, whom he rewards with tracts of papal land, he turns the Lateran into a brothel, summons the Devil during one of his orgies, and becomes known for molesting female pilgrims in er, St. Peter's Church, then having a cardinal castrated for criticizing him; he begins the papal practice of choosing dual names - good idea for an adulterer? Does XII or Octavius mean the number of inches? On Nov. 23 Eadred (b. 923) (who suffers from a digestive problem that causes him to suck the juices out of his food, chew on the rest, then spit it out) dies without an heir, and his nephew (eldest son of Edmund I and St. Elviga) Edwy (Edwig) (Eadwig) the All-Fair (941-59) becomes king of Wessex and 11th monarch of England (until Oct. 1, 959); on the day of his coronation, St. Dunstan catches him hooking up with noble friend-with-benefits Ethelgive, and forces him to renounce her as a "strumpet", causing Edwy to remember he's da king and plunder his monastery, after which St. Dunstan flees England until Edwy's death. After sending his troops as far as Lisbon, Ordono III of Leon gets Abd-ar-Rahman III of Cordoba to sign the Peace of 955, recognizing the independence of Leon and Navarre and drawing the Muslim frontier at the Ebro River; in return Leon and Navarre recognize the suzerainty of the caliph and pay tribute. The Banu Ya'la tribe destroys Oran. Births: English Benedictine abbot (1005-) and writer Aelfric the Grammarian (the Homilist) of Eynsham (Cerne) (d. 1020) (d. 1010?). German duke of Swabia (973-82) and Bavaria (976-82) Otto I (d. 982); son of Liudolf (930-57) (son of Otto I) and Ida of Swabia. German king (961-83) and HRE (973-83) Otto II (the Red) (Rufus) (d. 983); son of Otto I (912-73) and St. Adelaide (931-99); husband (972-) of Theopohanu (956-91); father of Otto III (980-1002). Deaths: German duke of Bavaria (948-55) Henry I (b. 919) on Aug. 28 in Pohide Abbey, Lower Saxony; buried with his wife Judith in the Niedermunster in Regensburg. German duke (of Lorraine) Conrad the Red (b. 922) on Aug. 10 (KIA in the Battle of Lechfeld). English king (946-55) Eadred (b. 923) on Nov. 23 (St. Clement's Day) in Frome, Somerset; dies a bachelor.
956 On Aug. 3 the town of Luneburg (Lüneburg) in Lower Saxony, Germany (31 mi. SE of Hamburg) is first mentioned by HRE Otto I, becoming known for its salt mines. Hugh the Great dies, and his son Hugh (Hugues) Capet (938-96) becomes duke of France (until 996); the county of Troyes in France becomes the county of Champagne (until 1316), combining Rheims, Troyes, Laon, and Chalons-sur-Marne, with Robert II (the Very Glorious) of Troyes (-967) as count #1 (until 967). King (since 951) Ordono III (b. 925) dies, and his morbidly obese half-brother (son of Ramiro II) Sancho (Sp. "sacred") I (the Fat) (933-66) becomes king of Leon, only to be deposed in 958 by a group of nobles led by Fernan Gonzalez of Castile for being too obese, sending him into exile in Andalus, where he goes on a weight loss program under treatment by Hasdai ibn Shaprut while seeking help from his grandmother Toda to regain his throne, making a treaty with the Moors then taking Zamora in 959 with the help of nobles from Leon and Navarre, regaining his throne in 960, after which he reneges on his treaty with the Muslims and is raided several times, watching his Castilian and Galician nobles champ at the bit and go independent until he is finally poisoned in 966 - the original Sancho Panza or Sacred Belly? Christian Nubia attacks Aswan in Egypt. The Byzantines reconquer Reggio in S Italy, then invade Sicily. Births: German empress Theophano (Theophanu) (d. 991); daughter of Byzantine emperor Romanus II; wife (972-83) of Otto II (955-83). Bohemian missionary (St.) Adalbert of Prague (Vojtech) (d. 997) in Libice nad Cidlinou; feast day: Apr. 23; canonized in 999 by Pope Sylvester II. Deaths: Arab historian-geographer Al-Masudi (b. 896) in Sept. in Cairo; leaves The Meadows of Gold and Mines of Gems; history of the world from Adam and Eve through the late Abbasid caliphate. French duke Hugh the Great (b. 898) on June 16 in Dourdan. Spanish king of Leon (951-6) Ordono III (b. 925) in Zamora.
957 On Sept. 6 after invading Italy for a 2nd time and taking many cities, causing Berengar II to flee, Liudolf (b. 930) dies suddenly of fever in Pombia near Novara. The Mercians and Northumbrians, supported by Archbishop Odo revolt against Edwy in favor his his brother Edgar I the Peaceful (943-75), and defeat him in the Battle of Gloucester, causing them to agree to divide the kingdom along the Thames River, with Edwy keeping Wessex and Kent, and Edgar getting Mercia and Northumbria. Sancho I of Leon breaks the Peace of 955 with Cordoba, and is defeated then expelled by his subjects. Russian Grand Princess (St.) Olga of Kiev (890-969), wife of dead Grand Prince Igor I visits Constantinople, and is so wowed by the churches that she becomes a Christian and is baptized in Hagia Sophia by the patriarch of Constantinople with emperor Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus as her baptismal father, taking the name Helena after Constantine I the Great's mother; meanwhile her pagan son Sviatoslav I holds out; when Constantine VII proposes marriage to her, she replies that as her baptismal father that would be incest, causing to reply "Olga, you have outwitted me". Deaths: German Swabian duke (950-4) Liudolf (b. 930) on Sept. 6 in Pombia (near Novara) (fever).
958 On June 2 Oda dies, and next year Winchester bishop (since 951) Aelfsige I (-959) becomes Canterbury archbishop #23 (until 959); too bad, he dies of cold in the Alps en route to Rome to be given his pallium by the pope. Gorm the Old Hardeknudsson (b. 860) dies, and his son Harald I Bluetooth (Blaatand) Gormsson (910-87) becomes the first Christian king of Denmark, also controlling S Sweden and Norway; in 970 he marries Wendish princess Tove (Tofa) (Tore), daughter of Mstivoj, who raises the Sonder (Sønder) Vissing I (DR 55) runic stone in E Jutland after her mother (discovered 1836); a runic stone in Jelling in Jutland shows a crucified Christ with the inscription, "King Harald had this monument made in memory of his father Gorm and his mother Thyri. Harald, who conquered all Denmark and Norway, made the Danes Christians." The nobles of Leon, backed by Count Ferdinand Gonzalez of Castile, pissed-off at the extreme obesity of Sancho I the Fat revolt and depose him, causing him to flee to exile and lose a lot of weight to make a comeback with the help of his grandmother Toda and her nephew Abd-ar-Rahman II, who hire Jewish physician Hasdai ibn Shaprut (915-90). On Nov. 11 count (since 942) Fulk II (b. 905) dies in Tours, and his son (by Gerberge of Maine, daughter of Count Herve of Maine) Geoffrey I (Greymantle) (Grisegonelle) (938-87) becomes count #3 of Anjou (until July 21, 987). The Magyars raid Bulgaria again. The Fatimids raid Morocco for the charmed 4th time (913-5, 920, 935) and defeat the Umayyads, securing control (until 960), then resuming their attack on Egypt. King Kwangjong of Korea implements a Confucian civil service exam system - the SAT goes this far back? Births: Russian (Kievan) grand prince (St.) Vladimir (Volodymer) Svyatoslavich the Great (d. 1015); youngest son of Saviatoslav I (942-72) and his maid Malusha; converts to Orthodox Christianity in 988; feast day: July 15. Byzantine short stocky but top drawer emperor (976-1025) Basil II (the Bulgar Slayer) (the Young) (d. 1025); son of Romanus II and Theophano; of Armenian descent; older brother of Constantine VIII (960-1028). Tibetan Buddhist medicine man Lechen Rinchen Sangpo (d. 1056). Deaths: Danish king (938-58) Gorm the Old (b. 860). French count of Anjou (941-60) Fulk II (b. 905) on Nov. 11 in Tours.
959 On Oct. 1 king (since Nov. 23, 955) Edwy the All-Fair (b. 941) dies, and his brother Edgar the Peaceful (943-975) (peaceful on the inside not the outside, since he just seized Edwy's Northumbrian and Mercian kingdoms by force?) becomes the 12th king of a united England, marrying his 2nd/3rd wife (the original wicked stepmother?) Elfrida (Alfrida) (Aelfthryth) (Elfthryth) (945-1000) in 964 and having sons Edmund (966-70) and Aethelred (968-1016); "In his days it prosper'd well, and God him granted that he dwelt in peace" (Anglo-Saxon Chronicle); he recalls St. Dunstan, makes him first bishop of Worcester then bishop of London, and helps him reform the monasteries. On Nov. 9 Byzantine emperor (since 905) Constantine VII (b. 905) dies, and his son Romanus II (938-63) becomes Roman Byzantine emperor #137 (until Mar. 15, 963), banning his mother Helena Lekapene from court and sticking his five sisters into convents, going on to live a life of pleasure while letting his chief eunuch Joseph Bringas (-965) and wife Theophano run the govt. Sancho I the Slim, aided by Abd-ar-Rahman III (in exchange for some castles) takes Zamora (followed by Oviedo next year), and regains his throne in Leon (until 966); too bad, he reneges on his treaty with the Muslims and they raid his lands in retaliation, while his Castilian and Galician nobles see their chance and grab for independence. After being appointed by King Eadwig, Wells bishop (since 956) Byrhthelm (Birthelm) (Beorhthelm) (-973) becomes Canterbury archbishop #24, but new king Edgar reverses the appointment, claiming he's too gentle to maintain discipline, and replaces him with (St.) Dunstan (909-988), who next year becomes Canterbury archbishop #25 (until May 19, 988). About this time Roswitha of Gandersheim writes Latin comedies in a bowdlerized Terentine style, celebrating saintly virginity. Bouillon becomes part of Lower Lorraine in the County of Ardenne. Nonfiction: Anon., Suidas (Fortress); a Greek lexicon. Births: Japanese emperor #64 (969-84) En'yu (Morihira) (d. 991) on Apr. 12 in Kyoto; 5th son of Murakami (926-967); brother of Reizei (950-1011). Deaths: Byzantine emperor (913-59) Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus (b. 905) on Nov. 9 in Constantinople. English king (955-9) Edwy the All-Fair (b. 941) on Oct. 1 in Gloucester; buried in Winchester.
960 Every kiss begins with what letter? Berengar II invades the Papal States, causing Pope John XII to appeal to Otto I, causing him to make his 2nd expedition to Italy, after which Berengar II's troops desert him, after which by next Christmas Otto I takes Pavia and declares Berengar II deposed before proceeding to Rome, seeing his chance to expand German rule to the Mediterranean, while John XII sees his chance to sign this stud up permanently; meanwhile Otto I makes his 6-y.-o. son Otto II (b. 955) king of Germany. Pagan Piast dynasty member Mieszko I (930-92) (father of Boleslav I the Brave) becomes duke of the Polanes (Polans) (Polanians) (Old Slavic "pole" = field or plain) in the Warta River basin of Poland (until May 25, 992), going on to create the Polish state. About this year the city of Dunkirk in coastal N France 6.2 mi. from the Belgian border (modern-day pop. 91K) starts as a fishing village in the flooded coastal area of the English Channel S of the Western Scheldt, where Count Baldwin III erects a town wall to protect it from Viking raids; it goes on to become the scene of May 1940 Dunkirk Evacuation. A new kink in the chain of fools in Rome? In this decade the Crescentii (Crescenzi) Clan takes over Rome and the papacy (until 1012), with the Ottaviani subclan dominating the city of Rome, and the Stefaniani subclan dominating the Sabine region. Mieczyslav I (-992) becomes the first ruler of Poland. Grand zupan (headman) Cheslav Klonomirovich (927-960) dies after trying to unite the Serb tribes, who lean towards Eastern Orthodox Christianity, while the Croats lean toward Roman Catholicism, causing Bosnia to be split, W for Roman, E for Byzantine. Zhao Kuang Yin takes over the Zhou Kingdom, becoming Song Tai Zu (Tai Tsu) (Great Founder) (927-76), emperor #1 of the Northern (Bei) Song (Soon) (Sung) Dynasty (ends 1127), defeating the Tartars; the Golden Era of China begins; the capital is the SE Chinese city of Hangzhou; the Tai Tzu Chang Chuan (great ancestor's long fist) system of martial arts is perfected; the great watercolor painters of the Bei (Northern) Song era flourish. King Hakon the Good of Norway is killed by three of Eric Bloodaxe's sons, who invade at Hoerdeland. Byzantine emperor Romanus II begins the reconquest of Crete, held since 823 by the Saracens (finished 961), sending a fleet of 12.3K ships with 27K oarsmen and marines and 50K troops under his brother Adm. Nikephoros Phokas (912-69). Architecture: Emir Adud al-Dawla of Baghdad orders the construction of the great Port of the Amir Dam (Band-e Amir) between Shiraz and Estakhr, which irritates 300+ villages in Fars Province. Inventions: The written Italian language first appears in this decade. Architecture: The Nayin Mosque in Persia is built. Plays: The Hi-Khio, the first Chinese plays with music appear. Poetry: About this time the Exeter Book is written in Mercia, England, containing 15% of all surviving Old English poetry, incl. the 143-line poem Widsith. Births: Georgian Bagrationi king (1008-14) Bagrat III (d. 1014); father of George I (998-1027). Danish king (986-1014), Norwegian king (986-995, 1000-14) and English king (1013-4) Sweyn (Svein) (Svend) (Swegen) I Haraldsson Forkbeard (Tveskaeg) (d. 1014); son of Harald I Bluetooth (910-87); father of Canute (995-1035). German Roman Catholic bishop (St.) Bernward of Hildesheim (d. 1022); born to a Saxon noble family; feast day: Nov. 20. Byzantine tall graceful but botched emperor (1025-8) Constantine VIII (d. 1028); son of Romanus II and Theophano; younger brother of Basil II (958-1025).
