The Normans (Norman: Normaunds; French Normands; Latin Nortmanni / Normanni; Old Norse: Norðmaðr) are an ethnic group formed by contact between Nordic Viking settlers from the French region named after Normandy and the indigenous Franks and Gallo-Romans. The Norman dynasty had a major political, cultural and military impact on medieval Europe and the Middle East. These are, in particular, England, southern Italy and the Crusaders.
The arrival of the Normans
The establishment of settlements in France followed a series of raids on the French coast, mainly from Denmark - although some also came from Norway and Sweden - and gained political legitimacy when the Viking leader Rollo agreed to swear allegiance to King Charles III of West France. after the siege of Chartres in 911 AD, the king tried in this way to solve the problem of expansion and predation of the Normans. The intermingling of the Nordic settlers and the indigenous Franks and Galloromans in Normandy brought an ethnic and cultural "Norman" identity in the first half of the 10th century, which continued to evolve over the centuries.
Characteristics of the Normans
The Normans were known for their fighting spirit and eventually their Catholic piety and became representatives of the Catholic Orthodoxy of the Romanesque community. The original Nordic settlers adopted the Gallo-Romanic language of the Frankish Empire in which they settled. Their Old Norman dialect became known as Norman, an important literary language still spoken in parts of Normandy (the Cotentinais and Cauchois dialects) and the nearby Channel Islands (Jèrriais and Guernésiais). The Duchy of Normandy, founded on the basis of a treaty with the French crown, was a great fief of medieval France, and during the reign of Richard I of Normandy, a cohesive and imposing principality was created under feudal influence. At the end of the reign of Richard I of Normandy in 996 (the surname "Richard sans Peur", meaning "Richard the Fearless"), the descendants of the northern settlers of the province were "not only Christians but especially the French" according to Cambridge Medieval History (Volume 5, Chapter XV). .Normans are known both for their culture (unique Romanesque architecture and musical tradition) and for significant military achievements and innovations. They also significantly influenced the history of the Mediterranean. They took part in a number of battles with the Arabs and were widely rewarded for their bravery. They briefly conquered southern Italy and Malta from the Saracens and Byzantines. Rainulf Drengot acquired in Italy in 1030 from Sergio IV. The county of Naples Aversa and a member of the Hauteville family Guaimar IV. from Salerno he later even acquired Apulia and Calabria as "Duke of Apulia and Calabria". Guaimar immediately rewarded his first commander, William, called the Iron Arm, with the Principality of Melfi. Drengot's son then acquired the principality of Capuu. These territorial gains culminated in the conquest of Sicily and Malta by the Arabs. Norman adventurers played a role in founding the Kingdom of Sicily under Roger II. in 1130. An expedition led by Duke William the Conqueror led to the Norman conquest of England, which they acquired in 1066 at the Battle of Hastings, and William the Conqueror became King of England. In 1072, William the Conqueror invaded Scotland and King Malcolm III. he was forced to submit to him. The Normans also sought government in Wales and Ireland. Norman and Anglo-Norman forces from the beginning of the eleventh to the middle of the thirteenth century contributed to the Spanish Reconquista. Scotland and Wales in the United Kingdom, Ireland and the coasts of North Africa and the Canary Islands. Heritage