The Baptism of Europe:
Christmas Day, 496
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In 481, Clodevech, the 16-year-old chief of one of the Frankish tribes, secured his father’s claim to kingship by exterminating all his cousins and rivals.At age 21, this chief, known to history as Clovis, led his tribe into the Seine valley. He killed the Roman governor there, taking the towns of Soissons, Rouen, Reims, and Paris. Then he marched through the Loire River valley to the borders of Brittany and secured his western border. Safe on one front, he moved against his cousins along the Rhine and killed them one by one. By 491, Clovis held all the Frankish princedoms except Cologne. He slew every prince of Meroving blood who fell into his hands, and he did his best to exterminate all other members of rival families who could lay claim to his throne. (more…)