961 On Oct. 15 Abd-ar-Rahman III (b. 889) dies, and his son Al-Hakam II (915-76) becomes Umayyad caliph #9 of culture-cool Cordoba (until 976), continuing the wars against Christian Castile, Leon, and Navarre while sending agents around the Muslim world to amass a library of 400K books and hire translators for Latin and Greek to Arabic, all which ends up ruined in the Berber sack of Cordoba in 1100. After a 9-mo. siege of Chandax, the Byzantines under Nicephorus II Phocas reconquer creaky Crete (largest island in the Mediterranean) from the Arabs (until 1204), and reestablish Christianity there, building the Orthodox Church of St. Titus, housing the skull of St. Titus, a disciple of St. Paul and the first bishop of Crete; after the Turks recapture Heraklion in 1645, the skull is taken to Venice, and not returned until 1966. Landulf II dies, and his sons Landulf III (-969) and Pandulf I Ironhead (-981) become joint princes of Capua and Benevento. After leaving Khorasan and crossing the Hindu Kush Mts., Turkish Samanid slave gen. Abu Mansur Sebuktigin (942-97), former officer of Alptigin (Alp-Tegin) founds the Ghaznavid Dynasty in Ghazni (Ghazna) S of Kabul in Afghanistan (ends 1187), which is based on slave soldiers subsisting on land taxes (iqta'), and proclaims allegiance to the Abbasid Caliphate while cultivating both Islamic and Persian culture. The Kurdish Hasanuyid (Hasanawayhid) Dynasty in the C Zagros Mts. based in Dinawar (NE of modern-day Kermanshah) is founded by Hasanwayh (Abull Fawaris) (-979) (until 1015), ruling W Iran and upper Mesopotamia after making an alliance with Fakhr al-Dawla. Dunstan becomes archbishop of Canterbury (until 988), becoming England's most influential figure again. The original bad to the bone? King Harald I Bluetooth of the Danes accepts Christianity after seeing the hand of the priest Poppo of Henneberg (sent by Otto I) suffer no damage when pressed to hot iron; Poppo becomes bishop of Wurzburg. Sephardic Jewish merchant Abraham ben Jacob from Tortosa, Spain travels in W and C Europe incl. Italy as far as Rome, and is received by HRE Otto I, acting as diplomat and spy for caliph Al-Hakam II, producing the first known reliable description of the Polish kingdom of Mieszko I, along with the Vikings in Hedeby, Denmark (abandoned in 1066), and the Nakonid fort in Schwerin (Mecklenburg), and becoming the first person to mention Prague in writing. Nanking emperor Li Yu founds the Academy of Painting. Architecture: St. Paul's Church in London is rebuilt after the fire. Poetry: The Norwegian epic poem Eyvind Skaldaspillir (Annihilator of all Other Skalds) is written by Hakonarmal. Nonfiction: Bishop Liutprand of Cremona writes Antapodosis, History of the Deeds of Otto I, and Narrative of an Embassy to Constantinople. Deaths: Spanish Muslim caliph of Cordoba (912-61) Abd-ar-Rahman III (b. 889) on Oct. 15 in Oct.
962 On Feb. 2 after being invited to Rome by grateful Pope (since 955) John XII (937-64) to end the feudal anarchy of Rome and revive the dead (since 924) Holy Roman Empire (ends 1806) (which is only called the Roman Empire until 1157) as its new Charlemagne, Pope John XII crowns German king (since 936) Otto (Otho) I (the Great) (912-973) as Roman emperor of the West, and crowns his wife (St.) Adelaide (931-99) as empress, shifting the old Roman-Frankish alliance to Roman-German; too bad, the resurrected Roman Empire Pt. III gets off on the wrong foot when this pagan-inside Saxon lets it go to his head and considers himself higher than the pope, ordering all future bishops of Rome to swear fealty to him while claiming the right to approve papal elections, starting a perennial fight which takes until 1122 (Concordat of Worms) to work the bugs out of, even worse, an eternal struggle for supremacy between pope and emperor, which the pope usually wins at the expense of making the emperors and nationalists bitter, leading to the Protestant Reformation of the 1500s. After he gets too used to annual raids into Byzantine-held Anatolia, the Byzantines under Nikephoros Phokas liberate Cilicia and Aleppo from Sayf al-Dawla, emir of Aleppo, sacking his palace and capturing 390K silver dinars, 2K camels, and 1.4K mules; meanwhile after the Magyars raid Bulgaria yet again, Byzantine emperor Romanos II's brother Leo Phokas and Marianos Argyros lead an army that stops their incursions into the Byzantine-held Balkans. A Christian revolt against the Moors in Taormina, Sicily is bloodily suppressed; the Christians hold on in Rametta, causing the Byzantines to gather an army to send to their aid. Svyatoslav becomes prince of Kiev, rejecting Christianity with the statement "My retainers will laugh at me." Idulb is KIA on the Moray coast near Cullen while repelling a Viking raid at the Battle of Bauds, and Dub (Gael. "black") (AKA Niger) mac Malcolm (-966), elder son of Malcolm I becomes king of Alba (Scotland) (until 966), but Idulb's sons Culen Hringr and Olaf challenge him; meanwhile the Scottish V ends Norse control of Alba. The U. of Parma is founded by a decree of HRE Otto I as a school for notaries; faculties of law and medicine are added in the 13th cent. Births: English king (975-8) (St.) Edward (Eadweard) II the Martyr (d. 978); eldest son of Edgar I (943-75); brother of Ethelred (968-1016); feast day: Mar. 18. Deaths: Scottish king (since 954) Indulf (b. ?) near Cullen (KIA).
963 On Mar. 15 emperor (since 959) Romanus II dies unexpectedly after a long hunting expedition (poisoned by his wife Theophano?), with Joseph Bringas and their mother Theophano as regents for underage sons Basil II the Young porphyrogenitus (958-1025) and Constantine VIII (960-1028), after which Theophano begins plotting with army CIC Nicephorus (Nicephoros) (Nikephoros) II Phocas (Phokas) (912-69), who arrives in Constantinople in Apr. to celebrate a triump for his conquests in Syria, but suspects Bringas is plotting against him and takes refuge in the Hagia Sophia, gainng the support of Patriarch Polyeuctus; on July 2 Phocas' troops proclaim him emperor and marches on Constantinople, and after the populace supports them they overthrow Joseph Bringas, who is exiled to the Asekretis Monastery in Pythia (near Nicomedia); on Aug. 16 Phocas becomes Roman Byzantine emperor #138 (until Dec. 11, 969), marrying Theophano and going on to take on the Muslims and Bulgarians, becoming known as "the White Death of the Saracens"; meanwhile Theophano hooks up with new lover gen. John Tzimiskes (925-76), Phocas' nephew. After HRE Otto I the Great sieges Berengar II in San Leo, and Pope John XII enters into negotiations with his son Adalbert, Otto I makes his 3rd expedition to Italy, deposes John XII, and on Dec. 4-6 puts Antipope Leo VIII (-965) on the papal throne, then negotiates unsuccessfully with Byzantine emperor Nicephorus II for an alliance between the Eastern and Western empires. Luxembourg (Ger. "Lucilinburhuc" = small castle) in W Europe E of Belgium, N of France, and W of Germany with the heavy Ardennes Forest in the N) is founded by Count Siegfried of Ardennes, producing its first king of Germany in 1308. William III abdicates and enters Saint-Syprien Abbey in Poitiers, and his son William IV (Fierebras) (Fierebrace) (Iron Arm) (937-94) becomes duke of Aquitaine and count of Poitou (until 994), going on to get into fights with the counts of Anjou. Architecture: The Great Lavra Monastery on the SE side of Mt. Athos is begun by by St. Athanasios of Trebizond (Athanasius the Athonite) (920-1003) using funds from the will of his friend Byzantine emperor Nikephoros II Phokas. The first recorded existence of a wooden London Bridge dates to this year; replaced by a stone bridge in 1176-1209. Nonfiction: Abd al-Rahman al-Sufi (903-86), Book of Fixed Stars; mentions a nebula (Andromeda). Births: Norman duke #4 (996-1027) Richard II (the Good) (d. 1027) on Aug. 23; son of Richard I the Fearless (933-96) and Gunnora ((936-1031); husband (1024-) of Popie (Papie). Deaths: French duke of Aquitaine (959-63) William III (b. 915) on Apr. 3.
964 On May 14 after being found guilty in absentia of incest, adultery, and murder, and excommunicated, Pope (since 955) John XII dies from the effects of a beating at the hands of a man who eight days earlier found him in bed with his wife (bashed in the head with a hammer?); when the news reaches Rome, they consider him to be lucky to die in bed, even though not his own?; on Mar. 1 the Romans expel Antipope Leo VIII, and on May 22 elect Benedictus Grammaticus Pope (#133) Benedict V (-965); Otto I marches on Rome and captures Benedict V on June 23, then takes him to Hamburg. On Oct. 25 after army of 40K Armenians, Thracians, and Slavs sent by Byzantine emperor Nicephorus II Phocas captures Messina in Sicily, the Muslim Kalbids under Abu al-Qasim defeat them, killing 10K Christians. Berengar II surrenders to Otto I's forces, and is imprisoned in Bamberg, Germany for life, while his wife Willa is put into a Germany nunnery for life. Igor dies, and his son (by wife Olga) Sviatoslav (Svyatoslav) I (942-72) (first Russian ruler with a Slavic name, sugesting absorption) becomes prince of Kievan Russia, going on to become the first great Russian conqueror, known for his barbarian hair style consisting of shaved head with a single side sprig of hair, requiring his men to BBQ their meat and sleep out in the open using their horse blanket and saddle. The New Mayan Empire begins (ends c. 1191). Silver and copper mines in the Harz Mts. of Germany begin to be worked. Monasticism revives in England after the Danish wars. Architecture: The Church of St. Stephen on the Romanesque Road in Waldau (modern-day Bernburg), Germany is first mentioned.
965 A famine is recorded in Ireland. In 965-1065 the first settlement of the Hawaiian Islands is made, producing 28 generations of Hawaiian royalty by 1865. On Mar. 1 Antipope (since 963) Leo VIII dies; on July 4 Pope (since 964) Benedict V dies in Hamburg, and on Oct. 1 John Crescenzi, bishop of Narni is elected Pope (#134) John XIII (-972), going on to try to best Pope John XII (by 1 inch?) with his adulterous exploits, incl. with his father's concubine and his own niece, hanging a city prefect by the hair from the big bronze statue of Marcus Aurelius. The Byzantine Empire recovers Cyprus and Cilicia. Sviatoslav I of Kiev defeats the half-dead Khazar Khaganate on the lower Volga River and establishes a Russian state in their place by 969; he also defeats a number of wild tribes incl. the Kasogians, Vyatichians, and Yasians. King Dub (Duib) of Scotland defeats an attack headed by rival Culen Hringr. Rometta 7 mi. W of Messina and 110 mi. E of Palermo becomes the last Italian city in Sicily to fall to the Muslims, who rebuild it in 976 and populate it with Muslim families, protected by the Arabic fortress of Ramth; they completely control Sicily until 1061, and are ousted by 1091. Emma of Italy (948-88), daughter of Lothair II and St. Adelaide of Italy marries West Frankish king Lothair III (941-986), becoming the last Carolingian queen consort of the Western Franks, going on to bear son Louis V of France (b. 967). Piast duke (since 960) Mieszko I of Poland marries Czech Premyslid princess Doubravka (Dobrava) (Dobrawa) of Bohemia (940-77), daughter of Boleslas I the Cruel of Bohemia, and gets baptized next year. Dunstan enforces celibacy for English clerics - quit flogging that bishop? The English invade the Celtic kingdom of Gwynedd. The city of Cracow (Krakow) (Krak's town) (modern-day pop. 767K/1.73M), named after (mythical?) Krakus (Krak) (Grakch), ruler of the Lechitians is first mentioned as a major commercial center captured from Moravia by Bohemian duke Boleslaus I in 955, after which Polish king (960-92) Mieszko I incorporates it into his Piast Dynasty holdings near the end of his reign; in 1038 it becomes the Polish capital; it is granted city rights on June 5, 1257. Nonfiction: Widukind of Corvey (925-74), Res Gestae Saxonicae Sive Annalium (Deeds of the Saxons) (3 vols.); covers Saxony's earliest history through the times of Henry the Fowler (876-936) and HRE Otto I the Great (912-73). Births: Chinese poet Lin Pu (Ch'un Fu) (d. 1026). Arab (Persian?) scientist (Muslim) ("the Second Ptolemy") ("Father of Modern Optics") Alhazen (Abu Ali al-Hasan ibn al-Hasan ibn al-Haytham) (al-Basri) (d. 1038) in Basra; moves to Cairo, where he promises to control the Nile River, fails, and fakes insanity to survive and continue his scientific researches. Deaths: German archbishop of Cologne (953-65) Bruno I the Great (b. 925) on Oct. 11 in Reims. Arab poet Abu Tayyeb al-Mutanabi (b. 915) (murdered); leaves poems extolling the virtues of his ruler Sayf al-Dawla of Syria.
966 On Dec. 19 king (since 956) Sancho I the Fat (b. 932) is poisoned, and his 5-y.-o. son Ramiro III (961-85) becomes king of Leon (until 984), with mother Teresa Ansurez being put in a convent while his aunt Elvira Ramirez takes the title of queen-regent; after a peace treaty with caliph al-Hakam II expires, the Cordobans resume attacks on his realm; meanwhile when he reaches the age of majority and marries Sancha, daughter of Count Gomez of Saldana, he decides to become an absolutist monarch, pissing-off Galicia and Castile and causing them to fight for independence. Otto I makes a third expedition to Italy against the Byzantines in Apulia, then punishes the Romans; on Aug. 6 King Berengarius II of Italy dies. Prince Mieszko I (922-92) accepts Christianity under German pressure, being converted by his wife Dobrava and baptized; he establishes the first Polish state, founding the Piast Dynasty (ends 1370), and conquers the territory between the Oder and Warthe Rivers. Dub is KIA in Moray (in a clan war?), and Cuilen (Cuilén) (Culenring) (Cuilean) Hringr (-971), son of Idulb becomes undisputed king of Alba (Scotland) (until 971). Infant Fujiwara no Michinga (966-1028) becomes emperor of Japan (until 1027), and the Fujiwara family reaches its height; he becomes the father of three empresses and the grandfather of four emperors. Otto I grants Bremen the right to hold markets. Architecture: Worcester Cathedral is founded by St. Oswald; it starts out as a minster or monastery church, and a cent. later Wulstan rebuilds it. Deaths: Italian king (950-61) Berengar II of Ivrea (b. 900) on Aug. 4 in Bamberg Castle, Nordgau, Germany. Spanish Leon king (956-66) Sancho I the Fat (b. 932) on Dec. 19 (poisoned).
967 On July 15 duke (since 935) Boleslaus I the Cruel (b. 915) dies after cruelly conquering Moravia, part of Slovakia and Slovenia, and Cracow (Krakow) (on the Vistula), and his Christian son Boleslaus (Boleslav) II the Pious (920-99) (an ancestor of U.S. pres. Bush?) becomes Premyslid duke of Bohemia (until 999). Otto I's son Otto II "the Red" (Rufus) (955-83) is crowned co-emperor in Rome, and asserts his suzerainty over Capua and Benevento, ordering Pandulf I Ironhead to start a war against the Byzantines in Apulia. After being called in by the Byzantine emperor and given 1.5K lbs. of gold, Sviatoslav I of Kiev campaigns succesfully against the Bulgars, and decides to move into Little Preslav (Pereslavyets) in the Dobrudja on the Lower Danube, extending his domain from Novgorod in the N to the Danube in the SW and the Lower Volga in the SE; too bad, while he's wintering in Little Preslav, the Pechenegs siege Kiev, causing him to have to rush back to drive them out. The Buyids conquer Kerman and Oman. Cuilean Mac Iduilb (-971) becomes king of Scotland, going on to build a rep as a bad dude. Count Borrell II of Barcelona visits the monastery of Aurillac, and takes Gerbert of Aurillac back with him to learn mathematics. To have a new Roman Empire, you have to have a court of learned time-wasters? Otto I learns to read (but not speak ) Latin, and in partnership with his Greek-speaking brother Archbishop Bruno of Cologne begins the Ottonian Renaissance a la Charlemagne, setting up a cosmopolitan court, with a lit, circle of learned Greeks, Italians, English, and Irish, incl. Liutprand of Cremona, Widukind of Corvey, Roswitha of Gandersheim, and Ekkekard of St. Gall's Abbey in Switzerland (which has a huge library of 600 vols.). Births: Western Frankish Carolingian king (last) (986-87) Louis V (the Sluggard) (the Do-Nothing) (Le Faineant) (d. 987); son of king Lothair of France; grandson of Louis IV. Persian Arabic "Maqamat" poet ("Prodigy of the Age") Ahmad Badi' al-Zaman al-Hamadhani (d. 1007) in Hamedan; founder of the maqamat literary genre of dramatic rhymed anecdotes. Polish king (992-1025) (Roman Catholic) Boleslav (Boleslaus) (Boleslaw) I Chrobry (the Brave) (the Mighty) (the Great) (d. 1025) in Poznan; eldest son of Mieszko I (930-92) and Dobrawa of Bohemia (940-77). French duke of Lorraine (1023-44) Gothelo (Gozelo) I (the Great) (d. 1044); youngest son of Count Godfrey I of Verdun (-1002) and Matilda Billung (daughter of Duke Herman of Saxony). Deaths: Muslim poet-socialite Abu al-Faraj Ali al-Isfahani (b. 897) in Baghdad; leaves Book of Songs (Kitab al-Aghani), the #1 source of info. on Muslim pop culture? Bohemian duke (935-67) Boleslaus I the Cruel (b. 915) on July 15. Syrian Hamdanid ruler Sayf al-Dawla (b. 916) on Feb. 9 in Aleppo. Japanese emperor #62 (946-67) Murakami (b. 926) on May 25. Persian Buyid emir #1 of Iraq (945-67) (Shiite Muslim) Mui'izz al-Dawla (b. 1915) on Apr. 8 in Iraq.
