September 1 (estimated), 911 Normandy

Today in History

The warlike men who sailed their longboats out of the north tormented the coastal UK and northwestern Europe, ever since their first appearance atLindisfarneMonastery in 793.

In the year 911, these “Norsemen” or “Normans” attacked the city of Paris. By July, they were holding the nearby town of Chartres under siege. Normans had burned the place to the ground back in 858 and would probably have done so again, but for their defeat at the battle of Chartres on July 20.

Even in defeat, these people presented a formidable threat. The Frankish King approached them with a solution.

King Charles III, known as “Charles the Simple” after his plain, straightforward ways, proposed to give the Normans the region from the English Channel to the river Seine. It would be the Duchy of Normandy, some of the finest farmlands in northwest Europe, and it would be theirs in exchange for…

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