Page 1084

1084 UNIVERSAL HISTORY-THE MODERN WORLD.

on the 3d of October, 732, was fought one

of the great battles of history, in which the

religious status of Europe was fixed. The

Arabian cavalry beat audaciously against the

ranks of the heavy armed German warriors,

who with their battle ax, dashed down whatever opposed. At sunset the Arabs retired

to their own camp. During the night some of the Moslem tribes fell into battle with each

other, and on the morrow the host rolled back

to the south.

In honor of his triumph over the Saracens,

Charles received the name of the Hammer.

Without any imprudent attempt to pursue

the Mohammedan hordes beyond the limits of

safety, he nevertheless pressed his advantage

to the extent of driving them beyond the

Pyrenees. The province of Aquitaine was

recovered and permanently annexed to the

Frankish dominions. Charles continued to

rule the empire until his death in 741, when

the government descended to his two sons,

Carloman who received Austrasia, and

Pepin the Short, to whom was assigned the

remainder of the Frankish dominion. The

latter soon obtained possession of his Austrasian province, as well as his own, assumed the

name of king, and thus became the founder of the Carlovingian Dynasty.

On his first accession to power, Pepin

adopted the policy of his immediate predecessors and set up a Merovingian figurehead in

the person of Childeric III. This poor shadow

of an extinct House was made to play his part

until the year 752, when a decision was obtained from Pope Zachary in favor of the

Carlovingian family. Childeric was thereupon

shut up in a monastery, and Pepin the Short

was anointed and crowned as king by St.

Boniface in the cathedral of Soissons. He