968 The Byzantines begin the capture of Antioch from the Muslims (ends 969). Sviatoslav I of Kiev repulses the Turkic Patzinaks (Pechenegs), who after being roused by Bulgarian Tsar Peter enter S Russia from the E and attack Kiev; Sviatoslav I then tells his mother Olga a few days before she dies that he wants to move the capital to Little Preslav (Pereyaslavets) (Preslavets) (Presthlavitza) on the mouth of the Danube River, and returns to Bulgaria, only to find that the Byzantines have flopped and don't want them any more. In 968 C.E. the Irish of the Dal Cais under Brian Boru defeat the Vikings of Limerick under Ivar of Limerick (-977) at the Battle of Sulcoit in County Tipperary, then burn Limerick the next day, marking the end of Norse expansion in Ireland; in 970 Mathgamain mac Cennetig (Cennétig), elder brother of Brian Boru deposes Munster king (since 959) Mael (Máel) Muad (Molloy) mac Brain (-978), becoming king of Munster until 976, when he is KIA. Dinh Bo Ling (925-79) founds the Red River, Black River kingdom of Dai Co Viet near the S rim of the Red River plain in Vietnam, with capital at Hoa-lu. Cordoba U. in Spain is founded. Magdeburg becomes an archbishopric, consolidating the Slavic bishoprics of Brandenburg, Merseburg, Meissen, and Zeitz. The first bishopric is created in Poland in Poznan under Bishop Jordan. HRE Otto I sends Bishop Liutprand of Cremona on a mission to Byzantine emperor Nicephorus Phocas; he writes the report Mission to Constantinople. Births: English ninny king (978-1013, 1014-16) Ethelred (OE "noble counsel") (Aethelred) II (the Redeless) (the Unready) (the Devoid of Counsel) (the Ill-Advised) (d. 1016) in Wessex; son of Edgar I (943-75) and 2nd wife Aelfthryth (945-1000); half-brother of Edward II the Martyr (962-78); father of Edmund II Ironside (988-1016); his mommy beats him with wax candles, causing a lifelong aversion to them? Roman Byzantine emperor #142 (1028-34) Romanus II Argyrus (Romanos II Argyros) (d. 1034); husband of Zoe Porphyrogenita (978-1050). English Saxon cradle-robbing noble Leofric III, Earl of Mercia (d. 1057); husband of Lady Godiva (990-1067). Deaths: Arab Abbasid caliph #21 (940-4) Al-Muttaqi (b. 908) in July.
969 The Byzantines capture Antioch and the N Syrian coast (until 1084); the Hamdanid emirate of Aleppo contracts to the city, and its hinterland becomes a Byzantine satellite by the end of the cent.; on Dec. 10/11 emperor (since 963) Nicephorus II Phocas (b. 912) is murdered in his bedchamber by assassins working for his wife Theophano's lover John I Tzimisces (925-76), who succeeds him as Roman Byzantine emperor #139 (until Jan. 10, 976), proving a good military leader as well as lover?; Nicephorus II leaves the military tactics treatise Praecepta Militaria. In Dec. Landulf III dies, and his nephew (Pandulf I's son) Landulf IV (-982) becomes prince of Capua and Benevento. Ivarr of Limerick reconquers Limerick - relicks it? Count Borrell II of Barcelona travels to Rome this year and next to meet with Pope John XIII and HRE Otto I in order to reorganize the ecclesiastical structure of Catalonia and reinstate the archdiocese of Tarragona; the pope persuades Otto I to employ Borrell II's charge Gerbert of Aurillac as tutor for his young son Otto II. The Shiite Ismaili Fatimids under gen. Gawhar al-Siqilli (928-93) extend their N African empire by invading and conquering Ikhshidid-controlled Egypt, then set their sights on Syria, taking Jerusalem and burning the Dome of the Holy Sepulchre, founding the Ism'ili Shiite Egyptian Fatimid Dynasty (ends 1171), denying the legitimacy of the Sunni Abbasid caliphate and wanting to be numero uno, eventually controlling Egypt, N Africa, the Hijaz, and most of Syria; Janhar el-Kaid founds the new capital of Cairo (al-Qahirah) ("the Conqueror") (modern-day pop. 9.5M/20.4M) 3 mi. N of the old capital of Fustat (founded 641) (which was taken on Aug. 5), although the latter remains the center of pop., commerce, and industry; the Qaramitas take advantage of the fall of the Ikhshidids and seize control of S Syria. The king of Nubia refuses payment of tribute required by the 651 nonagression treaty with the Arabs, and refuses a demand to convert to Islam; Nubia holds out against Islam until the 14th cent. Architecture: The Fatimid Style in Syrian-Egyptian architecture begins (ends 1170) - what happens in Cairo stays in Cairo? Births: Norwegian king (995-1000) Olaf I Tryggvasson (Tryggvesson) (d. 1000). French duke of Aquitaine and count of Poitou (990-1030) William V (the Great) (le Grand) (d. 1030); son of William IV Fierebras (937-94) and Emma (daughter of Theobald I of Blois). Hungarian king (997-1038) and HRE (1001-38) (Roman Catholic) (St.) Stephen (the Great) (d. 1038) in Esztergom; son of Duke Geza (-997) and Sarolt; pagan birth name Vajk; baptized in 972. Deaths: Russian princess St. Olga of Kiev (b. 890) on July 11 in Kiev. Roman Byzantine emperor #138 (963-9) Nicephorus II Phocas (b. 912) on Dec. 10/11 in Constantinople (assassinated in his sleeping quarters by a conspiracy led by his nephew John Tzimiskes).
970 On Jan. 30 Bulgarian tsar (since 927) Peter I, after suffering a stroke and abdicating to become a monk dies, and his eldest surviving son (by Byzantine emperor Romanos I Lakapenos' granddaughter Maria or Eirene) Boris II (931-77) (who ruled since last year) becomes tsar of Bulgaria (until 977). On Mar. 25 (Good Friday) the Feast of the Annunciation and Good Friday fall on the same day, causing Lotharingian scholars to compute that this must be the date on which Adam was created, Isaac was sacrified, the Red Sea was parted, Jesus was conceived and crucified, and therefore the Big Day when he comes again; since this will happen again in 992, guess what? In Mar. after invading and sending a message "I come upon you", the 50K-man Russian army of Sviatoslav I of Kiev is defeated by a 12K-man Byzantine Greek army under Bardas Skleros (Sclerus) at the Battle of Arcadiopolis (60 mi. W of Constantinople), and driven out of the Balkans. King (since 925) Garcia Sanchez I (b. 919) dies, and his son Sancho II Garces (Garcés) Abarca (Sp. "sandal") (936-94) becomes king of Aragon and Pamplona (until 994), going on to use the title of king of Navarre in 987 for the first time ever; on his succession he recognizes his younger brother Ramiro Garces (Garcés) (-981) as king of the new independent kingdom of Viguera in La Rioja (until 981); Viguera is reunited with Pamplona in 1005. John I Zimisces transplants a colony of Paulicians and Jacobites from the Chalybian Hills in Armenia to Mt. Haemus in Thrace, where the Paulicians gain control of Philippopolis, and establish villages and castles in Macedonia and Epirus, later spreading to Albigeois in S France. Architecture: Al-Azhar (Arab. "most resplendent") Mosque in Cairo, Egypt is built by the Fatimids, becoming the first mosque in Cairo, churning out Shiite propaganda until 1171, when it is turned into Al-Azhar U., which becomes the #1 Sunni religious college. St. Laurence Church in Bradford-on-Avon (rare Saxon design) is built on a site where St. Adelhelm first founded a church around 700. About this time the Romanesque Gero Crucifix (Cross), commissioned by Cologne archbishop (969-76) Gero (900-76) in the Cologne Cathedral becomes the first monumental crucifix in N Europe, and the oldest to survive to modern times, becoming the first great example of the revival of large sculpture since Roman times. About this time Chinese architect Yu Hao writes Mu Jing (Timberwork Manual), which is later lost. Births: German pope #1 (996-9) Gregory V (d. 999). German Roman Catholic missionary bishop ("the Second Apostle of the Old Prussians") (St.) Bruno of Querfurt (d. 1009) in Querfurt, Saxony; relative of HRE Otto III?; feast day: Oct. 15. Icelandic Viking explorer Leif (pr. LAYF) (Leifr) (Leifur) (the Lucky) Ericsson (Ericson) (Erikson) (Eriksson) (d. 1020) in Iceland; son of Erik the Red (950-1003). German archbishop (999-1021) (St.) Heribert of Cologne (d. 1021) in Wurms; feast day: Mar. 16. Egyptian Fatimid regent (1021-3) (Shiite Muslim) Sitt al-Mulk (d. 1023) in Cairo; daughter of Fatimid caliph #5 Nizar al-Aziz Billah and a Christian Byzantine slave; aunt of Fatimid caliph #7 Ali az-Zahir. Mathematician-astronomer Abu Nasr Mansur (d. 1036) in Uzbekistan. French count of Anjou (987-1040) (founder of the Angevin Dynasty) Fulk III (Foulque Nerra) (the Black) (d. 1040); son of Geoffrey I Greymantle of Anjou (938-87) and Adelaide of Meaux (950-80) (daughter of Robert of Vermandois). Norse king of Dublin (989-1036) Sigtrygg (Sitric) (Sihtric) (Sitrick) (Sigtryg) (Sigtryggr) II Silkbeard Olafsson (d. 1042) in Dublin; Norse father, Irish mother. Deaths: Italian queen consort Willa of Tuscany (b. 911) in Germany; dies captive in a nunnery. Italian Jewish scholar Shabbathai ben Abraham (b. 913). Spanish Jewish scholar Hasdai Ibn Shaprut (b. 915) in Cordoba. Spanish king of Pamplona (931-70) Garcia Sanchez I (b. 970). Spanish count Ferdinand Gonzales of Castile (b. 930).
971 In Apr. Byzantine emperor John I Zimisces attacks the rushing Russians by land and sea, takes and destroys Little Preslav, then attacks Dorystolum (Dristra) (Silistra) on the Lower Danube River, blockading it until they skoot out of Bulgaria; Tsar Boris II is captured along with his family, and forced to abdicate, and the Bulgarian patriarchate is abolished, scaring the Byzantines into sending an army against him. Cuilean and his brother Eochaid are killed in a hall-burning in Lothian by Rhydderch (Amdarch), son of King Dyfnwal of Strathclyde for abducting and raping Rhydderch's daughter, and Dub's younger brother Kenneth (Cinaed) (Cinadius) II Mac Malcolm (the Fratricide) (932-95) becomes king of Alba (Scotland) (until 995), launching a plundering raid into Strathclyde to reward his supporters; meanwhile Olaf Mac Constantine (-977) vies for the throne. Births: Afghan Sunni Muslim Ghaznavid emir #1 (998-1002) and sultan #1 (1002-30) Mahmud of Ghazni (Ghazna) (Mahmud-i Zabuli) (Yamin ud-Dawla Abul-Qasim Mahmud ibn Sebuktegin) (d. 1030) in Nov. in Ghazna; first to use the title of sultan ("authority").
972 On Apr. 14 Otto I's son Otto II marries Byzantine princess Theophano (Theophana) (Theophania) (Theophanu) (956-91), niece of John I Tzimiskes, who goes on to introduce Greek language and culture to his court. On Sept. 6 after introducing the custom of blessing and the naming of bells, Pope (since 965) John XIII is murdered by a husband who catches him doing his wife. Byzantine emperor John I Zimisces conquers E Bulgaria, causing the Bulgarian capital to be moved to Skopje in Macedonia (until 992). Prince Taksony (b. 931) dies, and his son Geza (Gejza) (945-97) becomes grand prince #5 of Hungary, selecting Esztergom (ancient Roman town of Strigonium) (35 mi. NW of modern-day Budapest) as his capital, and going on to cruelly reduce the pagan tribal leaders and convert to Christianity under the name Stephen, making peace with the HRE in return for support of Christian missionaries. While en route to Kiev via the Dnieper River, Sviatoslav I is ambushed and killed by the Petchenegs, and his head turned into a cup; the Byzantines promised to arrange safe passage, and stabbed him in the back?; he gives his son Yaropolk I (958-980) rule of Kiev, his middle son Oleg (-977) rule of Derevlya, and his youngest son (St.) Vladimir I (958-1015) rule of Novgorod; too bad, Yaropolk defeats and kills Oleg, causing Vladimir to flee to Sweden, leaving Yaropolk in his sole control, and Vladimir begins a long fight for the throne of Kiev (ends 980). Kenneth II of Scotland invades England. A great fire in Baghdad kills 17K, many of them Jews, who sometime in this cent. begin to be forced to wear yellow badges, later copied by the Nazis. The Poles under Duke Mieszko I and his brother Czcibor win the Battle of Cedynia (Cydzyna) (Zehden) in W Pomeriania again Hodon, German margrave of Lusatia, becoming the first recorded battle in Poland. N Africa is freed from Egypt by Cordoba, and the Fatimids relocate their capital to Egypt, reliquishing their N African possessions to the Zayrids (Zirids), who become govs., starting with Buluggin (Bologhine) ibn Ziri (-984), gradually going Sunni by the 1040s, and breaking away from the Shiite-eating Flies, er, Shiite Fatimids, and founding the Zirid (Zayrid) Dynasty in Ifriqiya in N Africa (ends 1148). Dinh Bo Ling of Vietnam sends his son to China to establish relations and obtain recognition. Architecture: The Second Church of Peterborough in England is built (first 655). Sancho II of Pamplona founds the Monastery of San Andres de Ciruena. Births: French king (996-1031) Robert II (the Pious) (the Wise) (d. 1031) on Mar. 27 in Orleans; son of Hugh Capet and Adelaide of Aquitaine; father of Henry I, Countess Hedwig of Nevers, Hugh Magnus, Countess Adela of Flanders, and Duke Robert I of Burgundy. Spanish count of Barcelona (992-1017) Ramon Borrell (Raymond Borrel) (d. 1017); son of Borrell II (-992) and 1st wife Letgarda de Rouergue (granddaughter of Raymond Pons of Toulouse); brother of Ermengol I (974-1010). Islamic Sunni jurist Abu al Hassan Ali Ibn Muhammad Ibn Habib al-Mawardi (d. 1058) in Basra. Deaths: Hungarian grand prince #4 Taksony (b. 931). Russian Kievan prince Sviatoslav I (b. 942).
