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Word Count: 940
The suggestion that the Capetian kings of the tenth and eleventh century were weak and merely Primus inter pares appears a valid one There has been a trend ever since the age of Charlemagne for the position of the kings of the Frankish State to be fragile There are some historians however who would refute this description of the Capetian kings of this period most notably the historian Fawtier who suggested that the king was truly a powerful medieval leader in the mould of the modern notions of kingship The other view is that of the historians Lemarignier and Duby suggesting that the Capetian kings of this time only had a localised powerbase meaning that they were indeed little more than first amongst equal Primus inter pares The question however should also centre upon why the Capetian kings of this period were first amongst equal whilst the kings of Saxon-Salian Germany at this time were so powerful Let us first then consider the argument of Fawtier that the Capetian kings of the tenth and eleventh century were not first amongst equals but rather powerful kings similar to those of Saxon-Salian Germany Fawtier reasoned that the king was a powerful for several reasons all of which help to provide the king with theoretical power They could call upon the support of the church as the church themselves would back the legitimate lord in order to ensure stability This effectively meant that the Capetian kings had the backing of God which would theoretically place them in a great advantage over the other lords such as those of Flanders Anjou and Normandy The king also held legal rights including being the font of justice and keeper of the peace Theoretically these legal rights meant that the king should be obeyed and that essentially everything revolved around the king Yet was this necessarily true After all if the rulers of this time are supposedly first amongst equals then surely
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