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What was the role of a medieval king?

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Quick Answer

The roles of a king during Medieval Europe included land ownership, warfare leadership and lawmaker. A king allowed knights, barons and lords to live on his land, as long as they provided armies of men to fight wars. When kings fought neighboring kingdoms, he led his men into battle. Kings were supreme rulers of their lands, and they meted out justice as they saw fit.

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What was the role of a medieval king?
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Full Answer

Kings displayed many signs of their wealth and land ownership with huge castles adjacent to vast forests, rich clothing lined with jewels, and large amounts of weapons and armor. Horses, crops and livestock in the castle's keep kept the king supplied in case of a siege, drought or natural disaster.

In times of war, a king displayed his power by wielding armored cavalry in the form of knights on horseback. Medieval kings developed strategies, technology and weapons to defeat neighbors or invaders. Good armies were fiercely loyal to their king.

Laws were made and changed by kings. When clashing citizens came before kings, justice was doled out. Kings were not the only authority in Medieval Europe because the Catholic Church played a part in a king's reign. Charlemagne and his descendants, known as Holy Roman Emperors, were crowned by the Pope. When any of these kings strayed too far away from the church's teachings, the Pope excommunicated them if the pontiff wielded enough power.

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