973 On Jan. 19 Benedict of St. Theodore, son of Hildebrand is elected Pope (#135) Benedict VI (-974). On May 7 HRE Otto I the Great (b. 912) dies, and his son Otto II (b. 955) becomes sole HRE and king of Germany (until Dec. 7, 983). Edgar the Peaceable's son Aelfthryth is crowned at Bath, becoming the first English king's wife given the title of queen (cwen). A conference of British kings is held at Chester, and Edgar I recognizes the claims of Kenneth II of Scotland to Lothian (and Cumberland?) in return for recognizing his N frontier. Mieszko I of Poland is defeated by Markgraf Gero and forced to recognize German suzerainty. The Umayyads of Cordoba, Spain invade Morocco and decisively defeat the Fatimids, ruling indirectly through local factions until the late 11th cent., the most powerful being the Zanatas (Zenata) in the NE. The town of Torgau on the Elbe River in E Germany is first mentioned. The bishopric of Prague is founded, signalling the final V of the Christian faith in Bohemia, which sends missionaries to Hungary and Poland. Architecture: Deccan sculpture and architecture are revived in India. Births: German Saxon king #5 (1002-24), Italian king (1004-24), and HRE (1014-24) (St.) Henry (the Saint) (d. 1024) on May 6; son of Duke Henry II the Wrangler of Bavaria (951-55) and Gisela of Burgundy (952-1006) (niece of St. Adelaide); 2nd cousin of Otto III: last Saxon king of Germany. Japanese novelist-poet (baron) Lady Shikibu Murasaki (d. 1031) in Kyoto; member of the Fujiwara family; father is a provincial gov. and scholar, who discovers her outlearning her brother and tells her "If only you were a boy, how happy I should be", then allowing her to learn verboten Chinese. Persian #1 superbrain mathematician-physicist-astronomer-historian-geographer-poet (Shiite Muslim) (agnostic?) ("the Sheik") Abu al-Rayhan Muhammad ibn Ahmad al-Biruni (al-Beruni) (d. 1048) near Khiva, Uzbekistan; pupil of Abu Nasr Mansur; goes to India in 1001-17, then spends his last years in Ghazni, Afghanistan (1018-48). Arab blind philosopher-poet ("the Eastern Lucretius") Abu al'-Ala' al-Ma'arri (d. 1057) in Ma'arrat al-Nu'man, Syria; a freethinking Rationalist, he denounces Islam and its Big Black Cube-kissing cult as moose hockey without getting decapitated? Deaths: German king (936-73) and HRE (962-73) Otto I the Great (b. 912) on May 7.
974 The earliest authenticated earthquake occurs in Britain. The Charter of Castrojeriz recognizes Jews and Christians in Spain as having equal rights - everybody is Kung Fu walking? Roman adherents of self-styled Roman patrician John Crescentius II Numentatus (of the Marble Horse) (-998), son of Theodora, and brother of Pope John XIII stir up an insurrection in Rome, throw Pope Benedict VI into prison in Castel Sant'Angelo, and in June create Franco as Antipope Boniface VII (-985); Benedict VI dies in prison in July, and Boniface VII loots the treasury of the Vatican Basilica and flees to Constantinople; in Oct. Pope (#136) Benedict VII (-983) is elected. Prince Geza of Hungary invites German missionary Pilgrin (Pilgrim) of Passau (-991). Al-Muti dies, and Al-Ta'i (932-1003) succeeds him as Abbasid caliph (until 991). Births: Spanish count of Urgell #1 (992-1010) Ermengol (Armengol) I (de Cordoba) (d. 1010); 2nd son of Borrell II (-992) of Barcelona and 1st wife Letgarda de Rouergue (granddaughter of Raymond Pons of Toulouse); brother of Ramon Borrell (972-1017); father of Ermengol II (1004-38). Vietnamese Later Ly Dynasty founder-ruler (1009-28) Ly Thai To (Ly Cong Uan) (Trieu Dien) (d. 1028) in Co Phap, Dinh Bang, Tu Son, Bac Ningh Province. Deaths: Iraqi philosopher Yahya ibn 'Adi (b. 893). German Saxon historian Widukind of Corvey (b. 925).
975 Emperor John I Zimisces captures Beirut. Sancho II of Pamplona is defeated by the Moors at the Battle of San Esteban de Gormaz. On July 8 Edgar I the Peaceful (b. 843) dies (peacefully?), without acknowledging an heir, causing the kingdom to become divided by supporters of his two sons, but with the support of archbishops Dunstan and Oswald of Worcester the eldest son (St.) Edward (Eadweard) II the Martyr (962-78) succeeds him as the 13th English monarch (of Wessex) (until 978); too bad, a comet and famine during his reign causes factions of greedy nobles to almost start a civil war and dispossess the reformed Benedictine monasteries of lands and properties granted to them by Edgar I (the "anti-monastic reaction"), and weak king Edward II doesn't last long, all of which causes the Anglo-Saxon regime in England to begin its downward slide to the nearest 666 in sight, 1066. Count William of Arles captures Garde-Freinet (on the Gulf of St. Tropez) from the Arabs. Nanking is captured by the Song Empire under Zhao Guoyi, and Li Yiu is exiled to the new capital of Kaifeng, where he is given the degrading title of "disobedient marquis", then poisoned in 978. The bishoprics of Prague and Olomouc are founded. The first known record of a person with the surname Smith (OE "metalworker") is Ecceard Smith of County Durham, NE England. Architecture: The Ottonian sandstone Mainz Cathedral in Germany is begun by Willigis, who wants to turn Mainz into the "second Rome", and takes over the functions of St. Alban's Church; it is dedicated to St. Martin of Tours on Aug. 29, 1009, and it is rebuilt by 1037. The Thunder Pagoda in China is built. Inventions: Arabs bring arithmetical notation to Europe. Births: German bishop-chronicler Thietmar (Dietmar) (Dithmar) of Merseburg (d. 1018) on July 25; educated at Quedlinburg and Magdeburg. Indian sage Abhinavagupta (d. 1025) in Kashmir; originates the theory of rasa (vital juice or sap). Bohemian duke (1013-34) Oldrich (Ulrich) (d. 1034); son of Boleslaus II (920-99); brother of Boleslaus III (d. 1037) and Jaromir (-1035). Deaths: English king Edgar I (b. 943) on July 8 in Winchester, Wessex; buried in Glastonbury Abbey. Korean king Kwangjong (b. ?).
976 On Jan. 10 after announcing plans to curb the power of landowners, emperor (since Dec. 11, 969) John I Tzimisces (b. 925) dies (poisoned?), and brilliant but short and stocky Basil II (the Young) (Porphyrogenitus) (Bulgaroktonos) (Bulgaroctonus) (the Bulgar Slayer) (958-1025) (son of Romanus II) becomes Byzantine emperor #140 (until Dec. 15, 1025), fighting a civil war for over a decade to solidify his power; under him the empire reaches its height of power and last golden age, cementing a marriage alliance with Vladimir of Kiev, and esp. enjoying the kicking of Bulgar butt along with a little Fatimid and Armenian butt, travelling with his men to the field and eating their rations to show he's one of them; until 1025 he shares power with his younger brother (tall and slender, but a pampered snob?) Constantine VIII (960-1028), who fritters away all he gains?; being too young to want to mess things up, Basil at first devotes himself to his studies, letting the eunuch chief minister (947-85) Basil Lekapenos (Parakoimomenos) (Nothos) (the Bastard) (925-85) (illegitimate son of Romanus I Lekapenos, and pres. of the senate since 945) run things, and when he graduates magnum cum laude he cures the problem John I and Nicephorus II had with being able administrators, firing and exiling Basil in 985; meanwhile the Bulgarians begin raiding Byzantine lands, becoming a thorn in their side until 1014-18. On Oct. 16 Al-Hakam II (b. 915) dies, and with the help of future real ruler Abu Aamir Muhammad Ibn Abdullah Ibn Abi Aamir Al-Hajib Al-Mansur (938-1002), his 10-y.-o. son Hisham II (966-1013) becomes Umayyad caliph #10 of Cordoba (until 1009), which passes its cultural prime, but still has plenty of military punch left to crush the pesky Iberian Christian kingdoms. On Nov. 14 emperor (since Feb. 960) Song Tai Zu (b. 927) dies, and Song Tai Zong (Guang Yi) (939-97) becomes Bei (Northern) Song emperor #2 of China (until May 8, 997). Brian Boru (Boruma) (940-1014) succeeds his brother Mahon as king of the Dalcassians (Dal Cais) based on the River Shannon in Munster, becoming a rival to the Ui Neills and going on to conquer Dublin, Leinster, and all of Ireland. Duke Henry II the Wrangler of Bavaria is defeated and dethroned by HRE Otto II, and Bavaria loses Carinthia and Verona; Otto III gives Bavaria to Duke Otto I of Swabia, and Carinthia to Henry III the Younger, becoming the first newly created duchy of the Holy Roman Empire, stretching from the Adriatic Sea almost to the Danube River, which only whets the latter's appetite for his daddy's entire kingdom? Leopold (Luitpold) (Liutpold) I (the Illustrious) (-994) becomes margrave of Austria, founding the House of Babenberg (ends 1246). Samuel (Samuil) I (-1014), son of a gov. of a W district unaffected by the Russian invasian declares himself tsar of Bulgaria (until Oct. 6, 1014), telling the Byzantines to knock the chip off his shoulder? Abul Hasan Ali ibn al-Hasan Fakhr al-Dawla (Arab. "pride of the dynasty") (-997) becomes Buyid emir of Jibal, followed in 984 by Hamadan, Gurgan, and Tabaristan. The original Kill Bill? Esato (Gudit, Gwedit, Yodit, Judith), Jewish queen of Axum in modern-day N Ethiopia suppresses the Christians. Architecture: It's not your grandfather's Doge? St. Mark's Cathedral (founded 828) in Venice next to the Doge's Palace burns down during a revolt when a mob locks Pietro IV Candiano inside and torches it, and it is rebuilt in 978; a new basilica is begun by Peter Orseolo II 1063, finished in 1092, and consecrated in 1095 after St. Mark's body is allegedly discovered in a pillar in 1094 by Doge Vitale Faliero, using Byzantine and Lombard artisans, with a gen. plan modeled after Justinian's Church of the Holy Apostles in Constantinople of a Greek cross with a dome over the center and each arm, going on to become the richest cathedral in Italy ("the cathedral of gold"), with colored marble mosaics in bold background, four bronze horses over the doors of the central arched portal (either from the triumphal arch of Nero at Rome or the 1204 sack of Constantinople), the Campanile (Bell Tower) of St. Mark's Cathedral (collapses in 1902), and the Pala d'Oro (Golden Reredos) (Ital. "golden pall"), the retable of the high altar, containing 1.3K pearls, 400 garnets, 300 emeralds, and 300 sapphires (finished 1345), housing the relics of 1st cent. Jewish peasant St. Mark, which are lost in the fire but miraculously found again on the day of consecration when a pillar falls and reveals them; the yearly Long March on Easter sunrise, with everybody dressed in black after a week of carnivals is led by the Doge, crowned with jewels and wearing purple satins, followed by papal emissaries in white chasubles with jeweled miters, and accompanied by musicians playing lutes, flutes, and lyres, first going through the Porta della Carta door separating the Cathedral from the Ducal Palace, then making 16 stops along a figure-8 path along the Piazzetta and ending up in the Basilica; the 10th stop, the Castello Wall, contains the inscription "If a man could say and do what he thinks, He'd see how he might be transformed", beoming the oldest known inscription in Venetic - and I bet they still use Roman numerals? Nonfiction: Persian Muslim brain man Muhammad ibn Ahmad al-Khwarizmi (al-Balkhi) pub. Keys of the Sciences (Mafatih al-Ulum), which recommends using a little circle in calculations "to keep the rows"; the Arabic word "sifr" (empty) is translated into cipher, also zephyrum, which the Italians shorten to zero. The Codex Vigilanus (Albeldensis) illuminated ms. is completed in the Monastery of Abelda in Pamplona, becoming the earliest known Western ms. containing the Arabic numerals 1-9 (no zero), along with the canons of the Councils of Toledo and a copy of the Liber Judiciorum. Deaths: German archbishop of Cologne (969-76) Gero (b. 900) on June 29 in Cologne. Persian Buyid emir (935-76) (Shiite Muslim) Hasan Rukn al-Dawla (b. 915) Sept. in Rayy. Byzantine emperor #139 (969-76) John I Tzimiskes (b. 925) on Jan. 10 in Constantinople.
977 The War of the Three Henries (ends 978) sees Duke Henry II the Wrangler of Bavaria (son of Duke Henry I of Bavaria), Duke Henry III the Younger of Carinthia (son of Duke Berthold of Bavaria), and Bishop Henry I of Augsburg (-982) revolt against HRE Otto II, who allies with Duke Otto I of Swabia and Bavaria and sieges Passau, using a bridge of boats to capture it in Sept. Kenneth II kills his rival Olaf Mac Constantine. Ashot III dies, and his son Smbat II (-989) becomes king of Armenia (until 989). Boris II and his brother Roman (930-97), who had been castrated by the Byzantines are allowed to escape in hopes of causing a Bulgarian succession war, but Boris II is killed at the Bulgarian border before he can establish his identity; luckily, Roman makes it, and is recognized as titular (no balls, no throne?) co-emperor of Bulgaria with Samuel I (until 991). Arab scholar Ibn Hawqal describes Kabul as still under Buddhist control, with the Muslims controlling the single road into and out of the city. Muslim Chinese trader P'u-lu-shieh reaches Brunei, after which the surname Pu becomes a Muslim trademark. Births: Hungarian bishop of Csanad (1030-46) (St.) Gellert (Gellért) (Gerard) of Csnad (d. 1046) in Venice; born to a noble family. Deaths: Polish princess Doubravka (b. 940).
978 On Mar. 18 Edward II the Martyr (b. 962) is martyred at Corfe Castle in Dorset as he dismounts from his horse on the orders of his wicked stepmother Elfrida (Aelfthryth), who sees that her 10-y.-o. son (Edward II's brother) Ethelred (Aethelred) II (the Unready) (the Redeless) (the Devoid of Counsel) (the Ill-Advised) (968-1016) (who spends his wedding night in bed with his wife and mother-in-law?) is crowned king of Wessex at Kingston (14th monarch of England), going on to face Viking invaders (starting in 991) whom he tries to buy off (earning him the nickname)) and proving the most incompetent king of England until mad King George III?; he sets up the Wantage Code, containing rules for 12-men juries, who have to investigate the case themselves; Dunstan's public career is kaput and he retires to Canterbury; meanwhile Edward II spawns a cult at Shaftesbury Abbey, and becomes a saint in the Anglican, Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches - brilliant? On Easter Otto II punishes the Three Henries, banishing Duke Henry II the Wrangler of Bavaria and Duke Henry I of Carinthia, and imprisoning Bishop Henry I of Augsburg until July until he denounces the rebels and kisses foot; Bavaria is completely subdued, loses its SE marches incl. Austria, and is no longer the #1 stem duchy; Otto I of Worms (-1004), son of Duke Conrad the Red of Lorraine becomes duke of Carinthia; Henry II the Wrangler is placed under the custody of the bishop of Utrecht. After Lothair of the West Franks invades Lorraine, HRE Otto II drives them out, invades France, sacks Aix-la-Chapelle and reaches the walls of Paris, unsuccessfully sieging it; meanwhile Hugh Capet, in alliance with Otto II and aided by Gerbert of Reims eliminates Lothair's rule at Laon, causing him to renounce Lorraine, and ending the war. Molloy is defeated and KIA in the Battle of Belach Lechta (Leachta) by Brian Boru, who becomes king of Munster. Bagrat III (960-1014) becomes king of the Abkhazians, followed by king of Georgia in 1008 (until 1014). The Fatimids defeat Turkish and Qaramita forces in Palestine, then gain control of S Syria, expelling the Qaramita. Abu Aamir Mohammed ibn Abdullah ibn Abi Amir seizes power, making the new caliph Hisham II a prisoner in Medina Azahara, and becoming chief minister (caudillo) of the Umayyad caliphate of Cordoba (Al-Andalus) (until 1002) under the title of Hajib ("chancellor"), going on to build the new Medina Azahara (Madinat az-Zahra) (Al-Madina az-Zahira) ("shining city") Palace on the outskirts of Cordoba (finished 981), and carry out successful campaigns against the pesky Christians in Leon, Navarre, Pamplona in NW Spain, and Catalonia in NE Spain, while temporarily stopping the racial and religious separation plaguing Mauretania (W Africa). The Vikings raid Santiago de Compostela in the kingdom of Galicia (Leon). Earl Haakon (Hakon) Sigurdsson (the Bad) (-995) of Norway defeats King Ragnfrid (son of Erik Bloodaxe) in a Hazelled Field, becoming the last known reference to the practice - we now call it a cage match? Raymond III dies, and his son William (Guillaume) III Taillefer (Tallifer) (975-1037) becomes count of Toulouse (until Sept. 1037), also calling himself margrave, and going on to gain a bad rep for usurping church property. Nonfiction: The 1000-vol. Chinese Encyclopedia (Taiping Quangji) is begun (completed in 984). Births: German bishop of Strasbourg (1001-28) Werner I (d. 1028); eldest son of Lanzelin of Altenburg and Klettgau (son of Count Guntram of Breisgau) and Countess Lutgart of Nellenbourg (daughter of Count Eberhard of Thurgau); brother of Radbot of Klettgau (985-1045) and Rudolph I. German musical theorist and abbot (1008-) Berno of Reichenau (d. 1048); reformer of the Gregorian chant. Russian Kievan prince (1019-54) Yaroslav (Jaroslav) (Russ. "beauty of spring") I (the Wise) (d. 1054); son of St. Vladimir I (958-1015); brother of Sviatopolk I (980-1919), Yaroslav I (978-1054), Mstislav (-1036), Boris (-1015), and Gleb (-1015). Deaths: English king (975-8) Edward II the Martyr (b. 962) on Mar. 18 in Corfe Castle, Dorset (murdered); buried in Wareham without royal honors, then disinterred and found to be without decay, taken to Shaftesbury Abbey and reburied with a lavish ceremony next Feb. 18, and turned into a saint in 1001; his relics are hidden during Henry VIII's reign, and recovered in 1931, then put in the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia in Woking.
On June 8 King Lothair has his son Louis V (966-87)
crowned king of the West Franks at the Abbey of Saint-Corneille in Compiegne by Archbishop Adalbero of Reims.
The Buyids take Al Jazira (the region around Mosul) from the Hamdanids (until 990).
Emperor Basil II kicks the butt of rebel Asia Minor landowner Baras Skleros.
After conquering the lands of Musafirid ruler Ibraham I ibn Marzuban I in Azerbaijan, the
Rawwadid (Rawadid) (Ravvadid) (Revendi) (Rewend) Dynasty
of Kurdicized Arabs in Azerbaijan, centered around Tabriz and Maragheh is founded by Husain I (-988), son of Muhammad ibn Husain (-951) (ends 1071).
Le Hoan (941-1005),
CIC of the armies of Emperor Dinh Bo Linh hooks up with the queen mother, detrones and assassinates him and his son,
and proclaims himself king of Annam (Vietnam), then defeats a Chinese expeditionary force, promising them a
tribute every three years in exchange for peaceful relations, and founding the Early Le Dynasty (ends 1009),
becoming the first attempt to consolidate Vietnam incl. building a new road network.
980 On Jan. 6 the principality of Liege is officially created. Vladimir returns from Sweden to Novgorod with a Viking fleet, then marches to Kiev with a large army, inviting his elder brother Yaroslav to negotiate then having him stabbed by two men as he enters the door, and takes over as Grand Duke (St.) Vladimir I Sviatoslavovich the Great (958-1015) of Kiev, working to consolidate the Russian state from the Ukraine to the Baltic, first setting up idols of pagan gods Perun, Khors, Dazhbog, Stribog, Simargl, and Mokosh, then after the news that he's a fratricide gets around, flopping and deciding to convert it to the Orthodox (Constantinople) faith after converting in 988; under him Kievan Rus reaches its height of power, and begins a permanent partnership with the Byzantines. After the C Asian silver mines become exhausted, causing their Russian trade routes to collapse, dormant Danish Vikings wake up and again begin to sail their dragon ships to England in hopes of plunder, especially silver, attacking Chester, Southampton, and Thanet; the Vikings from Dublin under Ragnall (Reginald), son of ex-pagan Viking king of Dublin (since 945) Olaf Cuaran (927-81) (known for his love of pillaging churches before converting to Christianity in the 940s) are defeated by the Gaelic Irish of Meath under Malachy II (Mael Sechnaill mac Domnaill) (949-1022) at the Battle of Tara in Ireland, giving the Irish control of the kingdom of Dublin; Ragnall is KIA, and Olaf Curan gets Millennium Fever, abdicating and sailing to Iona in the Hebrides as a penitent, where he dies within a year; Malachy II takes Dublin in a 3-day siege and frees all the slaves, gaining a stronger hand in his rivalry with Munster king Brian Boru. The Buyids take Tabaristan. Geza becomes the first Magyar ruler of Hungary to accept Christianity. The rule of the nobles in Rome finally ends - a match seemingly made in caveman heaven? Architecture: The Monastery Church (Munster) of Cluny is built. Winchester Monastery in England installs a 400-pipe organ - for rockin'-in the millennium? Inventions: In this decade Canal (Pound) Locks are invented in China by Ciao Wei-Yo (Qiao Weiyo), who builds double dams between Anbei and Huaishi in 984. Nonfiction: The musical ms. Antiphonarium Codex Montpellier is written. The illuminated Egbert Codex (Codex Egbergi) is created for Archbishop Egbert of Trier (finished 993). Births: Japanese Yamato emperor #66 (986-1011) Ichijo (Kanehito) (d. 1011) on July 15 in Kyoto; only son of En'Yu (959-91). German king and HRE (983-1002) Otto III (d. 1002); son of Otto II (955-83) and Theophano. Italian pope #144 (1012-24) Benedict VIII (Count Theophylact of Tusculum) (d. 1024); son of Count Gregory of Tusculum; brother of Pope John XIX. Persian "The Canon of Medicine", "The Book of Healing" polymath physician-scholar-philosopher (Muslim) Abu Ali al-Hussain (al-Husayn) ibn Abdallah ibn Sina (Avicenna) (d. 1037); born to a Persian official. Austrian duke of Carinthia (1011-35) Adalbero of Eppenstein (d. 1039); son of Markward of Eppenstein, margrave of Styria and Hadmud of Ebersberg. Roman Byzantine emperor #146 (1055-6) Theodora (Gr. "gift of God") II (d. 1056) in Constantinople; daughter of Constanting VIII and Helena; sister of Zoe Porphyrogenita (978-1050). Deaths: Margrave Berthold of Bavaria (b. ?) dies, becoming the founder of the House of Wittelsbach in Bavaria (ends 1772) after his descendant Count Otto II of Dachau acquires Wittelsbach Castle near Aichach in 1119.
981 In Mar. Pandulf I Ironhead dies after establishing control over most of S Italy, and his Lombard principality is divided between his eldest son Landulf IV (-982), who receives Capua, Benevento and Spoleto, and his nephew Pandulf II the Old (-1014) (son of Landulf III), who receives Salerno; too bad, HRE Otto III steps in and gives Spoleto to Thrasimund, duke of Camerono and count of Penne, and gives Benevento to Pandulf, dividing Capua and Benevento, which had been united since 900. The Bulgarian War begins. Otto II and Hugh Capet sign an agreement, and Otto begins a campaign in S Italy to expel the Saracens and reduce the power of the Byzantines (ends 982). The Buyids take Gurgan, reaching their maximum territorial extent. Al-Mansur (Almanzor) (Abu Aamir Muhammad bin Abdullah ibn Abi Aamir, al-Hajib al-Mansur) of Cordoba (938-1002) crushes his last rival, his father-in-law Ghalib al-Nasiri, then assumes the title of "al-Mansur" (Almanzor) (Almansor), "the Victorious", and dedicates himself to crushing the Christians out of the Iberian Peninsula, eventually taking part in 57 campaigns, all victorious; too bad, he brings in Berber mercenaries, who get ideas and end up taking over; he starts out by destroying Zamora in Leon, deporting 4K POWs, after which Hisham II of Cordoba makes Leon a tributary; he then defeats Ramiro III of Leon, Garcia Fernandez of Castile, and Sancho II of Pamplona in the Battle of Rueda 7 mi. from Tordesillas, causing Ramiro III of Leon to abdicate, and Sancho II to travel personally to Cordoba bringing gifts to Mr. Victorious and arranging to marry his daughter Urraca the Basque (later called Abda) to him, after which she has son Abd al-Rahman Sanchuelo (983-1009), who becomes Caliph Hisham II's chief minister and later tries to usurp the Cordoban throne. Norwegian Viking leader (known for his red hair and/or temper) Eric (Erik) "the Red" Thorvaldsson (Porvaldsson) (950-1003) of Iceland, whose father Thorvald (Porvald) was exiled from Norway to Iceland for a killing, and who had already been driven from one part of the island for killing a neighbor, kills two of his neighbor's sons in a feud over wooden house beams, is convicted of manslaughter and banned from Iceland for three years along with his wife Tjodhilde (daughter of a wealthy islander). Songjong I (-997) becomes king of Korea (Koryo), moving the capital to Kaesong, and attempting to broaden the aristocratic order and make it more mobile. Nestorian monks visit China, and find no traces of a Christian community remaining. Architecture: The Al-Adudi Hospital (Bimaristan) in Baghdad is built; it is destroyed in the 1258 Mongol siege. Deaths: North African Muslim polymath scholar Ibn al-Tabban (b. 923). Norse king of Dublin (945-7, 952-80) Olaf Cuaran (b. 927) in Iona, Scotland; romanticized as Havelok the Dane.
982 On July 13/14 after occupying Naples, Salerno and Taranto, HRE Otto II and his Italian allies Landulf IV of Benevento et al. have their butts kicked royal at the Battle of Stilo (Cap Colonna) near Crotone (Pythagoras' ancient Croton) in Calabria, S Italy by the Muslim forces of Sicilian emir Abu al-Qasim; foot-kissing On Oct. 15 after the nobles of Galicia rebel against weak tyrant Ramiro III of Leon and proclaim Ordono III's son Bermudo (Vermudo) II the Gouty (953-99) as king of Galicia (which later becomes Portugal) he is crowned in the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela (until 999). Bishop Henry I of Augsburg is KIA; Duke Otto I (b. 955) of Swabia and Bavaria is sent back to Germany with the bad news, survives an Arab ambush, then dies on Nov. 1 in Lucca, Tuscany, leaving sister Abbess Mathilde of Essen, who makes a precious jewelled cross in his memory that ends up in Essen Cathedral. The Vikings raid the coasts of Dorset, Portland, and South Wales. Exiled Eric the Red lands at Ericsfjord in E Greenland with his small band of Viking colonists, explores Greenland, and finding it mainly rocky and snow-covered, unlike green, clement Iceland (except for some grassy valleys in Ericsfjord, which enjoy a brief summer period of verdure, so he can't be successfully sued?), he decides to use false advertising to attract more settlers, naming it you know what? - good reason to fish west for a better home? Inventions: The first record of glassmaking in Venice is a deed witnessed by "Domenic the glassmaker". Deaths: German duke of Swabia (973-82) and Bavaria (976-82) Otto I (b. 955) on Nov. 1 in Lucca, Italy.
983 On July 10 Pope (since 974) Benedict VII dies; HRE Otto II holds an Imperial Diet which elects his 3-y.-o. son Otto III (980-1002) king of Germany; on Dec. 1 he selects Bishop Peter Campanora (Canepanova) of Pavia (a Lombard) to become Pope (#137) John XIV (-984), the first non-Roman pope in a long time, which pisses off the Roman pop., who invite Boniface VII back; days later Otto II (b. 955) is stricken with malaria in Rome while planning a new campaign in S Italy, and dies on Dec. 7 at age 28, and is succeeded as HRE by Otto III, with his brilliant, refined, cultured Byzantine mother Theophano and Lombard grandmother Adelaide as co-regents (until 991), who immediately deal with the slob, er, Slavic Wends under Nako's sons Mstivoj (Mistivir) (-995) (AKA Billung) and Mstidrag, who hear the good news, go pagan, and revolt against the Germans again E of the Elbe River, pushing the Germans as far back as Hamburg, which they destroy; Henry II the Wrangler of Bavaria is released from captivity, and wranglingly and quarrelsomely proclaims himself king, abducting infant Otto III (his 2nd cousin) and regaining Bavaria before he is forced to submit in 985; Gerbert of Aurillac (946-1003), Stupor Mundi (Wonder of the World) becomes Otto III's tutor, educating him in the Byzantine tradition; he later becomes Pope Sylvester II. Bohemian nobleman (St.) Adalbert of Prague (Vojtech) (956-97) becomes the first non-German bishop of Prague, going on to criticize Bohemian polygamy, clerical marriages, and the sale of Christians into slavery - ever hear of the Bohemian Exemption? Adud al-Dawla, the greatest Buyid ruler dies, and the dynasty begins to degenerate into succession wars. The secret Brethren of Sincerity (Purity) (Ikhwan al-Safa) is founded in Basra to renew Islam and the caliphate by mixing Islam with Greek philosophy, Christian ethics, Sufi mysicism, Shia politics, and Sharia, producing 51 tracts (1,134 pages) that are pub. about 1000 by a Spanish Muslim, and become popular with Muslim brain men despite being declared heretical in 1150 by Caliph Mustanjid in Baghdad, along with the works of Avicenna. Venice and Genoa act as merchants between Asia and W Europe. Architecture: The Hall of Yuan Kin at Tu Lo Temple in Chisien, Hopei, China is built. Charlemagne's place in Aix-la-Chapelle (destroyed by the Norse in 881) is rebuilt. Births: Spanish Muslim gen.-statesman Abd al-Rahman Sanchuelo (d. 1009); son of Al-Mansur (938-1002) and Abda (Urraca the Basque) (daughter of Sancho II Garces Abarca of Pamplona). French count of Blois (1004-1037) Odo II (d. 1037); son of Odo I of Blois (950-996) and Bertha (daughter of Conrad of Burgundy). Russia monk ("Father of Russian Monasticism") (St.) Anthony Pechersky of Kiev (the Caves) (Antipas) (d. 1073) in Lyubech; feast day: July 10/24. Deaths: Icelandic poet-warrior baron Egil Skallagrimsson (b. 900); dies after losing his youngest son to drowning in his old age, and being stopped from suicide by his daughter, who persuades him to write a poem instead, resulting in Sonartorrek (Loss of the Son), which starts out with him wanting to fight Odin for his loss and ending up reconciled with the gift of poesy. Persian emir Adud al-Dawla (b. 936) on Mar. 26 in Baghdad. German HRE Otto II (b. 955) on Dec. 6 in Rome (malaria).
984 On Aug. 20 after Antipope Boniface VII (-985) returns to Rome from Constantinople and makes him a prisoner, Pope (since 983) John XIV dies in prison in Castel Sant'Angelo within 4 mo., and Boniface VII claims to be pope again. Bermudo II the Gouty usurps the throne of Leon from Ramiro III; too bad, he relies on the protection of the caliphate of Cordoba, which double-crosses him and invades (until 987). Ruler #1 (since 972) Buluggin ibn Ziri dies, and his son Al-Mansur ibn Buluggin (-995) becomes Zirid ruler #2 of Ifriqa, and installs his brother Hammad ibn Buluggin (-1028) as gov. of C Maghreb (Algeria), who goes on to drive the Zanata tribes into Morocco and eventually (1014) break away.
985 In Feb. Lothair III summons Archbishop Adalbero to an assembly in Compiegne, and charges him with treason for trying to influence Hugh Capet to ally with Otto III; too bad, the assembly is ended quick when Hugh Capet's army approaches. In the summer after selling the Icelanders a load of goods, Eric the Red talks 500 people into sailing in 25 ships to settle Greenland, and only 14 make it, bringing sheep and cattle; Eric settles at Brattahild (Steep Slope) in SW Greenaland, which becomes the HQ for the colony, which lasts four cents. On July 20 Antipope (since 974) Boniface VII is murdered, and his body taken by a mob and dragged to the Lateran Palace, where it is thrown under a statute of Marcus Aurelius, and later given a Christian burial by clerics; in Aug. Pope (#138) John XV (-996) is elected. Al-Mansur attacks the Hispanic March, and sacks and burns Barcelona and takes its pop. prisoner; after the petitions of Count Borrell II of Barcelona are ignored by Lothair III of France in Verdun (who was ill), it pisses him off so bad that he refuses to pledge fealty to new king Hugh Capet in 988, breaking the bond of vassalage between the Hispanic March and France and beginning the independence of Catalonia and its turn toward Iberian alliances. Ethelred II begins a quarrel with the Witan. Rajaraja Chola I (-1014) becomes Chola king of S India (until 1014), with capital at Thanjavur (Tanjore) on the right bank of the Cauvery River 190 mi. SSW of Madras, going on to expand to Sri Lanka in the S and Kalinga (Orissa) in the NE. Hungarian ruler Geza and his son Vaik (Vojk) are baptized by Archbishop Adalbert of Prague; the latter changes his name to Stephen (975-1038). Leopold I establishes the chapter of Melk in Lower Austria. Khazar army officer Seljuk (Seljuq) (-1038), son of Duqat Timuryaligh ("of the iron bow") splits his Turkish clan from the Tokuz-Oghuz (Tokuz-Ghuzz) confederacy of nine clans in Turkestan between the Aral and Caspian Seas, and sets up on the right bank of the lower Syr Darya (Jaxartes) River near Kzyl Orda in modern-day SC Kazakhstan, converting to Sunni Islam; the Seljuks go on to become one of the first Turkish peoples to rule in formerly Christian Asia Minor from the mid-11th cent. to the mid-13th cent. Nonfiction: Muhammad al-Muqaddasi (945-91), Ahsan al-Taqasim fi ma Rift al-Aqalim (The Best Divisions in the Knowledge of the Regions); description of the Muslim world, based on personal travels and observations, esp. Palestine, becoming the #1 work by an Arab geographer until al-Biruni. Births: Egyptian Fatimid caliph #6 (996-1021) (Shiite Muslim) Al-Hakim bi-Amr Allah (Arab. "ruler by Allah's command") (Abu Ali Mansur) (d. 1021) on Aug. 13 in Cairo; son of Abu Mansur Nizar al-Aziz (975-996); brother of Sitt al-Mulk (970-1023); first Fatimid ruler born in Egypt. German count #1 of Hapsburg Radbot of Klettgau (d. 1045); 2nd son of Lanzelin of Altenburg and Klettgau (son of Count Guntram of Breisgau) and Countess Lutgart of Nellenbourg (daughter of Count Eberhard of Thurgau); brother of Bishop Werner I of Strasbourg (978-1028) and Rudolph I; husband (1010-) of Ida of Upper Lorraine (995-1035) (daughter of Frederick I); father of Werner I (1025-1096). French monk-historian Rodolfus (Radulfus) (Ralph) (Raoul) Glaber (the Bald) (d. 1047) in Burgundy. Italian margrave of Tuscany (1027-52) Boniface III (IV) of Canossa (d. 1052); son of Tedald of Canossa (-1012) and Willa of Bologna; father of Matilda of Tuscany (1046-1115). Deaths: Bavarian duchess Judith (b. 925) on June 29 in Regensburg.
986 On Mar. 2 Lothair III (b. 941) dies in Laon, and his son Louis V the Sluggard (967-87) becomes king of France (until May 21, 987) (the last of the Carolingians); since all power is in the hands of his noblemen, he acquires the name of Louis the Do-Nothing. After several annual raids into Thessaly, Bulgarian Tsar Samuel I takes Larissa and extends his power E to the Black Sea, causing Emperor Basil II to lead a 60K-man army into Bulgaria and siege Sredets (Sofia); too bad, after worrying about a revolt Basil lifts the siege and heads back for Thrace, and is ambushed and defeated at the Battle of Trayanovi Vrata at Trajan's Gate - such a good, good thing? Viking ships say Good morning, beautiful to Miss America? Icelandic merchant Bjarni (Barney) Herjulfson (Herjolfsson) sails from Iceland to Greenland to visit his father, but is blown off course by a gale in the fog and discovers a new country with lots of trees and small hills (Cape Cod?); instead of exploring it, he returns along Novia Scotia and Newfoundland to Greenland, where he is criticized for being a whimp? Sebuktigin of Ghazna invades India, and is opposed by Jaipal of Kangra. Louvain on the Dyle River in Belgium 18 mi. E of Brussels on the old Roman trade route from Rome to Augusta Trevivorum or Trier becomes the chief residence of the counts of Brabant. Emperor (since 939) En'Yu (b. 959) retires, and his only son Ichijo (Kanehito) (980-1011) becomes Japanese Yamato emperor #66 (until 1011). Deaths: Persian prince Abd al-Rahman al-Razi (b. 903). West Frankish king Lothair III (b. 941) on Mar. 2 in Laon.
987 236 years is enough for the same old song? On May 21 Louis V (b. 967) dies one year after his accession from a hunting accident (poisoned by his mother?), leaving no heirs and ending the investigation of Bishop Adalbert of Reims, ending the Carolingian (Carlovingian) Dynasty (founded 751); Bishop Adalbert of Reims and Gerbert of Reims engineer the election of Hugh (Hugues) Capet (941-96) as king of France, and he is crowned at Noyon with the support of the duke of Normandy and the count of Anjou, founding the Capetian Dynasty (ends 1328), which becomes known for long-reigning but weak kings; his dominions are less extensive and powerful than the duke of Normandy's, and his domain of the Ile-de-France is surrounded by castles of robber barons, making him afraid to leave his own city, but he does make Paris the capital of France; the French royal demesne is administered by prevots, local lords who pay the king a lump sum to farm it, leading to cheating and abuse of the pop., along with loss of royal prestige, and it takes until Philip II Augustus (r. 1180-1223) to correct it; after his coronation he immediately begins pushing his son Robert to be his successor despite claims of electoral power on the part of the aristocracy, with the excuse that he needs a co-king to help him aid Count Borrel II of Barcelona fight the pesky Moors, which never happens. In May Landulf V (-1033) is associated by his father Pandulf II the Old as prince of Benevento in Italy (until 1033). On Nov. 1 Harald I Bluetooth, having united Denmark and Norway dies, and his son Sweyn (Svein) (Swegen) Haraldsson I Forkbeard (960-1014) becomes king of Denmark (until Feb. 3, 1014). Emperor Otto III recognizes his title in exchange for his claims to Lorraine; "In this narrow compass [Paris and Orleans] he was possessed of wealth and jurisdiction; but in the rest of France, Hugh [Capet] and his descendants were no more than the feudal lords of about sixty dukes and counts, of independent and hereditary power... whose disregard of their sovereign was revenged by the disobedience of their inferior vassals" - (Gibbon, Ch. 58). Bermudo II of Leon finally expels the Moors from Zamora, which pisses-off Al-Mansur, who sieges and razes Leon, causing Bermuda to hide in Zamora while the Muslims continue rampaging at will. Emperor Basil tries to turn Tsar Samuel I's brother Aron against him, offering the latter his sister Anna's hand in marriage, but after the bride sent turns out to be a switch, negotiations fall through and Samuel kills Aron anyway. Sebuktigin of Ghazni finally takes Kabul, which remains under Muslim control until ?. Alcohol makes great antifreeze, or, Why settle for drinking beers and just being guys? Envoys of Russian Grand Prince Vladimir I the Saint experience the Divine Liturgy at the Church of the Hagia Sophia in Constantinople, and are so wowed that they convince him to choose Christianity as the designer religion for the Russian people; previously the Bulgars tried to interest him in Islam, saying, "We believe in God, and our prophet has taught us that if we do not eat pork or drink wine we shall go to heaven and be waited upon, each one of us, by seventy beautiful women", to which Vladimir replies, "Drinking is the chief pleasure of the Russians and we could never live without it"; he also checked out Judaism, but when he learned of the Diaspora, he says, "What? You are trying to teach others, you whom your God has punished? He would not have done that if he had loved you and your laws. Do you want the same thing to happen to us?"; he sends ten envoys to Germany, Bulgaria, and Constantinople, and the report is that the Bulgars find no joy in their worship, the Germans find no beauty in theirs, but that with the Byzantines "We found ourselves in the presence of God. We can never forget that beauty"; also, "If the Christian faith were a bad one, your grandmother Olga, the wisest of women, would not have adopted it"; at his "urging" mass baptisms of Russians in the nearest available freezing cold rivers are orchestrated - those circumcised Muslim women were a real turnoff, plus I got back problems? Deaths: Western Frankish king (986-7) Louis V (b. 967) on May 21 near Senlise, Oise; dies from a fall while hunting. French count of Anjou (960-87) Geoffrey I (b. 938) on July 21 in Marcon.
988 On May 19 St. Dunstan dies, and Selsey bishop (since 980) Aethelgar (-990) becomes Canterbury archbishop #26 (until Feb. 13, 990). The Vikings attack Devon and Somerset, while Irish Danes raid Wales. William IV Fierebras of Aquitaine goes to war with newly-elected French king Hugh Capet, who had been granted Aquitaine by Lothair IV, and defeats Capet's royal army on the plain of the Loire Valley; Fierebras shelters the last legitimate Carolingian heir Louis (son of Duke Charles of Lorraine) in his palace in Poitiers. Charles of Lorraine, assisted by Count Odo I of Blois takes Laon. Bishop Adalbert of Prague deserts his see, travels to Italy and enters the monastery of San Alessio. Prince Vladimir I of Kiev seizes Chersonesus, the main Byzantine imperial base in the Crimea. The town of Dublin ("dark pool") in Ireland at the confluence of the Poddle and Liffey Rivers (modern-day pop. 550K/1.9M) is first settled on the site of the 841 Viking settlement of Dyflin near the Christian Gaelic settlement of Ath Cliah ("ford of hurdles"); Meath Ard Ri (high king) Malachy II (Mael Sechnaill mac Domnaill) (949-1022) demands and is paid tribute by the Vikings of Dublin. Births: English Anglo-Saxon king (1016) Edmund (Eadmund) II Ironside (d. 1016); 2nd son of Ethelred II the Unready (968-1016) and 1st wife Aelfgifu of Northumbria; half-brother of Edward III the Confessor (1004-66). Deaths: English Archbishop of Canterbury (St.) Dunstan (b. 924). Italian count Adalbert Atto (Azzo) of Canossa (b. ?) on Feb. 13; son of Sigifred of Lucca; founder of the House of Canossa.
989 Vladimir I of Kiev strikes a deal with Byzantine emperor Basil II to evacuate Chersonesus, and supplies 6K soldiers (organized later into the Varangian Guard) to help him kick the butt of the last great rebel Asia Minor landowner Bardas Phokas (-989), who is KIA on Apr 13; meanwhile newly-PC Duke Vladimir I of Kiev is baptized and married in the Crimea to Basil II's younger sister (St.) Anna Porphyrogeneta (963-1011) (who had already refused a proposal from Hugh Capet because Franks as well as Russians are barbarians, but since his entire pop. goes along with the deal, she smells teen sainthood and lowers herself for Christ?); he also promises to divorce all umpteen of his pagan wives, but eh?; Anna dies childless; boss Basil now takes care of remaining great landowner Basil Lekapenos (925-989) and begins a systematic program of dissolution of the huge estates in Asia Minor, making him popular with the people. Halfbreed Norse-Irish (Norse father, Irish mother) Sigtrygg (Sitric) (Sihtric) (Sitrick) (Sigtryg) (Sigtryggr) II Silkbeard Olafsson (970-1042) of Dublin suceeds his paternl half-brother Gluniaim as king of Dublin (until 994), while his rival Ivar of Waterford waits in the wings, and future Norway king Olaf Tryggvason moves in for a few years (until 994) after marrying Sigtrygg's sister Gytha, plundering his foes and weakening them. Smbat II dies, and next year his brother Gagik (Gakik) I (-1020) becomes Pakradounis king of Armenia (until 1020). The Old Slavonic Voden Incription allegedly dates to this year; found in 1997 in Voden (Edessa) in N Greece. Architecture: The Kai-Bo Pagoda is built in Kaifeng, China; in 1040 it burns down after a lightning strike, and is replaced by the red brick Iron Pagoda in 1049. Births: Turkish Seljuk ruler (Sunni Muslim) Chaghri (Turk. "small falcoln or merlin") Beg (d. 1060); son of Mikail; brother of Tughril Beg (990-1063); grandson of Seljuq (-1036).
990 On Feb. 13 Aethelgar dies, and Sigeric the Serious (950-94) becomes Canterbury archbishop #27 (until Oct. 28, 994), going on to advise King Aethelred to pay Danish king Sweyn Forkbeard the first Danegeld of 10K lbs. of silver next year; too bad, it takes awhile to realize the demands never end. Vladimir I returns to Kiev with his new wife and a force of priests, and forces the Russian pop. to convert to Eastern Orthodox Christianity with mass baptisms, along with casting of wooden images of pagan gods into the river, and Russia is finally converted just in time for the Big M; Vladimir I's priests give the Russians the Greek-derived Cyrillic Alphabet, which they had orginally invented for the Goths and Slavs, and begin trans. the Bible into Russian. Danzig becomes the capital of the Slav duchy of Pomerania. William V (the Great) (le Grand) (969-1029) becomes duke of Aquitaine. Count Conan I (927-92) of Rennes succeeds his father Judicael (Judhael) (Judhel) (Juhel) Berengar as duke of Brittany (until 992), becoming the first Gallo family to rule it. Poland submits to the Holy See. The Shiite Ugaylids (Uqaylids) tribe of Arabs capture Mosul (until 1096), ending its Buyid rule (begun 979) and Hamdanid rule (begun 929). The Annazid (Banu Annaz) Dynasty of Kurds in the C Zagros region is founded (ends 1116). The Kurdish Marwanid Dynasty (ends 1085) in Diyar Bakr Province in N Mesopotamia and Armenia, centered around the city of Diyarbakir is founded by Kurdish shepherd Abu Shuja Badh bin Dustak. Moorish merchants from the Barbary coast reach the cities of Nigritia (Arab. "Bilad Al Sudan" = Negroland or Land of the Blacks") in W Sudan and begin a slave trade with Europe. Music: Systematic musical notation is developed in this decade - face on the space, every good boy does fine on the line? Births: Polish king (1025-31) and duke (1932-4) Mieszko (Miezko) (Mesko) (Mieczyslaw) II Lambert (d. 1034); son of Boleslav I the Brave and Enmilda (daughter of Duke Dobromir of Lusatia); husband of Richensa of Lotharingia (995-1063) (granddaughter of HRE Otto I); father of Casimir I (1016-58). German Salian king #1 (1024-39) and HRE (1027-39) Conrad II (the Salian) (the Younger) (d. 1039); son of Henry of Speyer, Count of Speyer and Worms, and Adelaide of Alsace; father of Henry III (1017-56); not to be confused with Conrad II of Italy (1074-1101). Chinese moveable type printing inventor Bi Sheng (d. 1051). Turkish Seljuk ruler Tughril Beg (Rukn al-Dunya wa al-Din Abu Talib Muhammad Toghrul-Beg ibn Mikail) (d. 1063); son of Mikail; grandson of Seljuq (-1036); brother of Chaghri Beg (989-1060). German bishop of Mecklenburg Johannes Scotus (d. 1066). English nudist Lady Godiva (d. 1067) in Mercia; wife of Earl Leofric III (968-1057). Persian Muslim Junaidia Sufi scholar Abul Hassan Ali Hajvery (AKA Data Ganj Bakhsh or Data Sahib) (d. 1077) in Ghazni, Afghanistan. Deaths: German tutor (of Duchess Hedwig of Swabia from 973) Ekkehard Palatinus (the Courtier) (b. ?) on Apr. 23 in Mainz; the hero of an 1856 novel by Joseph von Scheffel.
991 On Aug. 11 after help from traitor Eadric Streona (the Acquisitive) (-1017), Norwegian pretender to the throne Olaf Tryggvasson raids England with 93 ships and 3K men and fights the epic Battle of Maldon by the Blackwater River in Essex with King Athelred II the Unready, defeating and killing Essex (former E Anglia) ealdorman Byrhtnoth (OE "beorht" + "nod" = bright + courage), causing Athelred to pay the first Danegeld ransom (10K lbs. of silver) to stop Danish Viking attacks on England, earning him the name Unready; the fate of Saxon England and the Wessex dynasty is sealed?; the Saxon poem Battle of Maldon is latter composed to celebrate it all. Peter Orseolo II (-1008) becomes dodge of Venice (until 1009), going on to rid Dalmatia of pirates and absorb it, establishing control over the Adriatic and establishing trading relations with Constantinople; Venice signs a commercial treaty with the Muslim Saracens, initiating a new policy of trading rather than fighting - you have to put things on display that never cross their minds? Emperor Basil II captures titular Bulgarian emperor (since 977) Roman the Ball-Free, and he remains in captivity until his death in 997. Count Odo I of Blois sieges Melun, belonging to Hugh Capet's vassal Bouchard the Venerable, causing Hugh, Richard I of Normandy, and Fulk Nerra to arrive and lift the siege. Otto II's mother Theophano (b. 956) dies, and Mainz archbishop (since 975) (St.) Willigis (940-1011) becomes head of a regency council (until 996), in which Adelaide is a member. Al-Ta'i dies, and Al-Qadir (947-1031) succeeds him as Abbasid caliph, going on to help the Sunni-Shiite split harden, upholding the Sunni position against the Shiites and their public cursing of the first two caliphs, their annual ashura (public mourning for dead Husayn) at Karbala, and pilgrimages to the tombs of Ali's family. Births: Italian Benedictine monk-composer ("Doe, a deer, a female deer"?) Guido d'Arezzo (d. 1050); inventor of solmization and Guido's Hand. Deaths: Arab geographer Al-Muqaddasi (b. 945) in Palestine. German empress Theophano (b. 956). Japanese emperor #64 (969-84) En'yu (b. 959) on Feb. 12.
992 On Mar. 22 the Feast of the Annunciation coincides with Good Friday, causing Millennium Feverists to call this a sign from heaven that the End of Days is less than three years away. On May 25 Poliah duke (since 960) Mieszko I (b. 930) dies in Poznan, and his son Boleslav (Boleslas) (Boleslav) I Chrobry (the Mighty) (the Great) (967-1025) succeeds him as prince of Lesser Poland (until Apr. 18, 1025), a small principality on the Vistula River, with capital at Cracow, going on to expel his father's wife Oda of Haldensleben and his half-brothers and reuinite the kingdom, becoming the founder of the Polish state, conquering first E Pomerania, then Silesia and Moravia, building an admin. system of comites (castellani) (Burggrafen) with civil and military powers, and founding Benedictine monasteries, with the goal of uniting all W Slavs. On June 27 the Battle of Conquereuil sees Count Fulk III the Black of Anjou (9740-1040 defeat and kill rival Count Conan I of Rennes (b. 927), taking Rennes, after which he soon takes Maine and Touraine and builds his first castle in 1994 at Langeais on the Loire River 60 mi. E of angers, becoming the first of 100+. Borrell II dies after having told the Franks to fork off of Catalonia, and his son Ramon Borrell (972-1017) becomes count of Barcelona, Girona, and Ausona (until 1017), while his 2nd son Ermengol (Armengol) I (974-1010) becomes the count #1 of Urgell (pr. ur-HELL) (until 1010). Adalbert is ordered to return to his see in Prague by the archbishop of Mainz. Skopje in Macedonia becomes the capital of a Byzantine admin. region. Korean King Songjong founds a nat. univ. in Kaesong. Deaths: French duke of Brittany (990-2) Conan I of Rennes (b. 927) on June 27 (KIA). Polish duke (960-92) Mieszko I (b. 930) on May 25 in Poznan.
993 On Jan. 31 Pope John XV becomes the first pope to canonize somebody, Bishop Ulrich of Augsburg. On Oct. 19 Conrad I the Peaceful (b. 925) dies, and his infant Welf son Rudolph III (the idle) (the Pious) (993-1032) becomes the last king of an independent Burgundy (until Sept. 6, 1032). The Vikings ransack Yorkshire, England. Prince Geza of Hungary invites German missionary (St.) Adalbert of Prague to his country, which is filled with Christian POWs that are already being worked on by Pilgrin of Passau as well as Orthodox missionaries from the East - hurry, only one shopping week left till Christmas? The Khitans cross the Yalu River and invade Korea (Koryo), but are talked into withdrawing by an adept diplomat. The city of Potsdam on the Havel River 15 mi. SW of Berlin (modern-day pop. 175K) is first mentioned as the ancient Slavonic town of Poztupimi ("beneath the oaks"), occupied by the Hevelli tribe of Slavs in the 8th cent., which HRE Otto II gives to the Quedlinburg Abbey run by his aunt Matilda; it is mentioned as a small town in 1317, and is granted a town charter in 1345, reaching 2K pop. in 1573, losing half in the Thirty Years' War of 1618-48; in 1660 it becomes the hunting residence of Elector Frederick William I of Brandenburg, and the HQ of the Prussian barracks; in 1815 it becomes the capital of the Province of Brandenburg, with Berlin alternating in 1827-43 and after 1918. Births: French king of Burgundy (-1032) Rudolph (Rudolf) III (le Faineant) (the Sluggard) (le Pieux) (the Pious) (d. 1032) (b. 970?); son of Conrad I the Peaceful (925-993); last independent king of Burgundy. Deaths: French king of Burgundy (937-93) Conrad I the Peaceful (b. 925) on Oct. 19.
994 A major solar storm. The Mal des Ardents (plague that burns out the intestines) strikes France and Germany; it strikes again in 1043, 1089, and 1130. On Oct. 28 Sigeric the Serious dies, and Ramsbury bishop Aelfric of Abingdon (Wessex) (-1005) becomes Canterbury archbishop #28 (until Nov. 16, 1005). In Dec. Sancho II Garces Abarca (b. 936) dies, and his son (by Urraca Fernandez, the prior wife of Ordono III and Ordono IV of Leon, and aunt of Sancho Garcia of Castile and Garcia Gomez of Carrion, count of Saldana) Garcia Sanchez II (the Trembling) (-1000) becomes king of Pamplona and count of Aragon (until 1000). Olaf Tryggvason of Norway returns to England with Svein (Sweyn) Forkbeard of Denmark, beseiges London on Sept. 8, accepts more Danegeld (8 tons of silver) from Athelred II the Unready, then heads for Norway after he hears that King Earl Hakon is doing things to Norwegian women. Ivar of Waterford expels Sigtrygg Silkbeard from Dublin, but he returns within a year. Leopold I dies, and his son Henry I the Strong (-1018) becomes Babenburg margrave of Austria (until 1018), ruling from Melk. Boleslav I of Poland conquers E Pomerania, gaining access to the Baltic. Adalbert clashes with Duke Boleslas II and returns to Rome, where he becomes part of a group of intellectuals in the court of Otto III. Basil II begins a siege of Aleppo (until 995). The Arabs destroy the monastery of Monte Cassino. Otto II appoints Heribert (970-1021) as chancellor of Italy, followed by Germany in 998 (until 1002). Architecture: The Church of St. Peter (later St. Peter's Collegiate Church) in Wolverhampton, Staffordshire, England (13 mi. NW of Birmingham) is dedicated. Births: Spanish king of Leon (999-1028) Alfonso V (the Noble) (d. 1028); son of Bermudo II (956-99) and 2nd wife Elvira Garcia of Castile (965-1017); wife (1013-22) of Elvira Menendez (Mendes) (996-1022); father of Bermudo III (1017-37). Spanish Sunni Muslim scholar Ibn Hazm (d. 1064)in Cordoba. Deaths: Spanish king of Pamplona (970-94) Sancho II Garces Abarca (b. 935) in Dec. Persian physician (Shiite Muslim) Ali ibn al-Abbas al-Majusi (b. ?); born in Ahvaz; physician to Buyid emir (949-83) Adud al-Dawla Fana Khusraw (936-83), working at the Al-Adudi Hospital in Baghdad; leaves The Complete Book of the Medical Art (Kitab al-Maliki); textbook on medicine and psychology, describing a scientific research methodology, stressing the need for medical ethics and preserving health through diet instead of drugs, and discussing the anatomy and physiology of the human brain along with various mental disorders.
995 Olaf I Tryggvason (969-1000) conquers Norway, is crowned king (until 1000), then finds that a mob has killed former de factor ruler Earl Haakon Sigurdsson for doing things to women, and declares it a Christian kingdom, becoming its first Christian king and building its first Christian church, going on to convert his subjects using Christian terrorist tactics; the facts that Thor's Hammer amulets have a crucifix shape and the apocalyptic Battle of Ragnarok resembles Armageddon help speed their conversion?; he then sends German (Saxon) bishop Thangbrand to convert the Icelanders, threatening to kill or disfigure several Icelander hostages in Norway to speed them up; Olaf I then sails to Orkney and forces Sigurd Hlodvisson the Stout (960-1014), earl of Orkney N of Scotland to convert to Christianity - onward Christian soldiers? King Eric the Victorious of Sweden (who converted to Christianity but apostasized) dies, and is succeeded by his son Olof I Skotkonung (Skötkonung) ("tributary king"?) (980-1022), who is converted in 1008 and doesn't apostasize, becoming the first baptized ruler of Sweden; meanwhile his stepfather Sweyn I Forkbeard of Denmark claims his throne. Kenneth II seizes the estate of Cunthar, ruler of Angus and the Mearns to endow a new monastery at Brechin, then kills his son, causing her brother Finella to send an assassin, who kills him at Fettercain, and Constantine (Castantin) IV (-997), son of Culen Hringr becomes king of Alba (Scotland) for the next 18 mo., fighting the usual clan rivalry. Count Odo I of Blois enters the war against Count Fulk III of Anjou. Sigtrygg Silkbeard and his nephew Muirchertach Ua Congalaich attack the church in Donaghpatrick in County Meath, pissing-off Mael Sechnaill, who raids Dublin and steals the ring of Thor and the sword of Carlus, pissing-off Sigtrygg, who attacks Kells and Clonard in 997. Basil II begins a campaign in Syria, lifts the siege of Aleppo, takes over the Orontes Valley, and restores much of Syria to Byzantine control (until 1070); then after deciding he couldn't retake Jerusalem he crosses Anatolia with his whole army of 40K men and 80K mules in 16 days to take on fellow Armenian Samuel I of Bulgaria. The Slavnici (Slavniks), the last independent tribe of Bohemia are massacred by Boleslaus II of Bohemia at Libice. The Liao Dynasty sends a patent of investiture to the new Koryo (Goryeo) king. Weik of Hungary marries Gisela, a sister of future HRE Henry II, adopting the Christian name Stephen - the right man in the right place and the right time? About this time Japanese statesman Fujiwara no Michinaga (966-1028) founds a golden age in Japan. The city of Durham, NE England on the Wear River (modern-day pop. 48K) is founded by divine intervention when a milkmaid tells the congregation carrying the bier of St. Cuthbert (634-87) that she lost her dun cow at Dun Holm, and they take it as a sign to place the body of there. Births: Norwegian king (1015-28) (St.) Olaf (Olave) II Haraldsson (d. 1030); patron saint of Norway; feast day: July 29. Danish king (1018-35), Norwegian king (1028-35), and English king (1016-35) Canute (Cnut) (Knut) (Norse "knot") I (the Great) (d. 1035); son of Danish king Sweyn I Forkbeard (*960-1014) and Saum-Aesa (Gunnhilda). Persian historian Abolfazl Beyhaghi (Abu'l-Fadl Bayhaqi) (d. 1077) in Harethabad, Bayhaq, Khorasan. Deaths: French duke William IV of Aquitaine (b. 937) on Feb. 5. Bavarian duke (955-76, 985-95) Henry II the Wrangler (b. 951). Duke Henry II the Wrangler (b. 951) Norwegian earl (de facto ruler) Haakon Sigurdsson (b. ?) (KIA). Muslim scholar-librarian Ibn al-Nadim (b. ?); leaving Al-Fihrist (The Catalogue), an annotated bibliography of all known works of Arabic lit. Muslim judge-scholar Abu Ali al-Tanukhi (b. ?); leaves Nishwar al-Muhadara, a book of anecdotes about Muslim society.
996 On Feb. 13 caliph (since Dec. 21, 975) Abu al-Mansur Nizar al-Aziz Billah (b. 955) dies, and on Oct. 14 his son Al-Hakim bi-Amr Allah (985-1021) becomes Fatimid caliph #6 of Egypt (until Feb. 13, 1021), the first Fatimid imam born on Egyptian soil, deeming himself to be an incarnation of Allah and founding the Druze (Druse) sect of Islam, which mixes it with Greek philosophy (Pythagoreanism), Christianity Neoplatonism), and Judaism, along with a belief in reincarnation, while gaining a rep. for cruel and eccentric behavior, persecution of non-Muslims, and repudiation of orthodox Islam; he sponsors the Persian missionary Hamza ibn 'Ai ibn Ahmad (985-1021), who establishes the Druzes in Syria. On Oct. 24 Hugh Capet (b. 941) dies, and his after pushing since his own coronation to make his illegitimate line of kings into a dynasty, his son Robert II the Pious (the Wise) (972-1031) becomes Capetian king #2 of France (until 1031). On Nov. 1 Otto III issues a deed to Bishop Gottschalk of Freising, becoming the oldest known document using the name Osterreich (Austria). 16-y.o. Otto III (980-1002) reaches the age of majority and begins his rule, and is crowned king of the Lombards, then travels to Rome to end John Crescentius II's sway and obtain imperial coronation from Pope John XV, but the latter dies first (Mar.-early Apr.), causing him to reside in Pavia until a new pope can be elected; on May 3 his learned Saxon 1st cousin Bruno of Carinthia is elected Pope (#139) Gregory V (970-99) (1st German pope), and crowns HRE Otto III in Rome on May 21; not amused, John Crescentius II begins a civil war in Rome (ends 998); meanwhile Otto III makes Rome his imperial seat (unlike his grandfather Otto I, who chose Quedlinburg), striving to make it the capital of the Holy Roman (Western) Empire like in the good ole days. Danish king Olaf Tryggvason I becomes king of Norway (until 1000), and Earl Hakon's vengeful heirs flee to Sweden and conspire against him. Emperor Basil II begins campaigning against Samuel I and his Bulgarians, destroying one stronghold after another, while Samuel avoids open battle, causing Basil to begin bribing his leaders to defect. On Nov. 20 Richard I the Fearless (b. 933) dies in Fecamp, and his son Richard II the Good (963-1026) becomes duke #4 of Normandy (until 1027). Al-Mansur conquers Astorga from Leon. Icelandic settlers arrive in Greenland. The Old Church Slavonic liturgy is introduced by Bulgarian priests. Cane sugar arrives in Venice from Alexandria, Egypt. Architecture: The Tithe Church in Kiev is consecrated. Niujie Mosque in Peking is built. The Church of St. Mary in Wolverhampton, Staffordshire, England is founded by King Edgar's sister Wulfruna. Nonfiction: Alefric of Eynsham, Lives of the Saints. Births: French count (of Valois and Vexin) Drogo of Mantes (d. ?). Deaths: Tunisian Muslim scholar Ibn Abi Zayd (b. 922). French king (987-96) Hugh Capet (b. 938) on Oct. 24. Frankish king (987-96) Hugh Capet (b. 941) on Oct. 24 in Paris. French count Odo I of Blois (b. 950) on Mar. 12. Norman duke #3 (942-96) Richard I the Fearless (b. 933) on Nov. 20 in Fecamp. Egyptian Fatimid caliph Abu Mansur Nizar al-Aziz Billah (b. ?).
997 In Feb. John Crescentius II creates Antipope John XVI (-1013) out of John Philagathus (Philagathos) of Rossano. On Apr. 23 after being chosen as a missionary to the Prussians by Boleslaus I of Poland, (St.) Adalbert of Prague is martyred by pagan Prussian Borussi near the Vistula River while trying to chop down their sacred oak trees. On May 8 emperor (since Nov. 15, 976) Taizong dies, and next Dec. 23 his 3rd son Song Zhen Zong (968-1022) becomes Bei (Northern) Song emperor #3 of China (until Mar. 23, 1022). In Aug. Sebuktigin (b. 942) dies, and his Muslim Sunni son Mahmud of Ghazni (Ghazna) (971-1030) breaks off from the Samanids and becomes sultan ("authority") (first to use the title) of the independent Ghaznavid Empire (ends 1187), gaining recognition by the Abbasid caliph of Baghdad and making Afghanistan into the center of Islamic power and civilization, going on to expand his rule over Kuristan, Khwarazem, and N India, persecuting Fatimid Shiites, and looting and destroying Hindu and Buddhist temples and using some of the loot to patronize literary giants incl. Firdawsi (935-1020). Al-Mansur sacks Santiago de Compostela in Leon, and spares the Tomb of St. James the Apostle, but steals its bells - so that Richard Widmark can get a good Hollywood part "The Long Ships" (1963)? Brian Boru of Munster and Malachy II of Meath meet in Clonfert and make a truce giving rule of S Ireland to Boru and the high kingship and rule of N Ireland to Malachy II, agreeing to hand over their hostages next year and begin working against the Norse of Dublin for the first time; too bad, the Leinsterman ally with the Norse of Dublin and revolt against Boru, fomenting a final battle. Roman dies, and his brother Samuel is officially crowned tsar Samuel I by Pope Gregory V, and adds Moesia to his conquests. Prince Geza dies, and his Roman Catholic son Stephen I the Saint (969-1038) becomes Arpad ruler of Hungary, becoming the first Christian Hungarian king, working to suppress Eastern Orthodox Christianity by force while crushing paganism, still the bad habit of the tribal chiefs - hurry, the Big M is nigh? Constantine III is killed by Kenneth (Cinaed) III (966-1005), son of Dub (Duib), who becomes king of Alba (Scotland) (until 1005); the line descended from Aed Mac Kenneth is extinct, but the clan rivalry merrily continues, with Kenneth trying to associate his son Giric with him in the kingship while Kenneth Mac Malcolm's son, er, Malcolm Mac Kenneth vies for the throne. The Christians recapture the seaport of Oporto in NW Portugal, which was held by the Muslims since 716. The seaport of Nidaros is founded by King Olav Tryggvason on the S side of the Trondheim Fjord in Norway (250 mi. S of modern-day Oslo) as the capital of Norway (until 1380); it is renamed Trondhjem in 1564, and Trondheim in 1931 (modern-day pop. 190K/274K). The first written reference is made to the port city of Gdansk on the Motlawa branch of the the Gdania River in Poland on the S edge of Gdansky Bay in the Baltic Sea (modern-day pop. 463K/1M). Architecture: St. Martin Cathedral in Tours is rebuilt. Births: French duke of Upper Lorraine (1044-65) and Lower Lorraine (1065-9) Godfrey III (the Bearded) (d. 1069); eldest son of Gothelo I (967-1044); husband of Beatrice of Bar (1017-76). French duke Alain III of Brittany (d. ?). Danish mathematical queen Estrid Margrete Svensdatter (d. ?); daughter of Svein Forkbeard of Denmark. Deaths: Bohemian missionary St. Adalbert of Prague (b. 956) on Apr. 23 in Truso, Prussia (modern-day Eblag, Poland). Korean king Songjong (b. ?). Persian Buyid emir (Shiite Muslim) Abul Hasan Ali ibn al-Hasan Fakhr al-Dawla (Arab. "pride of the dynasty") (b. ?) in Oct./Nov.; 2nd son of Rukn al-Dawla (-976); brother of Adud al-Dawla (936-83).
998 On Nov. 2 Odilo of Cluny institutes the observance of All Saints' Day. Otto III makes his 2nd expedition to Italy, marches on Rome, captures Crescentius' antipope John XVI (John Philagathus), orders his nose, eyes, ears. and tongue cut out, then publicly degraded and imprisoned in Germany; Crescentius is captured and hanged. The Byzantines agree to a series of formal truces with the Shiite Fatimids of Egypt, giving Egypt control of Jerusalem and Damascus, while Antioch remains under Byzantine control. The Danes attack the Isle of Wight. Mael Sechnaill (Malachy II) and Munster king Brian Boru force Sigtrygg Silkbeard to recognize their lordship by giving hostages. Ali ibn Mayzad, leader of the Arab Banu Asad tribe founds the Mazyadid (Shaybanid) Dynasty in Kula S of Baghdad (until c. 1150), founding the city of Hilla (Hillah) in C Iraq (62 mi. S of Baghdad and 35 mi. N of Najaf) as the capital. Venetians begin to celebrate on Ascension Day their V over the Dalmatian pirates with the symbolic ceremony of the Sposalizia, with the dodge going out in a decorated galley and flinging a consecrated ring into the sea while crying "We marry you, the sea, in sign of our true and perpetual dominion." Architecture: Benedictine Sherborne Abbey (Abbey Church of St. Mary the Virgin) in Sherborne, France is founded. Nonfiction: Aelfric of Eynsham, Canons. Births: Georgian Bagrationi king (1014-27) George (Giorgi) I (d. 1027) (b. 1002?); son of Bagrat III (960-1014); father of Bagrat IV (1018-72). Deaths: Persian Muslim mathematician Abu al-Wafa Buzjani (b. 940) on July 15 in Baghdad; leaves Almagest, introducing innovations in spherical trigonometry incl. the secant and cosecant functions, along with tables of sines and tangents, pub. the first instance of negative numbers in an Islamic text.
999 The grip of Millennium Fever (MF) in Christendom is at full strength, with the faithful believing that the world will end in the Big Year 1K (Y1K), and many leaving their homes and giving all their belongings to the poor; the hysteria doesn't die down for at least four years; HRE Otto III stays close to the con in Rome; meanwhile China doesn't give a fart - maybe only after China is Christianized will the world have to worry about Christ coming back? The first German pope is followed by the first French pope as the approach of the big 1000 causes the Italians to hide behind them? On Feb. 18 Pope (since 996) Gregory V (b. 970) dies, and on Apr. 2 HRE Otto III's tutor Gerbert of Aurillac is elected Pope (#140) Tweety, er, Sylvester (Silvester) II (946-1003) (first French pope); Otto III, who just happens to be a learned mathematician and philosopher declares the 8th cent. Donation of Constantine to be a forgery; because he is learned and studied with the Muslim Moors, Pope Sylvester II is regarded by the common people as a magician in league with the Devil, e.g., he is said to have tried to impose the Arabic (really Hindu) number system on Christians, incl. the newfangled zero, and to have invented the pendulum clock (that newfangled zero must have seemed groovy to the worldly, and pure terror to the pious?); Otto and Sylvester work to revive the ancient glory of Rome, and set up a Byzantine-style court ("Renovatio imperii romani"), with an imperial palace on the Aventine Hill, further alienating the Millennium Fever-struck Roman pop. - wonder why they're taking out 999-year leases and mortgages when the world is ending next year? On Mar. 11 HRE Otto III approves the new Monastery of St. Sofia in Benevento on his return from the Shrine of St. Michael the Archangel on Monte Gargano, which becomes the mausoleum of the line of Pandulf II the Old; too bad, they begin a dispute next year over the relics of St. Bartholomew, patron saint of Benevento, after Pandulf refuses to give them up to be housed in Otto's new Church of San Bartolomeo all'Isola on Tiber Island, causing Otto to seige Benevento until they give him the saint's skin? In Sept. king (since 982) Bermudo II the Gouty (b. 953), who has been forced to travel by litter all year dies in Villanueva del Bierzo, "the poor king tormented in life by the sword of Almanzor and in death by the vengeful pen of a bishop" (Perez de Urbel); his 5-y.-o. son Alfonso V (the Noble) (994-1028) becomes king of Leon and Galicia (until Aug. 7, 1028), with his mother Elvira Garcia (978-1017) of Castile and Count Menendo Gonzales (Mendo Goncalves) (965-1008) as regents (until 1007). Why am I dressed up like a baby, I've no clue? There's no MF way over here? Dublin king Sigtrygg (Sitric) (Sihtric) (Sitrick) (Sigtryg) (Sigtryggr) II Silkbeard Olafsson (970-1042) (known for minting the first Irish coins) and his maternal uncle Maelmordha (Mael Morda) mac Murchada (-1014), king of the Ui Faelain of N Leinster defeat their cousin, Leinster king #10 (last) (until 1003) Donnchad mac Domnall Claen (Donnchad mac Dómnaill Clóen), and imprison him in Dublin. On Dec. 30 after revolting against Irish Ard Ri (high king) Brian Boru (Boruma) (940-1014) of Munster and Meath Ard Ri (high king) Malachy II (Mael Sechnaill mac Domnaill) (949-1022), they are defeated at the Battle of Glenn Mama (Glenmama) (Glen of the Gap) in the foothills of the Wicklow Mts. near Lyons Hill between Windmill Hill and Blackchurch in Ardclough, County Kildaire; the V leaves the road to Dublin "free and unimpeded for the victorious legions of Brian and Mael Sechlainn" (Dictionary of English History); Maelmordha escapes by hiding in a yew tree; Brian Boru magnanimously reinstates both of them in their kingdoms, but the humiliation festers for years. On Dec. 30 after Irish king Maelmordha (Mael Morda) Mac Murchada (-1014) of Leinster allies with Viking king Sigtrygg (Sitric) (Sihtric) (Sitrick) (Sigtryg) (Sigtryggr) II Silkbeard Olafsson (970-1042) of Dublin (known for minting the first Irish coins), and revolts against Irish Ard Ri (high king) Brian Boru (Boruma) (940-1014) of Munster and Meath Ard Ri (high king) Malachy II (Mael Sechnaill mac Domnaill) (949-1022) who defeat them on Dec. 30 them in the Battle of Glenn Mama (Glenmama) (Glen of the Gap) in the foothills of the Wicklow Mts. near Lyons Hill between Windmill Hill and Blackchurch in Ardclough, County Kildaire; the V leaves the road to Dublin "free and unimpeded for the victorious legions of Brian and Mael Sechlainn" (Dictionary of English History); Maelmordha escapes by hiding in a yew tree; Brian Boru magnanimously reinstates both of them in their kingdoms, but the humiliation festers for years. In Dec. Count Fulk III the Black of Anjou has his 1st wife (and cousin) Elisabeth of Vendome burned to death at the stake in her wedding dress after discovering her hooking up with a goatherd, after which he makes four pilgrimages to the Holy Land to get Christ's thanks (1002, 1008, 1038) - just in time to save you for the Millennium Cookoff? Boleslav I reconverts Poland to Christianity, and begins using the anarchy in Bohemia to conquer Silesia, Moravia, and Cracow, and expand. Emperor Basil II breaks off from Bulgar-slaying to lead his last expedition against the Fatimids in Syria - the millennium's Last Action Hero? Mahmud of Ghazna defeats the Samanids and annexes Khurasan, which they have held since 900; meanwhile the Qarakhanids seize Bukhara from what's left of the Samanids. Sigmundur Brestisson introduces Christianity to the Faroe Islands. Eric the Red's son Leif Ericson (970-1020) sails from Greenland to Norway, drifts off course to the Hebrides and winters, falls for some babe and converts to Christinsanity with not a minute to spare, goes on to Norway and is baptized at the court of King Olaf Tryggvason I, then is commissioned to carry the faith back to Greenland, with a priest to accompany him. Heribert is elected archbishop of Cologne (until 1021). The Orsay Commune in France 13 mi. SW of Paris is founded. The city of Saarbrucken (Sarrebruck) in W Germany on the Saar River on the modern-day French-German frontier is first mentioned as Castellum Sarabrucca. Deaths: Frankish queen (St.) Adelaide (b. 931) on Dec. 16 in Seltz, Alsace. Mexican Toltec king Quetzelacoatl (b. 947). Spanish king of Leon (984-99) Bermudo II the Gouty (b. 953) in Sept. in Villanueva del Bierzo; "The poor king tormented in life by the sword of Almanzor and by the vengeful pen of a bishop." (Justo Perez de Urbel) German pope (996-9) Gregory V (b. 970) on Feb. 18. Bohemian duke (967-99) Boleslaus II (b. 920) on Feb. 7. Welsh king Maredudd ab Owain (b. ?).